In this day and age, it's all too common for families to eat meals on the run. Sitting down together at the dinner table is a good way to instill healthy habits that can last a lifetime. It's also a great time to teach good manners and the art of listening to one another. Children learn much by observing what we do and not only by what we say.
My friends Lylah and Michael run The Simple Farm in Scottsdale, Arizona. Situated in a neighborhood, surrounded by gated communities, they are teaching many about a lost art in our families. They offer classes on how to start your own garden of vegetables and herbs. Lylah loves to sit and share her idea of coming together for meals without rushing. She will grab an herb from her garden and have visitors smell it and taste it. Her enthusiasm for community is infectious. I love this about her.
I work in a private school working with preschool children. I am with them during their lunch time and work with them on eating and practicing good manners. They say 'please' and 'thank you' and 'may I be excused'. I continue to work with them on chewing their food with mouths closed and taking small bites. I'm often amazed at how children eat until they're full and then stop. A lesson for me ...
Last week our school held an outdoor assembly (yes we can do this in February in Phoenix) to raise awareness for diabetes. Our principal has diabetes. Each year our students and teachers walk to raise money for a cure. I was especially touched this year when one of our Pre-K 4 students stood in front of the crowd to answer questions about his diabetes. He held the attention of everyone as he spoke.
And then the student body walked ...
They walked for our principal.
They walked for this little boy.
They walked for people with diabetes to raise awareness and money for a cure.
Children can begin to learn about living a healthy lifestyle from a young age. Practice what you preach. Talk to them about healthy choices. And then go outside and ride your bicycles or take a walk together.
Do you have any ideas to share? How do you teach your children about health and exercise? I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas.
Blessings and love,