#339: Sleigh Ride

Put on your warm clothes, grab a blanket, and go for a sleigh ride!

Don't have a horse and sleigh? Some ranches provide sleigh rides in the winter as do some winter carnivals/festivals as well as some winter resorts.

Make this a family activity: Pile the whole family in the sleigh--if they all fit!

This activity promotes peace and an enjoyment of nature.


#338: Watch the Northern Lights

On a cold night in the winter, sometimes you can see aurora borealis in the sky to the north.

Make this a family activity: Admire the northern lights together.

This activity promotes an awareness of the Earth's atmosphere and the beauty of nature.


#337: New Year's Resolution

Tonight we say goodbye to 2009 and hello to the year 2010.

On New Year's Eve (today), many people make New Year's resolutions. A New Year's resolution is something you decide to do in the new year. Usually, a resolution is something you promise to do that will help make you a better person in some way. It can be simple like trying to remember to make your bed every morning to bigger things like not picking on the small kid in your class anymore.

Do you have something you would like to do in the new year? Make it a resolution and try not to break it!

Make this a family activity: ask your family what resolutions they are making.

This activity promotes self-development and self-awareness.


#336: Dare to Compare

Take a look around. Are there things you can compare?

This is a great game for those boring times when you are waiting around somewhere. Hey, it's fun even if you're just looking out the window!

Here are a few ideas to get you started in Dare to Compare: What season is it? Winter? Okay, how many people are wearing boots? How many are wearing shoes? What about hats? If it is summer, you can compare things like how many people are wearing shorts. How many aren’t wearing shorts?

What else can you compare? How about Tall vs. short. Colours (Black pants vs. blue pants or Silver cars vs. black cars.) Birds. Or make it harder and compare more than one thing like Cars vs. Trucks vs. Vans. You can compare anything and everything!

Make this a family activity: Each member of your family picks one thing to watch for. They count how many they see. Then, get together and compare.

This activity promotes math skills as well as visual identification skills and detail awareness.


#335: Find Your First Name in the Newspaper

Pull out a newspaper and flip through it. Can you find your first name somewhere in the pages?

Make this a family activity: Is everyone's name in the paper?

This activity promotes literacy skills.


#334: What Time Is It Mr. Wolf?

Number of players needed for 'What Time is it Mr. Wolf': 4 or more.

One player is the wolf and everyone else stands far away at a starting point. The wolf keeps their back to the other players (and cannot peek). Everyone asks together, “What time is it Mr. Wolf?” The wolf says a time and everyone moves towards the wolf that number of steps. For example, if he says “12 o’clock”, everyone takes 12 steps.

After everyone has moved forward, they ask the time again. If the wolf replies “Time to eat you!” everyone runs back to the starting point. The wolf tries to tag players. If a player is caught, they are out. Keep playing until all players are caught. The last player caught by the wolf, becomes the wolf for the next game.

Variations: Eaten players join the wolf.

Make this a family game: Who gets to be the wolf first?

This activity promotes counting skills and speed.


#333: Thumb War

One, two, three, four, I declare a thumb war! Thumbs, get in your corners. Ready? Three, two, one, go!

Thumb Wars or Thumb Wrestling:

Two players face each other. The players hold right hands and curl their fingers into each other’s palms so their hands ‘lock’. Both players touch the tips of their thumbs together. See which player can pin down the other player’s thumb under their thumb for three seconds. They are the winner of that round in thumb war.

Make this a family activity: Have a thumb wrestling tournament with your family.

This activity promotes dexterity, strategy making, and fine motor skills.