What Influences the Choices Kids Make? | Sanford Fit


What Influences the Choices Kids Make?

Help kids understand that they have a choice about how to react to their feelings and emotions.Teach them that learning about self-awareness and impulse control can positively impact their future choices.


  • Help students identify examples of choices that do not help their bodies and brains.
  • Describe how energy and mood can impact healthy choices.

Lesson Plan

First and foremost, fit is about choices. Each day a child, no matter their age, makes many choices that impact their health and well-being. The lessons in this unit build awareness of the many moments each day when they can make a choice, then empowers them to make the best choice—the fit choice! Print and display the fit Posters to support healthy decision-making involving recharge, mood, food, and move.

Set The Stage

Share examples of choices you've seen students make at school and ask them to classify them as recharge, mood, food, or move choices.

Follow along with the slideshow as you continue the lesson.


To use this with your students click here.


Reflect on Personal Choices

Ask students to recall what they did after school yesterday. What choices did they make? Were they fit choices? Read about the choices the kids in the slideshow make.


Consider Another Person's Choices

Use the discussion questions to help students recall that, rather than making fit choices, the kids in the slideshow chose to make unhealthy choices. Emphasize that their recharge (energy) and mood (motivation) influenced their choices.

Check for understanding: What recharge, mood, food, and move choices can you make to be fit?


Planning Future Choices

 Ask students to think about the kinds of recharge and mood choices they can make so they have energy and motivation to make healthy fit choices.

Students share their choices with a friend or by completing the My Choices printable.

Close the Lesson

If you have time, write students’ ideas (and other suggestions, if needed) on slips of paper to create a recharge- and mood-strategy jar to keep in your classroom. These are abstract concepts to help students learn impulse control and decision making. Having a bank of simple, concrete strategies will help students form healthy habits. Easy ideas include:

  • Take 10 deep breaths.
  • Close your eyes and slowly count backwards from 20.
  • Stretch.
  • Pick a quiet activity you like and do it.
  • Look in the mirror and smile at yourself.
  • Compliment yourself.
  • Check in with a friend or adult.
  • Open a window and breathe fresh air.

Pick an idea from the collection if they feel sluggish or grouchy.

Grade: K-2

Time: 20 Minutes

Health Education Standards

  • Standard 1: Core Concepts - Engage in activities that are mentally and emotionally healthy.
  • Standard 4: Interpersonal Communication 
  • Standard 5: Decision-Making


Social and Emotional Learning Competencies

  • Responsible Decision-Making

Extend the Lesson

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