The kids are officially back in school. Whether the first day of school was met with excitement, nervousness, or tears, your kids will soon settle into their daily routines and build habits that will last the entire school year.
For most kids, these habits will include doing homework, studying for tests, and hanging out with friends. But while the habits are still being formed, we think it’s important to include a few more things on that list to help kids stay healthy during the year. After all, being back in school can also mean more exposure to things that will make kids sick—like germs on desk surfaces or shared between other kids!
We put together a short list of things you and your kids can do to stay healthy. Start building these habits at home and remind them to keep it up while they’re at school!
Back-to-school tips to stay healthy
- Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer frequently – Germs are everywhere. Remind your kids to wash their hands frequently AND thoroughly to get rid of germs. A good trick is to sing “Happy Birthday” while they wash to make sure they get their hands nice and clean
- Keep hands away from mouth, nose, and eyes – Mouths, noses, and eyes are entry points for germs. Make sure keep your hands away from them—even if your hands are clean!
- Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze – Avoid spreading germs by covering your mouth during coughs or sneezes. Use a tissue, if it’s handy. Or, sneeze into your shoulder or the crook of your elbow if you don’t have a tissue.
- Don’t share utensils, water bottles, or food – Anything that you’ve eaten or touched with your mouth should not be shared. Ask your friends to grab a new fork or straw if you need to share.
- Stay active! – Physical activity is a great way to keep your body healthy and your immune system strong. Find a consistent time to play outside during and after school.
- Get plenty of sleep – We wrote an entire blog post about the importance of sleep earlier this year. Getting a good night’s sleep is the best way for your kids to be prepared for school. It’s a crucial part of physical and mental development!
Photo courtesy of NCChild.org