Quick weather changes create challenges for kids

WICHITA, Kan. As we navigate the up and down temperatures of a Kansas fall, what our kids are wearing when they head out the door becomes critical to a productive day at school.

“When you have cold weather in the morning, and then it's hot during the afternoon. It definitely makes things interesting,” says Cornelia Stevens, Executive Director of Top Early Learning Centers.

Connor Christensen, a kindergarten teacher at Apollo Elementary in Goddard, says students perform better when they are better prepared for the weather.

“If a student goes outside, and they don't have the right coat, they might get too cold. Then they can't focus when they come in,” says Christensen. “They are just worried about warming back up. They are just worried about not having their hands and their ears cold.”

Stevens agrees and says making sure the littlest ones have plenty of layers and options is key.

“We want to make sure if it's 35-40 degrees outside, that our children are bundled up and warm,” Stevens explains. “At this stage especially, a lot of the body heat leaves from their head, feet, and hands. We want to make sure that our children are safe.”

Many will tell you the cold weather itself does not make you sick, but Christensen says he does see a correlation with his students.

“As it does get colder, I think you do see the illnesses and the sickness rise,” says Christensen.

That means extra cleaning in the classroom, to make sure those germs stay in check.

“We've got a lot of Clorox wipes,” Christensen chuckled. “That comes on the list at the beginning of the year. We use them often. Daily as it gets colder.”

Both teachers say hand washing is critical this time of year, and they encourage parents to make it a habit at home as well.