One Step At a Time: Helping Young Children Be Active!

Adults’ Role in Promoting Physical Activity

Mother and ChildAdults can influence where and how young children spend their time.

For example, if children play outside instead of watching TV, that makes a big difference in the amount of calories burned and children’s weight. How young children spend their time also affects their development.

So, adults’ influence on where and how young children spend their time affects children’s bodies and minds.1

The term “parent” is used for the adult or adults responsible for a child. This could also be a grandparent, aunt, uncle, grandparent, or legal guardian.

Parents have the most influence on young children’s activities because young children spend most of their time in their parents’ care. This is true even for children in child care programs.

Parents want advice from people they trust about raising their child. Parents often trust family members, friends, doctors and nurses, child care providers, and others who work in health care and social services.

Child care providers can give parents information and support on issues affecting young children’s physical activity. This can help parents encourage their child to be physically active. To help parents, child care providers need to understand parents’ lifestyles and values. Child care providers should not make parents feel guilty if their child is not physically active enough.





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