Let’s Move! Child Care Celebrates 3rd Anniversary
In a few weeks, Let’s Move! Child Care (LMCC) will celebrate its 3rd anniversary. Part of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! Initiative to raise a generation of healthier kids, LMCC is a voluntary effort to empower early care and education providers to instill healthy choices from the start. One in five children is overweight or obese by age 6. With about 12 million babies and young children in child care and 1 million in Head Start nationwide, child care and Head Start providers have an important opportunity to prevent childhood obesity by supporting the following LMCC goals:
- Increase Physical Activity: Provide 1–2 hours of physical activity throughout the day, including outside play when possible. The summer months are an especially fun time to get active outside. To stay safe, remember to keep babies younger than 6 months out of direct sunlight. For children older than 6 months, try to limit sun exposure when UV rays are strongest, dress children in protective sun hats and shatter-resistant sunglasses with UV protection, and apply sunscreen.
- Reduce Screen Time: No screen time for children under 2 years. For children age 2 and older, strive to limit screen time to no more than 30 minutes per week during child care and work with parents and caregivers to ensure children have no more than 1–2 hours of quality screen time per day (as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics).
- Improve Food Choices: Serve fruits or vegetables at every meal, eat meals family style whenever possible, and don't serve fried foods.
- Provide Healthy Beverages: Provide access to water during meals and throughout the day, and don't serve sugar-sweetened drinks. For children age 2 and older, serve low-fat (1%) or nonfat milk and no more than one 4- to 6-ounce serving of 100% juice per day.
- Support Breastfeeding: For mothers who want to continue breastfeeding, provide their milk to their infants and welcome them to breastfeed during the child care day. Support all new parents' decisions about infant feeding.
LMCC salutes the more than 12,500 Head Start and child care providers who have already committed to working toward the Initiative’s best practices for healthy nutrition, physical activity, breastfeeding support, and screen time!
We're excited to mark the 3rd anniversary of Let’s Move! Child Care this June by giving away fun toolkits full of kid-friendly physical activity materials. Toolkits are sponsored by Nemours, a child health system, and Kaplan, a global provider of educational services. The toolkits include the following:
- Ready, Set, Move Game
- Read, Move, Learn Book
- Rainbow Parachute
- A World of Parachute Fun
- USDA Wellness Handbook
- USDA Recipes for Healthy Kids Cookbooks
Getting started is simple. It’s free! To enter the drawing to win a toolkit, just take the Let's Move! Child Care Checklist Quiz between June 1 and June 13, 2014.
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