The Redleaf Press® Author Spotlight: The Wellness Duo

Healthy Children, Healthy Lives coauthor Rachel Robertson, MA

Get to know the talented authors who write your favorite Redleaf Press® titles!

This month, we’re excited to feature Rachel Robertson, MA, and Sharon Bergen, PhD, who teamed up to write Healthy Children, Healthy LivesTheir new book — which provides a series of checklists and information to help integrate six areas of wellness into early childhood programs — will be available at the end of the month.

Here’s a sneak peek at what you’ll find in this month’s Author Spotlight.

Do you have any recommendations to jumpstart wellness in early childhood settings or within our personal lives?

Rachel Robertson: Evaluate the beverages in your program. “More water, less juice” is my new slogan. Eliminate flavored milks and have a no-soda policy — including removing soda machines in the staff lounge (if that’s too radical, have a no-soda in the classroom policy).

Require that all children and teachers be prepared to actively play every day. This means tennis shoes and weather-appropriate clothing.

Eliminate television or movie watching from your program, if you haven’t already. There is no learning value and it increases the time children spend being inactive. Plus, television often exposes children to commercials of unhealthy foods.

Purposefully teach children the skills they need to understand and regulate their emotions. A good way to teach this is though modeling it!

Healthy Children, Healthy Lives author Sharon Bergen, PhD

Sharon Bergen: I was very lucky to benefit from Rachel’s research and passion for nutrition and physical fitness in working on this book. So, those are the areas that I have worked hard to jumpstart in my own life. A couple of really simple things that I have added to my daily routine:

  • Walk when I can. I try to take the stairs and not the elevator, park away from the door and take a longer walk, etc., whenever possible.
  • Eat more green. Changing one meal each day to a salad is a simple way to add more vegetables and to cut calories.

For early childhood environments, one simple practice I recommend is to create two checklists: a cleaning checklist and a daily safety check. Using these two checklists each day is a simple strategy to improve the health of the children and your health, too!

Read the rest of our Q&A with Rachel Robertson and Sharon Bergen here. You will learn about their terrific new resource, their passion for health and wellness, and other interesting tidbits, including favorite healthy snacks and reading material. Have a question for our authors? Leave a comment, and we’ll get you an answer!

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