America's Healthiest Schools: Seaton Elementary School
Seaton Elementary School was named one of America’s Healthiest Schools by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. The school met stringent standards set by the Alliance’s Healthy Schools Program for serving healthier meals and snacks, getting students moving more, offering high-quality physical and health education and empowering school leaders to become healthy role models. Aside from home, kids spend most of their time at school, making schools important places to influence kids’ behavior and lifelong health habits. Research shows that healthy students learn better.
At Seaton Elementary School, physical activity and healthy eating go hand-in-hand. Each day before the first bell rings, the school offers an active play program through the local YMCA. During morning announcements, Seaton’s Student Wellness Ambassadors lead the school through a morning activity to get everyone at school moving and ready to learn. This year the school administration changed its schedule to ensure that all students receive 150 minutes of physical education every week. Even staff are becoming more physically active thanks to a staff-wide pedometer challenge.
The opportunities for physical activities at Seaton Elementary even extend into celebrations, too. School celebrations now involve dance parties, kickball tournaments and relay race field days.
With an active student body, Seaton is focused on fueling their students with healthy food. The school has aligned all food with U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Smart Snacks in School standards. They also have started to offer healthy cooking lessons and tastings to spark student’s interests in trying new fruits and vegetables.
“The Healthy Schools Program provided the guidance and support we needed to begin to shift the culture at our school,” said Wellness Coordinator Bonnie Gallion. “The taste tests and the fun games and activities are helping to make the nutrition and physical activity facts we are teaching more memorable. We are planting the seeds for our students to make healthy choices for a lifetime.”