School smarts for parents
Help keep your child learning and growing throughout the school year. Follow these four tips.
1. Practice backpack safety.
- A backpack should never hold more than what’s equal to 10 to 20 percent of your child’s total weight. If your child has more to carry, consider a rolling backpack instead.
- Choose a backpack with wide shoulder straps that are well-padded.
- Teach your child to use both shoulder straps and tighten the pack so it’s close to his or her body.
2. Make time for rest.
- Don’t over schedule your child’s day. Allow for unstructured playtime.
- Set a regular bedtime for your child, and follow it on weekends as well as weekdays.
- Create a calming bedtime routine, such as reading or listening to soft music.
3. Limit screen time.
- Keep the TV off during meals.
- Don’t allow video games, TVs, or computers in your child’s bedroom.
- Choose a day for the whole family to go screen-free and do something active together instead, such as playing tag or taking a walk.
- Learn more about how to limit screen time and how to help your kids find creative ways to be active.
4. Choose healthy foods.
- Keep your kitchen and the kids’ lunchboxes stocked with healthy foods. Low-fat yogurt, whole-grain bread, fresh fruit, hummus, peanut butter, carrot sticks, string cheese, and air-popped popcorn are great options.
- Limit junk food, including soft drinks, chips, and baked goods.
- Find healthy lunchbox recipes and learn more about healthy eating.
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