Back to school reminders

Well, it’s that time of year again when students across British Columbia are preparing for a new school year. Whether it’s elementary, high school, or university, it’s an exciting time for them all. There’s plenty to look forward to as fall approaches and the learning begins.

Well, it’s that time of year again when students across British Columbia are preparing for a new school year. Whether it’s elementary, high school, or university, it’s an exciting time for them all. There’s plenty to look forward to as fall approaches and the learning begins.

Just this past week, the Ministry of Education released some helpful tips on how parents and students can make this school year an active and healthy one. So what is one of the most important ways we can ensure our kids are healthy? Packing them a balanced lunch of course! Nutrition is so important when starting down the path towards an active lifestyle, so including your kids in packing their own lunch is a great way to encourage healthy eating habits. A great tool that can help teach kids about eating healthy and balanced meals is the Canada Food Guide.

There are so many things to think about when sending kids back to school, but another important one is their safety. We think about kids at school, but what about getting there? Be sure to plan your kids’ route to and from school and plan on how they will get there. If possible, walk the route with them for the first while and make sure they are not walking the route alone.

Also on the topic of safety, I want to remind local drivers about school and playground zones. Please be sure to follow all posted signs in and around both schoolyards and playgrounds and approach crosswalks with caution.  All of us need to pay extra attention, be aware of speed limits, and slow down.  It’s a busy time of year so please be careful and let’s make this school year a safe one. Finally, how can you encourage your child to embrace literacy? Well there are a few ways. Why not make it fun? While you’re making dinner or other tasks, ask your child to read to you. Also find out what interests them and what genre of books they like to read. Asking questions about what they’ve read helps increase comprehension as well. All these tips can help your child have a successful school year.

So I hope everyone has a great start to the school year and gets off on the right foot. For more info on helpful back-to-school tips, visit the Ministry of Education website at:http://www.gov.bc.ca/bced/index.html.

Donna Barnett is the Liberal MLA for the Cariboo-Chilcotin.