Cold weather keeps kids inside for recess, teachers prepare for - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Cold weather keeps kids inside for recess, teachers prepare for winter


Recess is an important part of the day for students.

For most of them, it's time to burn off some extra energy and breathe some fresh air. However, with temperatures dropping, teachers say keeping the kids safe and warm always comes first, even if that means staying inside.

At Advance Elementary, teachers say their classes have a 20 minute recess. However, when the wind chill gets to be 32 degrees or lower, they start cutting recess time down. If it's 15 degrees or colder, they don't go out at all for recess.

First Grade teacher Amy Gilmore says even though kids love their time outside, when it gets that cold, they're usually glad for the rule.

“Usually they're OK with it. They'll make little comments about ‘Oh, we didn't get to stay outside very long,' but they understand. You know, it's cold out there to them too. So, usually they're as ready to come in as we are, as teachers,” Gilmore said.

Gilmore says even when she can't take her class outside, they still get recess time. They play games in the classroom and hang out with their friends. Still, she says, it's not quite the same as being out on the playground.

“They need that time with their friends, that time to relax and unwind and have some fun, some non-structured time and that gets cut into when we can't go out and do that because of the weather,” Gilmore said.

Another aspect of cold weather safety is the ride to school. When your kids get on the school bus each morning, it'll likely be nice and toasty. That's because it could have been warming up a half hour longer during those cold mornings.

Richard Clayton, the bus mechanic at Advance, says letting the buses run before starting the routes along with preventative maintenance and mixed fuel that prevents gelling keeps the buses running at 100 percent.

He says as the winter gets colder, they also use timed heaters overnight to keep the engines in good shape.

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