It’s that time of year again! It’s back to school time! It’s time for catching up with old friends, and making new; time for new school supplies, clothes and new things to learn. Start off the new school year healthy and safe by following these helpful tips from Pella Regional Health Center:
-Eat breakfast! It’s the most important meal of the day for a reason. Whole grain cereals, fresh orange juice and a side of fruit will help your kids concentrate and be alert.
-Pack a good lunch with protein, a mix of fruits and vegetables, and a healthy snack like pretzels or study the lunch menu to teach your kids how to make healthy choices on their own.
-Eat dinner together. It’s a great way to spend quality time together and it allows you the opportunity to set a good example of healthy eating.
-Always look both ways before crossing the street and cross using crosswalks or intersections.
-If riding a bike, always wear a helmet and wear bright colors to make sure drivers can see you.
-If walking, make sure you know the safest route from home to school and back. An adult should accompany younger children.
-If taking a bus to school wait at least three giant steps back from the curb.
-Never walk behind a school bus and always stand away from the bus so the driver can see you.
-Use a lightweight backpack with two straps.
-Always use both shoulder straps and adjust them so the backpack fits comfortably.
-Pack light—the backpack should not weigh more than 10% of the child’s body weight.
-Use proper lifting technique when picking up the backpack—bend at the knees.
-Do not ignore any back pain in a child or teenager.
-Plan early. Start working into a school routine before the new school year starts. Schedule a set bed time and wake up time and begin enforcing them.
-Stick with the routine. Don’t use weekends as a time for staying up later or sleeping in longer. The more stability there is the better you sleep and the more alert you are for school.