Kids’ Healthy Mouths joins with Scholastic for campaign

The Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives and the Ad Council have joined together with Scholastic to launch an educational component of the Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign.

The Scholastic program materials, which launched in October, are directed at teachers in grade PreK-First Grade in schools across the United States through downloadable lessons and family fact sheets that dentists can also share with patients. The materials were offered to teachers the second week of October.

The purpose of the campaign is to educate parents and children about the importance of proper oral care, create and distribute educational oral health-themed materials, and direct educators, community leaders and parents to visit the campaign website, 2min2x.org, to find more information on oral care and tools to help encourage their children to brush their teeth.

“CDA initially agreed to participate in this Ad Council campaign because of the tremendous impact it could have on improving the oral health of children — something CDA could not have done alone,” said CDA President Lindsey Robinson, DDS. “Having an organization such as Scholastic on board takes the campaign to a whole new level.”

The Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign includes the following materials for teachers to use in the classroom:

  • Classroom Posters
  • Teaching Guide (Parts 1 and 2)
  • Family Fact Sheet
  • Teacher Survey

As part of an in-class science lesson, for pre-K, K, and first graders, teachers instruct students to soak an egg for several days in both dark-colored soda and water. Children will then have to brush the liquid off the eggs to help teach the importance of brushing for two minutes, twice a day. Through this activity, children will learn the basic parts of teeth: dentin and enamel.

The family fact sheet contains oral health tips for families. Each teacher will receive 30 fact sheets to send home with students.

”We believe that these new educational materials will help elevate the Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign and educate families about the importance of oral health. We hope this effort will help to recapture school hours lost due to dental distress [American children miss more than 51 million school hours each year due to dental conditions],” said Robinson.

Launched in August 2012 by the Ad Council and the Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives, the campaign has received tremendous media exposure through widespread TV, radio, print, outdoor and digital public service announcements (PSAs) in both English and Spanish.

With a goal of reducing the prevalence of dental decay by motivating parents to promote good oral health habits with their kids, the campaign has, according to a recent Ad Council survey, had a big impact on increasing awareness. Significantly more parents in 2013 report, for example, that their child brushes at least twice a day compared to before the campaign launched (55 percent of English-speaking parents in 2013, up from 48 percent in 2012, and 77 percent of Spanish-speaking parents in 2013, up from 69 percent in 2012).

CDA and 35 other dental organizations make up the Partnership for Healthy Mouths, Healthy Lives, which collaborated with the Ad Council to produce the three-year advertising campaign. In addition to partnering with the coalition, CDA is a key member of the executive council, which oversaw the development of the research-based messages.

For more information on the Scholastic campaign, visit scholastic.com/2min2x/.

For more information on the Kids’ Healthy Mouths campaign, visit 2min2x.org/kids-healthy-mouths.