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Cooking & Nutrition

habits of healthy kids

5 Habits of Healthy Kids

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February 17, 2016 – Prestige Preschool Academy – 5 Habits of Healthy Kids

5 Habits of Healthy Kids

Here are 5 habits of healthy kids that you will want to put into place in your family to avoid illness this year.  They are simple and make sense, but children need to practice them to make them a habit!  You may find that your child is the healthiest one in the neighborhood.

Keep hands clean

The healthy way to wash hands is to scrub for 15-20 seconds.  Teach your child to sing “Happy Birthday” to themselves—twice—before rinsing.  Remind them to “scrub” up after preschool or play dates and before they eat.

Be active every day

Studies have shown that regular exercise can reduce the number of cold and flu episodes during a year.  “Exercise is better than any advertised cure or miracle,” according to Harley A. Rothbart, M.D., Parents magazine advisor and author of Germ Proof Your Kids: the Complete Guide to Protecting (Without Overprotecting) Your Family from Infections (ASM Press, 2007).

Get plenty of ZZZs

The healthy habit of getting enough sleep is very important for children.  Dr. Rothbart says that sleep deprivation nearly doubles the risk of getting a cold or flu.  Most preschoolers need 11-13 hours of sleep per day and babies need about 14 hours per day.

Avoid touching your face

The reality is that viruses enter the body through the nose, eyes, and mouth.  Help your child keep their hands away from their face.  Also, teach them not to share a straw, cup or toothbrush!

Consume a balanced and healthy diet

Healthy eating means healthy kids.  Make sure the meal has plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables that will help boost your child’s immune system.  Some of those immune building foods are broccoli, strawberries and oranges along with tuna, milk and cereals.  Yogurt with probiotics helps to build defenses.  YUM.

Make Foods More Nutritious for Kids

 

From an article by Michelle Crouch, Parents Magazine

 

 

 

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Little Things Mean a Lot to Kids

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February 12, 2016 – Prestige Preschool Academy – Little Things Mean a Lot to Kids

 

Little things really do mean a lot to kids and will have a huge impact on their lives.  These little things may seem silly or trivial to adults, but they will make your child smile!  Here is a list to get you started:

  1. Cook heart-shaped pancakes for breakfast.
  2. Wear that macaroni necklace to work. Well, at least until you’re at work.
  3. Tape your family slogan (Unstoppable! We can, we will! We’ve got this!) to your refrigerator door and invoke it whenever your child feels discouraged.
  4. Go for a walk with just one child.
  5. Slip a note (and an occasional small treat) into her lunch box.
  6. Say “yes” to something usually off-limits, like sitting on the counter.
  7. Go ahead: Let your 4-year-old stomp in every puddle along the way. Even without rain boots.
  8. Get out the glitter glue and make a birthday card for your child.
  9. Take in a pet that needs a home—and a child’s love.
  10. Cultivate your own traditions: Taco Tuesdays, Sunday-afternoon bike ride, apple picking every fall.
  11. Ask your child to teach you how to do something for a change. And once you get the hang of it, be sure to tell him what a good teacher he is.
  12. Let your child wear her dress-up clothes to the supermarket. All month if she wants to.
  13. Let your child overhear you saying something wonderful about her.
  14. Make a secret family handshake.
  15. Hang a whiteboard in her room to leave messages for each other.
  16. Start a pillow fight.
  17. Share your old diaries, photos, and letters from when you were her age.
  18. Thank your child when he does a chore on his own—even if it’s just hanging up a wet towel without prompting or refilling the empty water pitcher.

 

from an article by Margery D. Rosen – Parents Magazine 30 Little Things That Mean a Lot to Kids

image – DeltaDental.com

Best Creative Art Activities for Preschoolers

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February 10, 2016 – Prestige Preschool Academy – The Best Creative Art Activities for Preschoolers

Best Creative Art Activities for Preschools

Preschoolers and process-focused art experiences are a match made in creativity heaven!  The best creative art activities for preschoolers are those that are process-focused.  What are process-focused art experiences?  Here are the characteristics of preschool process-focused art experiences as explained by Dr. Laurel Bongiorno, Champlain College.

Characteristics of Preschool Process-focused Art Experiences

  • There are no step-by-step instructions
  • There is no sample for children to follow
  • There is no right or wrong way to explore and create
  • The art is focused on the experience and on exploration
  • The art is unique and original
  • The experience is relaxing or calming

In her article in Teaching Young Children, Dr. Bongiorno continues with a list of easy art activities and tips that offer open-ended, creative art experiences for preschoolers.  Open-ended art experiences will offer hours of fun for you and your preschool child.  As she says, “Remember that it’s the children’s art, not yours.”

Open-ended, creative preschool art experiences

  • Easel painting with a variety of paints and paintbrushes (with no directions)
  • Watercolor painting
  • Exploring and creating with clay or homemade dough
  • Finger painting
  • Printing, painting and stamping (stamps purchased or made with sponges)
  • Collages using tissue paper, glue sticks, scissors, and recycled materials

What do preschoolers learn through process-focused art?

  • Preschoolers relax, focus, feel successful, and can express their feelings
  • Preschoolers compare, predict, plan, and problem solve
  • Preschoolers use small motor skills to paint, write, glue, use clay, and make collages

Art does teach preschoolers more than just the names of colors.  Your preschool child’s social, cognitive, and physical skills will grow along with their creativity!  These are life skills that will support a happy, healthy, creative child.

 

From Teaching Young Children, a NAEYC Publication    By LAUREL BONGIORNO

Process-focused Art Experiences

 

Why Teach Baby Sign Language?

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February 5, 2016 – Prestige Preschool Academy – Baby Signing Time

Why Teach your Baby Sign Language?

When children’s hands are moving, their minds are learning.

Children are able to understand language as early as 6 months, but the ability to speak requires complex fine motor skills that don’t develop until much later. The result is a frustration and tantrums.

On the other hands, the motor skills required to use sign language develop much sooner than spoken language.  Children who learn baby sign language can start using signs as early as 6 to 9 months! The result is a baby who can express her wants and needs.

For babies, sign language is a visual language. Many basic signs resemble what they mean. For example, to sign ball, you show the shape of a ball with your hands. See some examples on our Baby Sign Language Dictionary. This makes sign language fun and easy for kids.

Teaching your baby sign language can unlock the world around them and give their minds a head start.

  • Open a window to your child’s heart & mind
  • Reduce tantrums & increase bonding
  • Build vocabulary & instill confidence
  • Cognitive benefits of being bilingual

Prestige Preschool Academy parents love Baby Signing Time !  For more information about this program see the Baby Signing Time website here.

Baby Signing Time   Here is a video!  Baby Signing Video

 

Image – sheknows.com

 

 

 

 

 

Good Foods for Healthy Teeth

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February 3, 2016 – Prestige Preschool Academy

Good Foods for Kids’ Teeth

Candy for kids is not on the “good” list, but here are some foods that are actually good for your child’s teeth!  Since February is Children’s Dental Health month, here is a list of some dental hygiene heroes.  Your child will benefit and the dentist will be impressed.

Oranges, kiwis, strawberries, limes, and peppers

Fruits high in Vitamin C in fruits such as oranges, limes, kiwis, cantaloupe, papaya, and strawberries help kill bacteria in the mouth and promotes a healthy supply of collagen in the gums that encourage healthy teeth. Other good vegetable sources: red, yellow, and orange peppers; tomatoes; and sweet potatoes.  After eating, wait for about 30 minutes before brushing.

Milk, yogurt, and cheese

Sugar feeds other types of bacteria in your child’s mouth that produce cavity-causing acid. When your child drinks milk or eats yogurt or cheese — which are rich in calcium, vitamin D, and phosphate — it raises the pH level in his mouth, lowers acid levels, and reduces the risk of tooth decay, says Ray J. Jurado, DDS, director of pediatric dentistry at Children’s Memorial Hospital, in Chicago.

Raw carrots, celery, cauliflower, green beans, and snap peas

Crisp veggies are “chewing foods” that mechanically clean your child’s teeth and gums. “These foods naturally scrape away plaque that builds up between meals or that kids miss when brushing,” says family dentist Jimmy Wu, DDS, of San Diego. Encourage your child to eat slowly and to completely chew each crunchy mouthful.

Sesame, sunflower, and pumpkin seeds, and nuts

Nuts and seeds contain natural fats that coat teeth and help shield against bacteria, says Dr. Wu. The oils in the seeds help strengthen enamel, making teeth more resistant to cavities, and most seeds also contain calcium. Kids older than 4 can eat trail mix as a healthy snack.

The Dentist “No No” List

If your kid eats these, be sure he brushes well afterward.

  • Gummy candy (even vitamins)
  • Caramel
  • Taffy
  • Carbonated drinks
  • Fruit drinks with high-fructose corn syrup
  • Bubble gum (with sugar)
  • Raisins
  • Potato chips
  • Hard candy
  • Honey

Original article by Gina Roberts -Grey, Parents Magazine, found hereSmile Savers

 

 

 

6 Helpful Tips If Your Child Has the Flu

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January 29, 2016

Helpful Tips If Your Child Has the Flu

Here are 6 helpful tips if your child has the flu.  Children younger than 5 years old are among those who are at a high risk for serious complications when the flu hits.  If symptoms are reported within the first 2 days of the illness, your doctor might prescribe an antiviral medicine, but that only shortens the course of infection by about 2 days.  What can you do to help ease the symptoms?

  1. Offer plenty of fluids (fever, which is common with the flu, can lead to dehydration). If your child is tired of drinking plain water, try ice pops, icy drinks mixed in a blender, and soft fruits (like melons or grapes).
  2. Encourage your child to rest in bed or on the couch with a supply of magazines, books, quiet music, and perhaps a favorite movie.
  3. Give acetaminophen or ibuprofen for aches and pains as directed by your doctor (but do not give aspirin unless your doctor directs you to do so, as it has been linked to a rare but serious illness called Reye syndrome).
  4. Dress your child in layers so you can add and remove layers during bouts of chills or fever.
  5. Ask a close relative or faraway friend to call and help lift your child’s spirits.
  6. Take care of yourself and the other people in your family!  Check with your physician about a flu vaccine. Also, wash your hands well and often, especially after picking up used tissues.

 

Read more at KidsHealth.org  Elana Pearl Ben-Joseph, MD