Winter is officially upon us.
With these winter months comes the cold, dark and the desire to hibernate. That's no different for children. In winter, kids tend to spend more time inside, but outside play is incredibly important for child development and burns off energy which never seems to be in short supply. ParentSavvy expert Doctor Arispe recommends 60 minutes of physical activity a day for kids and adults too.
When there's snow on the ground, it's a perfect time to play outside with your kids. Snowmen building, sledding, and snow ball fights. Don't forget the shoveling too; if you turn it into a game, your kids may enjoy the winter chore. Even if snow isn't available, a bundled up walk around the block or a trip to the park is still a good option.
In the frigid Midwest, winter safety can be a concern. If you pay attention to the wind chill, playing outside is still an option to get in some of those 60 minutes. If the wind chill is above 32° and your kids are dressed warmly, they're fine to play outside. If the wind chill dips below 32°, Dr. Arispe advises caution. You can read more in his Cold Weather Activity Precautions for Your Kids post.
Now you may be asking yourself, "My kids and I want to play in the snow, but the wind chill is too low. What can I do?"
Well, I'm glad you asked. The Omaha Children's Museum can help. Our newest exhibit Snowville brings the fun of snow inside. It's a good chance to work in those 60 minutes of exercise too. Visit the North and South Pole where you'll encounter some polar bears. Scale Mount Everest and venture through an ice cave, play ice hockey, build an igloo, and have your own snowball fight with the snowball launcher. Snowville is free with regular museum admission or membership and is open January 23 through April 10, 2016.