Nutrition Boxes, Nutri-cize, and New Experiences
W.B. Simpson Elementary School
This school year, students at W.B. Simpson Elementary School in Wyoming, Delaware are learning all about healthy habits and how much fun physical activity can be! Through the support of an Action for Healthy Kids Game On grant sponsored by CSX and the leadership and engagement of teachers, staff and parents, these students are getting– and staying—healthier.
Physical education teacher Karine Scott developed “Healthy Habits: Nutrition Boxes” for 1st grade students to get the school’s youngest kids thinking about and reflecting on the importance of nutrition. Filled with age-appropriate books like N is for Nutrition, plush fruit and vegetable critters, Skillastics Nutrition cards, and MyPlate information for parents, students get to check out each of the different boxes and bring them home to explore with their families. By also including a writing journal in the boxes, students are encouraged to think about what nutrition means to them and their bodies, and reflect on their experiences with the boxes at home. As one 1st grade parent said, “The Nutrition Box was a great way to get the family talking about healthy eating habits! The kids had a blast playing the game and reading the book together. My son is excited to check out the next box.”
But W.B. Simpson isn’t just targeting their students’ nutrition – they’re getting kids up and moving, too! All of the 1st-5th grade students at W.B. Simpson take part in Workout Wednesday each week, where students pick from 35 different activities including Dance Dance Revolution, cardio exercises, core workouts, and more. One of the options available for Workout Wednesday is a fun activity by US Games called Nutri-cize. Nutri-cize teaches students about the different food groups and new exercises to help burn energy while also encouraging collaborative learning and engagement.
Not only is Nutri-cize helping increase the average amount of time students are active and the number of students participating in physical activity, but the teachers love it, too. Cori Stoken, a 3rd grade teacher at W.B. Simpson, said, “The Nutri-cize game was a great activity for my students. All the students were engaged and moving. Students were able to be physically active, as well as use their brains to match the correct food groups. My students were able to give examples of the food types after the activity in a quick verbal review.”
W.B. Simpson also launched a Fitness Club at the beginning of the school year that encourages students to choose an activity to further their knowledge, skill and experiences in developing new lifelong habits. Students try a new activity for six weeks and then get to try something different. This year’s activities included baseball, tchoukball, and general fitness where students got to explore mini-trampolines, pogo sticks, jump ropes and hula-hoops to stay active.
Thanks to dedicated and creative staff, their Game On grant has truly helped W.B. Simpson’s students look at health through the lens of new experiences.