Important elements of health education
Child health care education has been one of the touchiest school subjects of all time. What is covered can be controversial, but everyone can agree that some degree of education is necessary to help students lead healthy lives and make healthy decisions.
How to approach health education:
- Be inclusive. Health problems can happen to anyone. Make students feel like they're not alone if they encounter a problem.
- Offer resources. Students are often shy about asking for extra information about health topics, particularly sexual health. Provide pamphlets, website addresses and books students can use as further resources.
- Have a positive attitude. Being healthy is largely about being happy. Having a positive approach to health education topics like exercise and food nutrition will encourage students to develop good habits.
- Teach for the future. Don't fill students with lots of facts they will forget. Try to teach them healthy practices they can start implementing today and carry through for years to come. Show them why being healthy now will help them be healthy later as well. Health care management education is the best way to prepare students for healthy lives.
While policies and curriculum decisions are ultimately up to individual boards of education, there are a few common units and areas of health education that are covered in most schools. These include:
- Personal hygiene
- Positive self image and self esteem
- Mental and emotional health
- Different parts of the human body, including major organs
- Physical fitness and physical education
- Health issues as related to drugs, alcohol and tobacco
- Nutrition, healthy eating and weight control
- Sexual health and sexually transmitted diseases
- Preparation in case of disaster
- Driver and safety education
Sexual health education is a controversial topic in many school boards, so consult board policy before teaching students. Your school's principal can also give you guidelines.
Many schools are also starting to introduce students to alternative medicines and holistic health education. While these are not widely taught and are not major topics, the perspective is valuable in giving students all the information they need to make proper decisions for themselves.
A successful health education lesson plan will engage students and directly connect to their lives. By showing kids how different habits and substances can affect their bodies, minds and overall health, they will understand what they can do to keep as healthy as possible.
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