Nutrition E-Newsletter for February 2009

The Team Nutrition (TN) e-Newsletter is published periodically to share TN resources developed by USDA and/or by State agencies, and to share ideas for promoting healthy eating and physical activity through Team Nutrition at the State and local levels.

In This Issue

  • Materials Developed by States
  • USDA Team Nutrition's New Publications
  • News from the Healthy Meals Resource System
Materials Developed by States

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Making Wellness Work: A Guide to Implementing and Monitoring School Wellness Policies in Maryland
Maryland State Department of Education
The guide provides sample goals for each of the four required components of Wellness Policies: physical activity or education, nutrition standards, nutrition education, and other school-based activities that promote student wellness. In addition, each goal has specific implementation activities, steps to support implementation, expected outcomes, and monitoring opportunities.
  Instructor’s Guide for Fruits and Vegetables Galore
How can you help kids in your schools eat more fruits and vegetables? Using quality produce and preparing it in a safe and attractive way are the basis for this instructor’s guide, developed by The North Dakota Department of Public Instruction. This guide is a companion piece to the USDA’s Fruits and Vegetables Galore. The program is intended to train school nutrition personnel on how to purchase, protect, prepare, present, and promote fruits and vegetables to capture the interest of students. Handouts, activities, and PowerPoint presentations are among the tools included. For more information go to: http://tinyurl.com/bpxgs4
  Alaska School Wellness Tool Kit: A Resource for Local School Wellness Policy Development and Implementation
The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, the Department of Education & Early Development, Child Nutrition Services and the Association of Alaska School Boards and others created a school wellness policy Web site that includes ideas for health promotion that can be used by all Alaska schools. The Web site has sample wellness policies, multiple health resources, and a school wellness toolkit.
  Within the toolkit is information on what to consider when developing school wellness policies, tools for policy development, nutrition guidelines for school foods, information on federally funded school meal programs, goals for nutrition education, goals for physical activity throughout the day, school-based activities designed to promote student wellness, and tips for monitoring, compliance, and evaluation. To learn more go to: http://www.hss.state.ak.us/dph/chronic/school/ASWPI.htm and http://www.hss.state.ak.us/dph/chronic/school/pubs/AKSchoolWellness.pdf
  Pick a Better Snack & ACT
Looking for quick, easy recipes along with fun facts about fruits and vegetables to use in schools or community events? The Iowa Department of Public Health provides The Color Way newsletter articles that are organized by the five major colors found in fruits and vegetables. Each article contains a recipe and emphasizes the health benefits of the color groups. Recipes in Spanish are also available.

Find out more at: http://www.idph.state.ia.us/Pickabettersnack/recipes.asp

  Healthy Minutes
Iowa Public Television’s Healthy Minutes offers kids’ videos, book recommendations, activity cards and calendars, and resources geared towards eating well and being physically active. Healthy Minutes video messages promote healthy lifestyles and positive choices for young Iowans. Healthy Minutes encourages positive health choices, good nutritional practices, personal safety, good decision making, and many other important skills that promote health and wellness lessons that will stick with children as they become adults.

Resources that support the messages of the Healthy Minutes videos are grouped by general topics and provided in downloadable PDF format. Check it out at: http://www.iptv.org/kids/healthyminutes/exerciseeveryday.cfm

  Nutrition Lessons
These free nutrition lessons, formatted by Indiana Team Nutrition, include lesson plans to incorporate in math, science, reading/language art, and combined curriculum classes. All lessons are appropriate for elementary schools, with the goals of promoting nutrition curriculum and education. Lessons for science and combined curriculum classes are also available for middle and high schools. Examples include English Lessons with Citrus Fruit, Floating Orange Experiment, Creating a School Garden, and ideas for field trips. Access the lessons at:
  USDA Team Nutrition's New Publications
  Expanding Your School Breakfast Program
The USDA Food and Nutrition Service has updated its Web site with an improved version of the Discovering School Breakfast Toolkit. This new resource is web-based and full of resources to help anyone interested in increasing participation in the program.

Expanding Your School Breakfast Program provides a step-by-step guide to create a breakfast-focused team, explore alternative service methods, design and implement an action plan, and market the program effectively to improve participation and positively impact student health and academic potential. The resource includes downloadable letters to principals, teachers, and parents, a PowerPoint presentation, and other materials to build community support and encourage more students to eat School Breakfast.

Access the Expanding Your School Breakfast Program site at: http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/Breakfast/expansion/default.htm

  News from the Healthy Meals Resource System (HMRS)
  Are you struggling to incorporate healthier food items into the menu? Check out the “Food Service” section at the Healthy Meals Resource System’s (HMRS) Web site! You can find a variety of resources for nutrition educators, food service managers and staff, covering everything from education and training materials, purchasing, to regulations, marketing and more. Recipes, fact sheets, studies, and nutritional information are just some examples of the types of resources you can find. For example:
Soybeans Find recipes, fact sheets, resources, and nutritional information to help you and your staff incorporate more beans into the menu!
  Whole Grains
Whole Grain Foods Recent whole grain recommendations are encouraging schools to play their part in helping children get this vital food group. Use the resources here to help increase whole grains in your school.

About USDA's Team Nutrition
Team Nutrition is an integrated, behavior-based, comprehensive plan for promoting the nutritional health of the Nation's children. Team Nutrition uses three behavior-oriented strategies: 1) provide training and technical assistance to help Child Nutrition Program foodservice professionals to prepare and serve nutritious meals; 2) provide multifaceted, integrated nutrition education for children, their parents, and other adults who influence children's behavior; and 3) build school and community support to create a healthy school environment that is conducive to healthy eating and physical activity.

For more information regarding USDA's Team Nutrition and how to enroll your school as a Team Nutrition School, go to the USDA Web site at http://teamnutrition.usda.gov/team.html

What's new on USDA's Team Nutrition Web site? Check it out at http://teamnutrition.usda.gov

Submit your comments and suggestions regarding this Team Nutrition e-newsletter to Desiree Stapley (desiree.stapley@ars.usda.gov)

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