A school wellness committee is an action-oriented advisory group that focuses on the health and well-being of students, staff, and families in a school community. The school wellness committee implements the district wellness policy and leads other health-related initiatives
School wellness committees may also:
Monitor and evaluate the implementation of district health and wellness policies and programs
Advise the school board or district on related school or community health issues
Organize health-promoting programs or events in the district or community
Family engagement in schools is a shared responsibility in which schools and other community agencies and organizations are committed to reaching out to engage parents in meaningful ways, and the parents are committed to actively supporting their children's and adolescents' learning and development.
The Minnesota Walk! Bike! Fun! Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Curriculum is a two-part curriculum designed specifically for Minnesota's schools and youth education programs. This curriculum meets Minnesota Physical Education Standards and Benchmarks.
Helps children of all abilities ages five to 13 learn traffic rules and regulations, the potential hazards to traveling, and handling skills needed to bike and walk effectively, appropriately and safely through their community.
Movement increases brain function. Physical activity increases blood flow which brings more oxygen, water and glucose to the brain and leads to improved concentration. Physical activity also increases endorphins, which have a positive effect on mood. As a result, Active Kids Learn Better.
There are several activities that can contribute to an active classroom:
Morning walk up warm up activities
Classroom physical activity breaks (also known as brain breaks, brain boosters or energizers)
Integrating physical activity into classroom instruction, including walking while learning
SRTS provides students with the opportunities to walk or bike to schools by identifying and supporting safer routes for them to get to and from school through intentional planning by school and community partners. Successful implementation of this activity includes activities such as implementing the Walk! Bike! Fun!, providing bicycle fleets for school programming, participating in "Walk to School" or Bike Trains to School" opportunities, and creating safer routes plans to walk and bike to school for families. Watch the video below to learn more!
Recess serves as a necessary break from the rigors of concentrated, academic challenges in the classroom. Engaging students in physical activity during recess provides them with fun, safe and active play. Watch the videos below to learn more, provided to you by the Minnesota Health Department!
Physical education teaches self-management and motor skills that help children adopt healthy living practices and manage their day-to-day activities.
A quality physical education program includes the opportunity to learn, meaningful content, appropriate instruction and program assessment. Some operationalized strategies for this activity include enhancing physical education programming that results in a new or updated standards-based curriculum, inclusion of new or innovative units that reduce activities where students are sitting out, adding or enhancing a fitness education and assessment component to help children understand, improve and-or maintain physical fitness, and including physical education expectations as part of the school wellness policy.
Physical Activity opportunities before or after school play a vital role in assisting students to fulfill 60 or more minutes for their recommended daily physical activity. Successful implementation of this activity increases physical activity options through formal programming such as intramural, interscholastic sports or activity clubs as well as informal opportunities such as open gyms that provide multiple physical activity options for students.
What is Farm to School?
Farm to School programs (sometimes referred to as "F2S") connect schools and local farms so that school cafeteria are able to serve fresher and more nutritious meals using locally produced food. While different in each community, farm to school programs are generally created:
Help students eat more nutritious foods and develop healthier lifelong eating patterns.
Support the local economy and local farmers.
Integrate food-related education into the classroom curriculum.
Students who eat well learn better. Farm to School activities aim to increase the number of fruits and vegetables children eat during the school day while also lowering their intake of sodium, saturated fat and added sugar. Farm to School encompasses changes within the classroom, curriculum and community. Children have increased access to minimally processed, local food and an environment conducive to learning about how food is grown and good nutrition is created. Some operationalized activities include cafeteria menu changes with local sourcing, harvest bar implementation.
Toolkit Resource & Directory
Check out University of Minnesota Extension's Website
Students who are invested in where their food comes from and how it is produced are more likely to consume these items. School-based agriculture aims to increase the number of fruits and vegetables children consume while also lowering their intake of sodium, saturated fat and added sugar by incorporating hands-on learning through schoolyard gardening activities. This includes the use of outdoor learning laboratories, indoor growth chambers, on-site greenhouse or hoop hoses as well as incorporation of these elements into the school curriculum such as FACS or FFA classes.
It is the goal of this strategy, Healthy Eating in Schools, to increase fruit and vegetables, decrease sodium, decrease saturated fat, and decrease added sugars in foods and beverages available and sold. Evidence-based activities to reach these goals include Farm to School, School-Based Agriculture, Healthy Snacks During the School Day, Healthy Snacks Outside of the School Day and implementing Smarter Lunchrooms.