When the weather report calls for rain and stormy conditions, parents instantly translate the forecast into the inevitable -- keeping children busy indoors. Here are some rainy-day ideas to have up your sleeve.
* Find the weather page in your newspaper and read it together with your children. Point out the weather prediction for the day, noting the temperature lows and highs.
* Teach your preschoolers how to identify some of the symbols on the weather map. Your children may enjoy cutting out the symbols and creating their own weather page. Clip pictures from magazines depicting various weather conditions, and glue them to a piece of paper to illustrate the symbols (sunny, cloudy, rainy, etc.).
* Note the lows and highs for other cities, especially where friends or relatives live. If relatives or friends are on a trip, check the weather forecast where they are traveling.
* Draw or paint a picture of the day's weather conditions; date it and hang it on the wall.
* Talk to your children about the importance of rain, and share experiences you have had in a downpour or a storm.
* Listen to a weather report on the radio or watch one on television. Assist your kids in preparing their own weather report to give to one another or to the entire family at dinner time. Let everyone try to make his or her own weather forecast for the days ahead. Write down the predictions, and check them as the days go by.
If you'd like to share your comments or ideas for family projects, write to Donna Erickson, Features Department, The Sun, Baltimore 21278.