Currently one-third of all children in Arizona are either overweight or obese. These children have an elevated risk for a range of health and emotional problems — now and well into the future.
The Walk On! Challenge is only for the month of February, but kids can use all the help they can get the other 337 days of the year. Each qualifying school will have a chance to win one of five $5,000 grants for their school from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona.
Grant submissions will be judged by a panel of community members with expertise in education by using a set scoring system. To qualify for a $5,000 grant, teachers must have registered for the current year’s program – for fourth or fifth grade or both – and meet the following criteria:
- Show an increase in awareness among students of the importance of good nutrition and physical activity along with ways to achieve the 5-2-1-0 goal. The increase will be demonstrated through the pre- and post-Challenge surveys included in the Walk On! Challenge brochure kits.
- Demonstrate 80-percent student participation in the classroom. One hundred percent participation is defined as every student in the class submitting a tracking sheet with their participation for the month, whether they met the goal each day or not.
- Provide a summary with specific examples of what the teacher did and the curriculum or lesson plans followed during the month of the Walk On! Challenge to engage fourth- and/or fifth-graders. Examples might include, but are not limited to, exercise opportunities during or after school, integration of Walk On! messages into curriculum, instruction about the importance of physical activity and good nutrition, and ways to increase students’ ability to reach the 5-2-1-0 goal daily.
- Submit an essay of 250 words or less about what the teacher plans to do with the $5,000 prize to combat childhood obesity and what it will mean to your school.
This year’s $5,000 grant recipients were:
- Brianna McLaughlin at Prince Elementary School in Tucson
- Margaret Mander at Picacho Elementary School in Picacho
- Duane Yazzie at Tsehootsooi School in Fort Defiance
- Aaron Whiting at Taylor Intermediate School in Snowflake
- Trinka Hall at Canon School in Black Canyon City