Healthy Diet and Rest
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Good nutrition is very important for children because they grow and develop so quickly. Once your child is eating solid foods, it is important to encourage him or her to eat a variety of foods to provide your child with all the nutrients they need for a healthy body. Fresh fruits and vegetables of all colors of the rainbow are nutritious choices and good learning opportunities for children. If your child is a picky eater, engage him or her in making food choices and enlisting their help during meal preparation. When children help prepare the family meal and feel like they have a choice in what they eat, they are more likely to start (and finish!) dinner.
Getting enough sleep at night and rest during the day is also important for healthy growth and development. Did you know that one, two, and three year olds require 12 – 14 hours (including naps) of sleep a day? Three to six year olds need at least 10 – 12 hours a day.
Being well fed and well rested are essential to learning. But sometimes, meals, naps or bedtime can be the most frustrating part of your day! Regular, predictable routines around these times of day will help them go more smoothly.
This video will share some tips for helping making meal time and bedtime more manageable.
Questions to ask yourself:
- How do you involve your children in planning meals and preparing food?
- What kind of bedtime routine do you have with your children?
- Often, children try to drag out the bedtime routine to avoid going to bed. What are ways to keep the bedtime routine reasonable and get to bed on time?
Learning at Home Resources from PBS KIDS and PBS Parents
- Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood: Finn's Bedtime (1:52) - Does your child have a bedtime routine? Watch Finn’s bedtime routine with your child and compare how the two might be the same and different.
- Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood: Making Dumplings (2:17) - Daniel’s friend Annie is making dumplings with her dad. Watch this video with your child to learn how dumplings are made and to see how much fun it can be to cook together.
- Super Why: Woofster's Delicious Dish - Woofster wants to make and delicious and nutritious dish for the Super Reader. Your child will need to find a protein, grain, fruit, and dairy item in the kitchen to make a healthy and balanced meal.
- Martha Speaks: Skits Cooks - Practice cooking vocabulary while making an irresistible pizza with Skits. Your child will need to sift, shake, pour, stir, toss, spread, and grate to make the perfect pizza.
- Martha Speaks: Cooking - Help your child try out and understand words like bake, beat, blend, combine, from scratch, ingredients, mix, stir as you work together to bake a yellow cake.
- Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood: My Bedtime Routine Book - Cut out pictures from magazines or use photos of your own child to create a Bedtime Routine Book. Establishing a routine can help your child make the transition from play to sleep at naptime and bedtime.
- Super Why: Twinkle Twinkle! - Put a lot of extra twinkle in your child’s bedtime routine by creating a nighttime star scene using the alphabet and lots of sparkle.
- Peg + Cat: The Pirates' "Great Banana" Fruit Salad - Engage your child in cooking and practice math skills with this easy and nutritious fruit salad recipe.