Worcester Public School’s wellness policy highly values the health and wellbeing of the students and staff members. It provides an environment that supports healthy eating, physical activity, and nutrition through physical education policy and health education classes. The nutrition department provides resources through the nutrition services website to teachers, students and parents to ensure the effective implementation of guidelines determined in the wellness policy.
On Nov 21st, 2022, Framingham State University Student Dietitian, Rakhee Uttam in conjunction with Umass extension NEP programs, provided nutrition education in one of the Worcester public schools. Umass Extension is a federally funded organization which runs the program with Umass Amherst. The nutrition lesson was taught to second grade students at Learning Center Charter Public School’s after-school program
In this lesson, Rakhee emphasized foods that provide protein and its sources. She also educated kindergarten students about how protein helps our body grow, stay healthy and build strong muscles. This lesson was focused on the school’s wellness policy of incorporating plant and animal-based protein sources. While students moved to a new rhyme teaching them about protein foods.
There was a taste testing opportunity for students to identify beans as an important source of protein. Students were given samples of hummus and carrot sticks to taste while they were also provided recipe cards to take home. Students were excited about making this recipe at home with their parents during the Thanksgiving break.
There are more resources for school nutrition and wellness that can be applicable for classrooms and at home for parents. These resources can be accessed through the SWITCH website.
By: Rakhee Uttam, FSU Food and Nutrition Graduate student in the Programa Coordinado en Dietética