Tips for choosing and using school backpacks

Here are some tips for choosing and using school backpacks from

1. Look for a backpack with two padded straps that go over your shoulders. The wider the straps, the better.

2. Backpacks with multiple compartments can also help distribute the weight more evenly.

3. Use your locker. Try not to load up on the books for a full day’s classes. Make frequent locker trips to drop off heavy books or extra stuff. An added benefit is that you’ll get more exercise going back and forth to your locker.

4. Figure out the nonessentials, too. If you don’t need an item until the afternoon, why carry it around all morning?

5. Plan your homework. Plan ahead and spread your home-work out over the course of the week so you won’t have to tote all your books home on the weekend.

6. Limit your backpack load. Doctors and physical therapists recommend that people carry no more than 10% to 15% of their body weight in their packs. This means that if you weigh 120 pounds, your backpack should weigh no more than 12-18 pounds.

7. Choosing a lightweight backpack can get you off to a good start. Use your bathroom scale to weigh your backpack and get an idea of what the proper weight for you feels like.

8. Pick it up properly. As with any heavy weight, you should bend at the knees when lifting a backpack to your shoulders.

9. Strengthen your core. A great way to prevent back injury is to strengthen the stabilizing muscles of your torso, including your lower back and abdominal muscles. Weight training, pilates, and yoga are all activities that can be effective in strengthening these core muscles.

So what’s the best way to carry a backpack? Learn from the hiking pros and wear both straps over your shoulders it’s the best way to avoid back pain and other symptoms. Keep your load light enough so that you can easily walk or stand upright, and pack your backpack with the heaviest items closest to your back

Information provided by from the health experts of Nemours. © The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth

Attention Grand Forks Parents

In today’s Grand Forks Herald (8/7/15), you’ll find a special 4-page section called “Spotlight on Excellence” produced by the Grand Forks Public Schools.  It is a great resource, if you have a student attending Grand Forks Public Schools. It lists all of the Grand Forks Public Schools, their addresses, phone numbers and the names of the principals.  You’ll also find school registration dates and times, open house dates,  GFPS 2015-2015  calendar, plus a lot of useful information.

SPOT0807_Page 01.pdf


Grand Forks Montessori Academy students visit the Herald

Elementary students from Grand Forks Montessori Academy, along with their teacher Miss Jenny, visited the Grand Forks Herald downtown office today. The students had the opportunity to talk with employees from both the advertising department and the newsroom. Thanks for coming to see us – we enjoyed your visit!



July 1 is Canada Day

Canada Day is celebrated every year on July 1 in honor of the formation of the Canadian federal government on July 1, 1867 (the British North America Act). If it falls on a Sunday, the next day is considered a legal holiday. This holiday was called Dominion Day until 1982.

Canada Day is celebrated much like our Independence Day, with picnics, parades, festivals, and of course fireworks.

To learn more about Canada download the NIE tab “O Canada” from the NIE Institute by clicking here

Note:  if you are going to print this pdf, make sure to adjust your print setting to “fit on page”.  The pdf is bigger than 8.5 x 11 (normal print size.)

July 4th Word Search, History Quiz and more!

Here are a few activities for you to enjoy this 4th of July holiday. Check out the word search you can download and print. Also be sure to test your knowledge with an American History Quiz from American Profile Magazine.

Have a safe and happy 4th of July holiday!

Download the word search puzzle by clicking HERE


How much do you know about American History? 

Take the quiz from American Profile by clicking here.  

For more information click here

Summer Solstice

Summer officially arrives on June 21, the summer solstice. It’s considered the longest day of the year because it has the most daylight hours between sunrise and sunset.

In the summer, the North Pole tilts toward the sun, so the Northern Hemisphere gets more sunlight. On the solstice, the North Pole is tilted the closest to the sun. On this day, the sun reaches its highest point in the sky. (Information from TNS) 

Newspaper Activity: Look at the newspaper’s weather report for different symbols used to illustrate weather. Then design your own symbols for these weather conditions: sunny, cloudy, partly cloudy, showers, thundershowers, and snow.

Grand Forks Central students visit Herald production plant

20150616_093503rBeth Carlson and her summer students, along with para Ruth Turner, from Grand Forks Central High School toured the Herald production plant on Thursday, June 16.  The students enjoyed seeing the giant rolls of paper, the enormous ink tanks and the printing press. They participate in the Grand Forks Herald’s Newspapers in Education program.

Sunday is Father’s Day

Father’s Day, a holiday which honors fathers worldwide, is celebrated in the United States on the third Sunday of June. It originated in the United States in 1910, a few years after the country began celebrating Mother’s Day. Father’s Day became an official U.S. holiday in 1972. (Information is from

ACTIVITY (From the NIE guide, “A Plan for All Seasons” from the NIE Institute) Use your newspaper to search for ways to have a special celebration for Father’s Day.  Look for examples of ways that this day can be celebrated other than giving gifts. Try to come up with at least three unique ideas that your family has never tried before.

WORD SEARCH (TNS)Click here to download Father’s Day word search