It’s essential to incorporate nutrition and physical activity in school curriculum and health education. It can be done by-
- Incorporating healthy eating habits and physical activity across the curriculum in fun and creative ways
- Creating partnerships with the broader community, for example local famers, sports clubs, NGO, charity etc.
- Providing professional development opportunities for teachers and other support staff to teach and promote healthy eating and being active.
Ways, in which schools can help students to become more active, include:
Be a role model. Teachers are in a good position to act as positive role models for students, parents and the community. Students observe and try to replicate same behaviours of others.
A teacher who makes healthy choices – including healthy eating habits and regular physical activity – can have a good influence on the health of students, others and most importantly, yourself.
Schools and teachers can model healthy eating habits and being active at school by:
- Packing a healthy lunch and taking the time to eat it.
- Providing healthy snacks at school canteen and staff functions (staff meetings, parent-teacher interviews, etc.)
- Using non-food rewards (pencils, skipping ropes) instead of lollies and chocolates.
- Assess student in learning physical education & include in school report cards.
- Joining in the activities during physical education classes, recess or lunchtime.
- Providing a school environment that encourages being physically active, for example adequate play ground facilities, access to equipment, walking paths etc.
- Including students while deciding the type of physical activity to be undertaken, making them more committed to participation.
- Using public transport for school excursions – it is often cheaper and you can get in your physical activity for the day.
- Taking activity breaks during classes.
- Supporting physical activity opportunities during and after school hours.
- Sharing your physical activity interests with students.
Classroom energizers (sometimes called brain breaks or classroom physical activity breaks) help to re-activate the brain when students have been sitting for extended periods of time and need to re-focus.
Include classroom energizers into their schedules. Here are five ideas to energize student.
- Have students, the PE teacher, or staff lead a morning activity via intercom before class starts.
- Implement a brain break the last five minutes of class before lunch—a little physical activity will improve the kiddos’ appetites!
- Students can do different movements before starting with new class or subject like simple counting to 10 while doing jumping jacks or some warm up exercises.
- Take the class for a walk while teaching a lesson or practicing maths games along.
- Add kinesthetic tools to the classroom, like balance balls for kids to sit on during class, pedal desks etc.