Healthy Eating, Active Living (HEAL)
Healthy Eating, Active Living (HEAL) is a health & wellness LNESC program that serves elementary students in 4th and 5th grades. HEAL is a dynamic multi-component program that works to bring transformative change to the lives of students and their families.
HEAL combines the Five for Life® Basic Program, a curriculum that delivers basic fitness and health concepts to an activity-based setting. Included is a parental component in which families and their students participate in nutritional education workshops designed by Five for Life at local community centers.
As an educational health and fitness program for students and families, the LNESC HEAL initiative consists of two components. The student component serves 25 - 30 students in 4th through 5th grade, twice a week after school, totaling 46 hours a week. During this time, students accumulate 1,020 hours a month of additional physical activity not included in the school curriculum. Students learn to make healthier choices utilizing the Five for Life curriculum, focusing on fundamental fitness and health concepts and increasing the amount of time they engage in physical activity on a weekly basis.
The program results are evaluated using Welnet, a web-based database software that will allow LNESC to track the students' fitness assessments and track progress throughout the program. In addition to the after-school component, LNESC host a series of workshops for 50 to 60 people each session (program participant's family members and the general public), with a field day at the end of the year for 300+ attendees.
Students were asked to complete a pre-program survey and post-program survey in which they were asked about their knowledge of health and their health choices.
- At the end of the program, 98% of students said “Yes” when asked if they know what it means to be healthy, compared to 75% at the beginning of the program.
- At the end of the program, 75% of students reported they think they are leading a healthy lifestyle with the food they eat and amount of exercise they do, compared to 59% at the beginning of the program.
- At the end of the program, 83% of students reported that they feel they are in great health, compared to 67% at the beginning of the program.
Parents also completed pre-program and post-program surveys, in which they were asked about their knowledge of health and their health choices, as well as their children’s physical fitness levels.
- At the end of the program, 89% of parents strongly agreed and agreed that they live a healthy lifestyle, compared to 76% at the beginning of the program.
- At the end of the program, 82% of parents strongly agreed and agreed that their child lives a healthy lifestyle, compared to 71% at the beginning of the program.
- At the end of the program, 93% of parents strongly agreed and agreed that their child drinks plenty of water a day and gets 6-8 hours of sleep, compared to 38% of parents at the beginning of the program.
“The best thing I like in the program is when we get to go to the gym. I was able to learn that exercising daily gives you more health.”
-Student, Hunter Elementary School in Philadelphia, PA
“I like learning about eating healthy because I got very healthy and the physical activity helped me to get more involved with different sports.”
- Student, Calusa Elementary School in Miami, FL
“The whole family is making better choices. My daughter has learned a lot and has made sure we are all eating healthy and staying fit.”
- Parent, Calusa Elementary School in Miami, FL
“This past school year my son had the chance to join HEAL. I have seen him grow in to a young man, not only ready to take on the day but someone who is ready to take on middle school in his own little young man way. Since he was a small child he has had a long term goal to become an Olympian. Being in HEAL, he has seen the hard work and dedication it takes from him to be able to make his dreams come true and it has given him one step closer to reaching his dream.”
- Parent, Rucker Elementary School in Houston, TX
Miami, Florida: Calusa A Elementary School, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: William H. Hunter Elementary School