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School Newsletter Tips - December

​Breakfast On the Go!
Breakfast is an important part of starting off your day. It gives your body and brain the fuel needed to carry out daily activities. For busy mornings have food options your family can eat it on the go, in the car, or while waiting for the bus like fruit and yogurt or a homemade muffin and smoothie.
Stay active over the holidays
Bundle up and have some family fun. Take the family to a ‘Toonie’ skate or visit an outdoor rink. Try on some snowshoes or skis and hit the local trails. Many places have free or low cost rentals. Play a game of hockey in your driveway or head to a rink with friends. Take a hike. Get off the beaten trail and explore nature’s winter wonderland.
​Give the gift of physical activity- give a present that promotes fun, active play.
Winter time is a great time for kids to get outdoors and be active. Are you having a hard time deciding what to buy for a child? Give the gift of fun and play by giving an active gift:

• Geocaching kits- kids will love it!
• Family play pass- bundle up and go play outside with the kids
• Sports equipment – sliding saucers, skates, skis, toboggan, hockey
   stick, snow shoes, snowboard, helmet, mouth guard.
• Recreation passes or memberships to use for public skates and swims,
   shinny hockey or swimming lessons
• Warm clothing, mitts or footwear for outdoor winter play.
• Pedometer to count your steps and track activity levels.
​Protect Your Family from Radon
In our region, 1 in 4 lung cancer deaths are due to radon exposure. Radon gas comes from the breakdown of uranium that is found in rocks and soil and gets into homes through cracks, pipes, and drains.
Your home may have unsafe levels of radon gas in it – the only way to know is to test. To prevent being exposed to radon:
• Test to find out if there is radon in your home. Testing should take place
   for a minimum of three months during the winter in the lowest lived-in
   area of your home. Radon testing kits can also be purchased at most
   hardware stores or online.
• Avoid putting bedrooms in the basement where radon levels are the
• Spend most of your family time on the main levels of your home, not in
   the basement.
​Choosing a gift for a child?
The age recommendations on toys relate to safety, not to the ability of a child. Follow the age recommendations on toys for all the children on your list, including those you believe are exceptional.
​Tooth-friendly Christmas gift ideas!
Kids love getting new toothbrushes. Find one with a character they like, you may be surprised at their excitement over tooth brushing. For kids over 3, buy some kid-themed toothpaste. Sometimes the flavour or the character on the tube helps motivate kids to brush!
​Holiday Food Safety
During this holiday season avoid foodborne illness with these simple tips:
• Don’t eat uncooked batter or dough that contains raw eggs as they can
   contain harmful bacteria.
• When serving meals make sure hot food stays hot (above 60°C) and
   cold food stays cold (below 4°C).
• Think ahead when thawing a turkey. Thaw under cold running water or
   in a refrigerator.
• Ensure your turkey is cooked to at least 82°C and stuffing to 74°C.
• Clean and sanitize all surfaces that may have come into contact with
   the turkey or its juices.
​Parent/Child Communication
No parent is expected to have all the answers. Talk to your child. Create a connection. Provide your child with the chance to share his/her day’s activities, feelings, and ask questions. Learn to observe, wait and really listen. Open, effective communication benefits not only the children, but every member of the family.
Here are some good online resources for reliable information:
• Infant Mental Health Promotion
​Stay up-to-date with your immunizations
Like eating and exercising, immunization is a foundation for a healthy life. Getting immunized is a safe and necessary part of keeping you and your family healthy. When you get immunized against a disease, you build up your immune system, making you stronger and more resistant to that disease. No matter how healthy you are, if you haven’t had the vaccine, you don’t have the antibodies to protect you if you are ever exposed to the disease. Stay up-to-date with your immunizations and stay healthy! For more information contact your local health unit office.
​Have travel plans this winter?
Before you travel, the NWHU recommends that you visit to research your destination regarding health and safety. It is recommended that you consult a travel clinic (Winnipeg or Thunder Bay are closest) if you have further questions about travel health. If you require vaccinations for travel, the NWHU will administer travel vaccines for a fee.