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5 Healthy Habits for Kids to Kick-Start the New Year

Try these simple and educational kids’ activities that add up to mega fun—and a more healthful life.

By Emilie Dingfeld

As adults, we know the importance of including healthy habits in our daily life—in fact, we often don’t recognize that many of our actions are, indeed, habits. We also know how easy it is for the unhealthy ones to slip in (looking at you, mindless scrolling). For kids, the earlier they learn about healthy habits, such as getting outdoors daily, the easier it will be to stick to them lifelong. So, to make the New Year overhaul easy and enjoyable, we’ve compiled a fun list of kids’ activities that you can easily swap in for screentime. Read on for five healthy habits that will nourish their mind, body, and soul.

Learn How To Meditate Together

Help kids look inward by making a mindfulness practice part of your daily routine, whether that’s by reading books about topics such as empathy, meditation, and gratitude, or using flashcards, games, puzzles, and more to dive deep. You can also use guided journals, or blank ones, for pre-bedtime doodling or writing, which can help relieve stress before sleep. Lastly, keep a list of mindfulness questions handy for dinnertime, bath time, and beyond.

Learn Something New as a Family

Expose your kids to new passions by experimenting with a variety of different activities, games, and books. Create an idea jar, where your family members can drop activity suggestions, then draw a new one (or two) each week, such as cooking or baking new recipes, learning a new language, and crafting—from making slime to tie dyeing. Of course, no day is complete without bedtime stories, so expand your kids’ bookshelf with books that encourage diversity and inclusion.

Incorporate Daily Physical Activities For Kids

Instill a lifelong love of movement early on by introducing physical activities that bring on the giggles. Break movement sessions down into four or five mini activities—it all adds up. In the morning, bundle up and walk, bike, or ride to school. Then, après school, unwind with yoga for kids via a deck of cards or a bag of dice that offers a range of playful poses. For weekend fun, plan an obstacle course, a scavenger hunt, or sports playoffs. Stock up on hula hoops, skipping ropes, sports equipment, and more.

Get The Kids Involved in Random Acts of Kindness

Show your kids that no gesture is too small by helping neighbours with chores such as cutting the grass, shovelling the snow, or bringing their garbage bin in from the curb. For craft lovers, double down on fun by making a giving book, for which little ones write and/or illustrate a range of acts of kindness to complete. One such act could be delivering cards or crafted gifts to frontline workers to show your family’s appreciation. When you’re ready, volunteer as a family at an organization you choose together.

Enjoy The Outdoors & Educate Kids About Nature

Commit to exploring natural wonders with a range of outdoor activities for kids. You can start simply with a walk in the park, as well as caring for an outdoor space by gardening and cleaning off patio furniture. Then, to further your kids’ respect for the environment, teach them about waste, and arm them with strategies to reduce garbage. For instance, have them help pack a waste-free picnic lunch (for snowy and spring days alike). You can even try a plastic-free challenge, where you aim to find alternatives for often used household items, such as laundry detergent, shampoo, and more.

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