Balancing Daily Activities in Order to Achieve a Healthy Lifestyle
We all strive to live happy, productive, and healthy lives. But sometimes, it can be difficult or overwhelming to continually make decisions that benefit our physical, mental, and emotional well-being each and every day. Not to mention, for many of us, finding the time in our busy schedules to work on improving ourselves can be quite a challenge. Managing your own time and building healthy habits that work for you are essential social emotional learning (SEL) skills that students will need for the rest of their lives. If you're wondering how you can empower your students to start taking small yet powerful steps towards healthier living, then look no further! Read on to discover how you can encourage students to achieve a healthy lifestyle.
Balancing Daily Activities In Order to Achieve a Healthy Lifestyle
1. Living a Healthy Life
Have students take a moment to evaluate their daily health habits, and track what they do each day. A healthy life is like a puzzle that you have to put together. All the pieces are connected, and when one piece is missing, the puzzle is not complete. Checkout this "Healthy Me Checklist" to guide students with daily healthy habits.
2. Exercise and Your Brain
Allow students a little extra time to do some light exercise. It could be something as a 5 minute dance party, some light stretching, or yoga. Exercise of course benefits our bodies, but also our minds. Studies have found that young people who participate in even 10 minutes of exercise before a test or other academic activity performed better on those tasks than young people who did not exercise. To learn more about the benefits of exercise, you and your students can check out this article on PebbleGo!
3. Power Off the Tech
Technology is a wonderful tool for education, building connections, entertainment, and so much more! But even a good thing, when used in excess, can have detrimental effects. Encourage students and families to balance screen time with other activities.
Children age 2 to 5: Limit to 1 hour or less of high-quality programs each day. Watch these programs with your child to help him/her better understand them.
Children age 6 and older: Set a screen time limit that is right for your child and the whole family. Screen time should never replace healthful behaviors such as physical activity, sleep and communication and collaborative interactions with others.
4. Super Sleep
Sleep plays an important role in healthy growth and development. Your body needs the deep rest it gets during sleep to help your muscles, bones, and skin prevent injury and illness, and helps your brain develop too. You can guide students and their families to ensure they are getting quality sleep at home, and encourage them to check out this PebbleGo article all about forming healthy sleep habits!
5. Gratitude: Overlooked Blessings
Research shows that gratitude helps people be happier and deal with stress better. Being grateful is a muscle you can build. Just like you learn or develop a new skill or strength through practice, you can improve your attitude of gratitude by working on it a little bit each day. Try having your students keep a gratitude journal, and take time to record one thing they are grateful for everyday.
6. It's All About Breathing
How you breathe can make a difference in how you feel. When you are stressed, nervous, frightened, worried or angry, you may notice that your breathing increases quickly. You can learn to slow down your breathing, making each breath longer and deeper, to return to feeling more calm in stressful situations. Practice some simple breathing techniques students can use when they feel stressed or anxious.
7. The Visual Mental Remix
It has been said by different people in different ways that we see things not based on the way they are, but on how we are. The visual mental remix helps us see the world in new and more hopeful ways, thus helping us be the very best, and happiest, we can be. Creative journaling prompts can help students to look at things with a different perspective, and can allow them to see how their thoughts can change when they view things in a different way.
8. Smart Snacking
Choosing healthful snacks is a habit that can benefit you every day as you grow. When making a new habit of choosing the right foods for snacks, it can provide you with the nutrients and energy your bodies need to stay healthy. Have students play this "Smart Snack" online game to improve your snacking and eating habits.
9. Smile Bright Tooth Care
There are so more reasons to keep your teeth clean than just having a nice smile! Tooth decay (also known as cavities) affects children in the United States more than any other chronic (long-lasting) infectious disease. If not prevented or properly treated, it can cause infections that may lead to problems with eating, speaking, playing, and learning. Checkout this interactive "Brush Your Teeth" game from Sesame Street to guide your students with improving their tooth care habits.
10. Brain Boost
The brain is a very important organ. Without it, nothing else in our bodies can function. Scientists are learning more all the time about how our big beautiful brains grow and develop, and how we can best care for them. Since our brains take such good care of us, it’s important for us to take care of them too, through:
- Proper nutrition & drinking 100 ounces of water a day
- Stimulating thinking and problem solving activities
- Mindfulness - Relaxation - Rest - Sleep
- Helmet protection during physical activities
Looking for more ways to help your students develop positive habits and foster healthy lifestyles? Then check out this free lesson plan with printable activities from PebbleGo! Students can explore PebbleGo's selection of health related articles, and show what they know using the included templates. Then, students can design their own balanced day using the "My Balanced Day" wheel!