It’s snowing outside.
The snow reminds me that the best part of my school year growing up was snow days. Snow days meant I could do whatever I wanted and play outside. I remember feeling bad for kids who didn’t live in areas where it snowed and couldn’t have such glorious days of snow forts and snow ball fights.
The only times I prayed to God as a kid was for a bike when I was ten, and for snow days.
Adult me can dissect why snow days were so special:
- Creating with my hands. I loved building and making things, and snow meant snow forts with unlimited supplies. We would try out different kinds of structures and wall thicknesses. One time we even got the dome over top like an igloo. Forty years later I can still remember every inch of that snow fort.
- Collaboration with others. Snow days we would all rush outside and just start at someone’s house. It wasn’t organized by adults and we got to set goals and work together. We would have some awesome structures by end of day and fun snow ball fights.
- Open-ended discovery. No adult directed us step-by-step on the proper procedure for building a snow fort or making snow balls. We each figured out ways to do it and then compared processes. We banned the boy who would put icicles in his snow balls. Cold water sprinkled on snow fort walls harden them. If you start from where the plow made a mound of snow, your fort was done by lunch. Benches made of snow are a nice touch inside.
- Independence. I managed myself, my time and my work. It was a glimpse into adulthood. At school I was told where to sit, what to do, and when to do it. I had homework to do too so even my time out of school was managed by school. Snow days meant no homework that day so 24 hours of freedom.
Homeschooling is a snow day every day, but without the snow most days. The bus doesn’t come to take the kids away. You can make things and get messy. You can play with whoever you pick, and however you want to play. You get control over what you study. And you can drink hot chocolate anytime.