Healthy habits are not formed from exposure to fitness and nutrition once a week.
Lifelong healthy habits must be developed at a young age; and habits aren’t formed in health or PE class once a week. In order to build and sustain healthy habits, fitness and nutrition must be integrated into students’ daily schedules, making it a part of their normal routine. Think of it like a foreign language—you wouldn’t teach children a foreign language, once a week for 30 minutes, and expect them to become fluent, would you? You’d have to talk to them in a foreign language every day to build true fluency.
Introduce fitness and nutrition every day, starting with Pre-K and continue until high school graduation.
After daily interaction with fitness and nutrition, children are bound to make healthy choices, or at the very least, think about making healthy choices.
1. Engage students with energy breaks
Children are children, and that’s important to remember. Training them for the Olympic Marathon isn’t a realistic (or smart) way to build healthy habits.
- To get students thinking about fitness and exercise, it needs to be fun!
- Taking a break from academics for 5 minutes each day for an energy break is a smart way to build lifelong healthy habits
- An energy break a quick physical and mental break from academic lessons; students stand beside their desks and engage in simple exercises less than 5 minutes in length
2. Make nutrition simple and realistic
Healthy choices don’t have to be difficult, you either make the healthy choice or you don’t. You either choose the apple or a bag of chips.
- When incorporating nutrition into a classroom’s daily schedule, keep it as short & sweet as possible!
- A daily nutritional tip is all it takes
- Choose a piece of fruit for an afterschool snack, try a red veggie today, make half of your dinner plate fruits & veggies
- By providing students with a simple nutrition tip every day, they will get in the habit of thinking about nutrition and making healthy choices!
By exposing our students to fitness and nutrition every day, we are providing them the golden opportunity to form and sustain healthy lifestyle habits.