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What Parents Can Do to Ensure their Kids are Successful

... Smita Bharati/Unbound:

As Parents we are always gunning for super academic performance from our kids. However, the drive for academic achievement can often overshadow child's health and wellness, with schools cutting valuable PE class or minutes at the lunch hour to squeeze in more instruction time. Research shows that student health ultimately impacts learning and behavior. Our current approach to education may undermine the benefits physical activity and good nutrition can contribute to a child's ability to learn and thrive. Parents can champion the "learning connection" between healthy students and improved academic achievement, and lead the way in their communities to ensure kids get the physical activity and proper nutrition needed for success in the classroom.

It is recommended that Children must get at least 60 minutes of daily vigorous- to moderate-intensity physical activity. The majority of children and adolescents today spend most of their day sitting in classrooms and a big part of their free time engaged in sedentary activities. Back home more and more of them take recourse to gaming and TV if they have any time left from completing their pile of homework and assignments.

On a daily basis, only about half of the students who eat school lunch eat school breakfast; with many coming to school with an empty stomach. There is a growing body of evidence on the association of physical activity, school-based physical education, school breakfast consumption and nutrition with learning.

So, What Can Parents Do?

  • Get Access to Information: Read and be informed about the linkages between  Health, Nutrition and Physical Activity and academic performance
  • Champion the Cause of Physical Activity: Start  giving equal importance to your Kid's Performance in Sports and Physical Activities. Encourage them to get into as many extra-curricular activities as possible.
  • Work with the School: Get proactive with Schools vis-a-vis physical activity and nutrition. You can do a lot to help your school become an active school.
  • Get Social: Spread the word about the issue and the importance of the learning connection. Grow support for school breakfast, including alternate options such as breakfast in the classroom, grab-n-go. Build grassroots efforts to improve physical activity, physical education and healthy eating in schools by engaging vocal support from students, parents, school administrators and teachers
  • Get moving!: Take time out to do some physical activities or play some sport with your kids. Parents show active interest only when they want to make their Kids a Pro. Don't measure everything in terms of a Career/profession perspective. Look for the fun element into all these activities.

The science is now beyond doubt: better nourished, physically active kids learn more and perform better at test time and beyond. Join us in taking action to help create a culture of wellness in schools across America.