Welcome to the May Edition of the Healthy Schools


Brought to you by the Regina Area Health Promotion Department Saskatchewan Health Authority 

Please share with your administration, teachers, other school staff, and school community council.  There is something for everyone!   

French resources will be highlighted by 'FR.' 
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May 2019 feature topic:
Kids are Built to Move

In this issue:

  1. Why kids need to be active (FR + EN)
  2. Tips for increasing physical activity in schools (FR & EN)
  3. Unstructured Play (FR + EN)
  4. Recess
    • Alternatives to taking it away
    • Bullying prevention
  5. Taking Class Outdoors: Benefits of Nature
  6. Curriculum Connections (FR & EN)
  7. May School Nutrition Poster:  (FR & EN)
  8. Upcoming Community Programs:
  9. How to Connect with us

Kids need to be active

Children and youth's bodies are not designed to sit still all day. According to the Canadian Society of Exercise Physiologists (CSEP) guidelines (FR + EN) , 10 minute blocks of activity can help children achieve the recommended 60 minutes of daily physical activity. Physical activity has physical and mental health benefits, and can also improve mood and focus, leading to more engaged students and better academic outcomes. 
Click here to learn more

Tips for Increasing Physical Activity in Schools

  • Provide children with active recess ideas, find some here (FR + EN), or encourage children to create their own
  • Start a Take the Lead” program at school, where older students lead younger students in non-competitive active play.
  • In long cold stretches where indoor recess and lunch happen, look to have in-motion breaks. For ideas click here.
  • Try an in-motion break the next time you start to see students lose focus.
  • Create an active or sensory path hallway (containing illustrations of actions for children to do rather than just walking in the hallway). When teachers notice a student is unable to focus, send them to do a couple rounds of the sensory path and the child will come back less distracted. Check out our Pinterest page for ideas or click here to see how a school in Manitoba is using one.

Unstructured Play

Recess provides the best opportunity for children to get unstructured play. Unstructured play is where adults act as silent observers so that kids can control and make up the rules as they go along. Unstructured play helps children:
  • develop gross and fine motor skills  
  • learn autonomy to make their own decisions and engage in conflict resolution
  • build resiliency by solving problems and overcoming challenges on their own
  • stimulate creativity
  • Stimulate connections in the brain that develop skills for socialization and language acquisition
  • improve academic performance by enhancing social skills, oral language, pre-reading, reading for meaning and pre-math skills.
Unstructured play toolkit can be accessed HERE (FR + EN)
Click here for ways to increase unstructured play in schools


Alternatives to taking away recess

Taking away recess or active time from children to finish work or for poor behaviour does not help children. This can actually decrease focus and increase disruptive behaviour. For more tips on alternatives to withholding recess, click here (Action for Healthy Kids)

Preventing Bullying at Recess 

Although recess can be a time of fun, it can also be a time of stress for children who may be bullied. Click here to see these recess bullying prevention tips.

For more tools and tips to a successful recess see here:

Taking Class Outdoors: Benefits of Nature

Taking class outdoors once in a while, has been shown to:
  • increase physical activity levels more so being outdoors vs. indoors.
  • increase scores on standardized tests. 
  • increase positive attitudes about school, leading to an improvement in in-school behaviour.
  • decrease stress levels.
  • enhance mood and improve mental health.
  • increase student enthusiasm.
  • build stronger immunity.
  • prevent onset of myopia (nearsightedness) through exposure to sunlight.
  • Improve focus and attention to enhance learning.
         (Outdoor Education –Research Summary)
For outdoor learning space grant opportunities click here

Curriculum Connections

Nature Guides and Lessons connected to various Saskatchewan Curriculum outcomes : Resources for Rethinking - Learning for a sustainable future

Check them out here (FR + EN):

Outdoor Classroom Day Website has lots of good ideas too: 

May's School Nutrition Information Poster: Weight Bias

This Month's Nutrition Information Poster is: "Weight Bias at Home and at School" - En français: "Préjugés défavorables liés au poids à la maison et à l’école." Weight bias is judging or treating someone badly based on the size of their body. This poster provides tips for being supportive and inclusive of all body types.
The Public Health Nutritionists of Saskatchewan have developed a nutrition information poster for each month of the school year. This information can be posted in the school, website or social media, used in newsletters, or in school announcements. Download French and English copies HERE

Upcoming Community Programs

Child and Youth Services -  ADHD Parent Education Group

Time: 6:30 - 8:00 p.m.
Location: Wascana Rehabilitation Centre (2180 23rd Ave, Regina, SK) in the Auditorium
Who Should Attend: Parents/Caregivers of-,  school staff and volunteers who work with- children with ADHD, and anyone else interested.
Registration: Not required - anyone welcome
For more information call: (306) 766-6780

Class Topics and Dates:

  • May 16th: Psychiatry (medications)
  • May 22nd: ADHD and Nutrition
  • June 5th: Electronic Overuse

Eat Well Saskatchewan - New call or email a dietitian service 

Free, confidential, easy access advice from a dietitian is available to help individuals make healthier food choices and answer food and nutrition questions. Call toll free 1-833-966-5541 or email More information about this service is at Please feel free to share with families.

Raising a Healthy Happy Eater

  • Who should attend: Parents with kids ages 0-6. 
  • Next Date: May 11th, 2019
  • Time: 10:00 - 11:00 a.m..
  • Location: 55 Davin Cr. (Dr. Hanna School)
  • Registration Required
Click here for details

Cooking with Healthy Ingredients, Nutrition and Oral Health 

Health Promotion is presenting at one of the Family Nights at the Albert Branch Regina Public Library. At this interactive evening we will be learning about cooking with pulses, taste testing some dishes and learning the link between good nutrition and oral health. There will be activities for kids and the whole family to do together.  
  • Who should attend: Anyone - adults, children and youth
  • Date and Time: Tuesday May 21st  - Free dinner served at 6 p.m., activities and information from 6:45-8:00 p.m.
  • Location: Albert Branch Regina Public Library (3355 6th Avenue)
For more information contact, or for more about Tuesday family nights at the Library, call: (306) 777-6076.

Talk Tuesdays at Balcarres Community School

The Balcarres Community School and Saskatchewan Health Authority present “Talk Tuesday.”  Together, on the third Tuesday of each month they showcase a health and wellness topic of interest for the school and community. 
  • Who should attend: parents, students and community
  • What: Free supper and presentation
  • Dates and Times:  5:30 - 7:00 p.m. May 21st Mental Health
  • Location: Balcarres Community School (420 Lisgar St., Balcarres, SK)
  • For more information contact: Amy Redding at (306) 695-7067  

Connect with us

The Regina Area Health Promotion Department is here to support your school in health areas including: nutrition, physical activity, positive mental health, body image, and dental health. 
If you would like to share success stories or upcoming events related to health in our newsletter please let us know - Click on the 'envelope' symbol below.

Coming up in the May Edition: Unstructured play in schools
CLICK HERE to view Last Month's Edition on School Wellness Teams
Click here for more on how the health promotion department can support your school
Subscribe here!
Saskatchewan Health Authority - Health Promotion Department, Population and Public Health Services - Regina Area

Our mailing address is: 
4211 Albert Street - 4th floor
Regina, SK S4S 3R6
Ph: 306-766-7370

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Saskatchewan Health Authority, Health Promotion - Regina · 4211 Albert Street · Regina, Sk S4R 3R6 · Canada

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