Healthy kids learn better! Live Well Goodhue County works with schools to increase opportunities for physical activity and improve access to healthy foods.

The goal of the Active Schools strategy is to increase physical activity opportunities during and outside the school day to help students meet the national guidelines of 60 minutes or more per day. Incorporating physical activity throughout the school day can improve students’ concentration, behavior and learning retention.

Partnership Opportunities for Physical Activity:
• Safe Routes to School – improving the ability to walk or bike to school safely
• Quality physical education – ensuring the program includes opportunity to learn, meaningful content, appropriate instruction and program assessment
• Active classrooms – integrating physical activity opportunities into the classroom
• Active recess – engaging students in physical activity during recess
• Before and after school physical activity – increasing physical activity options through formal and informal programming including intramurals, interscholastic sports or activity clubs, and open gyms
The goal of the Healthy Eating in Schools strategy is to increase fruit and vegetables, decrease sodium, decrease saturated fat, and decrease added sugars in foods and beverages available to students.

Partnership Opportunities for Healthy Eating:
• Farm to School – incorporating local, farm-fresh foods into the school menu
• School-based agriculture – implementing school gardens or orchards
• Healthy snacks during the school day – having healthy food and beverages accessible during the school day
• Healthy snacks outside of the school day – targeting snack carts, vending, concessions, school store, fundraising, and celebrations/special events
• Smarter lunchrooms and healthier menu options – improving eating behaviors by using practices in the cafeteria to promote healthful eating
Learn more about how to receive support from Live Well Goodhue County to work on school wellness.

1st Graders at Sunnyside Elementary Stay Active while Learning!

During the 2018-19 school year, 1st grade teachers from Sunnyside Elementary School applied for mini-grants to purchase Wobble Stools for their classrooms. Wobble Stools have a rounded base where the stool meets the floor, which provides the wobble and the stability. Rather than sitting still, on the Wobble Stool you are always engaging changing combinations of leg, hip, and ab core muscles. The constant motion helps increase blood flow, which in turn stimulates secondary focus.

Gabrielle Harteneck said, “One of the reasons I wanted the wobble stools was for the fact that the stools allow for some movement as the student works.” Emily Krenik said, “I love having the Wobble Stools in my classroom because they allow some movement while the students work without being distracting for students or others in the room.” Shauna Friedrich stated, “My students use them all throughout the day as they complete independent work at their table spots. They are so much more focused during independent writing time as the stools give them the flexibility to move as they work.”

The goal of the Active School Strategy is to increase physical activity opportunities both during and outside the school day to assist students to meet the national guidelines of 60 minutes or more each day. According to the 2019 Minnesota Student Survey, approximately 20% of 5th graders, 18% of 8th graders, 17% of 9th graders, and 14% of 11th grade students reported being physically active for at least 60 minutes. “We have to figure out ways to get kids moving,” said David Anderson, Live Well Goodhue County Coordinator. “Teachers and other school staff members can integrate physical activity into their classrooms, support recess, intramurals and other physical activity offerings. Wobble stools work great for kids of all ages and they help improve concentration, so it’s a win, win in my book!”

Live Well Goodhue County is supported by the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership, Minnesota Department of Health

Gina Johnson, Coordinator
Goodhue County Health & Human Services, Public Health Division
426 West Avenue, Red Wing, MN 55066

Sarah Dawson, Public Health Educator
Goodhue County Health & Human Services, Public Health Division
426 West Avenue, Red Wing, MN 55066