Fuel for School

Back to School Tips from Children's Healthcare of Atlanta
Learn New Ways to Eat Smart

A new school year means getting your kids back into a routine of smart eating so they can perform their best while learning. 

We’ve got you covered when it comes to fueling your family with food throughout the school year with these nutrition tips.

  • Breakfast

      Breakfast, the most important meal of the day, breaks the overnight fast and gives kids the energy they need to power through the day. 

      When kids skip breakfast, they could be going hours without food, which can make them inattentive and ill-behaved in the classroom.

      We also know that kids who skip breakfast are more likely to be absent from school more often. 

      In contrast, kids who regularly eat well-balanced breakfasts generate higher scores on standardized tests and show improvements in math, reading and vocabulary.

      Check out these breakfast tips from Strong4Life:

      - Make breakfast part of your family’s morning routine.

      - Prepare breakfast at home. Try our quick and delicious Rise and Shine Rollups.

      - If time is an issue in the morning, having your kids eat breakfast at school can be a time-saving and cost-effective alternative.

  • Lunch

      A healthy, tasty lunch provides the fuel your child needs to finish the school day, attend after-school activities and get a head start on homework before dinner.

      Keep lunch healthy with these tips:

      - Suggest your kids eat lunch at school. School cafeterias can be a good option for the midday meal. Georgia’s school districts have been working hard to meet the newly improved federal nutritional guidelines and increase the quality, taste and variety of food they serve. That means your kids are now able to get a nutritionally balanced meal at an inexpensive price, right in the cafeteria.

      - Create a well-balanced packed lunch. If you prefer to pack your child’s lunch, skip the sugary drinks and juices as well as fruit snacks, cookies and other energy-zapping treats. Need ideas on what to pack? Check out our 5-day menu planner for school lunch ideas or mix and match to create your own.

  • Snacks

      Eating between meals is a good idea for your kids as long as you make sure they do it right with nutritious snacks.

      Power Snacks

      Make sure snacks pack a lot of vitamins and minerals to keep your kids going strong by creating a power snack.

      The key to power snacking is to combine at least two food groups and always include a protein. Carbohydrate-heavy snacks like chips and pretzels may provide a quick burst of energy, but it wears off quickly. Protein keeps your child full for longer and with enough energy to make it to the next meal.

  • Special Events

      Classroom Parties

      From fundraisers and birthday parties to after-school activities and beyond, there are tons of reasons to celebrate at school. 

      With just a few simple changes, you can help make your child’s activities more nutritious and healthier for everyone. Here are a few ways to get you started:

      - Ditch the sugary drinks. Encourage water in place of soda, sports drinks or juice.

      - Limit sweet treats. Serve plenty of colorful fruit and veggies instead.

      - Take the focus off food by planning more activities (i.e., arts, crafts, games, etc.).

      - Create a scavenger hunt, have a dance party or enjoy extra playground time.

      Team Events

      Whether your child has joined a soccer team or plays pick-up basketball at the park, Strong4Life has a simple game plan to make sure he stays hydrated and fueled up for play.

    A Cookie Took My Son’s Life: The Real Danger of Nut Allergies

    "Food allergies aren’t just hype," says Charles Dillard on the Children's Blog. "They’re real, and they’re dangerous."

    Charles shares how his teenage son passed away after he mistakenly took a bite of a cookie containing peanut products.

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