An option to keep kids out of the cold when school is closed - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

An option to keep kids out of the cold when school is closed


Eau Claire (WQOW) - No school for today. No assigned homework. That's the sound of having fun. Josie Dallas, from Eau Claire, said she was excited to come to the Eau Claire Sports Center. "I hope we play some fun games," she said.

Many children in the area made some noise outside their homes while their parents spent the day at work. Amy Peterson-Foss, the executive director at the Eau Claire Sports Center, said parents scramble at the last minute arranging plans for their children when school is canceled.  "Sometimes some parents take the day off or sometimes they have their obligations that they have to take care of so the kids will come here with us," she said.

For one ten-year-old, Eau Claire native, Matthew Mauer said he wasn't sure why he couldn't just stay home but is glad he didn't. "My dad sent me here today and I'm having fun (smiles)."

Dallas said she was excited to spend the day at the sports center.  "School's out and my dad had to work so we came here, and it's really fun here."

And, having fun while getting a workout is key. Peterson-Foss said, "We offer care for them to be able to come here, play activities, and just be active throughout the day than just to be sitting at home."

An area day care agrees. Owner of the Eau Claire Family Day Care, Cassi Stoeklen, said, "Just making sure they stay active and doing some music and movement with them and just trying to really get through these next few days and letting them know that the sun will be a little warmer and that they'll get to go out soon."

As Dallas and Mauer described, some physical activities included big base and builders and destroyers. Peterson-Foss said, "So, half the group knocks down the cones, half the group picks them up, and they work together as a team to make that happen."

Stoeklen said children need to be active, especially during days they do not have school. "We do like to do some sensory activities with them, maybe bring in some snow and let's see how cold it is outside."

For Mauer, having the school canceled two days in a row was awesome. "I get to play sports and be with my friends," he said.

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