ERIC Number: EJ848622
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Reference Count: 50
Childhood Obesity in the Testing Era: What Teachers and Schools Can Do!
Winter, Suzanne M.
Childhood Education, v85 n5 p283 2009
In this era of increasing accountability and high-stakes testing in schools, a serious paradox has surfaced. Children are becoming overweight at an alarming rate, and mounting evidence points to a relationship between obesity and poor school performance. Ironically, pressure to improve children's academic achievement has led many schools to adopt certain policies, such as eliminating recess or reducing the number of physical education (PE) classes, that put children at greater risk of obesity (Cook, 2005). Critics have characterized schools as "obesogenic" environments that promote obesity through sedentary academic work, limited physical activity, and cafeteria fare of low nutritional value (Davidson, 2007). Obesity is thought to be particularly of concern for children of minorities and those in poverty, who are already at high risk for underachievement. In this article, the author identifies possible causes for this pandemic crisis in children's health and provides five strategies that teachers and other professionals can use to reverse obesity trends and improve the chances for all children to be successful in school. These 5 strategies are: (1) get in the know and stay informed; (2) design a school action plan; (3) promote positive psychosocial development of children; (4) promote healthy diet and nutrition; and (5) encourage physical activity.
Descriptors: Physical Education, Obesity, Physical Activities, Nutrition, High Stakes Tests, Psychological Patterns, Social Development, Children, Child Health, Academic Achievement, School Policy, Physical Activity Level, Life Style, Poverty, At Risk Students, Minority Groups, Underachievement, Child Development, Eating Habits
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A