To get the calcium they need from milk, kids must drink at least 3 glasses every day. But with milk being replaced by sodas and other nutrient-void beverages, nearly 50% of kids in the U.S. aren’t getting enough calcium in their diets. So what can you do to help your children get enough calcium?
Involve your children to help them learn.
One way is to get them thinking about calcium and its benefits. For instance, do they know that calcium helps their bones grow stronger, and ultimately, more resistant to fractures? But it doesn’t stop there. Calcium also helps their teeth and gums stay healthy, and aids in muscle contraction and nerve function. So teach your children about calcium by building a Bone-Building Scoreboard with them. You’ll help teach them about the importance of calcium and encourage them to make smarter food and drink choices down the line.
Here’s how it works:
On a large poster board, make a list of everyone in your home who needs calcium. To make it fun, you can even draw pictures of healthy bones and teeth. Explain to your children why they need calcium for strong bones and where they get calcium.
Include the list of foods and their calcium on the board for reference. Get the list.
We’ve provided a list of a few foods that are excellent sources of calcium. Every time a family member has a calcium-rich food they get a star. When they drink milk with dinner, eat some cheese and crackers as a snack or a cup of yogurt for breakfast they get a star. Ice cream, cottage cheese and frozen yogurt count, too.
At the end of each week, the family member with the most stars receives a fun gift that the family picks out.
Here’s how it works:
The idea is to make it fun for your children to learn about calcium, so have a good time with it. Let your children decorate the chart as they want, to make it their own. Plus, have your children monitor the chart and award the stickers. They’ll feel more in control and, become more involved.
It’s a fun activity to help your children learn and grow!