August Lysol.com Healthy Habits Blog Post; Sponsored by Joe Rubino, Director of Microbiology, Research & Development at Reckitt Benckiser

Healthy Habits Tips for Back to School

As a teacher, it’s necessary to be prepared and to keep a watchful eye on children’s health and safety. Teachers can instill healthy habits in students, who in turn may be excited to share these tips with their parents, siblings and friends. Developing good nutrition, fitness and hygiene habits at a young age can help children live healthier and happier lives. Below are tips that you can implement in the classroom and share with your students.

Hygiene

  • Share and Tell –Handwashing is one of the best ways to help prevent the spread of germs in a classroom. To effectively wash away germs, teach your students to use antibacterial soap and to scrub in between fingers, under nails and on both sides of their hands, for at least 20 seconds. Students can take turns reminding each other when to wash their hands (e.g., after sneezing, playing outdoors, using the bathroom or playing with the class pet)!
  • Wipe Out – Cleaning and disinfecting are part of a broad approach to helping prevent infectious diseases in schools, as reinforced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While cleaning is important for physically removing dirt and some germs from objects or surfaces in the classroom, it does not actually kill germs. Using disinfecting wipes is a way to target and kill illness-causing germs in the classroom. Focus on wiping frequently touched hard surfaces in the classroom, such as door handles, keyboards and even tables and chairs.
  • Achoo! – Teaching proper sneeze and cough etiquette is very important when educating children about healthy habits. Encourage good hygiene practices, such as covering their mouths and noses with tissues or the inside of their elbows, while coughing and sneezing, and washing their hands directly after. This will help prevent the spread of germs around the classroom.

Nutrition

  • Food is Fuel – Nutritious food keeps students healthy and energized to learn and play. Starting the day off with breakfast is important, but for many students, this habit may not be a part of their existing routine. Teach students the importance of fueling their bodies with nutritious food in the morning that will power them throughout the day.
  • Healthy Foods for a Healthy You – Encourage students to bring snacks that look and feel as the ingredients did when they were harvested. Whole foods offer lasting energy so students can feel great throughout the day, whether it’s learning geography in the morning or playing outside during recess. To learn more about making smart, healthy food choices, visit the CDC‘s Body and Mind website for recipes, games and tips!

Physical Education

  • Make Your Heart Skip – Recent studies have found a strong correlation between exercise and good academic performance.[1] Encourage students to take breaks during the school day and at home to play outside. Whether it is a game of catch or running around, having fun by raising their heart rate during the day helps students keep their brain and body healthy and strong.

To learn more about the Lysol Healthy Habits Program and to access 30 lesson plans for the classroom and home to help teach children about healthy habits, and to receive a list of recommended school supplies for the upcoming school year, visit Back to School.