Asian salad makes a healthy school lunch

“iCarly” star Reed Alexander, creator of KewlBites.com, shows TODAY’s Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb how to make an easy and healthy school lunch for kids. Watch the video above.

From caffeine sheets to Dust-Off: Do you know what your kids are doing?

It’s well-known that teens experiment with illegal substances such as alcohol and marijuana. But recently, children and teens have turned their attention to substances found at home or local convenience stores. They’re abusing parents’ prescription painkillers, energy drinks and computer cleaners. Read more in MSNBC.

Trying to find a cry of desperation amid the Facebook drama

Facebook iconFor adolescents, Facebook and other social media have created an irresistible forum for online sharing and oversharing, so much so that endless mood-of-the-moment updates have inspired a snickering retort on T-shirts and posters: “Face your problems, don’t Facebook them.” Read more in the New York Times.

Kids not exercising? Here’s how to get them moving

There are many reasons why kids may not play team sports: They lack the interest, skills and even resources – which include transportation, money for fees and equipment or uniforms.

Unfortunately, many schools do not provide at least 60 minutes of physical activity for kids each day.  Parents know their kids need to be more physically active – the question is how to get their child off the couch and moving. Check out this FOX News report.

DPS funds school nurses, despite tight budget

While tight budgets are forcing many districts to cut school nurses, Denver Public Schools are bucking that trend. Dayle Cedars reports. Watch the 7NEWS report. 

Communities Putting Prevention to Work program gets results in Dougco

DENVER – It’s been a year since the Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) grant began making a difference in the Denver area, encouraging kids to get more active and eat healthier. On Thursday, students from several participating districts, including Douglas County, joined together to celebrate the milestone.

The goal of the two-year $10.5 million grant, which was awarded to the Tri-County Health Department, is to increase opportunities for residents in Douglas, Arapahoe and Adams counties to make healthier choices. Most of the money is being provided to schools, to implement programs that lead to sustainable change in communities. Read more at Our Colorado News. 

New guidelines planned on school vending machines

vending machineThe Obama administration is working on setting nutritional standards for foods that children can buy outside the cafeteria. With students eating 19 percent to 50 percent of their daily food at school, the administration says it wants to ensure that what they eat contributes to good health and smaller waistlines. The proposed rules are expected within the next few weeks. Read more in the New York Times. 

What’s on your kid’s lunch tray? Poudre lunches get once-over

An apple a day might keep the doctor away, but do school lunches need more to fuel healthy minds?

Healthy school lunches that taste good and appeal to students are of prime importance to many parents who have shown up at school board meetings, contacted nutrition experts and requested a formal audit of the nutritional value of school meals.

Complaints range from the lack of gluten-free and vegetarian items to a desire for more scratch cooking and farm-to-school produce options and a lack of student interest in picking healthy options over “just tasty” selections. Read more in the Coloradoan.

What is Healthy Breakfast 4 Kids Grant Program?

The Healthy Breakfast-4-Kids (HB4K) goal is to create and improve access to breakfast in schools nationwide as a means to lessen the huge negative impact of hungry children across our nation. In 2012 Food Family Farming Foundation (F3) and Walmart Foundation are partnering to grant 117 $2500 equipment grants to rural high needs schools for the purpose of assisting in the successful establishment of universal breakfast in the classroom programs. Grant awardees will be able to order $2500 worth of food service smallwares or equipment to help support implementing breakfast in the classroom via an online order with our partner Tundra Specialties. As part of the grant program, F3 will create universal breakfast implementation resources to be available to all schools via our program, The Lunch Box. Click here for more information.

How much sleep does your child need? Even experts disagree

I’m used to seeing parents having spirited debates about sleep methods. But now sleep experts are having their own debate about sleep guidelines.

A recent paper suggests that the sleep recommendations for kids are, in essence, not supported by research. The implication is that kids may not really need as much sleep as we are told. An expert’s reaction to this paper was that, in general, the guidelines are backed up by enough research to make them useful. Read this Parents blog post.