Subject: Healthy Schools Connection Newsletter - December 2020

Volume 20 Issue 3
Celebrating Christmas at School

Celebrations might look different this year but there are still ways to share the holiday spirit in schools. Here are a few ideas for safe holiday activities:

  • Have students perform a physically distanced dance or learn sign language to a recorded Christmas song. The performance could be recorded and shared virtually with parents. Avoid singing or shouting as these actions increase the risk of spreading COVID-19.
  • School-wide Christmas meals can occur, but buffet-style service is not permitted. Staff can distribute individually wrapped or plated meals for students to eat in their classrooms. Food must be covered when transporting it from the kitchen to classrooms.
  • Christmas food drives are a great way to show holiday spirit. Collect donations in classrooms and have the items sit untouched for 72 hours before delivering to the recipient.
  • Buddy up with a senior's home. Make cards or crafts for residents. Have the items sit untouched for 72 hours and arrange for outdoor delivery.
Northern Fruit and Vegetable Program is coming in 2021!

The Northwestern Health Unit is pleased to partner with the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers and the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care to offer this program once again from January to June, 2021. All K-8 students across the region are receiving fruit and vegetables once per week at school. The goal of the program is to increase consumption and awareness of fruits and vegetables among elementary school students in Northern Ontario. The menu will include items that can easily be provided as individual servings. If you have questions about the NFVP, please contact Chelsea Socholotuk, NWHU Registered Dietitian, at (807) 468-3147 ext. 301243; or email
12 Days of a Mindful Holiday Challenge

Join the 12 Days of a Mindful Holiday challenge from December 1-12, 2020!
Mindfulness can help build resilience; the ability to bounce back from life's daily challenges, self-regulation and concentration. It also promotes self-awareness, kindness and compassion.

Register using the registration survey. Then, print off or download a log sheet from our website or contact your local Northwestern Health Unit office to pick one up. Have a more mindful holiday by trying some of the following activities with your family:
  • Complete a random act of kindness
  • Make a snow angel
  • Practice being thankful
  • Try something new
  • Take a walk in the snow
  • Spend time with family and friends safely
  • Put lights up outside
  • Volunteer your time

There are 12 mindful activities for you and your family to take part in during the challenge that you can check off after they’re completed. Sign up to have a chance to win some great prizes!

Return your log sheet(s) by email to, or fax to 807-226-9807, by December 17, 2020. Visit to learn more.
Dental health services update

If you have students who are in pain due to dental needs, please refer them to us. We may be able to help them access care. Call our dental health team at 1-855-407-6453.
COVID-Friendly PE ideas: at home, outdoors and at-a-distance

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