Physical Activity: Moving Matters

Physical Activity: Moving Matters

Improving student health and learning

Active Schools Minnesota StategiesThe Moving Matters School Implementation Toolkit, an initiative of the Minnesota Department of Education and Minnesota Department of Health, helps schools provide students with quality physical education and activity.

These strategies have been successfully implemented in many schools across Minnesota and the nation and are based on best practices from the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance's Comprehensive School Physical Activity Program, along with Let's Move! Active Schools campaign.

The issue: children have stopped moving

only six states require PE in K-12, only 9 states require recess in elementary schools, 1 in 3 children are overweight or obese

Both at home and school, children have become increasingly sedentary over the past few decades: 41 percent of students walked or biked to school in 1969 compared to only 13 percent by 2001.

At home, active play has been replaced by the TV and computer games while at school, tight budgets and a focus on core academic subjects and high-stakes testing have resulted in a decline in physical education and activity.

Regular physical activity is a key preventative measure in the development of chronic illnesses and diseases, including mental health problems–conditions that impact student attendance and being “on task.” Clearly, there is a role for schools to play in turning the tide on this alarming reduction in children’s physical activity. With youth spending a minimum of 30 to 40 hours at school each week (6 to 8 hours a day), there are multiple opportunities for schools to provide more physical activity to students.

Helping kids to be more active in school

The Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP). With SHIP, schools are working to increase physical activity within the instructional setting, building a foundation for lifelong physical activity. Active classroom breaks, physical education and recess all mean kids not only are healthier, but also learn better. Find out more about SHIP.

Updated Monday, January 09, 2017 at 12:14PM