Hopster: Healthy Body and Mind
This week in Hopster school we are thinking about keeping a Healthy Body and Mind. This area of our curriculum helps children develop an understanding of how their body works and changes as they grow. They learn what it means to be healthy and how the choices they make can impact the health of their body and mind.
During these Covid times, maintaining overall health and emotional wellness in children has become a hot topic, especially as schools have remained closed and families have been advised to stay at home and practise social distancing. These changes to daily life are a lot for everyone to deal with, and especially for children whose lives and routines have been turned upside down.
By helping your child to understand their own body and mind as it grows and changes; and talking openly about what it means to be healthy both physically and emotionally you will be giving your kids the tools to help them cope when faced with uncertainty.
HOPSTER tips for Keeping a healthy body and mind
H is for Healthy Habits — Talk about the importance of healthy habits e.g. food choices, keeping clean, looking after our teeth, washing our hands etc Emphasize the importance of regular hand washing and teach young children how to wash their hands properly.
O is for Outside — Spend time outside in nature enjoying the seasons as they change from Spring to Summer. Encourage your kids to be still and observe what they see and hear around them.
P is for Play — Make time for free play. No agenda. Just playing in whatever shape/form that takes. If you are playing with your little ones then let them lead you. Just put your phone down, relax and be present with your child.
S is for Sleep — Get enough sleep. As the evenings are lighter and warmer; and without early school mornings it can be tempting to let the kids stay up later. The knock on effect of this, is that we grown ups have less of an evening for ourselves. Now more than ever it is essential that we find some space for ourselves during the day. A good start is sticking to bedtime!
T is for Talk — Talk to your kids about how they are feeling; let them know that you understand that they are worried, sad, or frustrated. Talking about feelings with young kids helps to make them more manageable; reassure them that they are not alone feeling like they do. Try using tech to stay connected virtually by talking regularly with family and friends or even get Grandparents to do regular storytimes.
E is for Exercise — Make exercise a priority for everyone; whether it’s Joe Wicks daily workout or playing a game of football, practising yoga or doing stretches, going for a bike ride or a neighbourhood walk. Take time out each day to do something active and encourage your kids to recognise how it makes them feel during and after.
R is for Routine — Try to have some kind of daily routine in place for balancing school work with play, bedtimes, mealtimes etc It doesn’t have to be written in stone, but experts tend to agree that keeping some kind of structure is key and can be calming during times of stress.
Which Hopster shows to watch?
Goodbye Germs (Find this show on Hopster in the mobile app in the volcano section)
These are a selection of short videos and catchy songs designed to teach kids about proper hygiene such as: sneezing into a tissue, washing hands and more.
Lil Doc (Find this show on Hopster in the mobile app in the volcano section)
With humour and compassion, each episode looks at the causes of a disease or other health problem. Li’lDoc informs everyone by entertaining kids and adults.
Saturday Club (Find this show on Hopster in the mobile app in the volcano section)
Saturday Club is a preschool show that encourages kids to recognise and imagine various emotions, and what it’s like to be in someone else’s shoes. This fun show strengthens social and emotional skills and helps to build kids’ capacity for empathy.
Which Hopster Game to play?
Tasty Kitchen (Find this game on Hopster in your mobile app in the balloon section)
In Tasty Kitchen little ones will learn about food groups as well as the health benefits of different foodstuffs in the game. Based on advice from child nutritionists, this fun foodie game can help kids establish their own healthy habits early.
Key Learning Skills:
- Learn about healthy eating habits
- Learn to recognise and name different types of food: proteins, grains, vegetables etc
- Develop decision making skills by sorting food in the correct container
- Squeeze Muscles: Starting at your toes, pick one muscle and squeeze it tight. Count to five. Release, and notice how your body changes. Repeat exercise moving up your body.
- Belly Breathing: Put one hand on your stomach and one hand on your chest. Slowly breathe in from your stomach (expand like a balloon) and slowly breathe out (deflate).
- Mindful Meal: Pay attention to the smell, taste and look of your food. No multitasking.
- Blowing Bubbles: Notice their shapes, textures and colours.
- Colouring: Colour something. Focus on the colors and designs.
- Listening to Music: Focus on the whole song, or listen specifically to the voice or an instrument.