Speaking out about the role of schools in ensuring kids get enough physical activity.

If you walk into the office at Piedmont Elementary in Piedmont, Oklahoma, you are likely to see a student walking on a treadmill while reading a book and to glance out the window and observe a class jogging along together in military style as they take the long way to art class to get in another round of cadence. Piedmont Elementary is dedicated to movement. The school’s principal, Shari Zimmerman, author of Speaking Out in the March/April issue of Principal, presents the case that schools play a role in ensuring kids get enough physical activity.

Zimmerman writes: “School programs should play an important role in helping youth develop the mindset and habits necessary to live healthy lives by providing an active school environment. Activity can become an integral part of the school environment through discipline strategies, reward offers, celebrations, and daily learning opportunities. Students can meet a good portion of the recommended 60 minutes of daily healthy movement within the routines of their school day.”

Does your school capitalize on these opportunities for movement? Is this a plausible goal in today’s high stakes testing environment?

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