Students learn the basics of staying healthy including exercise, good food, being safe, and staying well. During each lesson, student record what they've learned or information about their lives and likes in mini books. At the end of the unit, all the books are put inside a "Healthy Me" box -- a keepsake that will be treasured by families for years. This unit provides a great way to emphasize important healthy living. If possible, get your school nurse, P.E. teacher, and cafeteria staff involved (that's assuming that you have all of that support -- if you don't, don't worry because there's plenty of support in the Teacher's Guide).
In each of the lessons students complete one or more mini-books. The mini-books About Me, Play, Good Food, and Healthy all have a blank square for the last page. As students finish the books, collect them and keep them safe. During the last lesson, they'll cut out the square on the last page and glue it to one of the sides of a small cardboard box. Glue a picture of the child on the top of the box and have them write their name under their picture. Put all the mini-books into the box and send it home. The box will be a great keepsake showing what their first grader was like.
Lesson 1: It's Great to Be Me
It's Great to Be Me has students looking at the things that make each one of them different and also how they are all the same.
Lesson 2: It's Great to Play
It's Great to Play stresses the importance of physical activity. Play some running games and be sure to play Follow the Leader as explained on page 17.
Lesson 3: It's Great to Eat Good Food
It's Great to Eat Good Food lets you talk with children about foods that are better for occasional snacks and which foods are better choices for every day. Information about the new food pyramid for kids is in the Appendix.
Lesson 4: It's Great to Be Healthy
It's Great to Be Healthy introduces children to the names of major organs in their bodies and what they do to keep us healthy. Explain that germs can make them sick and that the best way to get rid of germs is to wash your hands after you use the bathroom and before you eat. The mini-book Achoo helps stress the importance of covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Don't make too big a deal out of germs. Instead, stress how great our bodies are at keeping the germs out and killing them if they get inside.
If you're using waterless sanitizers, you may want to think again. When you wash your hands, you're not killing germs. You're making them slippery so they'll be rinsed away. Studies are showing that washing your hands with soap and water does a much better job of getting rid of germs than the chemicals meant to kill them. The gels are also hard on young skin and can cause skin irritations. Check with a second grade teacher for more information from Healthy Science 2.
Lesson 5: It's Great to Be Safe
It's Great to Be Safe begins with a tour of the school to find all the ways that the school tries to keep children safe. Use the Safety Pictures to talk about how many things are helpful but can hurt us if we aren't careful. The Be Safe mini-book stresses the same ideas.
At the end of the lesson, return the books and have students create their boxes.
Comments, questions, suggestions? Click here for our input form!