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Snow much fun!

Love it or hate it, ice and snow is all over Calgary from October to April! There are plenty of ways to use snow and ice as an open-ended toy, play structure and science experiment – here are just a few ideas!

Snow silhouettes. Find a patch of untouched snow and lie down! Wave your arms and legs to make a snow angel, or try to capture funny poses. Carefully stand up so you don’t ruin your artwork. 

Snow castles. Use pop bottles, sandcastle molds, mixing bowls and buckets to pack snow and then create molded snow castles! This is a great technique for decorating a basic snow fort, too. 

Obstacle course. Dig trenches and build hurdles and slides out of packed snow to create your very own obstacle course. 

Snowflake observation. Put a sheet of dark construction paper in the freezer, then take it outside during a snowfall. Look at the flakes carefully and talk about the different shapes, then take photos and draw the snowflakes you observed.

Snow gallery. There are so many more choices for snow sculptures than your basic snowman! Try sculpting animals, aliens, landmarks or create some abstract art out of snow. You can decorate your sculptures with clothes and objects from inside, or use items from nature like sticks and berries that will biodegrade. 

Snow painting. Tint some water in a squeeze or spray bottle with a few drops of food coloring, then use some freshly fallen snow as your canvas! Draw silly faces, write your name or create a beautiful rainbow effect on your lawn. 

Blow bubbles. What happens to bubbles when they freeze in cold weather? There’s only one way to find out! 

Create an ice lantern. Place objects from nature, biodegradable glitter or even little toys in a bundt pan. Fill it with water and put it outside on a cold winter night. The next day, slide your ice lantern out of the pan and put a tea light in the middle! Why not make a few and decorate your sidewalk? 

Ice bricks. Use a rectangular loaf pan or food container and make bricks of ice (these look great with some food coloring!) Freeze them outside. Make a bunch and stack them into towers or walls. 

Treasure hunt. Bury small items in deep fluffy snow, then give your kids a shovel and let the search begin! (Make sure you know where you buried everything or use items from nature!) 

Snowball target practice. Hang a homemade bullseye target on a fence, a tree or the side of a building. Take turns trying to throw your snowball as close as you can to the center of the target. 

The biggest pile. This may seem simple, but there’s nothing as fun as a huge pile of snow! You may have to ask your neighbors if you can borrow their snow or build this in a large field. All you need is a couple shovels and perseverance. See how big you can make your pile! 

Snow forts. This is a classic childhood pastime here in Calgary! Make walls, domes, tunnels and trenches out of snow. If you have a house with a front yard, why not see if the neighbors want to join in and build adjoining forts in their yards, too? CCM


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