With the winter cold and snow upon us, it’s tempting to restrict children to indoor play. Safety concerns, the effort of bundling up, and worry over exposure to cold often limit children’s access to exercise and activities during the winter season.
How Can Winter Weather Benefit Your Children?
However, the cold weather offers benefits to health, wellbeing, and development. The winter landscape opens up a whole new opportunity for creativity and adventure. Fallen leaves, piles of snow, frozen puddles, and icicles are very different from the summer grass and flowers. Your children will not only approach the winter environment with fresh excitement, but engage in new problem-solving skills. How can they successfully form a snowball? Can they navigate a snow-covered hill? How can they form the facial features and limbs of a snowman? Walking through the snow, sledding, building a fort, or ice skating are new challenges which require different body movement and encourage gross motor development.
Fresh Air is Good for Your Kids Health!
While many adults tend to blame the cold temperatures for colds and flu, an increased exposure to bacteria and viruses is actually what’s responsible. Contaminants become trapped in tightly sealed homes, and without access to fresh air, the potential for illness is much higher. Getting outside and breathing fresh air is a healthy choice.
The outdoor environment also provides necessary vitamins. Although the sun is not as warm during the winter, exposure still provides children with vitamin D. Vitamin D increases serotonin levels in the brain, which regulates mental and emotional moods and keeps us happy. Although the ground is covered in a heavy blanket of snow, there’s still plenty of rewarding and enjoyable activities for children outdoors.