With FCAT less than one week away, it’s crunch time when it comes to making sure your children are prepared. In addition to offering practice problems, there are a variety of things parents can do to make sure their children are ready for the FCAT, or any test. Here are some suggestions:
Leading Up To FCAT
- Exercise – Make sure your child is active during the days leading up to the FCAT. Children should get at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day. Research has proven that children who are physically fit, and exercise on a regular basis, score higher on tests.
- Establish an Evening and Morning Routine – Set a proper bedtime and wake time leading up to the FCAT. This will establish a routine and get your child accustomed to going to bed at the proper time and waking up with enough time to get ready for school. Getting enough sleep allows the brain to retain information and be alert for the day.
- Have Fun – It is important to make sure that you allow your child time to decompress and not think about the upcoming FCAT. Test anxiety can cause children to under perform, so trying to curb some of that anxiety by allowing your child to engage in fun activities is very helpful.
Day Of Test
- Prepare a Healthy Breakfast – It is important to offer a balanced breakfast that will sustain your child throughout the day. Prepare a breakfast that is high in protein to keep them full throughout the morning, has complex carbohydrates such as whole grains or vegetables for a steady stream of energy that won’t make them crash and healthy fats to help absorb the foods’ nutrients.
- Stay Hydrated – Drinking water throughout the day will help your child stay hydrated and sharp. Staying hydrated helps people easily retain and recall information. Send your child to school with a refillable water bottle so he or she can stay hydrated throughout the day.
- Give Words of Encouragement – Tell your child that he or she will do well on the FCAT. Providing children with words of encouragement can have a positive effect on their self esteem. This has been proven to help children perform better on tests.
Designed to make students and families aware of ways they can live healthier lives, the Health Expo will include over 27 vendors. They will provide information to help students and parents get physically active and eat healthy.
The Health Expo is organized and hosted by Audubon’s Healthy School Team. Two years ago about 200 people attended the Expo, and last year that number doubled to almost 400. Audubon hopes to set a new record this year.
This year’s Health Expo is part of a larger Healthy Living Week that is scheduled April 8 – 12. Each day during Healthy Living Week, Audubon is educating students on how they can live a healthier life. Activities planned range from an Olympic sprinter talking about exercise, to lessons on maintaining proper emotional health, good nutrition, avoiding drugs, and dental and personal hygiene.
As a special surprise for the students, the Health Expo will feature an obstacle course where students will do different physical activities while answering questions about how they can be healthy. Parents will also have a special surprise. By getting at least eight signatures from different vendors they visit, parents will be eligible for raffle prizes ranging from a soccer summer camp voucher to free exercise classes.
Healthy kids are active kids, and according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, it is important for them to get at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day. But many times children don’t get that much physical activity at school leaving it up to parents to make sure they are active at home. So, how do families become more active? Healthy Kids Today had compiled three simple tips for how you can become a more active family.
Identify different types of fun physical activities
- Try a variety of activities. Every family is different. Sit down with family members and make a list of activities you think might be fun for everyone. This could include anything from jump rope, and dancing to gardening or even kick ball.
Lead by example
- As a parent, it is important to model the behavior that you want to see your children exhibit. After you identify the fun activities, take charge and make sure to schedule time to do them. Also, incorporate being active into everyday life. Take the stairs instead of the elevator or bike to your destination instead of driving.
Limit screen time
- Determine an appropriate amount of screen time for your family. Once you establish what works for you and your children, limit screen time to that amount. Screen time includes watching TV, being on the computer, playing video games and mobile devices, such as tablets and phones.
Added together, these simple changes can make a big difference in family life and health. Although it might be hard to fit 60 consecutive minutes of physical activity into the day, remember it is OK to tackle the goal in pieces. If you can only get in a 30-minute walk after school, follow that up later in the day with another 30 minutes of activity. It is up to parents to ensure their families are staying active. Comment below and tells us how you plan to make your family more active.
Did you know March is Florida’s Bicycle Month? The City of Winter Park is celebrating by joining the city’s Pedestrian & Bicycle Advisory Board to host the 5th Annual Bike from Park to Park on Friday, March 22, at 8 a.m.
Bike from Park to Park is a free scenic bike ride that begins at Central Park West Meadow located at the corner of Morse Boulevard and New York Avenue. The ride is approximately 3.5 miles, takes bicyclists through Martin Luther King Jr. Park to Mead Botanical Garden, by Azalea Lane Recreation Center, and back to Central Park West Meadow, where refreshments will be provided. Bike from Park to Park supports the mission to promote a viable and safe pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly infrastructure of Winter Park.
This is a great activity for the entire family. Bicycling is a fun activity that gets your family moving and staying fit. Remember to always wear a proper fitting helmet, adjust your bike to fit properly and watch for and avoid hazards on the road. Come out this Friday and enjoy a fun filled morning of bike riding. For more information on Bike from Park to Park click here.
Children lie as part of their normal development. Throughout childhood children clarify boundaries by testing limits. Very young children are not yet able to distinguish fantasy from reality. By the age of 6 children have a better understanding about the difference between fantasy and reality and develop a conscience. At this age children may lie to avoid punishment or disapproval. As children get older they might lie to spare someone’s feelings, because they feel overwhelmed or to gain attention. Remember that chronic or habitual liars rarely feel good about themselves. Look for patterns in the child’s lying and try to determine what needs the child has that make him or her want to lie.
Your CHILL counselors, the mental health professionals based in each Winter Park Consortium School (Winter Park High and the elementary and middle feeder schools), have assembled these tips on how to prevent lying.
- Always model telling the truth. Avoid “little white lies” such as lying about your child’s age so he or she gets a cheaper movie ticket.
- Keep your word, always explain and apologize if you have to break a promise.
- Teach your child through role-playing the value of telling the truth.
- Teach your child the difference between make believe and reality, truth and lying.
- Let your child know that lying is not acceptable.
- Praise your child for telling the truth, especially in situations where it is difficult for your child.
- Create a safe family environment so your child can express his or her feelings.
- Avoid being too harsh in parenting. Be firm, fair and consistent instead.
Contact the CHILL counselor at your child’s school for more information on this topic. To find out the name of your counselor, click on the Schools tab on any page of this website.