If you heard sirens going off Thursday afternoon or evening, that means it's tornado season. Schools in the area took the opportunity to prepare their students in case of severe weather. Kids at Sibley Elementary in Albert Lea followed teachers' instructions during an afternoon tornado drill. Teachers say they've been working with kids for a while to get them ready for today's drill.
"So, today is our first tornado drill of the season," explains Sibley Kindergarten teacher Devan Kreuscher, "and we taught our kindergarteners that we go to a safe place that is at a low level in the school and we will probably practice the duck and cover position to protect our bodies."
In the event of inclement weather, teachers say it's important to have the trust of their students.
"Usually they're not too scared," says Emma Mittag-Arboe, another kindergarten teacher at the elementary school, "Sometimes when they hear the sirens, that's when they get a little worried, but we like to remind them that it's a drill and that it's just practice so we can be prepared if the real thing were to ever happen."
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources says between 1950 and 2016, the state saw an average of 36 tornadoes a year. Some of those tornadoes have led to injuries and deaths. Their first drill took place statewide at 1:45 in the afternoon Thursday, while the second took place at 6:45 in the evening.