13 - 15 Months

There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing

Jessica Rolph, Co-founder and CEO of Lovevery, holding her daughter outside in the snow

In many Scandinavian countries, it’s not uncommon to see a line of strollers filled with sleeping babies parked outside a café, even in the dead of winter. It may be cold, the thinking goes, but time outdoors is so valuable for a baby’s health that there are benefits despite—and maybe even because of—the conditions.

We all know intuitively that outside playtime for children is good for them, and research supports that. Yet giving our children that free time outside in nature can feel harder than it was for our parents and grandparents.

Here are some simple ways to have fun outside, even when it’s cold or rainy:

Prepare for the weather

Before you head out, talk about the weather and how to dress for it: “today is cold so we need a coat and gloves” or “today is sunny so we should wear hats to protect our faces.”

Paint with water

Toddler sitting outside playing with water and rocks

In any conditions other than snow or rain, your child can paint pavement with a tub of water and a brush.

Draw with chalk

Young child walking on a line of chalk outside

Chalk also works in almost any weather. Draw a line on the pavement and have your toddler follow simple directions like walking along it or standing at the end/middle/beginning of the line. You can also draw several lines and count out loud.

Water the plants

Young child outside putting dirt into an orange pot

Have your toddler water plants outside. If you have access to a garden, they will love digging, picking, planting, and even weeding!

Go on a treasure hunt

Toddler sitting in the grass playing with a container filled with rocks and pinecones

Bring a container and go on a treasure hunt for leaves, rocks, pinecones, grass, sticks, and flowers.

Practice balance

Toddler walking on rocks being supported by a woman

Your toddler may not be ready to balance on their own, but they will love balancing on a curb or a rock with your help.

Go on a rain walk 

Toddler standing outside with dirt on their face while holding a leaf

Going on a “rain walk” can be exciting if everyone is dressed for the weather. Look for puddles, bugs, worms, and gutters overflowing with water.

More ideas for fun outdoor play for all seasons here at Tinkergarten.*

* At Tinkergarten, we help children to unlock their natural learning ability, building skills to become ready to learn, ready to thrive and ready for anything. We empower parents to be their child’s #1 teacher, giving them their life’s most important gift—to learn how to learn. With over a decade of design and continuous improvement in our program, and hundreds of thousands of families served, our unique method of activating a child’s learning is tested, proven and beloved. Each of our outdoor play experiences is engineered to marry the latest science, with the wisdom of the ages, and the wonder of childhood to teach creativity, empathy, focus, persistence and more


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Posted in: 13 - 15 Months, Balance, Real World Play, Water Play, Child Development

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