Sun Safety Superpowers


Children with hats and sunglasses

Sun Safety Superpowers

Help children be sun safe during outdoor play on playgrounds or during field trips by using the Sunbeatables® sun safety superpowers. Ask children to cover up, use sunscreen and lip balm with SPF 30, find shade, and be SUPER-protected when shadows are shorter.  

Cover Up

Cover as much skin as possible by wearing tightly-woven clothing, wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses.  

Cover up with:

  • Sleeved shirts (not tank tops)
  • Pants or knee-length or longer shorts, skirts or dresses
  • Socks and tennis shoes (not sandals or open-toed shoes) 
  • Wide-brimmed hats (with at least a 4-inch brim) that shade the face, ears and neck
  • Sunglasses that block 99-100% of UV rays and wrap around the sides of the face 


Check the label for the level of UV protection when buying sunglasses.

Use Sunscreen and Lip Balm with SPF 30

  • Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against UVA and UVB rays. 
  • Apply sunscreen at least 30 minutes before going outside so the skin can absorb it.
  • Reapply sunscreen every 1-2 hours, and after sweating or swimming. Water and sweat can wash sunscreen off our skin.
  • Use at least one ounce of sunscreen, enough to fill a golf ball or shot glass, to cover all exposed areas not covered by clothing.
  • Spread sunscreen generously and evenly from head to toe.
  • Do not forget the nose, ears, neck and feet.
  • Take sunscreen on field trips and outdoor activities so that you can reapply.

CAUTION: Do not apply sunscreen to babies under 6 months of age. Their skin is sensitive, and compared to older children and adults, babies have more skin surface area relative to their body weight. So babies may have increased exposure to the chemicals in sunscreen, which may lead to an allergic reaction or other side effect. When outdoors, babies should stay in the shade and cover up.

Make sunscreen application easier for you and fun for your children. 

  • Model sunscreen application and encourage children to rub sunscreen on their own skin.
  • Apply sunscreen while children are singing one of the sun safety songs provided with the curriculum.
  • Apply sunscreen during circle time or transition activities. 
  • Encourage parents to apply sunscreen to their children before they come to school or upon arrival.

Did you know?
  • To maintain sunscreen’s effectiveness, sunscreen will need to be reapplied before children go outside each additional time during the day.
  • No sunscreen blocks 100% of the sun’s UV rays. Sunscreen should not be your only form of sun protection.

Teacher applies sunscreen to a child's face


Find Shade

  • Plan outdoor activities and field trips for shaded areas. If you cannot find shade, be creative by using umbrellas, tarps and tents.  
  • UV rays can reflect off surrounding sand, concrete and light-colored walls or buildings. Even though you may be in the shade, UV rays reflected off surrounding surfaces can still reach your skin. Sunlight can also pierce through trees. Protect your skin with sunscreen, a hat and clothing while you are in the shade.
A shaded playground        Sun safe child in a playground tunnel


  Be SUPER-Protected When Shadows are Shorter

  • Shadows are longer during early morning and late afternoon. During the midday hours (10:00 AM to 4:00 PM), the sun is directly overhead and shadows are shorter (or there is no shadow). Sunburncausing UV rays are more intense and harmful at this time.  
  • If your shadow is shorter than you, or you have no shadow, remember to be SUPER-protected by using as many forms of sun protection as possible (e.g., sunscreen, protective clothing, hats, sunglasses and shade). Use the table and photos below as a reference.
  • When possible, schedule outdoor activities during early morning or late afternoon.  

Time of Day Shadow Length
Early morning Shadows are longer
Midday (10:00 AM to 4:00 PM) Shadows are shorter or there is no shadow
Late afternoon Shadows are longer


     Three Kids Looking at Shadow Later in the Day
Longer shadows during early morning hours Shorter shadows during midday hours


For more information about UV rays, please refer to the Resources section.






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