In recent years, a lot of schools have told their physical education programs to hit the showers. Greater emphasis on testing, budget cuts, and so on. But as school wallets get lighter, the children are getting heavier due to lack of exercise.
If you’re concerned about your students’ health, you can do something about it by extolling the virtues of healthy exercise. Ask Little Johnny how his little league team did over the summer. Do you have any joggers or climbers in your midst? Take an interest, and maybe they’ll get more active.
Of course, the best way to generate excitement about exercise is to let students see you do it yourself. If you’re a runner, show up early and run at the track before class starts. Maybe volunteer as a coach.
Personally, I’m a walker. I’m not going to pretend it’s a huge workout, but almost any activity is better exercise than sitting. If you live close enough, consider walking to school. If you live in a small community, or you have errands within walking distance, try taking a walk down your town’s main street. You’ll be visibly modeling good behavior, and parents will like the fact you’re out and about within the community. You can check out Walk Score to help gauge how walkable your area is, as well as to look for ideas for neat business or attractions you can find within walking distance.
Teaching kids healthy habits should be a goal of every school. Even if yours doesn’t have a dedicated health or P.E program, you can still teach them a lot about healthful living. -BILL FERRIS
Photo credit: Thomas Hawk on flickr