LiiNK Updates

Winter 2018

Happy Holidays from Dr. Rhea & the LiiNK Team!

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Tips from the Top

This is a wonderful time of the year. We all have a little time to relax and enjoy family and friends. The children have had a semester of unstructured, outdoor play four times daily which means their bodies expect it no matter if they are at school or at home. A parent told this funny story that may happen to you as well. The mom had taken her children, engaged in LiiNK at school, out shopping one week-end day. Everything was going along just fine for about an hour. Her children began to get anxious, more irritable, and fidgety. She looked at her watch and realized the children’s internal alarm clocks were going off to get outside and play. She laughed and said she probably needed to get outside too!

Use this time when the children are at home to go outside together and enjoy unstructured, playful experiences throughout this holiday season. Children needs this daily throughout the day, but so do we as adults. Everyone needs to get up and move every hour outdoors.

Remember the powerful benefits of the outdoors no matter what temperature:

· Improved immune system (better able to fight external & internal pathogens)

· Production of natural hormone D3 from the sun

· D3 boosts immune system function and prevents the ability of acute diseases such as bronchitis, colds, flu, joint pain, headaches from attacking the body and, over time, becoming chronic diseases such as asthma, arthritis, & migraines

· Become more relaxed and less stressed through a parasympathetic response

· Improved cognitive function

· Improved emotional well-being

· Become more hardy and resilient

Have a wonderful holiday season and enjoy the holistic healthy approach nature provides. Happy New Year for 2019!

- Dr. Rhea

Check Out LiiNK Featured in Seguin ISD!

Dr. Rhea's Keynote at TAHPERD:

Dr. Rhea gave a keynote presentation at the Texas Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance Conference in Galveston, TX. Click here to check out the presentation, focused on learning about the detrimental effects of sedentary behavior, living a better and healthier life through unstructured play, and leading your community to do the same.

Bundle up! We're Going Outside & Here's Why:

LiiNK campuses go outside for four 15-minute recesses daily as long as it is safe to do so. According to the National Weather Service and CDC, it is safe to be outside for 20-minutes or less in temperatures/wind chill as low as 13 degrees F. Being outside in different temperatures boosts the immune system, provides an outlet for energy and creativity, and strengthens the body. Exposure to nature creates a parasympathetic response which allows the body to be more relaxed and less stressed. Being outdoors more is also creating healthier and more resilient children.
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Recess Highlights:

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Increased play + Positive Action lessons lead to many opportunities for creativity. We can take a plain paper cup and create all sorts of interesting things. Check it out!

Connecting the Dots!

Ask your students about making decisions and taking care of the things they have. Which characters helped them learn about these ideas? What was something they learned about their talents?
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Week 11) Curious: Eager to learn how and why things happen

Week 12) Decision: To think about the choices and pick the best one

Week 13) Time: When something happens; Energy: The force to do something

Week 14) Talent: A natural ability that can be developed

Week 15) Possessions: Things you are responsible for; Money: Coins and bills

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Bad news: Kids are losing their strength and stamina.

A British study comparing 300 ten-year-olds from 1998 to their current counterparts found a 20% decrease in muscle strength and a 30% decrease in endurance. Kids today can do fewer sit-ups, and they can hang from the monkey bars for less time.

Is it because they're not getting enough exercise? No. The researcher, Gavin Sandercock, thinks it may be due to kids growing less tolerant of any discomfort.

The antidote?

More free play. When kids are playing just for fun, they are motivated to keep going. Hello, endurance! And when they're having a great time and fall, they get back up to play some more, learning to shrug off minor discomfort. They also learn how to deal with other people. That, as we all know, is OFTEN uncomfortable.

How can we bring all that back? First of all, consider becoming a LiiNK school, of course!

Then, also consider starting a Let Grow Play Club, where the school stays open for old-fashioned free play. Kids of all ages make up their own games and solve their own spats. An adult is on premises, in case of an emergency, but they don't intervene. This is truly kid-directed, device-free free play.

Try it and you'll see some "strong" results. Let us know how it goes!