When kids head out the door to school each morning, the contents of their backpack can make or break their day. You and your child may have differing opinions on what should take up that crucial backpack "real estate". Don't worry, they will make sure they have the latest trendy toy or school supply. If you are lucky, they will even have their homework tucked into a notebook eady to turn in (or at least scrunched in a ball at the bottom of the backpack).
Odds are they won't be thinking about health and wellness when they are packing up for the day. That is were you come in. There are so many simple ways to help you kids maintain physical and emotional wellness while they are at school. A new school year is the perfect time to make some changes, but anytime of the year works. Whether you make the changes gradually or all at once, you will be helping your child gain the tools and skills necessary to stay healthy, alert, and motivated so they can make the most of their school day.
Pack Nutrition Into Their Day
Packing your child's lunch with plant-based whole foods is often less expensive than using pre-packaged convenience items. It is definitely healthier. However, it can be a bit more time consuming. Put some effort into bulk packing items at the beginning of the week and get your kids involved. Not only will they learn to eat a healthy balanced diet, they will learn to make one. At the beginning of the week, prepare the fruits and veggies so you can easily add them to lunches. You can even portion them out into reusable bags or containers. This works well for nuts, pretzels, and crackers too. Make sandwiches for the week and freeze them. Prepare a vinegar based pasta salad that will last the week. There are so many ways to up the nutrition of your child's school lunches and snacks.
Sometimes children aren't able to get all of their nutrients through food. Selective eaters, small appetites, etc. - most of us have been there as parents. doTERRA's supplements for children are natural and can fill in some of the nutritional gaps.
- a2z Chewable - A daily supplement for children aged 4 and over. It is a "balanced blend of essential vitamins including the antioxidant vitamins A, C, and E, and a cellular energy complex of B vitamins.*"
- IQ Mega - This is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids which support healthy cardiovascular, joint, immune system, and brain functioning*. And bonus, it tastes like Wild Orange Essential Oil instead of fish.
Keep Them Hydrated
Many teachers allow and even encourage students to keep a water bottle with them during the day. Children are often more alert and ready to learn when they getting enough water. Make sure to slip a reusable water bottle into their backpacks each morning. Add a couple of drops of Lemon or Wild Orange to the water to enhance the flavor and to promote energy and a positive attitude.
Boost Their Immunity
We all know we can't protect them from everything that's going around the classroom, but we definitely can avoid some of it. On Guard Protective Blend is your go to here. You can use it to make a DIY Hand Cleansing Gel or Surface Wipes to slip into an accessible backpack pocket. Hey, they may even remember to use them once in a while!. You can also add a couple of drops of On Guard to your child's water bottle. It promotes a healthy immune system and adds a spicy, sweet flavor to the water.*
Don't Forget Emotional Wellness
It's not all about keeping their bodies fueled and healthy. Kids need to navigate emotional, social, physical, and mental challenges throughout the school day. If children are old enough, send small roller bottles containing their favorite oils or blends in their backpacks. When they feel the need for emotional support, they can roll it on pulse points or the back of their neck. The Emotional Aromatherapy Touch Kit contains Cheer Touch Uplifting Blend, Console Touch Comforting Blend, Forgive Touch Renewing Blend, Motivate Touch Encouraging Blend, Passion Touch Inspiring Blend, Peace Touch Reassuring Blend and can provide your child with some ownership over choosing which oils they want to use to help meet their needs. If your kids are too young to apply essential oils on their own, apply to wrists or pulse points as they leave the house.
Increase Focus & Attentions
Essential oils also can be used aromatically to increase focus and attention. InTune Focus Blend , Peppermint, and Wild Orange can all support sustained focus.* These oils can be applied topically and inhaled as needed to promote a sense of clarity and concentration.* You can also add a few drops to a plush key chain and attach it to your child's backpack. This is a great trick for smaller children.
Address Specific Needs
Backpack needs vary by age and gender. A kindergarten student may be required to take a snack each day. Sometimes older elementary aged children end up with a late lunch and may need a snack as well to get them through. And, of course, teenagers may need extra food just to get through first period if they are in a growth spurt.
Once girls start menstruating, they will need to have hygiene supplies in their backpacks at all times. Nobody wants to be caught unawares! You can pack a small kit of traditional feminine hygiene supplies, or go with an environmentally friendly option like the Luna Cup Period Starter Kit. In addition, include essential oils like ClaryCalm Monthly Blend for Women, Deep Blue Touch, Peace Touch Reassuring Blend depending on your daughter's menstrual symptoms.
Lighten The Load
You and your child should be thoughtful about what makes the backpack cut. Overloaded and heavy backpacks can become a real problem, especially if worn improperly. They can strain muscles and joints and cause pain. KidsHealth.org has lots of great information on backpack safety. Take some time to read through it with you child.
What backpack changes can you make to help your child survive and even thrive at school?