Monday, January 10, 2011

Playing in the Snow

I have hated the cold for as long as I can remember! Snow just makes it more of a hassle! But I can tell you playing with a child in the snow makes it all worth it! Snow is actually FUN with kids!!
We went out to play this morning and at first Jake was really not at all interested. He was all most whining about having to walk through the snow to get to his toys in the garage. I tried to coax him out of the garage by making snowballs but he was happy watching me play in the snow. Finally, I pulled out a broom knowing that a broom would motivate him to come out and play.
Once he was out in the snow he started mimicking me playing with the snow. Then he started having fun! We built a  small snowman (his size) so that he could be able to help. Apparently, I have forgotten how to make a snowman OR the snow was not great packing snow because it kept coming apart. I guess it did not help that Jake was 'helping' by picking up snow and pushing it onto the snowman causing chunks to fall off. We got the snowman together, I put on the hat because I do not think Jake knew exactly what we were doing despite me verbalizing every step over and over. After the hat I gave Jacob two rocks to put on his face as eyes. We then put the scarf on together. We gave him stick arms and a carrot nose.
We were having so much fun I decided to let him keep playing for a little while. After all he had on layer upon layer! He could barely move and I have to admit I laughed a bit! He has a little toddler slide in the backyard that was covered in snow but that did not stop him from trying to climb up and slide down!
After seeing how slippery the wet slide was I made some snowballs and we slid them down for a while. Finally, I had to drag the little guy inside. I did not want him to spend too much time out in the cold! 

We went inside and enjoyed some hot chili to warm us up! Had to include this picture, he loves to eat! :)

This activity is a great example of Structured Play. There is a lot out there in non-support of structured play saying that children need more unstructured play time. I completely and totally agree that children need extended unstructured play time! But there is room for structured play especially for small children! Jacob would not have wanted to go outside nor play in the snow if I had not modeled for him what to do and how much fun it could be. Now he will want to play in the snow very chance he gets! Not a lot of planning to accomplish this activity yet so fun and rewarding! Structured play can be just getting down and dirty and modeling how to play! So go play today!

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