Creating Healthy and Inclusive Playtime
|Recess will never be the same, at least if the folks at Playworks have anything to do with it. On Monday, March 24, the Oakland, California-based non-profit trained
educators from two Caroline County schools how to help kids get the
most out of every recess.
"Playworks believes in the power of play to bring out the best in every
kid," says Sean Keelan, senior national trainer for Playworks. "We
create a place for every kid on the playground, a place where every kid
belongs, has fun, and is part of the game. My goal is for the schools to
be confident in creating a recess that expands the opportunities for
safe and inclusive play."
Playworks trainers show teachers how to use games, play strategies, and
group management techniques to teach kids how to play well together,
share, resolve conflicts, and develop leadership skills. They say
inclusive play and conflict resolution skills lead to fewer
disciplinary actions and better classroom performance.
The training in Caroline County schools, and earlier training in
Wicomico County schools, is part of a pilot program sponsored by The Institute for a Healthiest Maryland (IHM),
a partnership between the University of
Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) and the Maryland
Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH). IHM Executive
Director Renee Fox, MD, says
the physical payoff for kids is of paramount importance. The most
recent data shows that more than 22 percent of school-aged Maryland children
are obese. "Recently in the Journal of the American Medical Association,
there was good news about declining obesity rates in young children
ages 2 to 5 years, which decreased 43 percent from 2003-04 to 2011-12.
This decrease is heartening, but the trend was not seen in school-aged
children," says Fox. "One goal of this training is to increase physical
activity for children during school time, to help develop lifetime
IHM's mission is to measurably improve the health of Maryland citizens
by supporting community transformation efforts, translating public
health research into practice, and providing technical assistance to
local health departments and community organizations.ý For more
information about IHM, go to http://www.healthiestmaryland.org.
|Posting Date: 03/28/2014
|Contact Name: Alex Likowski
|Contact Phone: 410-706-3801
|Contact Email: firstname.lastname@example.org