The National Weather Service is forecasting more severe storms this week for Sioux Falls and the surrounding areas. That news can be unsettling for parents who have children home alone during the day while they are working.

Storms can be scary for children but according to the Avera Children’s Child Life Educators, knowledge is power.

Betty Barto-Smith, Avera Children’s Certified Family Life Educator said the first thing children need to know is the difference between a watch and a warning.
She says kids need to know when the National Weather Service issues a severe weather alert they should be knowledgeable enough to know what precautions to take.

“Knowledge is power. If they feel as if they know what it is they need to do to keep themselves safe they can keep busy preparing themselves for a storm,” said Barto-Smith.

She said make sure your kids know where to go to stay safe in a severe storm. All families should have a plan and the child needs to know which room is the “safe room.”

Children should have access to weather information, flashlights and have a plan of action.

Barto-Smith said storms create fear in all ages, but that can be beneficial to a certain extent. “There’s a certain amount of fear that generates in this weather. We don’t want to be absolved of all fear, we want to give them the tools they need to protect themselves and keep themselves safe.”

Numerous thunderstorms are expected tonight and tomorrow. For the latest weather information check out the National Weather Service site.

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