5 ways to keep children focused and healthy this term
The spring term is upon us! The excitement and (for many of us) excesses of the festive period are but a memory – with still a good couple of months of winter still to get through.
Back-to-school means inevitable bugs and illnesses, and coupled with getting up in the cold – this can often mean for a pretty miserable January!
Fear not, there are just a few simple things you can do to help combat some of this – giving your little ones a fresh start to their year.
Look after that immune system!
It’s important to keep children’s bodies healthy so their immune systems can work properly. Sleep, diet, managing stress, exercising, and making time for fun and laughter all helps! Even with precautionary measures, most children are likely to get between six and eight colds per year as their immune systems continue to develop – and with the threat of COVID still upon us, the need to prevent sickness is more important than ever.
Stress and anxiety – watch for the signs
Tests, homework, peer group issues – children can face so many stressful situations on a daily basis. We know these stresses can have a negative impact on physical and mental health so spotting the signs early can be of great benefit. Our children are still navigating the upheavals caused by the pandemic, and so work with your child to recognise things that they can control, like their clothing or what they want to do in their spare time. Talk together about what might help them de-stress. This could be exercise, journaling, family games night or helping prepare a meal.
A decent night’s sleep
It sounds obvious, but one of the most important things you can do to keep your children healthy is to ensure they get enough sleep. Missing sleep can affect children in a number of ways, from poor concentration to obesity and depression. And not only is sleep an important part of a child’s physical and emotional health – it can also can play a role in their educational attainment. Try to limit screen time before bed, create a calm and relaxed environment and switch off that Wi-Fi!
The most important meal of the day
Breakfast really is important when it comes to students. A balanced meal of protein and complex carbohydrates has been established as an important factor for brain function and a steady energy level through the day.
It’s worth considering these nutrient-rich food groups:
- Whole grains – such as whole-wheat bagels, whole-grain cereals, whole-wheat tortillas, oatmeal, and whole-grain toast
- Protein – such as eggs, meat and poultry, tofu, beans, nuts, and fish
- Fruit – such as berries, melons, apples, and bananas (any fruit is great, including frozen)
‘Have you brought a snack?!’ Who else has heard that the moment their children emerge from the school gates? Snacks are important because when combined with healthy meals they help children get a balanced diet. Plus, having small snacks in between meals can help reinforce the idea of eating when you’re hungry – in turn leading to healthy eating habits.
Some snacks you might consider are:
- Home-made popcorn
- Peppers or carrot stick with guacamole or hummus
- Greek yogurt and berries
- Apple slices with peanut butter
- Celery sticks with cream cheese
- Whole grain crackers with nut butter
If you need more structure and think your child might benefit from tutoring, we’re delighted to help. Get in touch, and you’ll get a FREE assessment and FREE first lesson. That way, you can see if our approach will work for you and your circumstances.