What we choose to teach our children can affect their adult life and the decisions they make in the future. It is important to educate ourselves and seek valuable advice to ensure we have a positive influence on our children’s lives. Health and nutrition is an important lifestyle focus that is vital to teach our children from a young age in order for them to live a long and happy life.
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Below are Managing Director of Little Scholars, Jae Fraser’s 5 behaviours you can encourage in your children that will benefit them through a healthy lifestyle.
1. Model Health Early On
Role modelling is the best way to ensure that your child lives a healthy life. You can do many things to help your children develop healthy eating habits for life. In the first five years, a child’s brain develops more and faster than at any other time. A child’s early experiences – their relationships and the things they see, hear, touch, smell and taste – stimulate their brain, creating millions of connections. This is when the foundations for learning, health and behaviour throughout life are laid down. You are the most important influence on your child, so the way you eat in these early years will have a massive effect.
Leading a healthy lifestyle will ensure that children continue the same lifestyle in their adult years -things such as drinking more water and eating more fruit and vegetables will be an easy and great start
2. Stay Active
Regular physical activity is important for the healthy growth, development and well-being of children. You should encourage and engage your children in active play because it allows children to burn energy, stay fit and also assists with wellbeing. This can be a difficult task, due to its time-consuming nature, but centres like Little Scholars offer sports and active classes each week as part of their program, in order to save parents time.
3. Free Their Imagination
Allow your child to play. It is through play that children at a very early age engage and interact in the world around them. Giving your child opportunities to engage with other kids and use their imagination is essential to the start of a healthy life. Playing is a great relationship builder, but it also allows them to role play, communicate and learn new things whilst enjoying themselves in a relaxed and fun way. It develops their creativity, imagination and dexterity, as well as their physical, cognitive, and emotional strength. Only by allowing your children to play will they really engage and interact in the world around them.
4. Eat Well
Healthy eating is a key learning experience for children. This is often difficult and stressful for parents, but things as simple as involving children in the grocery shopping or cooking are effective and easy ways to educate children about healthy eating without having to tell them to eat healthily. Cooking classes, grocery shopping are all things that Little Scholars centres do as part of their weekly educational program to help educate children about this important life skill.
5. Nurture Discovery
Risk is not always a bad thing. In fact, it is important in a child’s healthy development. Parents, grandparents and educators need to teach children how to be aware of risks and how to manage these risks appropriately to avoid serious injury. This can be done by helping children to develop awareness of their physical surroundings, to think critically about their actions and to problem solve when they do encounter challenges. They can’t do that without being exposed to risky situations.
Encouraging your children to get out of the house and explore will give your children the freedom to try new things, explore, interact with others and test their limits. Risky play is thrilling and exciting, where they encounter unknowns and possible hazards that carry a risk of physical injury. This is not about exposing children to situations that can result in serious harm or danger. It is about giving them the skills they need to avoid serious danger throughout their life.