School Health Programs and Classroom Supports
On this page:
THU offers programs and support to elementary and secondary schools on healthy eating, physical activity, and mental health. We offer:
activity leaders in schools (PALS)
Walk ‘N Roll Timiskaming
Northern Fruit & Vegetable Program
A cycling skills program for grade 5/6 students. Includes an
in-class component and a bike rodeo.
A leadership program that trains
students in grades 4-7 to lead playground games during recess.
Walk ‘N Roll partners with schools to improve school zone safety and promote active school travel.
The NFVP provides 2 servings of vegetables and/or
fruit per week to students to try with their peers.
Check out THU’s Lending Library for a list of teaching tools and resources available for loan.
For more information on these programs:
Classroom Supports and Curriculum
Here are some suggested resources to support classroom learning and a healthy school environment:
Resources to support school staff in helping young people succeed and thrive.
- THU staff can deliver developmental assets training to school staff members. Reach out to your school public health nurse for more information.
- Search Institute Resource Hub offers a research-based collection of tools, activities, measures and other resources designed to support you in helping young people succeed and thrive. (EN)
- Search Institute, The Developmental Assets Framework The Search Institute has identified 40 building blocks of healthy development – known as Developmental Assets – that help young people grow up healthy, caring, and responsible. The framework is available to download in English and French.
Resources to support good hand washing practices and prevent the spread of germs.
- GlitterBug Hand Hygiene Training Borrow the GlitterBug kit from THU’s Lending Library. We also have supplies available to refill school kits! GlitterBug helps educators break down students' preconceptions about hand hygiene and train them how to clean their hands effectively. It’s great for all ages from kindergarten to seniors. (EN)
How to create a healthy food environment and teach about nutrition.
- Northern Fruit and Vegetable Program (NFVP) Activity Calendar The Calendar includes vegetable and fruit fact sheets, recipes and a calendar that provides corresponding educational activities with each week’s fruits and vegetables deliveries. Schools are encouraged to send a copy of this resource home to parents. (EN | FR)
- Northern Fruit and Vegetable Program (NFVP) Implementation Guide The Guide provides details on each educational activity recommended in the NFVP Activity Calendar. Also includes a sample/template for NFVP school newsletter. (EN | FR)
- BrightBites (Ontario Dietitians in Public Health) has resources to help teachers and other school leaders improve school nutrition. There are ideas to improve school celebrations, catered lunches, fundraisers and much more. (EN | FR)
- Paint Your Plate (Ontario Dietitians in Public Health) has fun lesson plans for grades 1 to 8 that teach the importance of vegetables and fruit. (EN | FR)
- Sip Smart ™ Ontario (Ontario Dietitians in Public Health) teaches children in grades 3 to 7 about sugary drinks and how to make good drink choices. (EN | FR)
- OPHEA has specific healthy eating lesson plans that are aligned with the 2019 Health & Physical Activity Curriculum. (EN | FR)
- Media Smarts has lesson plans on body image and food marketing. (EN | FR)
- Healthy Eating at Schools (Canada Food Guide) has resources to help teachers share healthy eating messaging to students. (EN | FR)
- Unlock Food (Dietitians of Canada) is a website where educators can find reliable resources and information on various healthy eating topics. (EN | FR)
- Kid Friendly Award winning recipes by Unlock Food (EN | FR)
- Weight Bias, Eating Disorders, Body Image Resources
- Beyond Images: Curriculum developed by the National Eating Disorder Information Centre (EN | FR)
- Educators Weight Bias - Infographic (EN)
- NEDIC Webinars: various webinars to learn more about teaching body image and using activities from Beyond Images outside of the classroom. (EN | FR)
- Nurturing Healthy Eaters in Elementary Schools: handout (EN | FR)
- Nurturing Healthy Eaters in Secondary Schools: handout (EN | FR)
Teaching tools about immunization, antibiotics, and global health.
- Kids Boost Immunity Curated lessons for students in grades 4-12 with interactive quizzes that mirror your province’s science, health and social studies curriculum. For every quiz that students complete, KBI donates a vaccine to someone in need! (EN | FR)
- For information about how THU supports school immunization clinics, visit our page: Immunization in Schools
Information on concussions, safe cycling, helmet use, road safety and sun safety.
- Parachute Canada Parachute offers resources and information on road safety, cycling, concussions, helmets, pedestrian safety, rail safety and more. (EN | FR)
- OPHEA Learning about concussions: a teacher guide and lesson This resource includes a teacher guide, lesson and an online student module for grade 6 and 9 students. (EN | FR)
- To meet the requirements of the PPM 158 (2020) – School Board Polies on Concussion (Ministry of Education), educators can visit the OPHEA Concussion Portal (EN | FR) to review information about concussions, including sample forms, assessments, an e-Learning module, as well as a Rowan’s Law Day Toolkit.
- Parachute has additional training and awareness building resources for educators. (EN | FR)
- The Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries (EN | FR) provides information and resources for parents, educators, students and coaches on concussion prevention, identification and management.
- Information specific to Rowan’s Law (the concussion safety legislation) can be found on the Ministry of Ontario website. (EN |FR)
- Active Transportation
- Walk ‘N Roll Timiskaming Walk ‘N Roll is Timiskaming’s local active and safe routes to school program. Walk ‘N Roll partners with schools to improve safety in the school neighbourhood, and encourage active transportation through fun events, incentives, and education. Visit walknroll.ca to learn how to get your school involved with the program, or for links to classroom resources. (EN | FR)
- Cycling 101 Education (School Bike Rodeos) Walk ‘N Roll Timiskaming offers bike rodeos to elementary schools every spring. Aimed at the grade 5/6 level, the program has three components: 60 minute in class curriculum, 90-minute outdoor skills training (the “Bike Rodeo”), and parent communication. Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in bringing this fun program to your school! (EN | FR)
- Sun Safety
- For information and factsheets, visit our Sun Safety webpage.
Resources to promote positive mental health in the classroom and at school.
- School Board Mental Health resources
- School Mental Health Ontario provides evidence-based resources for schools, parents, families and students on all aspects of student wellbeing. (EN | FR)
- Kid’s Help Phone is Canada’s only 24/7, national support service. Offering professional counselling, information and referrals and volunteer-led, text-based support to young people in both English and French. Whether by phone, text, mobile app or through the website, young people can access their services. There are also great resources on the website for caring adults. (EN | FR)
- RNAO's – Youth Mental Health and Addiction Champions Initiative boosts mental health, illness and substance use education and awareness among youth through empowering youth champions. This peer-to-peer impact is so powerful that it helps shifts attitudes from a mental illness focus toward mental health promotion. (EN | FR)
- Jack.org is Canada’s only charity training and empowering young leaders to identify and dismantle barriers to positive mental health in their communities. (EN | FR)
- RandomActsofKindness.org offers lesson plans and other resources to help build kindness in your school community: the Kindness in the Classroom® curriculum is an evidenced-based social emotional learning curriculum designed to help schools create a culture of kindness. Each unit teaches six core kindness concepts: Respect, Caring, Inclusiveness, Integrity, Responsibility, and Courage. (EN)
Supports for teaching how to keep teeth and gums healthy.
- Oral Health Education Guide for Teachers the OHEG is meant as a tool to enable you to teach oral health, as it links oral health education and resources to learning blocks and strands found in the Ontario Curriculum, grades 1-8. (EN)
- Dental Curriculum (Ontario Association for Public Health Dentistry) Dental curriculum available in English and French at the Timiskaming Health Unit 705-647-4305; 1-866-747-4305
Dental screenings are completed in all publicly funded schools in Timiskaming annually. Visit School Dental Screenings for more information about the program.
Ways for schools to promote active living for life.
- OPHEA Ontario Physical Health Education Association Curriculum Resource This resource for Grades 1-8 are available online to educators in both French and English through a password-protected site. You can receive your password by calling your school board office. They have ready-to-use lesson plans per grade, student templates and assessment tools. (EN | FR)
- Ophea offers DPA Everyday, a free resource for educators to support implementation of the 20 minutes of minimum physical activity into instructional time to promote well-being and academics. This resource is geared for educators of Grades 1 to 8, and includes videos, posters and discussion guide. (EN | FR)
- ParticipACTION aims to inspire Canadians to move more and to make it easier to do so. Their website provides a number of resources including campaign information, programs and initiatives, press releases, e-newsletters and webinars. Activity plans, sedentary guidelines and the latest Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth are also available. (EN | FR)
- Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth aged 5 to 17 years is led by the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP). This resource is research-based and includes valuable information promoting healthy development and encourages children and youth to live an active lifestyle. For optimal health benefits children and youth should obtain a daily balance of sufficient sleep, limited sedentary behaviour, and a range of physical activities in a variety of environments. (EN | FR)
- Active for Life offers resources for educators who want to deliver physical literacy instruction to children. There are ready-made lesson plans and lesson plan builder for ages 3 to 5, 5 to 8, and 8 to 12. (EN | FR)
- Physical and Health Education Canada (PHE Canada) offers some free physical activity resources for educators (grades k-12). (EN | FR)
- Be Fit for Life offers a variety of resources with ideas for physical activity and physical literacy that can be used in the classroom or in outdoor settings. (EN)
- Unstructured Play Toolkit Did you know that recess with unstructured play can increase students’ attention and focus and promote better behaviour in class? To read more about the benefits of recess and unstructured play on improving mental health and resiliency take a look at the Canadian Public Health Association’s (EN | FR)
- Physical Literacy Resources (Sport for Life) Physical literacy is as important as reading and writing. For children and youth to be active for life they need to develop fundamental movements skills, have confidence in their ability, be motivated to participate in physical activity opportunities and possess knowledge and understanding to value being active. They provide several resources and learning opportunities and they also have a physical literacy for educators section on their website.
- Playground Activity Leaders in School PALS is a leadership program offered by the Timiskaming Health Unit that trains students in grades 4-7 to lead playground games during recess. Contact your THU school nurse for more information.
Prom and Safer Partying
- 2022 Prom Toolkit We are aware that many traditional approaches to addressing youth substance use (e.g., zero tolerance policies, abstinence-only education, etc.) have limited effectiveness and can produce unintended negative consequences. As a result, this toolkit takes a harm reduction approach and aims to reduce the social and health harms related to alcohol and substance use. The goal is to support and encourage healthy behaviours and good decision-making. This resource includes information on the risks of using alcohol and substances and encourages youth to celebrate in a safer, less harmful way on their prom night.
- The purpose of this toolkit is to provide school administrators, teachers, students, and parents/caregivers with resources and messaging that encourages students to have fun on their prom night while making decisions to celebrate in safer ways.
- The toolkit contains the following components:
- Student Party PROMise Pledge and Photo Op Card
- Celebrate Safer On Prom Night-Information Sheet
- A Lesson on Consent
- Protect Yourself from Sexual Violence: Tip Sheet
- White Ribbon Resource Card
- How to Talk to Your Teenager About Prom- A Resource for Parents
- Social Media Messages
- Links to Resources
- Toolkit | Resources
- Trousse | Ressources
Teaching tools for healthy growth and sexual development.
- Sex and U (The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada) provides accurate, credible, and up-to-date information and education on topics related to sexual and reproductive health. Includes LGBTTQ+, healthy relationships and consent. (EN | FR)
- SHORE Centre Resources SHORE Centre (Sexual health options, resources, and education) offers resources for all grade levels that can help you teach your students about their bodies, their health, relationships, consent, respecting diversity for all students and much more! Includes great classroom games and activities, lesson plan support, and “The Answer Box” video series. (EN)
- Toronto Public Health offers resources for all grade levels that can help you teach your students about their bodies, their health, relationships, consent, respecting diversity for all students and much more! (EN | FR)
- Egale Canada Resources and trainings for Ontario educators to help build 2SLGBTQI inclusive schools. (EN)
- OPHEA Tips for teaching human development and sexual health with confidence. Downloadable resources and support teaching adolescent growth and development, personal hygiene and healthy active living. For grades 5-8. (EN | FR)
- PREVNet: Canada’s Healthy Dating and Relationships Guide. (EN | FR)
- Sex Information & Education Council of Canada (Sieccan): Canadian Guidelines for Sexual Health Education provide guidance to educators and policymakers for the development and evaluation of comprehensive evidence-based sexual health education in Canada. Also includes: Sexual Health Education for Youth with Physical Disabilities; Sexual Orientation in Schools; Gender Identity in Schools; Relationships and Sexual Health during COVID-19. (EN | FR)
- Public Health Agency of Canada: Information on Sexually Transmitted Infections, Sexual Health Facts and Information for the public. (EN | FR)
- Teaching Sexual Health: Teacher portal from Alberta Education. Teacher guide on how to respond to student questions and manage sensitive issues. Includes lesson plans, tools and grade-specific resources. (EN)
- Differing Abilities: Lesson plans for students who may experience challenges in their social and emotional development in comparison to typically developing students. The lesson plans often give options for students who may need more support versus activities where students can work more independently or in small groups. (EN)
- North Bay multicultural center: resources on positive spaces. (EN | FR)
Resources to prevent risk behaviours and teach about smoking, vaping, cannabis and opioids.
This video outlines the role of schools in preventing problematic substance use through positive skill development.
- The Blueprint for Action Model is a tool created by the Public Health Agency of Canada to support school community members in planning and carrying out a wide range of strategies for preventing substance-related harms among youth (EN | FR)
- Talking about... Series is an educational resource that helps leaders address lung health issues with youth. The series includes a set of activity guides to help facilitate critical discussion with young people in a fun and informative manner. (EN)
- Media Smart is a Canadian resource that houses one of the world’s most comprehensive collections of digital and media literacy resources that offer opportunities to approach digital issues in schools and in the classroom for educators in a positive way. It offers lesson plans, tip sheets, and other educator resources to assist with various media topics which including alcohol marketing and tobacco marketing (grades K-12). (EN | FR)
- Vaping: What’s the hype? (North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit) A toolkit meant to help youth learn about vaping to become informed decision-makers. *THU has a physical copy of the toolkit available for loan to schools. * (EN | FR) YouTube Videos: Vaping: What's the Hype? | Trousse d’outils sur le vapotage. An Educator Guide (Guide pour les éducatrices et éducateurs) explains the entire toolkit. It gives educators some background information on vaping, ideas for how to use the toolkit and support student learning, links to the curriculum and more!
- Vaping toolkit (Public Health Sudbury & Districts): This electronic toolkit includes downloadable factsheets, a PowerPoint, and activity plans. (EN | FR)
- Consider the Consequences is a Health Canada vaping prevention campaign. Download or order awareness materials for schools, community groups or for parents. (EN| FR)
- OPHEA: Vaping Education Resources These resources have been developed to provide educators with capacity-building tools and conversation starter prompts to support students in developing the knowledge and skills needed to make informed decisions to support their health and well-being. (EN | FR)
Smoke Free Ontario Act, 2017 - How the Act Affects: Schools
E-cigarettes and Vaping (THU)
Social Media Plan
About vaping - Government of Canada
What parents and caregivers need to know about vaping and e-cigarettes - Be prepared to talk with your teen
- OPHEA: Cannabis Education Resources offers discussion guides for elementary, secondary and parents, activity plans for grade 5 to 12, a cannabis resource data base and a Q&A column to support educators to help students acquire evidence-informed information and skills needed to make informed decisions. (EN | FR)
- Cannabis: What Educators Need to Know (CAMH) is an info sheet about the risks for youth, signs of a problem and how educators can help youth make informed decisions about cannabis. (EN)
- Info-Sheets on Opioid Misuse School Mental Health ASSIST has developed three versions of Info-Sheets on Opioid Misuse – one sheet for educators, one for youth, and one for parents/caregivers. (EN)
DYK? Under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act it is illegal to smoke on school or daycare properties. For more information on tobacco laws and enforcement please see our page Tobacco Legislation – Smoke-Free Ontario Act.
- Fresh from the Farm Fresh from the Farm is the only school fundraiser eligible to all Ontario’s publicly funded schools, selling Ontario-grown fruit and vegetables. (EN | FR)