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Promoting Positive Body Image at School

 
Teachers and school staff play a key role in fostering healthy body image. Learn about resources that help promote healthy body image and positive environments.

Teachers and school staff play a key role in fostering healthy body image. Schools are a great place to model healthy acceptance of oneself and appreciation of diversity. It’s also a great opportunity to teach simple but effective health messages, such as:

  • Enjoying exercise
  • Eating healthy
  • Accepting everyone’s strengths and skills

Providing curriculum supports, supportive social and physical environments, and resources on body image for students can promote a healthy school culture. Teachers and school staff can use the following resources to help promote healthy body image and positive environments for students.

Elementary

Elementary & secondary

Elementary

Elementary & secondary

  • Dove Confident Me: Five Session Program (external link)
    The five-session body confidence teaching resource is designed for educators to help boys and girls 10 - 16 years old to explore in depth the key factors that affect body image and self-esteem in young people. The workshops address key topics including social media, peer pressure, and strategies for promoting and protecting body confidence. Workshop materials include facilitation notes, student activity sheets and presentations with engaging videos. Single session resources are available.
  • Dove Self-Esteem Resources (external link)
    Resources for educators, mentors and parents are designed to help youth understand and deal with feelings about their physical appearance while improving their self-esteem and helping them to reach their full potential.
  • Healthy Food for Healthy Schools Act (external link)
    The act addresses healthy eating in schools, including dropping trans fat from food and beverages sold in schools, and establishing mandatory nutrition standards for food and beverages sold in schools.
  • Heart and Stroke Foundation (external link)
    Resources are available for teachers, parents and children to promote healthy living.
  • National Eating Disorder Information Centre (external link)
    This website provides ideas for teachers and administrators on how to teach students about general health and contains practical suggestions for prevention programs.
  • Playground Activity Leaders in Schools (P.A.L.S.)
    P.A.L.S. is a peer-led playground leadership program that encourages all children to participate in activities regardless of their gender, size or ability.
  • Supporting Minds (external link)
    This educator’s guide promotes students' mental health and well-being.
  • Where to Get Help in Halton (PDF file)
    The resource guide provides a list of support services available in Halton Region.

Elementary

  • ActiveChefs (external link)
    This not-for-profit organization is dedicated to promoting healthy living among children and their families. Healthy multicultural cooking and eating and active living are the cornerstones of fun, safe, interactive, affordable and free programs.
  • Kidsculinary Community (external link)
    The not-for-profit organization has a mission to educate children on the benefits of healthy eating by providing experiential learning programs.

Elementary & secondary

  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Halton (external link)
    This community service provides mentoring programs for children to meet the emotional, physical and social needs of girls and boys in our community.
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters - Game On Program (external link)
    This mentoring program is for preadolescent and adolescent boys. Through non-traditional physical activities, complemented with healthy eating support, participants are engaged in life skills, communication, and emotional health discussions that encourage them to pursue lifelong healthy lifestyles.
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters Go Girls Group Mentoring (external link)
    Seven mentoring sessions for girls aged 12 - 14 are held over a 7 - 10 week period, after school within school facilities. Each 1.5 - 2 hour session is loosely structured around four themes: physical activity, healthy eating, self-esteem and communication skills.
  • Canadian Active After School Partnership (external link)
    This comprehensive, collaborative and multi-dimensional initiative is comprised of programs and resources to enhance the delivery of quality after-school programs: increased access and opportunity to engage in physical activity and healthy living and nutrition practices for Canada’s children and youth.
  • Community Resources for Body Image
    This resource list of community-based body image includes supports for parents, educators and group facilitators.
  • Danielle's Place (external link)
    It offers hope and healing, support programs, self-help tools, and special events to inspire, empower and motivate individuals.
  • Dove Self-Esteem Resources (external link)
    The resources for educators, mentors and parents are designed to help youth understand and deal with feelings about their physical appearance while improving their self-esteem and helping them to reach their full potential.
  • Building Resiliency in Girls Program (Town of Milton only)
    This evidence-informed program (PDF file) for girls aged 12 - 18 is a gender-responsive prevention/intervention-based program (PDF file) that addresses the social, emotional and cultural needs of adolescent girls.
  • Halton Region Body Image
    It includes information and resources on body image.
  • Halton Region Nutrition and Healthy Eating
    Information and resources discuss healthy eating for babies, children, youth and adults.
  • Halton Region Registered Dietitians work with schools and community agencies to support school-based nutrition programs and healthy school nutrition environments.
  • The Representation Project (external link)
    This organization inspires individuals and communities to challenge and overcome limiting stereotypes. It includes a short video (with accompanying activities) that explores how masculinity is represented in the media. Additional videos are included under the resource section.
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