We all know that eating nutritious food and exercising regularly are vital for our children’s health and development, but for many homeschooling parents it can be tricky to find ways to fit physical activity into the homeschool day and encourage their children to make good food choices without it seeming like a chore or battle of wills.

As the number of children diagnosed with obesity on the rise, it’s more important than ever to set a good example and help our children build and maintain healthy habits that will serve them well throughout their lifetime, which is why I thought I’d share some of my favourite ways to integrate healthy living principles into your homeschool day with you below:

Aim for Balance, Not Restrictions:

While limiting your child’s intake of sugary and processed foods is a great way to keep unwanted weight gain and other health problems at bay, being too restrictive with food can actually cause more harm than good. The best way of achieving the ideal healthy diet for your child (and yourself!) is to aim for balance rather than cutting out certain food groups, so look to include a variety of fruits and vegetables along with whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats in each of your meals.

If your child isn’t a keen vegetable fan and resistant to trying them, you may find cutting them into fun shapes and arranging them into colourful patterns on the plate can make them more appealing and help familiarise your child with their texture and taste in an engaging and exciting way.


Get Your Child Involved, from Planting to Plating:

In my experience, children are more likely to be open to trying new foods, particularly vegetables, when they’ve been involved in the growing or cooking process (or, ideally, both!). You can incorporate this into our homeschool really nicely by teaching them about the different types of vegetables and fruit and why they’re so good for our bodies during one of your lessons, then grow them together in your garden, which in turn gives them lots of opportunities to learn about things like the lifecycle of a plant.

You can also encourage them to help you to prepare meals, whether that be by prepping vegetables or actually cooking (depending upon their age and ability, of course), let them choose ingredients and experiment with different flavours and textures by finding multiple ways to use the same vegetable (carrots are great for this!).


Try to Stick to a Regular Meal Schedule:

If you’ve been with me for a while, you’ll know I’m a huge advocate for planning and routine, particularly in the homeschool environment, and mealtimes are no exception. To help your child develop healthy eating habits, try to stick to having three meals within the same sort of time window each day and offer healthy snacks in between to make sure they don’t get too hungry. This will help them learn when they are full and keep their energy levels more stable throughout the day.

Get Joe Onboard:

During the first few lockdowns, Joe Wicks really saved the day for a lot of parents with his 20 minute P.E lessons for children, keeping the kids engaged and active while offering adults a chance to either rest or get involved as well!

Although those lockdown days are, thankfully, behind us, I still think these online P.E lessons are a really good tool to bring into your homeschool, especially if you find yourself struggling for inspiration or simply in need of some time to regroup or prepare for your next lesson.

You don’t have to use Joe Wicks, of course; there are plenty of other options out there on the internet and YouTube, so don’t be afraid to try different classes to find the one that suits you and your child best.

Be Their Role Model:

As a homeschooling parent, it’s a given that you’ll have a lot on your mind at all times, and I know from experience how easy it is to sort of “forget” about yourself among the chaos and settle for quick, easy meals or unhealthy snacks to get you through the day.

Although I appreciate this is much easier said than done, it’s really important that you bump yourself up that mental list and look after yourself by eating healthily and staying active, too. Children learn by example and you are their best teacher, so modelling these healthy habits for them will be so valuable and make a real difference to both their health and your own.


If you’re already doing most of these things in your homeschool and as a family, keep up the good work, but for those of you who are hoping to make a few small changes with big impacts, I hope these tips help or encourage you and your child to engage in a more healthy lifestyle together. You really will be setting your child up well in doing so, and these habits truly can last a lifetime.

Until next time,