As a blogger, I may be compensated in some way (either pay, product, or experience) for sharing the post below All opinions are my own. ~Heidi
Just because the ground hasn’t completely thawed doesn’t mean you can’t get your kids excited for spring. By doing fun projects on cold, rainy, or wintery days, you can spark your children’s imaginations and have tons of fun, even before spring starts. Here are three fun and educational spring-themed activities that you can do with your kids.
Creating a Terrarium to Move Outdoors
Take a clear 2 liter plastic bottle and cut it in half. Fill the bottom up with dirt so it is a couple inches high. Now find a store that sells earth worms (anywhere with fishing supplies or some convenience stores) and get a few sheets of cardboard or foam board and some flower seeds. Now you’ll be ready to help your kids learn about plants and how they grow!
Let your kids look at the earth worms and then place one on top of the soil in a plastic bottle. You can teach them about how they help to make the dirt healthier and help plants to grow. Let them watch as the earth worm buries itself into the soil. Then have them plant their flower seeds. Small ferns, marigolds, and other low maintenance plants are popular for this. Next you should cut out squares and rectangles to make a barn from the foam board and let your kids tape it together. Have them decorate the barn with crayons and name it!
Now your kids will have a farm that they can watch grow and a pet earth worm to help the seeds to sprout. They can learn the importance of taking care of something by having to water their mini farms and finding somewhere to place them that has enough sunlight. Setting up a schedule for watering their plants can also help to teach them responsibility. Buy them a kids robe and a pair of slippers that matches your own, and have them water the terrarium in the morning with you. It will help them feel more grown up and can create a really special bond between you and your kids. Once the weather gets warmer, they can take their farms and flowers outside and plant them in your garden.
Growing Their Own Rainbow Foods
Another fun educational indoor activity is growing your own rainbow foods. The easiest one to do is celery. First, cut off half an inch to one inch of celery from the base of the stocks. Take the base of the stocks and cut a slit into it, and place each stalk in a different cup. Add a couple of drops of food coloring and over the next few weeks, your celery should start to grow and turn the color of your food coloring!
If you want to go even further with growing your own food, green onions, lettuce and some other veggies can be regrown using similar methods. Once the ground gets warm enough, you can even bring your colored veggies outside and let your kids plant them into the ground. Helping them to start a garden in the winter and then grow their own food for the summer is a great way to get your kids excited about cooking, eating healthily and also learning about science and where food comes from.
Creating a Fun Bird’s Nest
One craft that can turn any room into a bird sanctuary is making string birds’ nests with fun birds. All you need are small balloons, square sheets of paper, and your favorite papier-mâché recipe.
Blow up the balloons and tie them. Have your kids cut the balloon string into long strips, and then dip the strips into the papier-mâché mix and wrap the balloons. Once they are done, set the balloons carefully on wax paper and let them dry. As the balloons dry, read your kids the story of the 1,000 paper cranes and teach them how to make origami birds. Once the paper mache eggs are dry and your kids have created an aviary of paper birds, pop the balloons and throw the remaining pieces of rubber away so no one plays with them or tries to eat them. Now, your kids will have some really cool looking bird nests waiting for their feathered friends to come call them home. Have your kids glue the birds on or in the nest and then they can hang them in your house to help make it feel more like spring and summer.
Having your kids learn about gardening and growing food and having fun while doing it can help to teach them about responsibility and get them excited about eating healthily. By teaching them new craft ideas and reading them inspirational stories you can also help them to use their creativity and learn new things like origami. Each of these activities will help them to learn about nature, use their imaginations, and keep them having fun until they can go outside and play again.