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Fit to Be Taught, Vol. 41

Crafting Thorough Cleaning Plans

Few educators may link school cleanliness with student performance, but cleaner buildings can mean higher attendance and more learning. Cleaning programs that limit the use of chemical cleaners create healthier environments for teachers and students.

How schools are cleaned, how often, and what type of cleaners are employed never used to enter into discussions about improving student performance and staff and student attendance. But as research and concerns grow about the affect of indoor air quality on overall health, administrators are looking more closely at these issues and discussing ways to provide staff and students with more environmentally healthy buildings in which to learn and work.

Busy administrators understandably would be reluctant to review cleaning strategies and supplies. But numerous educator-friendly resources are available to administrators and volunteer committees -- including a districts current vendors -- who can help analyze current cleaning practices and develop and implement new policies that are cheaper, easier, and create healthier and more environmentally-friendly school environments.

Read the full article on Education World

Wellness News
Group Seeking Processed Meat Ban A national cancer prevention group is asking the Philadelphia School District to ban hot dogs and other processed meats from its cafeterias.

Breakfast Enhances Teens Concentration Adolescents and young adults may be less attentive in school when they skip breakfast. The effect is different in boys and girls, researchers found.

Teaching Adolescents about Sports Nutrition

A sports nutrition program offered to in Pennsylvania school districts provides the resources for educators to promote healthful nutrition practices among students in grades 7-12 participating in school or community-based athletics.

The program is offered in 697 public high schools and middle schools in 501 school districts. The curriculum contains five multidisciplinary hands-on lessons that can be taught in health, family and consumer sciences, math, statistics, and science in grades 7-12. Lesson titles include Sports Drinks, Sports Bars and Energy Foods, Sports Diet, Protein Power, and Recovery Carbs.

Sports Drinks: Students appraise sports drinks to determine their benefits to athletes and recreational exercisers. Students determine the percent of carbohydrate concentration in various drinks, examine the sodium and potassium content of these drinks, and also create a homemade sports drink in the classroom.

Sports Bars and Energy Foods: Students examine the pros and cons of commercial sports bars versus other energy foods. Students compare and contrast the nutritional value and economic costs of popular bars as well as create their own sports bars in the classroom.

Sports Diet: Students examine and calculate the recommended number of calories, protein, fat, and carbohydrates for specific levels of activity and body weights.

Protein Power: Students determine the amount of protein needed for strength training, aerobic training, and muscle weight gain. They also appraise protein bars, powders, and shakes and compare them to other foods, and they plot the percent of protein by weight and cost per serving of supplements and protein-rich foods.

Recovery Carbs: Students calculate the amount in grams of carbohydrates to be consumed within 30 minutes of competition, examine a variety of foods for carbohydrate content, and design recovery carbohydrate snacks to meet individual needs.

After participating in the program, students and teachers demonstrated increased knowledge about specific products used for improving athletic performance and the importance of using food first to meet nutritional needs and relying less on supplements.

Read more about this program at: Sports Nutrition for Adolescents.

Click to learn more about Action for Healthy Kids.

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