January Healthy Schools - Healthy Students Newsletter

healthy schools healthy students

January 2019

School Lunch

Time to Eat School Meals: How Much is Enough?

School meals serve as a learning laboratory for developing healthy eating habits and acceptable mealtime behaviors. Enjoying good food with friends in a welcoming, safe environment can be a favorite part of the school day.

There are no federal or state requirements for the amount of time students have to eat lunch. USDA encourages schools to provide sufficient lunch periods that are long enough to give all students adequate time to be served and eat their lunches. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that students get at least 20 minutes for lunch (sitting down and does not include waiting in line).  Strategies to consider  to increase the amount of time for school meals.

smart snacks

Selling Food & Beverages at School Webinar

The Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act established nutrition standards for all competitive foods and beverages sold to students before, during, and 30 minutes after the school day. Items sold through vending machines, a la carte lines, student-run stores, and fundraisers are considered competitive foods. Compliance with the Smart Snacks standards is assessed during the triennial School Nutrition Administrative Review.

A webinar will be held on Monday, January 28th from 2-3pm and will include an overview of the Smart Snacks nutrition standards, tools and resources to assist schools in the identification of allowable food and beverage items, and guidance on coffee bars at high school. Webinar Registration

5210 map

Obesity in Iowa

Iowa has the 4th highest adult obesity rate in the nation, and the 10th highest obesity rate for youth ages 10 to 17 based on a recent report. Iowa's adult obesity rate is currently 36.4%, up from 12.2% in 1990. This problem is not going away. 

A great first step in 2019 is to register your school as a 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count! site and join an important network working towards healthier environments where young Iowans live, learn and play. Get your school on the map to demonstrate your commitment to making healthy choices count!

kids jumping

Share Classroom Physical Activity Ideas!  

 We know Iowa schools are implementing physical activity in the classroom and we want to hear from you! Your ideas may be included in the resource with credit to your school.

  • The physical activity should take less than 5 minutes.
  • Do not feature a paid subscription or app.
  • Submissions can include directions in text of how to do the physical activity OR a link to a video showcasing the activity (posted online by the school)

Submit your favorite physical activity today! Send to carrie.scheidel@iowa.gov by 1/10/19!

Complete a survey  from Iowa Dept of Public Health to provide feedback on incorporating physical activity in the classroom.  

Funding Opportunities

Agriculture in the Classroom Teacher Supplement Grant:  Grants will be awarded for up to $200 to help pre-K-12 Iowa teachers incorporate agriculture into their classroom and can help cover materials like a classroom set of books, science kits, incubators, field trips, guest speakers, and more! Deadline: January 9th

Paint Iowa Beautiful Grant: This program provides free paint to a wide variety of public service projects throughout Iowa. Deadline: February 15th

Gro More Grassroots Grant: Awards provide funding for the development of new and expansion of existing youth garden programs and greenspaces. 175 grants worth a collective total of $100,000 will be awarded. Deadline: February 15th

Local foods calendar

2019 Iowa Local Foods Calendar

Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship has FREE calendars available that feature Iowa Local Foods through photos and interesting facts. Interested in some copies? Please send the quantity and mailing address to schoolmeals@iowa.gov.

Staff Wellness Opportunity

Get moving in 2019 with Live Healthy Iowa's 10 Week Wellness Challenge! The flexible format and friendly team-based approach will keep you motivated and accountable to achieving team and personal goals.

The challenge begins January 14. Gather a team of friends, family members or coworkers and sign-up today!

Live Healthy Iowa
January Feature
green iowa logo

Environmental Steward Positions

Green Iowa AmeriCorps is looking to recruit individuals for a 3-6 month experience at one of their service locations (Cedar Falls, Cedar Rapids, Dubuque, Okoboji/Milford, Bloomfield, and Waverly). Members will have the opportunity to build leadership abilities, including environmental education. Members will have access to free trainings, hands on skill development, and extensive community engagement. Members need to be at least 18 years old. This is a great opportunity to gain valuable work experience. For more information contact Carmen Finken (finkenc@uni.edu).