Promoting Healthy Behaviors at Home During COVID-19
While schools and childcare centers remain temporarily closed, maintaining a routine – as you would on spring break or summer vacation – of regular, healthy mealtimes and consistent bedtimes can help keep kids healthy and happy. Check out our resources below for inspiration.
Healthy Meals for Children
After securing waivers from the federal government that enable schools to serve meals to all children age 18 and younger regardless of their location and income during the extended school closure period, the Louisiana Department of Education (LDOE) published a parish-by-parish list of school meal sites to inform families where, when and how free food can be accessed. The list, which is accessible on the LDOE's dedicated Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) webpage on its website and on its Child Nutrition Program (CNP) website, will be continually updated as more information is received. School systems operating meal programs that are not listed should update their CNP application. Access the parish-by-parish list of school meal sites.
Are you looking to prepare healthy meals for children while they are home? Check out MyPlate Kitchen. This website has sample menus, cookbooks, recipes, video and much more!
Keeping Children Active at Home
Keep children moving while at home with daily, quick and creative physical activities. Ideally, kids should have two to three active play times every day. Instead of thinking of exercise as a separate scheduled activity, just try to weave quick “moving” moments throughout the day.
GoNoodle: GoNoodle engages 14 million kids every month with movement and mindfulness videos created by child development experts. Available for free at school, home, and everywhere kids are! While children are out of school, GoNoodle has developed a whole range of fun, developmental, and otherwise helpful things can all be done at home. We call this effort GoNoodle: Good Energy at Home. Visit www.gonoodle.com/goodenergy for free resources.
Hands-On Activities Database: Search or browse hundreds of hands-on, ready-to-do activities for movement and physical activity for young children. Search or browse classroom activities to find what you need for language and literacy, math, science, art, social skills, music, movement, and physical activity. You can search ideas by children’s age, subject, or skills learned in the activity.
SHAPE America is committed to providing resources to keep students physically active at home, as well as to support continued learning in a virtual format. SHAPE America has a webpage dedicated to updates specific to coronavirus has a variety of resources for keeping students active. There is also a hashtag on Twitter, #HPEatHome, that health and physical education teachers from across the country (and world) are using to share resources they are using to ensure students continue to have access to physical activity opportunities.
Reducing Screen Time
It is important to limit the amount of screen time for children. What is screen time? It’s any time spent in front of a screen, for example, to watch television, use the computer, and play video games (not including time needed to complete schoolwork). Click here for tips for parent to reduce screen time. In addition, here is a list of 50 ways to use your pool noodle for activities!