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Winter Weather Awareness

Baby It’s Cold Outside! Some of you may be familiar with this “old” song. Well, it sure is Winter out there, and this is a reminder for parents and guardians to make sure that your child is prepared for Winter weather. We at Earthwork Programs want to make sure that your child is ready to enjoy all the fun and exciting activities that are planned for this season.

The first and most important fact: all of our Programs are totally outside based, which means that in the Winter we are: OUTSIDE CONTINUOUSLY FOR 5 TO 6 HOURS (9:30am – 2:00pm).

Here is a guide to help you plan and prepare your child to be comfortable and to keep warm and dry this Winter. The following recommendations come from our experience and are backed up with information gleaned from notable sources such as: Appalachian Mountain Club, Outward Bound, NOLS Leadership School and winter safety sites.

CLOTHES
Layers
• Kids should dress warmly using layers of clothes. If the top layer gets wet from snow or rain, they can peel off some clothes down to a dry layer.
• Dress them in long underwear, a turtleneck, a sweater or fleece and of course a warm waterproof or water-repellent jacket.
• Add more layers depending on the temperature.

Avoid Cotton
• It does not insulate; when wet it gets very coldddd!
• Stick with wool, synthetic, or fleece fabrics which wick away water and tend to keep one warmer.

Waterproof Clothing
• Waterproof pants and jackets are great top layers because they don’t let the wetness seep in to the other clothing.

Neck Warmer
• In addition to a warm jacket, it is important to maintain the body’s heat by wearing something on the neck. For example, scarf, neck gaiter – similar to one on the feet or a balaclava – neck warmer with a hood.

Socks
• Warm socks of wool, synthetic or fleece will feet warm and dry.
• A second sock is advised for added warmth if there is enough room for the toes to wiggle around.

Gloves
• Gloves need to be waterproof and roomy so they can easily come on and off during breaks or if it warms up.
• Back-up and/or inner gloves are important if the first ones get wet.

Hats
• A warm hat–wool, fleece or synthetic that covers the ears.
• Even if there is a hood on your child’s jacket, a hat often more comfortable and makes it easier to see and hear and move around.

Boots
• Waterproof boots that are spacious enough so that toes can move around make for warmer and more comfortable feet.

FOOD/WATER
Food
• Children use up a lot of energy staying warm as well as being active and need to have plenty of food with them.
• Warm food in a thermos helps take the chill of eating when we stop for breaks.
• Plenty of food especially protein; EXTRA sandwiches, snacks – nuts, dried fruit etc.

Water
• It is essential that every child have 16 oz. or more container of water. Water is the most important drink as it replenishes water lost in sweating and keeps everything flowing.
• A warm beverage in a thermos is great as it keeps the kids warm when we stop for breaks.
• Milk and soda are okay as an addition to water, but not as a substitute.