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“Veggies for Kids”

Posted 4/16/2010

UNCE, Mineral County implemented a new youth development nutrition program at Hawthorne Elementary School this year called “Veggies for Kids.”

Research shows that our children today are at greater risk of getting diabetes and other chronic diseases associated with being overweight and not eating right. We applied for federal nutrition education funding to offer “Veggies for Kids” in Hawthorne. This program provides a series of ten 30-50 minutes lessons to elementary grades with the overall goals of:

  • • Reinforcing the importance and integration of nutrition education in schools, with lesson content linked to Nevada education standards;
  • • Promoting adequate intake of vegetables and fruits through increased exposure;<\li>
  • • Promoting the use of water and low-fat milk over sweet drinks as a preferred beverage;
  • • Promoting daily physical activity (a least one hour);
  • • Introducing local American Indian foods, food gathering techniques and the Paiute language; and
  • • Engaging parents through weekly take-home assignments.
  • Students will also learn about the food pyramid, what it means, and why it is important. The children are pre-tested and post-tested for program impact information. Pretesting occurred on March 10 and children were asked if they knew what different vegetables were and if they would like to try them. Currently, there are 69 first and second graders in the program at Hawthorne Elementary School.

    Kellie Zuniga is teaching the program this year and she is just finishing week 4 of the program. This program will end with the children learning about growing vegetables and will lead into the Hoop House demonstration project that I will talk about next week. We have already received positive feedback from parents about the “Veggies for Kids” program and are submitting an application for next year. If you have any questions about this program, please contact Kellie Zuniga at 945-3444.

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