A fun way to teach your child to wash germs away is to use child-type washable paint. Put a little paint on each hand and have them rub their hands together. Pretend that the paint is “germs.” Tell your child that we can not see germs, so we have to wash every part of our hands to get rid of the germs.
Help them use soap to wash off the paint. Show them how to get it out from around and under their fingernails. Talk to your child about when to wash their hands. They should wash before they eat, after they come in from outside, after they use the bathroom, and after they blow or wipe their nose.
Sing a song or say a rhyme with your child while they wash their hands. The happy birthday song is just right. This will help them learn to wash their hands for at least 20 seconds every time.
Good Night & Great Day!
Your preschooler needs 10-12 hours of sleep each night. Help them get into a routine. Slowly start moving your child’s bedtime earlier and earlier until they are going to sleep around eight o’clock. This gives them enough time to sleep and still wake up in time to get ready for school without being rushed or tired. A warm bath or story time may help your child to relax before going to bed. If your child is still napping during the day, wake them up earlier so that they will be ready for bed and able to fall asleep.
Let your child help make a snack. Talk about why it is important to eat many kinds of foods. Offer milk products, meats and beans, fruits and vegetables, and grains and cereals. Let them create a healthy snack by trying food from each of these groups.
Make up a new snack together that uses foods from a few of the food groups. Your preschooler can help cut fruits, vegetables, bread, and cheese. When your child helps you prepare snacks, they are more willing to try new foods.
It is Fun to Move
Plan some fun activities you and your child can do to get your bodies moving. Try things that other members of your family like to do.
Some ideas for family exercise are:
- Going for a short walk around the block
- Dancing to music in the house
- Working out to an exercise video
- Playing tag or a sport at the park
Try to do one of these activities together every day. After the activity, talk about how your child feels. You can ask,
- What did you like about jumping rope? Was it hard work?
- What does your body feel like after you have been moving?
Sing and Brush
Your child should brush their teeth twice a day. Each time, they should brush for about two minutes. A good way to help them get into this habit is to sing a song while they are brushing. Choose a song that has a lot of verses. Start singing when they start brushing. They will know it is time to stop when the song is over. Talk to them about brushing every tooth, front and back.
At this age, it is a good idea for you to help them for the last minute of brushing. Make sure that all the areas of their teeth and gums are clean. Help them build a habit of taking their time and doing a great job.