Most of us are aware that exercise is important for everyone, particularly for young people, but how many parents know how much exercise our children should be getting at school? Is half an hour of physical education a week and some running around in the playground enough, or should our children be getting more exercise than that? Here is a look at how much exercise your children should be getting as part of their education along with how physical activity can directly relate to academic achievement.
According to the NHS, children aged between 5 and 18 should get at least 60 minutes of physical activity per day. This should include a mix of playground-related activity as well as more vigorous physical exercise.
The Link between Physical Activity and Education
Exercise and activity are not only important for children’s physical health and wellbeing; they can also help with behaviour and academic achievement. Exercise can help with attention and concentration span in addition to assisting with stimulating brain growth. All of these things will help children to achieve more academically and show what a great benefit exercise and activity can be.
What Sort of Exercise?
Schools should be offering children a mix of structured physical education and other types of exercise. Schools should also offer extracurricular activities with a sporting angle. This could include traditional sports such as football and cross-country as well as other forms of activity, such as dancing and yoga.
School playtimes should provide children with the opportunity to do more than just run around. More and more schools are providing equipment for children to use, both at playtime and during more structured activity sessions. This equipment might include Children’s wooden climbing frames like those from http://www.niclimbingframes.com/. Additionally, parents should consider clubs or activities outside of school or even something as simple as letting children use scooters to get to school or walking there instead of driving.
If you aren’t sure whether your child is getting enough exercise at school, ask the school what they are doing to promote physical activity, either through the curriculum or extra-curricular activities. If you think that they could be doing more, why not use it as an opportunity to volunteer and help your child’s school to be more active?