Nutrition and Physical Activity

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Let’s Move! Child Care (LMCC) is part of Let’s Move!, a comprehensive initiative started by Michelle Obama to help turn the rising tide of childhood obesity in the United States. Child care providers play an important role in helping to develop healthy eating and physical activity habits in young children. This lesson is an overview of the issue of childhood obesity and an introduction to the LMCC lesson series that covers the five goal areas in greater detail. (K7.3 C1, CDA 2) 2 hours

Goal number one in the Let’s Move! Child Care initiative is to get kids moving (increase physical activity). Research shows that physical activity provides many benefits for everyone and that it is important for parents and care providers to be good role models. This lesson can help child care providers learn the most up-to-date recommendations for physical activity levels for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers, and presents new ways to keep kids moving. (K7.3 C2, CDA 2) 2 hours

Goal two in Let’s Move! Child Care is to reduce (limit) screen time. Studies show that children who spend more time viewing TV are at an increased risk for overweight and obesity due to increased sedentary activity. Screen time refers to all digital media including TV and can interfere with cognitive development for children under the age of two. Child care providers will learn the best practice recommendations and gain an understanding for why it is important to reduce (limit) screen time for young children. (K7.3 C2, CDA 2) 2 hours

The fourth goal in the Let’s Move! Child Care Initiative is to provide (offer) healthy beverages. Calories found in beverages count just like calories in food so it is important to make sure that the healthiest choices are offered. With so many beverage options now available, the choices can be confusing to parents and caregivers. Child care providers will learn appropriate beverage options for children in their care, the benefits of healthy beverages and strategies for how best to transition to serving them. (K7.12 C2, CDA 2) 2 hours

The third goal in the Let’s Move! Child Care initiative is to nurture healthy eaters (serve healthy food). Lay the foundation for healthy choices and habits early in childhood by serving healthy food and providing positive mealtime experiences in the child care setting. Child care professionals will learn the benefits of offering healthy food including strategies and ideas to encourage healthy eating. (K7.12 C2, CDA 2) 2 hours

Goal number five in the Let’s Move! Child Care initiative is to support infant breastfeeding by encouraging mothers to breastfeed. Breastfeeding benefits mothers and babies in many ways, including helping to prevent childhood obesity. Continuing to breastfeed for the recommended amount of time can be challenging, especially when children need to be in child care. Child care providers will learn practical solutions for encouraging and supporting mothers to breastfeed their babies.(K7.13 C1, CDA 2) 2 hours

Research documents the benefits of playing, learning, and simply being outdoors. National and international movements encourage more time in nature. However, this can be challenging for early care professionals. In this lesson, adult facilitators view examples of rural, suburban, and urban programs that support outdoor fun. Grow in confidence, understanding and capacity to support best practices in outdoor play for birth to school-age children. (K7.3 C2 CDA2) 2 hours

Child care practitioners are important role models for the children in their care. The phrase "actions speak louder than words" is especially true for children since they watch and imitate what adults are doing. Being a healthy role model not only is important for the children but enables the care provider to have the energy and good health to meet the demands of the job. This lesson explores key concepts and actions for modeling healthy behaviors for children. (K7.3 C2 CDA 1) 2 hours

Work, family, activities – life is full and it is challenging to balance all of that with choices that lead to good health. This lesson examines ways child care providers can support these efforts and offers practical ideas for ways to encourage families to make healthier choices now to increase the potential for good health in the future. (K7.3 C2, CDA 4) 2 hour