Getting Ready For New School Season
Prince George, B.C. – The last blast of summer holidays is just a day away, the official countdown to the return to school.
There are a number of things families can do to get students ready for the return to school, says Sujata Connors, Manager of Community Services with Northern Health. “You could put things into three kinds of buckets, with the first bucket being safety. That’s where you want to think about things like traffic safety, bus safety keeping personal safety, bike safety, car safety and bullying, Those are the big things. As soon as school starts, the traffic increases dramatically and people really need to transition their thinking from playing around to how they are going to be safe on the street.”
The second bucket says Connors, is about food safety, making sure school lunches are nutritious and fun “One of the biggest challenges with lunches is making sure they aren’t boring or stale, and being prepared so there is variety.” Connors suggests having students help prepared the lunches so their own choices are part of the package, plus, they learn about food groups and what makes for a balanced meal.
The third bucket says Connors is about getting back into a routine “We really need to think about getting up early, making sure things are ready, having lunches prepared the night before so it’s easy to just grab them in the morning and there is still enough time to have a healthy breakfast. It’s really a good time now to start getting to bed earlier so the students will be fresher in the morning, so it’s a gradual return.”
There should be consideration given to the type of backpack your child is using, and how that backpack is packed. “It’s important to choose the right backpack first of all” says Connors ” You want something that’s a bit light, also think about the shoulder straps. Skinny shoulder straps can dig into the shoulders, so you want a wide, padded shoulder strap that may transfer some of the weight to the hips and think about how you are packing the bag so things are evenly distributed, so heavier things should be at the bottom of the bag.” She says the rule of thumb is that a packed backpack should not be any heavier than 15 -20% of the person’s own weight.