By Kimberly Tessmer, RD, LD

The kids are on Spring Break and it’s raining!  What do you do to keep them busy and you sane?  The fun and learning doesn’t need to stop just because of a little bad weather.  Here are just a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Now that the kids are contained inside and you have their attention, this can be the perfect time to teach them about good nutrition.  Make it fun for them and easy for you by checking out the kid’s section of the USDA’s ChooseMyPlate website:

http://www.choosemyplate.gov/children-over-five.html.  There are interactive computer games for them to play and learn with, coloring pages you can print out and other activities.  Make coloring fun by using colorful markers or by letting them use paint with either brushes or their own little fingers.  Here are a few other online games and activities to check out:

– http://www.dairycouncilofca.org/Tools/MyPlate/

– http://www.nutritionexplorations.org/kids.php

– http://www.nourishinteractive.com

  • When the kids get hungry for lunch or a snack let them roll up their sleeves and get involved!  Being hands on teaches them more about food and good nutrition.  Start your child with their favorite La Tortilla Factory wrap or tortilla and let them choose from a variety of healthy foods to fill them with.  If they are old enough let them make their own roll-up.  Ideas might include:

– Peanut butter, raisins and/or bananas

– Diced chicken breast with pizza sauce and mozzarella cheese

– Cut-up fresh veggies with low-fat ranch dressing

– Turkey breast, salsa and low-fat cheddar cheese

– Refried beans or black beans, low-fat cheddar cheese and salsa

The healthy wrap ideas are endless!  Let your kids be creative, with a little helpful healthy supervision from you.

  • Keeping your kids active and entertained can be much more of a challenge when you are inside but it is important for them to engage in physical activity everyday.  But with a little creativity it can be done.  Let your kids be involved in planning some fun indoor activities.  Here are a few suggestions to get them started:

– Turn on the radio or put in a CD of their favorite music and let them dance!  Have a dance-off or a talent show to make it extra fun.  If you have enough kids around play musical chairs.

– Video games such as Wii or X-Box 360 have great active kid’s games.  You can check out your local library for games to borrow or swap with neighbors and friends if your kids are tired of the games they have.

– Blow up a balloon(s) and have the kids play a game where they keep it off the floor as long as possible using any part of their body.

– Have the kids play hide-n-seek around the house.

– Create a healthy food treasure hunt by hiding healthy foods around the house and drawing up a map with clues to help find them.

– If the kids are too rambunctious check to see if you local gym has open swimming or playtime for children, take them bowling or take them to an indoor roller or ice skating rink.

Don’t panic, even if the weather isn’t so good outside there are many ways to keep your kids healthy, happy and entertained inside.  Good luck and Happy Spring!