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KRK Katy Cinco Ranch February Newsletter - 02.01.14

Staying fit is important at any age. Maybe you want to get your family active but don’t know how to go about it. Here are ten good ideas tohelp educate you on fitness so you can make changes in your life. Obesity is an epidemic in our world today. It is not just eating morefattening foods but the lack of activity that is contributing to the problem. As a family unit, you can help turn things around one day at a time.Try one idea and then another.

10 tips to make fitness fun and easy:
No one necessarily wants to exercise. Doing it alone can be a chore, but when you are with another, say a family member, it can becomefriendly competition that benefits all involved. Try the following.

  1. Talk to your family – We all could be a little more active each day. Encourage your family by telling them that you are doing ittogether so the person with the most weight to lose is not singled out. Everyone works together.

  2. Have fun – Especially for kids, an activity that is fun is more likely to be repeated day after day. They may even remind you aboutan activity if you forget.

  3. Make fitness more accessible – It can be a hassle driving to the gym if it is not close. Also coordinating schedules could be anightmare. For days when you can’t get away have equipment home to work with. Try DVDs, exercise bands, free weights orbicycles.

  4. Take a class together – The best thing about classes is that no one is looking at you but at the instructor. Zumba is hot danceexercises craze that is a great calorie burner for men, women, young and old.

  5. Play sports – Organized sports not only builds physical endurance but also camaraderie in the family. It doesn’t have to be a schoolteam but a church or neighborhood team.

  6. Plan healthy meals – Exercise is only a part of the equation. If you want to see your body transform quicker, make small changeseach day to your household-eating plan.

  7. Do something every day – There is nothing like consistency to bring about change. Plan to do something together each day even ifonly one or two can participate. Eventually everyone will be able to get on board.

  8. Buy sporting equipment – You can find items at a good price so that physical activity is only a few feet away at any one time.

  9. Prepare the back yard for fun – Anytime you want to have a friendly competition you can go outside. Keep the yard set up withvolleyball net or bases for kickball or whiffle ball.

  10. Be a role model – Kids are more apt to follow what they see. If you, as a parent, are active they will try to follow suit.You can turn things around in your family. It is never too late to get healthier and more active.

Studies show that hitting the books with your preschoolerimproves early literacy. It helps kids sharpen language andvocabulary, and sparks discussions with the parent thatpromote a better understanding, says child psychologist,Richard Gallagher, PhD.Books that tell a story and ones that teach counting, ABC’s,sorting and matching, and similar core concepts are perfect forthis age, says Gallagher, who is an associate professor of childand adolescent psychiatry at New York University’s Child StudyCenter.Source: WebMD

How Can Adults Respond to Children’s STRESS?

Assisting children in understanding and using effective adaptation and coping strategies must be based onthe child's developmental level and understanding of the nature of the stress-inducing event. Teachers andparents can prevent and reduce stress for children in many ways:

  • Help the child anticipate stressful events, such as a first haircut or the birth of a sibling. Adults can preparechildren by increasing their understanding of the upcoming event and reducing its stressful impact (Marion,2003).

  • Over-preparing children for upcoming stressful events, however, can prove even more stressful than the eventitself (Donate-Bartfield & Passman, 2000). Adults can judge the optimal level of preparation by encouragingthe child to ask questions if he or she wants to know more.

  • Provide supportive environments where children can play out or use art materials to express their concerns (Gross& Clemens, 2002).

  • Help children identify a variety of coping strategies (e.g., "ask for help if someone is teasing you"; "tell them youdon’t like it"; "walk away"). Coping strategies help children feel more effective in stressful situations (Fallin,Wallinga, & Coleman, 2001).

  • Help children recognize, name, accept, and express their feelings appropriately.

  • Teach children relaxation techniques. Consider suggesting to a child such things as "take three deep breaths";"count backwards"; "tense and release your muscles"; "play with play dough"; "dance"; "imagine a favoriteplace to be and visit that place in your mind" (use creative imagery) (O’Neill, 1993).

  • Practice positive self-talk skills (e.g., “I'll try. I think I can do this.”) to help in promoting stress management(O’Neill, 1993). Other basic strategies include implementing sound positive discipline strategies, followingconsistent routines, enhancing cooperation, and providing time for children to safely disclose their concernsand stresses privately and in groups.Our increasing knowledge about the importance and impact of stress on young children should be put togood use in reducing stress factors for young children and in assisting children to increase copingstrategies and healthy responses to the unavoidable stresses in their lives.

    • Source: Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education

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Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies work with the interactivetechnology that today’s children need to experience. We’rebelievers in the appropriate use of technology – utilizing creativecomputer applications and other innovations to help your childgrow – in keeping with the technologies he will need to understandfor future success. Our technology-based learning activities are developed with your child in mind and extend beyond theboundaries of traditional daycare.

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