On January 11, the New Hampton Community Schools staff had a teacher work day and were taught important ways to keep themselves and their students healthy by Emily Neal, assistant director for the Center for Sustainable Communities and a staff instructor in Environmental Studies.
A passionate science educator, she has over 20 years of experience teaching people of all ages how to integrate concepts of wellness, sustainability and stewardship into their lives.
Recognizing that human health is interconnected to the health of our planet, Neal oversees a wide array of healthy living and environmental programs at Luther and within regional communities.
Neal also works in a partnership with the Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative overseeing outreach programs in area schools and brought her message to the staff at New Hampton.
New Hampton Middle School Principal Susan Andersen said herself, Jolene Rosonke and staff at the school were taking part on the wellness committee that would be taking a look at the policy and finding ways to improve and implement it at school.
Andersen said the committee has begun generating ideas, narrowing them down to a few ideas to work with students on and looking to add ideas to the policy if the ideas turnout good for students and staff.
Neal spoke of growing healthy kids through schools and the Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative.
“We can turn the tide for future generations,” said Neal. She said this generation of kids is supposed to live shorter lives than the current teachers now because of what they are consuming and the activities they are doing.
Her first lesson was, “you are what you eat.” “The food we eat literally becomes you,” said Neal.
If we, and the students, are not eating what they need then the body is not growing how it needs to. Neal also lectured that actions define us.
“Things that you do matter,” said Neal. “Kids mirror more what you do rather than what you say.”
The teachers talked about their best and worst health habits as well as the students’ best and worst heath habits.
Source: New Hampton Tribune Online, 1/17/16.