Physical activity equals healthy and happy kids in Cass Lake
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Schools in Cass County are already seeing results of their efforts to increase physical activity among their students.
With the help of SHIP, four of the five schools in Cass County created programs to improve students’ physical activity, reaching up to 2,000 students. It starts with the belief that an environment that supports and models healthy behavior for youth is critical for them to become healthy, productive adults. “It was important to keep in our minds who we were doing all of this for, and why. The future is in their little hands; we just have to give them the tools…it’s our job,” says Jessica Nyland, Pillager school nurse.
The SHIP-funded projects are making an impact on the school environment and the students. Mandy Giffen, a health educator at Northland Remer School, reports, “One of our 11th graders has lost 60 pounds since we started our ‘Walk to the Moon’ walking program. It’s amazing to see such a transformation.” Giffen noted that Northland Remer also added a program called “Eagle Energizers,” which incorporates short bursts of physical activity into the classroom curriculum.
Walker/Hackensack/Akeley (WHA) is also seeing outcomes of their project on students. Sandy Munson, the school nurse says, “Some of these kids didn’t fit into groups…and now they get to know each other and have found a place to belong. I never expected that to be a part of it.”
Trent Mix, a 7th grader at WHA says, “When I didn’t walk, I didn’t feel so good in the afternoons. But now that I walk, I feel better. I am losing weight!”