Breakfast Club Blog

An Instant Activity Blueprint to Get All Kids Moving

It’s a fact. Kids need physical activity. Frequent physical activity has been linked to a variety of positive developmental outcomes for kids, including improved health, cognition, and even behavior. As “fitness mentors” it’s important we provide kids ample opportunities to be active throughout the day. While this sounds good in theory, the time, space, and equipment we have available to inspire kids to be active may be limited. Not to mention, we can quickly run out of ideas as little bodies an...Read More

Collaboration, Gratitude and Birds (Yeah, Birds!)

As we enter the holiday season, I’m thankful to be coming up on my 10th year at the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. As Director of Community Partnerships, I have the unique pleasure of cultivating relationships to engage communities in promoting children’s health. For this article, I wanted to share three collaborations that I am particularly excited about – each with resources I hope you can use to bring wellness to life in out-of-school time while engaging families and empowering children...Read More

Coaching And Endless Possibilities

A quick story and important reminder about how important a good coach is, and what the possibilities are when you have a great coach. My son, who is in first grade, played rookie tackle football this fall. The season ended a few weeks ago, with his team winning the 1st-grade championship. It was a spectacular finish to the season—they got to play the game on the high school football field. Our town’s high school football team won the state championship last year, and so football is a pretty big ...Read More

4 Amazing Tips To Making Communities Healthier Through STEAM and Sports

If you are a regular BOOST Breakfast Club reader, you may have read my summer article, STEM and Wellness: Colliding Galaxies. The article explores a partnership sparked by a chance meeting at the 2017 BOOST Conference between the Alliance for a Healthier Generation and the National Girls Collaborative Project. Three months later and our educational brief, STEM and Wellness: A Powerful Equation for Equity, is now live! Here is the heart of the brief: Intentionally blending STEM/STEAM and wellness...Read More

How to Receive Funding Dollars to Feed Kids on School Holidays & Weekends!

Did you know that funding is available to feed kids on school holidays and weekends? Most program providers know that the Afterschool Meal and Snack Program, through the Child and Adult Care Food Program, will reimburse schools, local government agencies, and private nonprofit organizations for serving meals and snacks to kids in programs after school. Few, however, know that they could receive the same funding to feed kids on school holidays and weekends. The Afterschool Meal and Snack Program ...Read More

7 Healthy Makeover Ideas for Your Office & Breakroom

Back-to-school is Here. For youth serving organizations, transitioning from summer to the school year is stressful. With tight budgets, limited capacity and less-than-inspiring news headlines, staying optimistic, energized and creative is a challenge. This article builds on my previous blog, “Designing Welcoming and Healthy Environments” with seven ways to makeover your office and break room this fall. Like this topic? I will be presenting a workshop based on this article at the National Recreat...Read More

Our Kids Are Stressed Out – 5 Ways to Empower Youth To Find Their CALMM

Focus, Pay Attention, Sit Still, Listen, Follow Directions… Just a few phrases youth are bombarded with on a daily basis whether it’s coming from their parents, teachers or other adults in their lives. As adults it can seem as if our words go in one ear and out the other and that children lack attention, motivation and behavior is something they have immediate control over or is an intentional response. Our kids Are Stressed Out – Empowering Youth the find their CALMM In my years as an education...Read More

10+ Fun Activities to Energize Your Summer Programming and Staff Meetings

Summer is here and let’s be honest, not every day is going to be an ideal summer day. You know, those days when poor air quality keeps you indoors, parents are late for pick up and technology doesn’t cooperate, leaving you scrambling for a backup plan. Don’t sweat it! With a few physical activity games in your back pocket, you’ll be able to keep staff and kids engaged, energized and smiling all summer long. When You Need a Quick Energizer Try Deal or No Deal for a quick pick-me-up energizer that...Read More

5 Ways to Address and Help: Self-Injury

Have you found yourself concerned for a young person with cuts or scratches on their thighs or noticed a wound on their arm that seems to not heal? Has there been a youth or student that you suspected might be harming themselves? Do you know how you would talk with a youth that is engaging in non-suicidal self-injury? Before you address someone’s non-suicidal self-injury, it is important to understand what self-injury is, why someone might engage in it, who is at greater risk of self-injury, and...Read More

#GirlsAre Builders, Explorers and Adventurers

This month the Alliance for a Healthier Generation and the Clinton Foundation are joining forces to inspire a new generation of strong active women. Girls are fierce, but we know that by age 14, girls drop out of sports two times faster than boys and less than 50% of 12-15 year old girls get the recommended amount of physical activity. To celebrate #GirlsAre, I reached out to nine leaders who are helping to flip this script. This group of nine are builders, explorers and adventurers, stretching ...Read More

How More Play Leads to More Learning (Part 2)

In this 3-part series, we will explore how more play, creative expression, and movement can lead to more cognitive development. The link from body to brain is powerful, so getting kids to move more and study a little less throughout the day may seem counterintuitive, but it may actually lead to better grades and even improve behavior! In part 2 we will explore the mechanisms behind the power of movement to improve the brain. If you missed Part 1, click here.  So how is it possible that more time...Read More

Creating a More Connected World Through Local Agriculture: 9 Voices

Imagine if we, above all else, prioritized creating a more connected world. If we blend and integrate our passions, what innovations will we discover? What challenges would we overcome? To celebrate National Nutrition Month, this article explores how local agriculture can help foster social connectedness. To do this, I spoke with youth and adults representing urban and rural communities, non-profits, business and government and education agencies. Each brings a perspective that explores linkages...Read More

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