The Tooth Fairy Experience is back with a new storybook and lesson plan on the importance of Feeding Your Smile
(NAPSI)—The Tooth Fairy Experience—a free dental health education program for kids across Washington state—is back with a new storybook and lesson plan titled Feeding Your Smile, focused on the connection between nutrition, active lifestyles and your child’s oral health. The lessons are available for K-2 teachers and school nurses statewide for free download, as well as through in-person or virtual visits from a team of tooth fairies.
The lessons are available for K-2 teachers and school nurses for free download, as well as through in-person or virtual visits from a team of tooth fairies.
The Feeding Your Smile worksheets and presentations engage students and encourage them to remember how drinking tap water, avoiding sugary drinks and candy, and eating vegetables and fruits can help your smile and overall health. The downloadable materials include video introductions, class discussion ideas, questions to reinforce learning concepts and additional facts about dental health beyond the lesson plan topics. Through the Tooth Fairy-led presentations, students play games, test their knowledge and listen to a Tooth Fairy read the latest storybook.
“Programs like The Tooth Fairy Experience are great ways to get children excited about taking care of their oral health. This latest module helps children understand that their favorite sports and activities contribute to keeping their growing bodies and their teeth healthy,” said Kyle Dosch, DDS, Delta Dental of Washington’s dental director and member dentist. “Children also learn how to make healthy food and beverage choices on their own, giving them a sense of ownership over their health.”
Washington-based children’s book author and illustrator Kelly Rae Bahr wrote Smile Scouts: A Tooth Fairy Tale, which was released last summer. The storybook helps children learn how what you eat and drink affects your teeth, how staying active can help support your oral health and overall health, and why protecting your teeth with a mouthguard when playing sports such as soccer, lacrosse and ice hockey can prevent permanent damage your teeth. The storybook is available to all students who participate in either a teacher-led or Tooth Fairy-led presentation in a hard copy and to everyone via e-reader on The Tooth Fairy Experience website.
This is the third lesson plan created for The Tooth Fairy Experience by Delta Dental, joining Caring for Your Smile and Baby Teeth Matter. All three modules are offered at no cost to teachers and school nurses in the state of Washington. From its launch in 2019, as part of Delta Dental’s vision for a cavity-free Washington, the Tooth Fairy program aims to improve dental health habits at an early age, reduce the incidence of tooth decay and increase the number of kids who regularly visit the dentist.
Children who experience tooth decay are more likely to miss school, have lower academic success and have an increased risk for lifelong dental problems. Over time, poor oral health can increase systemic inflammation, which may limit growth and development and increase the risk of adverse health outcomes, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Each Tooth Fairy Experience presentation—offered both in-person and virtually—lasts approximately 25 minutes and provides valuable knowledge about how kids can take better care of their smiles. The presentations, led by the Tooth Fairy, include fun smile facts, a dental-themed storybook reading (also offered via a free downloadable video with ASL interpretation), and hands-on educational activities focused on healthy brushing and flossing habits, the importance of young teeth, good nutrition and healthy lifestyles. Each child also receives a free dental health kit, including a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, a two-minute timer to help kids remember to brush for two minutes twice daily, and a copy of the Tooth Fairy storybook.
The Tooth Fairy Experience was developed by Delta Dental of Washington in partnership with Arcora Foundation, School Nurse Organization of Washington, and Washington State Dental Association—and is endorsed by the Washington Homeschool Organization. All materials have been dentist, teacher, school nurse, and child reviewed.
The Tooth Fairy isn’t just a helping hand for educators. For parents looking for fun ways to teach kids about caring for their smiles, The Tooth Fairy Experience website (www.TheToothFairyExperience.com) provides helpful year-round resources, including a dental tips blog, child dental health activity sheets for home use, a quarterly Grin & Grow e-newsletter, Tooth Fairy letters for children, Tooth Fairy hotline with pre-recorded messages, and links to Delta Dental of Washington resources such as help in finding a dentist.
For more information about the Tooth Fairy’s dental education program, visit www.TheToothFairyExperience.com.
Editors Note: Content is approved only for Washington State publications.