Many preschools are required to take students outside during the winter months even if it is cold and there is snow on the ground. As a teacher, navigating taking students outside to play in the snow can be a challenge. Here are a few tips to help make snowy day recesses more manageable.
Make Sure The Parents Know What To Send With Their Child
The first thing you need to do is make sure that parents know what to send to school with their children on a snowy day. Some parents may assume that you don't go outside in the snow and may not send anything if you don't communicate with them. Others may not fully understand the unique needs of getting a bunch of young students ready for a snow day, which is why it is so important to provide clear communication with your parents about what is needed for the winter months.
You can send home a newsletter or provide a laminated checklist for parents to keep at home to ensure that they have all the right snow day materials. Your list should include:
- Snow Boots
- 2 Pairs Of Mittens
- 2 Pairs Of Socks
- Extra Change Of Clothes
Children's mittens and socks can easily get wet while playing in the snow. They will need to put on a warm pair of socks when they go inside. If you have more than one outside play time, their mittens may get wet and they will need an additional pair for later that day.
An extra pair of clothing is necessary because sometimes kids get wet through their snow suit. Also, sometimes little ones are not able to make it to the bathroom and take off their snow gear in time, making extra clothes a necessity.
Additionally, make sure that you stress to the parents that all their children's snow gear needs to be labeled with their name and initials. This will help you more easily keep track of all this extra gear.
Enlist Extra Help Getting Your Students Dressed
When it comes to getting your class dressed to go outside, try to enlist extra help if possible. Most of your students are going to need some assistance getting ready. Try to stagger the times different classes in your daycare go outside so that extra help can be provided to the class getting ready to go outside.
Always Do A Bathroom Break First
Before your students get dressed, always send them to the bathroom first, even if they insist that they don't need to go right now. It can take a while to get students out of their snow gear and inside to use the bathroom. In order to avoid accidents, a bathroom break is a must before putting on snow gear.
Have An Activity Going On While Getting Your Students Dressed
It could take you a while to get all of your students ready, which is why it is important to have an activity going on while your students are getting dressed. Make it an activity they can engage in without a lot of supervision.
For example, put on an educational movie, and call students in small groups to come over and get dressed. When they are dressed, they can sit back down and continue to watch the educational movie until everyone is ready to go.
With the right gear on hand, some extra help, and an activity to engage the students waiting to get dressed or who are already dressed, you should be able to make it through snowy day recess without too many hiccups.