Tips for Preparing Kids to Play in the Snow

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preparing kids to play in the snow

Preparing Kids to Play in the Snow

Preparation is the key to playing outside in the snow. If you are prepared, your family can have a great time playing, even in the winter weather. If you’re not prepared, snow play can be a miserable experience for everyone. Try using these tips and enjoy your time outside longer!

You don’t need snow suits or snow boots to have fun in the snow (although boots are nice if the snow is deep). For the most comfortable experience outside in the snow, layer clothes.

Wear sweats or long underwear under jeans (or wear two pairs of jeans). They’ll stay warmer and when they get snow on the outer pair of pants, it doesn’t melt and make them wet, cold and miserable.

A turtleneck or t-shirt under a sweater with a coat on top will keep everyone warm even if they crash their sleds in the snow.

Put double socks on everyone and double mittens and gloves if needed. Again, this is not just for warmth. Double gloves will make it less likely that the snow will melt through them, keeping the kids (or mom and dad) more comfortable.

Keep everyone’s feet dry. Put plastic bags over socks. Use a rubber band to hold them up or tie the handles of the bags around their legs. Then put their shoes on. Pull their pants down over the tops of the plastic bags. Wet feet will cause everyone to feel colder, but keeping their feet dry will enable them to stay out and have fun longer.

kids playing outside in the snow

For children, purchase many identical pairs of gloves. Santa brought our three older kids ten pairs of black gloves. That way, when one pair gets wet we can just trade it for a dry one. Each kid can soak two or three pairs of gloves in one day’s sledding. By the way, Santa only paid $5 for all them on sale after Thanksgiving.

When you don’t have a hat, wrap a scarf over your head to cover your ears.

Quick Hand Warmers – Microwave potatoes for 2-3 minutes until very hot. After you remove from the microwave, wrap in foil, then wrap in a towel and put inside a cooler. When you need to thaw your hands, pull one out and wrap your hands around it for a quick warm up. When you’re done, dinner is ready. – Just add sour cream and butter 😉

Make hot cocoa and some cookies as a snack to warm everyone up. Warming them up on the inside allows them to stay outside longer. Once everyone is back inside, put wet mittens and shoes over heating vents or near a fireplace or wood stove to dry.


P.S. Please don’t post all your safety concerns about drying near a fireplace. We assume most of our readers have good old fashioned common sense in this area.

For more money saving ideas with kids check out our Saving with Kids E-book set.


  1. says

    here are some tips I have learned over the years of living in the snow belt of Ontario and then the cold belt of Northern Ontario.

    scarfs are not the greatest unless they are tucked into the coat. They get caught on things and get wet and cold. tuck them into the coats and they add warmth to the chest area.

    use face masks. those toques with full face just your eyes out if it is cold and windy.

    wool gloves and mitts are great for cold but they get wet and icy when in the snow. Nylon gloves or mitts are better as they don’t get wet.

    Ski-doo boots are the best but can be pricey so if you find boots with felt liners they are great. If they get wet take the liners out to dry over night.

    baggy flannelet pj’s are warmer than long underwear. or track pants under long pants are also better.

    Ski jackets and ski pants are wonderful since if you decide to go sliding you don’t need a sled just sit down and slide. Most children prefer that to lugging a sled up the hill.

    Stick a granolla bar into a pocket as each child leaves. it will give them energy to play longer and you won’t have to wipe up slush off the entrance way when they would normally come in for a snack.

  2. LittleLori says

    Great timing for us. We just moved to ON from FL and we are trying to adapt. We are ready to have an outside day now.

  3. Sheri says

    I had some nice leather gloves that got wet from the snow. I set them by the fireplace to dry out. Not a good idea! They shrank and contorted so that I could not wear them again. Leather needs to dry slowly…

    I wore wool in the snow and that kept me warm, even when the pants got wet! I did not shrink them either…

    Polar fleece seems to stay dry. I made micro fleece leggings and they are cozy!

    Perhaps using plastic bags over one pair of gloves and putting mittens over them might be better. I have never liked using plain knit gloves for the snow. It’s not long before their hands are freezing. I never tried layering the gloves…

    When we go to the mountains to play in the snow, we pack clean dry clothes for the return trip in the car, plus towels to dry off with. It’s almost like going to the beach, but colder…

    Hot food in the car does help a lot!

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