Chicago Suburban Family

Education

6 APPS for Fit Kids

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As schools are closing across the country, parents are looking for ways to keep their kids meaningfully engaged during the long days at home. How about encouraging your kids to download some apps that can help them stay mentally and physically fit? Here are some of the very best ones available, and the best part is that they’re all completely free.

Eat & Move-O-Matic
If you want your kids to understand the consequences of their food choices, Eat &Move-O-Matic is the right app for them. Created by the Learning Game Lab at New Mexico State University, the app teaches kids to be aware of what they eat or drink. It lets them compare the calories in their food choices with the type and length of time of physical activities like biking, running, or walking needed to burn of those calories. (App Available: Apple Appstore; Age range 9-18)

Nature Melody
If there’s one thing kids need to in order to lead healthy lives it’s a good night’s sleep, and the app Nature Melody can help them get that. It functions like an alarm clock and has more than 30 soothing, nature-inspired sounds to wake your kids up slowly and gently in the morning. The app can be used in the afternoon and evening, too, using the nap and a sleep timer function, for a stress-free end to their day.  (App Available at: Apple Appstore, Google Play; Age range: 5-18)

NFL Play 60
If your kids love sports, especially football, but it’s hard to get them to do any actual exercise, NFL Play 60 is just the right app for them. Created by the NFL, in collaboration with the American Heart Association, the app lets kids pretend that they’re professional football players. But instead of simply making their on-screen avatars run and jump, they have to get off the couch and actually run, jump, catch and turn to make their avatars move. The app lets kids count the steps they’ve taken while playing the game. (App Available at: Apple Appstore, Google Play; Age range: 5-18)

Space Chef
If you want your kids to learn to eat well, encourage them to download Space Chef. Created by the Lawrence Hall of Science, maker of the Monster Heart Medic app, Space Chef teaches kids important facts about healthy foods. And it goes one important step further: it has more than 60 easy-to-make and kid-friendly recipes that encourage kids to eat healthily and to take responsibility for their own diets. (App Available: Apple Appstore; Age range: 5-12)

Super Stretch Yoga
Besides meditation, a great way for kids to relax their minds and bodies for optimal health is to practice yoga. Super Stretch Yoga, created by a well-known yoga instructor, Jessica Rosenberg, teaches kids yoga through video demonstrations by other kids, with a focus on breathing and movement. It’s narrated by a character named Super Stretch and features 12 different poses with different skill levels. Kids can use the built-in camera to take pictures of themselves doing the poses. (App Available at: Apple Appstore; Age range: 9-18)

Three Good Things: A Happiness Journal
It’s a well-known fact that mental health is impacted by a sense of well-being. If your kids need a little boost and happen to enjoy writing, encourage them to download Three Good Things: A Happiness Journal. The app helps kids think more positively by writing daily about three good experiences they’ve had. The app has a feature that lets kids upload and share their writings on social media.  (App Available at: Apple Appstore; Age range: 5-18)

By Tanni Haas, Ph.D.


ACTIVE KIDS ZONE

Great Lakes Volleyball Center
Looking for a summer volleyball camp for your son or daughter ages Pre-K through 12th grade?  The Great Lakes Center located at 579 N. Oakhurst Drive, Aurora, IL. 60502 will be running camps in late June and all of July.  We will also be offering private, semi-private and group lessons this summer and fall. NEW this summer we will be offering a 5th – 8th grade league (more details to follow.) For more info call 630-898-6400 or visit www.greatlakescenter.com  FB: Sports Performance Volleyball

Harper College InZone Camps
We have adapted to bring Harper College’s InZone camp into your home this summer. With a wide selection of virtual classes available, kids can expand their art creativity, develop a website, become a master musician and even enhance their own cooking skills right at home. Make new friends and learn new skills, all while staying in your pajamas all day. How great is that?! InZone (ages 8-14) and InZone Junior Explorers (ages 6-8) will run online through August. Visit harpercollege.edu/inzone to view the online catalog and schedule your virtual summer of fun, with flexible programming schedules featuring morning and afternoon classes. Email inzone@harpercollege.edu or call 847.925.6300 with your inquiries and questions.

Rock ‘n’ Kids at Home!
Rock ‘n’ Kids is rockin’ at home with virtual music and movement classes of Tot Rock and Kid Rock for 1-6 year olds! Registered participants will receive an email with that week’s private 30-minute virtual class, allowing families to participate on their own time. More information and registration available at www.rockitkids.com.

Special Offer: Use coupon code RNK20 for 20% off summer enrollment! More information and registration available at www.rockitkids.com. Rock ‘n’ Kids has been enjoying children’s wiggles and giggles for 25 years!

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