Let's Move Let's Learn
One in three American children suffers from obesity. The Cities of Service Let's Move, Let's Learn Blueprints outlines learning activities to teach children healthy habits.
Childhood obesity is an epidemic affecting communities nationwide; the number of overweight and obese children has tripled in the last three decades. Today, one in three children in America is overweight or obese; millions will face chronic obesity-related health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and asthma. These health problems will have a significant impact on local government and the community at-large, straining health and emergency services and increasing the number of people who are disabled and dependent on public assistance.
To execute Let’s Move, Let’s Learn successfully, the Mayor’s office must determine the target demographic youth for the initiative (e.g., elementary school students) and disseminate information to create community interest. The lead partner develops the curriculum using the “IPARD/C” model, a tested method for engaging students in service learning. Through service projects, youth try to increase the number of hours children spend exercising each week or the amount of fruits and vegetables they consume in their daily diet and report progress to the Mayor’s office or nonprofit partners.
Executing The Plan
Students set goals for their service projects and are supported by adult project leaders (e.g., teachers, external partners, or adult volunteers) in creating a plan and timeline for implementation – including a plan to monitor progress against stated goals. After all service projects have concluded, students undertake a more expansive reflection period during which they evaluate their projects against the short- and long-term goals they determined at the outset.
Collecting data and reporting on the impact of each Let’s Move, Let’s Learn project is critical. Required metrics include the number of students participating in the program, participating youths’ understanding of healthy food and lifestyles, assessed via survey, number of active living and healthy eating service-learning projects completed, and number of young people served by the projects.