By Jewish Community Center of Greater Baltimore
After a very successful year introducing our Healthy Choices program at the Stoler ECE in Owings Mills, our Health Science Educator, Chris Sigman, decided to take on a new challenge for our school. She has upped the ante a little by registering the ECE for Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” childcare program. Introduced in September 2011, this initiative is designed to change the way preschool-aged children think about food, nutrition and physical activity to prevent childhood obesity. This past January, our school started focusing on four key areas in order to be recognized as a Let’s Move!-certified school.
- Beverages: We now have pitchers of water available in all of our classrooms and we encourage our parents NOT to send their children to school with sugar-filled juice packs.
- Food: Fresh fruits and/or vegetables are served with both morning and afternoon snacks. Healthy homemade dips are prepared weekly to be served with fresh vegetables during snack time. Family-style dining is taking place for all snacks and lunch.
- Physical Activity: We are aiming for all of our preschool students to have a total of 60 minutes of movement each day and for our full-day, preschool plus students to have 120 minutes of movements each day. Weather permitting, outdoor play will occur at least once per day.
- Screen Time: We are encouraging families to reduce their child’s TV/computer time to two hours a day, and will encourage family participation in National TV Turnoff Week on April 30-May 6, 2012.
In the coming months, Chris will be submitting a written journal as well as photos of the school’s progress to the Let’s Move! website.
“We are very excited to be the first preschool in Baltimore County to participate in this program,” says Chris. “We hope to meet this recognition by May 1.”
For more information about the ECE programs at the JCC of Greater Baltimore , visit www.jcc.org.
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