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New Year's resolutions for kids - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

New Year's resolutions for kids

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HACKENSACK, N.J. -

Brooke Hopkins, 10, wants to eat healthier in the new year.

"I've been doing pretty good so far, so I can stick to it," she said.

Her mom is helping her stay on track.

"Every week we try and add a new vegetable she hasn't tried before," mom Ronne said.

The American Academy of Pediatrics reminds everyone that New Year's resolutions aren't just for adults; children should make healthy promises, too.

"It really is a family effort," said Dr. Jennifer Sivitz of Hackensack University Medical Center.

For preschoolers, brushing teeth twice a day, washing hands after the bathroom and before eating, and putting toys away are some suggestions.

Experts say physical activity is a good resolution for children of all ages. Try to find a sport or activity they like and encourage them to do it at least three times a week.

"The recommendation is 60 minutes a day and the other piece of that is limiting screen time less than two hours a day," Sivitz said.

Some good resolutions for elementary school children-- drink reduced fat milk and water, limit soda and fruit drinks to special occasions, wear a biking helmet and be nice to other kids.

For teens, promise to choose nonviolent TV shows and video games, and resist peer pressure to try tobacco, drugs or alcohol.

Brooke got a jump start on her goals. She joined the Healthy Futures program at Hackensack University Medical Center five weeks ago.

"It's not about weight loss, it's more about making healthier choices for herself," Ronne Hopkins said.

Choices Brooke hopes to stick to through the year and the rest of her life.

Pediatricians say just like adults, kids love the sense of accomplishment when they stick to a goal. So be sure to reward kids for sticking to a goal and encourage them when they're having trouble achieving one.

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