WASHINGTON — More than 500 backpacks packed with school supplies were given away at an Operation Homefront event on Sunday.
The giveaway was held in College Park, Maryland, and gave military families a boost.
“It may not seem like a lot with a backpack with school supplies, but it’s a lot to military families. And they can’t always afford the school supplies — and so it will come primarily out of their food budget. So by helping them out with the backpack, it helps them to keep their food budget intact,” said Rosanne Coleman, program director for the Mid-Atlantic Region.
Another Operation Homefront backpack giveaway is planned for Saturday, Aug. 15 in Manassas, Virginia. Learn more about how to register on Operation Homefront’s website.
Many kids may need medication release forms for school so a check-up at the pediatrician may be in order to double check your child has the correct vaccinations and to get his or her hearing and vision checked.
Doctors say you should work on getting back into a routine with breakfast, a meal that may have been overlooked over the summer break.
“You want to start eating breakfast on time,” Dr. Richard So, a pediatrician at the Cleveland Clinic, told ABC News affiliate WPVI-TV.
Don’t forget about sleep either.
“Most kids under 12 need about 10 to 11 hours of sleep, after that is about 9 to 10 hours of sleep,” Dr. So told WPVI-TV. “You want to start moving their bedtimes back about 15-20 minutes every 2 to 3 days prior to school start.”
Practice hand-washing with your child by singing “Happy Birthday” twice to avoid any trips to the nurse or catching back-to-school germs.
“All we have to do is rub our eye, touch our mouth, touch something else and we’ve transferred germs and that’s the main way people catch things,” infectious disease specialist Dr. Michael Koniarczyk told WPVI-TV.
Going over safety basics is also important if your child walks to school or takes the bus, no matter what age.
“You might want to do a dry run with your kids, walking to the bus stop, walking to school, explaining to them what might happen and what you should do, yelling for help, running, don’t take a short cut through the woods.” Dr. Koniarczyk told WPVI-TV.
WASHINGTON — Remember gym class? Did you ever repeat those fitness drills or play dodgeball as part of your fitness routine?
This year, public schools in D.C. will introduce kids to a form of fitness teachers hope the kids will adopt for life: riding a bike.
“Every second grader is going to learn how to ride a bike,” said Miriam Kenyon, director of health and physical education for District of Columbia Public Schools.
“Not only are they going to learn to ride a bike, they’re going to learn bike safety, and they’re going to culminate their learning with a bike ride to the park,” Kenyon said.
For some kids, that could mean a trip to Anacostia Park, for others a field trip to Rock Creek Park.
The bikes are being supplied by D.C.’s Department of Transportation.
On Tuesday, Kenyon was joined by Brian Pick, chief of teaching and learning, at the school system’s warehouse in Northeast.
“We have 300 assembled bikes in front of us and another 300 behind us waiting for assembly by our volunteers,” Pick said.
Kenyon pointed out the sporty look of the BMX-style bikes.
“These are bike-shop quality bikes. They are very sturdy so that they can get multiple use,” Kenyon said.
The introduction of bike riding as a life skill isn’t just an effort to introduce kids to a lifelong fitness activity. It also will tie into classroom skills that the students are developing, including things such as learning to read maps.
Pick said that this fall, the school system plans to introduce something called the “Cornerstone Initiative,” part of a series of linked lesson plans.
“This is a series of 200 shared assignments that will happen in grades K-12 across the system, not only in PE, but in every subject area — in reading, in math, in social studies, health, PE and world languages,” Pick said.
The shared assignments mean that teachers across D.C. an exchange ideas and feedback about how their lesson plans worked, or if they didn’t what needs to be tweaked.
But for most kids, the focus will be on those shiny blue bikes. Pick said the introduction of the bikes as fitness equipment is a way to bring fun and excitement to the physical education experience.
Kenyon said some principals were a bit concerned about the safety of kids out on city streets, but once they are shown the routes that have been mapped out, those fears would be allayed.
The Washington Area Bicyclist Association has played a big role in introducing the idea of bike safety in the school curriculum. Kenyon said that Daniel Hoagland of WABA partnered with PE teachers on doing bike safety instruction, but that was on a school-by-school basis.The new program means 80 elementary schools will be taking part, so every child will have a chance to learn to ride. And each student will wear a helmet.
Pick, a cyclist himself, said he was excited about sharing his enthusiasm for cycling with students.
“Cycling is a great way to see the city. There are a lot of hidden gems” in the District of Columbia, and Pick said. “Hopefully this is just one steppingstone to greater enjoyment of both biking and Washington, D.C.”
DDOT funded the purchase of the bikes from a local chain Revolution Cycles and staffers from the bike shop volunteered to put them together in two days. The staffers will return later to build the remaining 300 bikes for DCPS.
To help kids start the year on the right foot, Washington Wizards all-star John Wall gave hundreds of D.C. students backpacks, school supplies and encouragement on Saturday. Read more here. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)
Dozens of needy children will be starting the new school year in style after a free shopping spree with the Shop with the Sheriff program. Read more
On average, full-time undergrads at four-year public colleges spend about $1,200 a year on textbooks and other course supplies, according to the College Board.
So, Consumer Reports checked out some online price comparison tools that can help you save money on textbooks, whether you’re buying new, used or if you’re renting.
Read more on WTOP.com: Websites that help college textbook bargain hunters
WASHINGTON (AP) — Public school students are heading back to class in the District of Columbia, and the city’s high schools are offering more Advanced Placement classes than ever.
For the first time this year, city high schools are required to offer at least six AP courses. While some school districts require students to take a qualifying test to enroll in AP classes, the courses in the District are open to all.
Students who fare well enough on AP exams can earn college credit.
Over the past five years, participation in AP classes by District students is up 52 percent. More than 2,700 students took at least one AP exam last year, up from 1,700 in 2010.
The first day of classes is Monday.