What if I told you there was something you could do that would increase your child’s academic performance AND reduce their risk of developing health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, asthma, high cholesterol, and arthritis?
Would it be worth it to you?
Click through to find out how you can be an ADVOCATE for your child’s future.
All you have to do to IMPROVE your child’s health, academic performance, and behavior is to convince his or her school to increase the amount of physical activity available.
It really is that simple. An article published in the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity in 2008 shows us that sacrificing some academic time to increase the amount of time being physically active has no effect on academic outcomes. In fact, sometimes it actually causes it to improve.
Why is school-based physical activity time so important?
- Improved physical health and a decreased risk of developing chronic diseases such as diabetes or heart disease
- Improved cognitive functioning
- Increased GPA
- Improved classroom behavior
- Improved self-esteem, body-image, emotional well-being, spirituality, and future expectations
- Decreased drop-out rates
SO WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Talk to your school administrators. Remind them that in Louisiana kindergarten – 8th graders are required by law to have 150 minutes or more of PE per week. Demand QUALITY PE teachers. Elementary PE teachers don’t have to be certified in physical education. Convince your school’s administration of the value of that certification. Ask them to require recess for ALL students EVERY day.
Talk to your school board members. Encourage them to fight for adequate funding for PE programs so they can hire enough quality physical education teachers. Also encourage them to improve the standards so that elementary PE teachers are required to be certified.
Talk to your child’s teachers. Ask them to include “Brain Breaks” in their day; 5-10 minute breaks from academics to stand up and perform some kind of brief physical activity such as running in place or jumping-jacks. Request that withholding physical activity time not be used as a punishment as this only worsens behavior problems.
Talk to your schools Parent-Teacher Organization. Educate fellow parents on the importance of physical activity at school. Fund-raise for equipment such as balls, jump ropes, hula hoops and frisbees that can be used at recess to encourage physical activity.
If you won’t advocate for your child’s health and future, who will?