Kids can choose any type of moderate or higher intensity physical activity, such as brisk walking, playing tag, jumping rope, or swimming, as long as it adds up to at least one hour a day. Work with your child’s school to ensure the activity is age appropriate and, to ensure safety, provide protective equipment such as helmets, wrist pads, and knee pads to prevent sports injuries.
For children and adolescents, regular physical activity has beneficial effects on the following aspects of health:
- Muscular strength
- Bone mass
- Anxiety and stress
It is recommended that children and adolescents participate in at least 60 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity most day of the week.
Travel to and from School
It’s estimated that 24 million students nationwide start their school day with a trip on the school bus. Whether they walk, ride the bus or travel by car, teach your kids these few tips to ensure they get to and from school safely.
Tips for School Bus Riders
- Do not play in the street while waiting for the bus
- Carry all loose belongings in a bag or backpack and never reach under the school bus to get anything that has rolled or fallen beneath it.
- Line up facing the bus, not along side it.
- Move immediately onto the sidewalk and out of traffic after getting off the bus.
- Wait for a signal from the bus driver before crossing the street and walk at least 10 steps away from the front of the bus so the driver can see you.
Tips for Pedestrians or Bike Riders
- Never walk alone – always travel with a buddy. Try and find a friend, or make a new friend in the neighborhood to walk to school or ride the bus with.
- Wear reflective or bright color clothing to increase visibility.
- Respect traffic lights and street signs.
- Always wear a helmet when riding a bicycle.
- Avoid loose fitting clothing that could get caught in spokes or pedals.
Tips for Car Drivers and Passengers
- Make sure young children are in safety seats at all times, and that the seats have been properly installed.
- All children under 13 years should ride in the rear seat of vehicles.
- Remember that many crashes occur while novice teen drivers are going to and from school. You may want to limit the number of teen passengers to prevent driver distraction. Do not allow your teen to drive while eating, drinking, or talking on a cell phone.
Source: Federal Citizen Information Center
Psych Central. (2006). Back to School Tips. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 31, 2015, from http://psychcentral.com/lib/back-to-school-tips/000467
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 30 Jan 2013
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.