Healthy and Fit Fifth Graders!

June 26, 2009

Exercise!

Filed under: Uncategorized — elm291 @ 2:51 am

Now that we’ve gotten the healthy eating portion of nutrition down, it was on to the next step; physical fitness. How do you motivate children to move? Easy! Make it a competition that’s how!

We did this in 2 ways.  Pedometers and Might Milers!

pedometerPedometers were a great way to motivate the students because they got to hold, touch and own something that kept track of how many steps they took. We gave them the pedometers and immediately they started to move more. First we made it a competition with themselves. We asked them “How many steps can you take in a day?” then we asked them to try and double it. At first the task seemed to be too much, but then they all got creative. To run or walk everywhere, play tag at recess instead of sitting on the benches, have races, run in place, some students wanted to increase their steps so much the even took to lightly jogging in place while waiting online for lunch.

Each day our students logged in their steps and had a record of how many steps they took a day. Sounds like a perfect time for some data analysis! The students found the mean (average) amount of steps they took in a week and created a line graph to visually represent their data.

To motivate them even more, the students competed with students in the other 5th Grade Class, and it was on! They couldn’t stop trying to add steps to their pedometers.

mightmilers

Mighty Milers is a branch of the New York Road Runners Club geared towards kids that tries to help schools promote physical fitness. We teamed up with them and set a goal of running 5 miles by the end of the year. Normally it’s a marathon, but we singed up later in the year.

We were given a tool to measure the perimeter of the yard, and the students got to do more math and figure out how many laps around the school would be one mile. It turned out to be almost 16. We set short term goals and started with running 2 laps and eventually built up our stamina to 3 or 4. By the end of the year some students were able to run 2 miles at a time!

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Visiting the Union Square Green Market

Filed under: Uncategorized — elm291 @ 2:31 am

green market

Now that we’ve gotten our students so pumped about making healthy choices, and given them the know how to do so, we wanted to give them more options about where to go to find healthy, local and possibly organic food. Since we are located on the very eastern most side of the island, it was difficult to find an affordable organic grocery store. Luckily, we were inspired by the wonderful selection of green markets in the area, the best one being in Union Square.

We scheduled a field trip and were on our way! When we got there we were greeted by one of the educational coordinators and she did a brief but essential run through of what a green market actually is, and why it is so much better then a grocery store. We learned the difference between a farm and an orchard, a meat farm and a dairy farm. Through going on a scavenger hunt we learned the difference between seasonal fruit and imported fruit. This lesson was essential to the students because it allowed them to see, touch, taste, and smell the wonderful seasonal and local food that is available to them.

At the end of the tour, they got to try a spinach salad with mushrooms and goat cheese. All local and organic! They loved it and were begging for more. Several students have paid visits to the green market since the trip and have shared some delicious, and healthy snacks with us.

June 18, 2009

Lower East Side Girls Club Visits 34 with the BIKE BLENDER!

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhildreth @ 10:29 pm

                   We were able to develop an amazing relationship with the LES Girls Club, beginning with a walk-a-thon we participated in to promote exercise with our students. Then we heard about their bicycle blender! They offered to come to our class and demonstrate how you can make a really delicious smoothie, using only natural fruits, juices, and yogurt. Of course we took them up on the offer and invited as many classes up to try it out and taste our creations!

June 16, 2009

Healthy Choices Night!

Filed under: Uncategorized — elm291 @ 9:42 pm

It was very important to us to bring the entire school community into our nutrition unit. We had struggled with how to do this, until we met up with some wonderful people at New York University.Luckily, we have a great relationship with NYU and one of the Undergraduate Professors, Dr. Bree Picower was able to get her students involved in our goal to teach our students to be healthy and fit. Together, we planned a Health Choices Night where the students could practice shopping for healthy food, and preparing it for their parents to sample “Top Chef” style.

First, the NYU students came up with a few recipes they thought would be delcious, healthy and fun to make. They prepared them themselves, and made a list of ingredients for us. Next, we went on a supermarket scavenger hunt! The students got to take a trip to the local supermarket to apply thier knowledge of food lables. The students got into groups, and went around the score copying the nutrition facts for each ingredient. After they got all of the nutrition facts for each ingredient, they were required to calculate the nutrition facts for one serving of their Healthy Choice Snack. We put all of the recipes and nutrition facts into a cook book the students could take with them so they could recreate these delcious, healthy snacks at home.

The night of the gathering was so exciting. The students decorated the cafeteria with different facts they’ve learned about nutrition and different posters showcasing the different food groups. They went food shopping with college students for their ingredients. After shopping, the students buckled down and prepared 100 servings of their snack. They sliced bananas and strawberries, shmeared peanut butter, chopped avocado and tomatoes, applied organic tomatoe sauce to whole wheat english muffins, and blended smoothies. Finally the parents came, and everyone gathered in the cafeteria for the event. Some students even got to make their first public speaking appearence discussing what learning about nutrition has meant to them.

With a classic “Lets Eat!” cheer, we all gathered around tables and sampled the healthy treats. We were able to vote for our favorite foods, and if we thought we could cook them at home. By the time the night was over, there was no food left, and everyone left feeling happy, full and healthy. Families left with a resource and students left with a sense of accomplishment that they can take their health into their own hands.

April 9, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhildreth @ 8:48 pm

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Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhildreth @ 8:45 pm

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Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhildreth @ 8:42 pm

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Food Pyramids

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhildreth @ 8:40 pm

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Visualizing Portions

Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhildreth @ 8:35 pm

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Filed under: Uncategorized — danielhildreth @ 8:28 pm

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