It’s hard to believe that March is already here, with spring officially just around the corner. For schools, that means testing season! In about a month, we will be giving AIMS tests to our students for the last time. Next school year, a new test will be given that’s designed to show how well students have learned new “Career and Career Ready Standards,” which used to be called “Common Core.”

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

One of the best things you can do to help children prepare for testing season (and life!) is teach them healthy breakfast routines, including how to make it themselves. Studies show that children who have had a healthy, balanced breakfast do much better on tests than children who don’t. Perhaps your child is able to have breakfast with us on testing days, so weekends are a great opportunity to try this out.

The experts at Healthy Kids Challenge say the first thing to do is talk to your child about a balanced breakfast, keeping the MyPlate food groups in mind. Think of your family’s favorite breakfast foods and plan simple meals with your child that include three or more of the food groups at breakfast. For example, you will cover grains, milk and fruit food groups by having a breakfast of cereal, low-fat milk and 100 percent juice.

It’s also important to teach children how to be safe in the kitchen such as using knives and appliances. You can make a hunt-and-search game of where the utensils and foods are that your child will need, including bowls, silverware, cereals, etc.

Plan to have the child prepare breakfast solo (with supervision, of course!) on a day when nobody’s in a rush. The day before, you can go over the menu so everyone knows what to expect. Who knows? Maybe you’ve got a budding chef in the house – or at least you might get a nice, healthy breakfast in bed sometime by a student who just aced the last exam!

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