I picked up Corey from school to hear him excitedly discuss how many cupcakes he had in class. Wait, there were multiple? Apparently, one week in March holds a whopping three birthdays.
Maybe it’s time we re-thought how we do birthday’s in school.
OK, before you start jabbing me with number two pencils, hear me out.
Birthdays should always be celebrated. Absolutely. Positively. Without a doubt. But I have found that there are a lot of ways to celebrate that are more helpful to our kids than harmful. I wrote a post not that long ago about the pressure placed on a Cheeto. Whether it’s a snack, part of lunch or brought in for a treat, the foods our kids eat are their fuel for the day. As adults, we regularly state that food is fuel. For our pint-sized counterparts, that statement still stands.
When our young ones are in school, we expect a lot from them. Teachers can be demanding, rightfully so. Their schedules are jam packed and there is no room for jitters, fidgeting and unfocused minds. And that’s what sugar does. Even the smallest amounts can affect the students. So you guessed it. Even the cupcake…or cupcakeS.
After we got home the day my oldest threw back a few baked goods it was clear as day he had overdosed. We asked him to ride around the block a few times, had him take out the garbage and sweep the garage. The boy was a wreck. He was a pacing fool! We laughed about it but it was evident he was affected. It makes you think.
If we sugar them up during the day, but expect them to walk a straight line, we are setting them up to fail. But it’s our responsibility to set them up for success. So, let’s do that.
Like I said, birthdays should always be celebrated. Here are some ways to do just that:
Read to the class
Bring the birthday kiddo’s favorite book or two and read it to the class. My Kindergartner loves when I can be in his classroom for special occasions. And, even my third-grader lights up when I can be with him!
The power of the Almighty Dollar. My kids are suckers for the $1 store. The invention of the $1 bin is mind blowing to them. A fun goody bag of $1 fun finds goes a long way!
For the past four years, I have brought all natural fruit ice pops for my son’s birthday. They contain no major allergen ingredients so all the kids in his class can enjoy them and they are all natural and low in sugar. And tasty!
Bring in a game for the class to play in the birthday celebrant’s honor. Whole class participation and some time away from studies could put your kid on the winning team!
Birthdays are to be enjoyed. By everyone. Save the cake for AFTER school and help set them up for success while they are IN school. Win win!