Tag Archives: Andover Public School

Andover High School Students Learn How to Eat Mindfully

Andover Public Schools is a leader in their health education. The food service department and teachers work hard to ensure students are provided nutrition education to help them carry healthy habits outside of the classroom. It is part of the goal of the Andover School wellness policy to gear health education toward personal behaviors and habits, to resist peer and wider pressures to make unhealthy choices, and to emphasize learning and practicing skills students need for healthy living.

In making these wellness policy goals a reality, Andover has partnered with Framingham State University and their Coordinated Program in Dietetics to provide nutrition education to their students.

FSU Student Dietitian Taelyr Hair teaching students about the importance of eating mindfully to enjoy food and avoid overeating.

FSU Student Dietitian Taelyr Hair teaching students about the importance of eating mindfully to enjoy food and avoid overeating.

Student dietitian Taelyr Hair taught high school students at Andover the art of eating mindfully by using all five senses to enjoy food, practice healthy skills, and work on their personal habits and behaviors. Many students identified issues with overeating while playing on their phone or watching TV. Most of the students had never heard of mindful eating, and this new way of thinking about their food surprised them. Students participated in an activity in which they had to mindfully eat a snack food and report descriptions for each of their five senses when experiencing the snack. By the end of the lesson, all of the students had come up with multiple descriptions for each of their senses and expressed that they liked the idea of putting more focus on their food experiences, and slowing down while eating.

To explore more resources on mindful eating and other interesting lesson plans to implement in your school, please visit The John C. Stalker Institute of Food and Nutrition resource center.

Submitted by: Taelyr Hair FSU Graduate Food and Nutrition Student, Coordinated Program in Dietetics.  

“Andover High Schoolers Re-think Their Drinks”

Andover High School promotes nutrition education through initiatives set forth by their wellness policy; the goal of which is to set students up with life-long healthy habits by providing a nutritious food environment, and incorporating nutrition education into the health curriculum.

In an effort to further the nutrition education provided within the school system, Andover Public Schools has partnered with the  Framingham State Coordinated Program in Dietetics to provide health classrooms with lessons created, and directed by student dietitians.

Framingham graduate student/student dietitian Tim Boykov educating Andover High-schoolers on added sugars

One such lesson was led by student dietitian, Tim Boykov, on April 8th; a class of 9th graders was taught about hidden sugars in their drinks, how to quantify added sugar, and alternative drink choices. Students were able to practice their new skills by converting the grams of added sugar on the nutrition label of popular drinks into teaspoons. Students were surprised to learn how much sugar was hidden in drinks that some of them consume on a daily basis, along with how many calories are associated with those few extra teaspoons of sugar. Students also learned the recommended upper limit of sugar consumption per day according to the American Heart Association.

Additional nutrition education resources from the John Stalker Institute, similar to those used in Tim’s lessons, can be found here.

Submitted by: Tim Boykov, FSU Graduate student in the  Framingham State Coordinated Program in Dietetics.

Students Learn the Costs of Fast, Convenience Foods Versus DIY at Andover Public Schools

Andover Pubic School’s Food and Nutrition Services are dedicated to providing healthy and delicious meals to their students during the school day. The assortment of choices students have daily in the cafeteria exposes them to a variety of different foods. Nutrition Services also supports learning opportunities, which help students build skills and confidence to make healthy lifestyle choices, according to their wellness policy.

FSU Dietetic Intern, Rachel Tedford, using an online survey tool, Kahoot, to test students’ knowledge on the costs of choosing fast and convenience foods

This spring they  welcomed dietetic interns from  Framingham State University into classrooms to provide nutrition education. In April 2018, Framingham State dietetic intern, Rachel Tedford, visited a seventh grade health class at West Middle School. She provided a lesson on the, “Costs of Fast and Convenient Foods Vs. DIY (doing it yourself).” Students learned about both the monetary and health costs that come with choosing fast and convenience foods. Many students were shocked at the costs and calorie savings that come with homemaking your meals.

This age group is crucial to target with this message because they are just beginning to have more freedom in their food choices. Many students reported that they felt constantly bombarded by food advertisements and fast food establishments. Students completed an activity using an online quiz tool, Kahoot. This new online quiz tool displays multiple-choice questions on the projector, students are required to enter their answer in real-time on their laptops, smartphones, or tablet. The tool then displays the distribution of answers on the projector, as seen in the photo above. Students were asked to estimate the calorie and cost difference of several different fast food items, compared to a homemade version.

Following the activity students brainstormed skills and habits that would prevent them from turning to these fast and convenient items. Students came up with ideas such as meal prepping at the beginning of the week, packing a snack the night before, and always having an emergency snack handy in their backpack.

For more information about smart snacks, and other nutrition education topics and opportunities, visit the John Stalker Institute (JSI) resource center.

Submitted by: Rachel Tedford, Framingham State University Food and Nutrition Student, Coordinated Program in Dietetics