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Snow Day Survival Tips

Eek! School is canceled, and you face a day at home with your energetic children. But the closing of school is an opening to create a memorable day.

"Embrace their excitement and enjoy the break in your normal routine," suggests Annie Seal, director of children's programs at Turning Point: The Center for Hope and Healing.

She recommends a variety of activities to make for a fun day – for everyone.

Get outside.

Bundle up and take your children outdoors to enjoy the weather. It's a great way for them to experience something new and burn off energy built up from being indoors.

Bring the outdoors in.

Grab a big tub and summer sand shovels and pails. Put a towel on your floor, fill the tub with snow, bring it inside and let the kids dig, tunnel and build. Voila! An indoor snow day.

Try to ban electronics.

Truly connect to each other by banning electronics (this goes for adults, too!). Make a conscious effort to keep your children away from tablets, cellphones, laptops and even movies. Stay away from video games and social media. Bring out old-school entertainment with board games, cards, charades, puzzles, even 20 Questions.

Play with science.

Weather-related experiments can both entertain and teach your children at the same time. Make snow ice cream or do other projects that demonstrate principles of science. A quick online search will help you find some great ideas appropriate for all ages.

Be artsy.

Get your children coloring or drawing. Stock up before the snow hits on markers, crayons and watercolors. Many craft stores have inexpensive ribbons, beads, feathers and more. Urge them to use their creativity to make their projects unique and reflect their imaginations.

Most of all, relax.

Let everyone stay in their pajamas all day. Eat breakfast later than usual. Eat breakfast for dinner. Just break your normal routine. Take time to laugh, play and just be together.

Of course, snow days are stressful when parents have tight deadlines at work or are unable to stay home. If you can stay home, try to look at it as an unexpected treat, and enjoy your day with your children. Make it a day you all will look back on and smile.

Learn more at Turning Point: The Center for Hope and Healing, a program of The University of Kansas Health System.

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