Healthy-Start Blog

Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior: Increasing Physical Activity in Preschool: A Pilot Study to Evaluate Animal Trackers

This report describes a pilot study to evaluate Animal Trackers (AT), a preschool program designed to (1) increase structured physical activity (PA) during the preschool day; (2) increase practice of gross motor skills; (3) provide teachers with an easy-to-use PA programr egardless of teacher experience; and (4) implement a teacher walking intervention.               

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Healthy Start Special For Your Students!

For each order of Healthy Start and/or Animal Trackers, receive Healthy Hops, pre-school nutrition and exercise program, a $59.95 value, free as part of our 2016 Preschool Education promotion.
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Preschool Funding from the US Department of Education for our Healthy-Start Users

The President's budget request expands access to high-quality early learning while investing in innovation and evaluation to promote the implementation of evidence-based practices for our youngest learners and improve educational outcomes in the early grades. 

  • Supports voluntary, universal preschool. The mandatory Preschool for All initiative would invest $75 billion over 10 years in a federal-state partnership aimed at providing all 4-year-olds from low- and moderate-income families with access to high-quality preschool, while encouraging states to expand those programs to reach additional children from middle-class families and establish full-day kindergarten policies.
  • Builds on the success of the Preschool Development Grants program to help jumpstart Preschool for All. Consistent with the requirements of the Every Student Succeeds Act, the budget provides $350 million for Preschool Development Grants in the Department of Health and Human Services request to support the fourth and final year of funding for the 18 current grantees as well as new activities intended to better coordinate and expand early learning services for children and families.
  • Supports special education services to children ages 3 through 5. The request provides an increase of $35 million over the fiscal year 2016 level for the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part B, Section 619 Preschool Grants, as well as additional flexibility for schools and districts to provide coordinated early intervention services for preschool-age children.
  • Provides additional funds for early intervention services for infants and toddlers. The request for IDEA Part C Grants for Infants and Families is an increase of $45 million over the 2016 level and would allow the Department to reserve $15 million to make new competitive grants to public-private partnerships to support community-based model demonstration projects that increase screening and delivery of evidence-based services.


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Towards A Healthy New Year

Dear Healthy Start Colleagues, Teachers and Friends:

Thanks to all of our hard work and efforts, as 2015 comes to a close, Universal Preschool Education is becoming a reality. Part of this education is to insure the physical and emotional wellness of our pre-school children.

Make 2016 a Healthy Start year for your students!

For each order of Healthy Start and/or Animal Trackers, receive Healthy Hops, a pre-school nutrition and exercise program, a $59.95 value, free as part of our 2016 Preschool Education promotion.

Our happy, healthy wishes to all!  

Chris Williams MD, Carolyn Lucca-Black, BJ Carter, Richard Leigh, Joan Beer and Charles Potter

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Hello Spring Goodbye Winter Blues!

By Juliana Jacobs, contributing writer.

Spring is finally right around the corner! We can bid farewell to freezing weather, snowstorms and puffy, often unflattering winter attire.

Although it’s easy to transition out of our winter wardrobes, it is often more difficult to get our bodies and minds into the spring spirit.

Here are some tricks for leaving the winter blues and bulge behind for a healthy and active spring!

Family Time Outside: Time to get active outside! Get the kids away from the television, computers and video games and spend time as family outside enjoying the beautiful spring weather. Take a walk in the park, go rollerblading, play a game of tennis or take a bike ride around the neighborhood. Getting active outside will lift everyone’s spirits and get the whole family back into spring mode.

Clean Out The Kitchen Pantry:
Start spring off on the right foot by cleaning out your kitchen pantry and cabinets. Get rid of any sugary, processed snacks and fill your pantry with healthy, well- balanced food. For instance, replace processed chips, cookies and candy with nuts, low- fat cheese sticks, pretzels and granola bars.

These low- fat and protein- rich snack options are perfect for both you and your children. Although chips and cookies may taste delicious, they are merely empty calories that will not benefit your body or provide efficient energy. Even these small changes will make a big difference in how you and your family look and feel!

Go Green:
Spring also signifies that fresh vegetables and fruit are in season. Stock your refrigerator with tons of vitamin- filled and antioxidant- rich fruits and veggies to snack on. Celery with a little peanut butter, carrots with hummus and cherry tomatoes with laughing cow cheese are low- calorie, delicious snack options that everyone will enjoy. And the best part- your kids won’t even feel like they are eating vegetables!

Fruit is also a perfect snack option. Apples are tasty and filling and will definitely keep you satisfied for longer periods of time. Add a little honey or peanut butter for a little extra flavor. Mixed berries are also fantastic to snack on and are a great addition to yogurt, cereal, cottage cheese etc. For that sweet tooth, add a little sugar or splenda to a bowl of mixed berries and you have a perfectly tasty dessert!

Water, Water Everywhere!:
This may sound obvious, but it’s so important to drink at least 8 glasses of water each day. Water flushes toxins out of your body and keeps you hydrated, unlike sugary sodas. This spring, turn over a new leaf and ditch sugary juices and sodas for water or seltzer. Flavored seltzer is carbonated and has no calories so is a healthy and delicious substitute for soda- lovers. Just remember, don’t drink your calories with sugary drinks!

Even these small changes will make a big difference in how you and your family embark on the spring season. No need to change everything all at once- this can get overwhelming! Small lifestyle tweaks such as cleaning out the cabinets and spending more family time outside can go a long way.

Wishing your family a happy, healthy and sunny spring season from the Healthy Start team!

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