The weather predictions are in, and there is the buzz of a classroom that only impending snow can bring. When you know you just won’t be able to reign in the excitement of winter with your typical lessons, you need a stack of quick and easy snowman activities you can reach for that is relevant and can keep your students engaged. Don’t miss the free printable activity linked at the end of this post!
After we get that first snow in New England, it’s always like little bits of it seem to linger until the first signs of spring. Aside from the skinned knees and pulled muscles from slipping on ice… I don’t mind the winter weather. What I do know is that the snow can get our elementary students so excited. Cue the first snowflake of a snowfall and you’ve got finger and nose prints all over your classroom window. Sound familiar?
One of the reasons I love thematic units in January and February is that they are a great chance to harness the excitements and curiosities that students already bring with them to school in order to engage them in meaningful learning tasks whether it’s winter literacy centers or math stations. Throw in a fun science lesson and you’ve sealed the deal!
The great thing about this theme is also that you don’t need to block a week off in the plan book. You can either gently use snowman themed read alouds all winter long, throw in a few here or there, or even have them handy in case there is a chance of snow in that forecast.
You need something ready to go, so here are 8 of my favorite must have printable snowman activities that I always keep prepped and ready at my fingertips to use year after year!
1. How to Make a Snowman Procedural Writing
The magic of a snowman can not be denied. When I use fun topics like this to practice sequencing and procedural writing lessons, student engagement and excitement about the lesson increases. When pulling the ideas out of them doesn’t take all the work, we can focus on the nuts and bolts of the how-to writing lesson.
This particular ready to go resource includes both 4 and 8 step sequencing so whether your students are preschoolers, first graders, or second graders, you can find a way to make this resource just right for them!
2. Snowman Spinner Activities – Printable Phonics Game
Winter, spring, or fall… no matter the season I am always looking for printable lessons that will meet the needs of many different students. When differentiation is built in, I know I can reach for that activity at any given time.
This print and go spinner center is a great way to practice reading words with short vowels, digraphs, or even diphthongs. This makes for a wonderful word work or word building center. It is also fun and a little competitive with the bump nature of the game (don’t worry, directions are included).
I love that students can practice reading words over and over again and when they are working with a partner they are also checking each others reading which means… double decoding!
I love that you can have different students working on the same station but the skill that is just right for them. Maybe you have students working on basic short vowel word families with one student. Give that group or pair the directions to use one of the short vowel spinners and game mats.Whereas if you have a pair ready for digraphs or diphthongs for example, you can choose that spinner!
3. Winter Color by Code Activities
When I was little, color by code was one of my FAVORITE types
of activities to do. It was calming and I didn’t even know I was learning or practicing a skill!
While this resource includes more than just snowman pictures, each of my winter color by number resource includes a few snowman pictures.
If you have diverse learners in your class, you can use the bundle to have all three versions so students can be working on the same picture but with an entirely different skill that is just right for them!
I’ve written a bunch about why I love color by code resources (read more here) as well as how to use them in the classroom but in short, I love that they are print and go, great for subs, and help with fluency practice in a fun way!
4. Silly Snowman Printable Sentence Building Center Activity
When your students are ready for fluency and identifying complete sentences, this center is perfect for winter. My first graders always loved this writing center in January. I love that there are so many options so I can leave it our for quite a while before students get bored of it.
In this center, students flip over two snowballs to create a sentence. First students will turn over the snowballs, then flip two and decide if it makes a sentence. If so, they can use the recording sheet to write and draw the sentence. Some of them are basic and typical things, but some sentences can get silly and we all know little learners LOVE silly!
If you’re working on a certain skill, you can also give students additional directions and goals such as:
*Highlight or underline the nouns/verbs/subject/predicate
*Circle every letter ____
*Find any letters that make the ___ sound
*Use a capital letter at the beginning of the sentence.
*Use finger spaces between words
*Use end punctuation
I love how you can take a ready made station that is print and go and with a simple addition of a direction really cater the activity to the needs of your students!
5. Snowman Math Printables
Looking for a back pocket sort of worksheet perfect for guest teachers or that extra 10 minutes that pops up during the day? This packet is perfect for wintertime.
From write the room activities, to basic winter worksheets, to a three in a row game, this resource has so many print and go snowman resources you can use right away!
6. Snowmen At Night Printable Story Activities
If you read the Snowmen at Night or Snowmen at Work stories, these activities will be perfect for your students. Although some of the pages reference the book, there are also pages that ask students to write a narrative story, retell any snowman story, and more.
Long story short, if you’re reading snowman stories at all, you can get some use out of this.
I’ve also included two cut and paste sentence activities in this resource. It’s a great early finisher task, writing center, or even a quick and easy activity to leave for a substitute or to leave in substitute emergency plans!
Speaking of snowman stories, if you want to see some of my favorites, I’ve listed them on this post!
7. The Snowy Day Printable Emergent Reader
Printable emergent readers are great for providing students with fluency practice once they have mastered the phonics skills included. Through read aloud they can also be used with students who aren’t yet ready to read.
The included vocabulary cards can be introduced to support before, during and after reading activities.
Most importantly the sequencing comprehension activities that follow bring value both to your readers and listeners as they build reading comprehension skills.
This is another great one to use with reading groups, as a whole group read aloud, or even to send home after a snowy day. I also like to leave these sorts of printable booklets that have the follow up activities as substitute plans since they can be done as a whole group or in small groups as well!
8. Snowman Color Free Printable Booklet
Take all the reasons I love printable emergent readers (like the ones I’ve listed above) and make them free… even better! This resource includes a printable booklet and instead of corresponding follow up activities, the goal is for students to identify and read the color words and then to color the picture to match.
This is a great way to have students practicing reading, fine motor skill of color, and identifying color words. It’s like the comprehension is built right into the color!