2016 Healthy School Hero: Amy Oliver
Physical Education Teacher, Cumberland Trace Elementary School
Amy Oliver is passionate about creating healthy learning environments so that students and teachers have more energy and are more successful in school. She has been teaching for 13 years and still wakes up every day eager to inspire and motivate students to live a healthy and active lifestyle.
Amy works with several school health programs ranging from nutrition initiatives to running clubs to in-class activity breaks. One of the newest initiatives at Cumberland Trace Elementary (CTE) is the Birthday Wish List. Amy loves to celebrate students’ birthdays, but rather than bringing sugary treats to celebrate, students choose from a list of options including extra recess, hat day, PJ day or being the teacher assistant for the day.
Students also love Track Tigers, a morning walking/running program that allows students to exercise before school begins in the morning. Additionally, she has worked to motivate classroom teachers to implement at least three brain breaks throughout the school day. At the end of the month a drawing is held to choose one classroom to receive extra PE time in order to recognize the effort of classes to be active.
Amy also works with families to improve health at home. In December 2015, CTE initiated a 12 Days of Fitness Challenge to parents and students. Students were given 12 different fitness activities to do throughout the month. If families tweeted photos exercising together, students received a free PE pass which allowed them to attend PE with a class other than their homeroom. Last spring CTE also hosted the Smart Living family event that allowed families to exercise together and learn valuable health information.
Outside of the school gym, Amy is the mother of two sons and is always looking for ways to be physically active as a family.
“I love teaching students about healthy foods,” says Amy. “Nutrition is a key component to overall health and wellbeing and this is why I really get into learning more about it.”