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10 of the Best Snow Day Resources, Activities, Ideas and Recommended Reads for EYFS and Primary

It's snowing! Make the most of it with these weather-related activities for students to enjoy indoors and out

  • 10 of the Best Snow Day Resources, Activities, Ideas and Recommended Reads for EYFS and Primary

1 | Winter mark making

Being outdoors enables children to observe and appreciate the beautiful, breathtaking changes in nature. It also supports physical development and facilitates unique adventures in play across all areas of learning.

Make sure children are wrapped up warm in hats, gloves and scarves for some wintry mark making with these ideas from Fiona Bland. There’s snow painting, natural art, making ice sculptures of hands and using frozen paints.

Check out these ideas here.

2 | Use Your Body to Draw Giant Snowmen

Help pupils understand how size relates to quantity with Martin Saunders’ measurements lesson for KS1 maths.

They’ll learn how to measure using non-standard units, create a ruler based on any object, measure using body-based units of measurement and use teamwork and problem solving to create giant shapes without a ruler.

Download this free PDF here.

3 | Fun Ideas For Early Years Outdoor Learning, Whatever The Weather

Getting out in the cold and wet might feel like an unnecessary hassle – but with some thought, it can provide many rewarding and stress-free experiences for children.

By following these simple suggestions from Juno Hollyhock, you can make venturing out a slightly less daunting prospect.

Check them out here.

4 | Over and Under the Snow KS1 book topic

Over And Under the Snow lets children discover forest animals by going beneath the winter white crust of snow into a hidden world of hibernating creatures. They can look at habitats, camouflage, food and the seasons through artwork, discussion and writing.

Get this free book topic here.

5 | Develop Investigative Skills With The Question ‘Should Snowmen Wear Coats?’

We put on clothing to stay warm, so is dressing up Frosty going to keep him cool or hasten his demise? The next time there’s a snow day, use the opportunity to do some great science investigations. Ask KS2 students to find out whether or not their snowmen will last longer with or without clothing.

Children will be encouraged to develop their investigative skills: ‘planning’; ‘obtaining and presenting evidence’; and ‘considering evidence and evaluating’.

They will also learn about changes of state and thermal insulation. The investigation aim will be to determine whether a snowman will remain frozen longer if it is insulated.

You can do this investigation in full scale or with miniatures, and if it doesn’t turn out to be a white Christmas, you can model the conditions using ice cubes and bring the fun indoors any time.

Download this resource freely here.

6 | Cross-curricular topic: The science of snow

Deborah Herridge lays out four activities you can do in winter weather: modelling the Earth’s temperature, assessing the impact of melting ice, investigating insulation and discovering nature’s ways of beating the cold.

Click here to check these activities out in depth.

7 | Art for winter

The season of winter provides a rich source of inspiration for artists of all ages. Famous artists and children can be equally excited by bare wintry trees, snowflakes, snow scenes and, of course, winter festivals such as Christmas and Chinese New Year.

There are countless ideas that can be linked to the new EYFS expressive arts and design area of learning – and Judith Harries lays out a few here to get you started.

Take a look here.

8 | Shackleton’s Journey KS2 book topic

Take your class on a perilous journey through the icy waters of Antarctica with William Grill’s book Shackleton’s Journey.

Write a persuasive letter from both perspectives: Shackleton trying to get people to sign up for a dangerous journey, and the men who applied to be crew members. Learn about the rigours of the mission and the perils of the freezing climate.

Download this free KS2 book topic here.

9 | Explore meteorology with Shakespeare

Blow, blow thou winter wind – this English/geography resource for KS1 uses a selection of counters and pictures to let pupils consider what people of Shakespeare’s time would have worn in different weather conditions.

Get it here.

10 | Recommended snow-themed reads

1. Last Stop on the Reindeer Express by Karl James Mountford
When Mia’s dad can’t make it home for Christmas, everything seems to lose its sparkle. If only she could find a way to at least get her card to him…

Enter a mysterious postbox and an unforgettable adventure that whisks Mia across snow-cloaked mountains and exotic streets lit by paper stars. But will she reach her dad in time for Christmas?

Join Mia on her journey through peek-through pages and hidden flaps that leave us feeling the warmth of Christmas – cinnamon, sugar and smoky wood – yet reminds us that family is what truly makes it special, no matter how far away they might be.

2. It’s Snow Day by Richard Curtis
You can practically hear the soundtrack starting as soon as you turn to the first page of this, Richard Curtis’ second collaboration with the wonderful Rebecca Cobb.

Once again, he’s produced a title for the festive season (following the pair’s first work, The Empty Stocking) – and once again, he taps into the romantic, nostalgic, shamelessly sentimental spirit that characterises this time of year in the way that he does so very well, whether as author or director.

All the ingredients for a classic Curtis tear-jerker are here: the grumpy teacher, hiding memories of a joyless childhood; the angry, defiant, ‘difficult’ pupil who is actually just desperate for his dad’s attention; and a thick blanket of snow that changes the familiar school environment into a place where the two of them are able to reveal their real selves.

This is a book that’s very easy to love.

3. I Want Snow by Tony Ross
Tony Ross’ feisty Little Princess returns with a suitable frosty offering for Christmas.

When the Queen gets to feed the penguins, the princess decides she wants snow too – cue imaginative efforts to satisfy her (sandmen, instead of snowmen; mudballs instead of snowballs), which, predictably, don’t go down well…

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