I had a great opportunity in the fall to work with a teacher in East Hartford on an After School grant to offer a program for 1st and 2nd graders at the School. I would be responsible for providing fun fitness instruction and the teacher was going to take the lead on teaching healthy life habits. True to Y form I had to come up with a catchy name for the program… “Healthy Kids”, maybe not that catchy but it works. The class meets twice a week after school. The kids in the class have Zumba on Wednesday and a Health and Fitness class on Tuesday. Each week for the Health and Fitness class the kids are introduced to new games and activities and are given a healthy snack and learn a Healthy fact. Last week the kids learned about Fire Safety.
I start each class with the kids in a circle and ask them “How can we be healthy today?” I love the answers I get…. My favorite this week was “eat spaghetti because it’s thin”. After I get a few suggestions, like the spaghetti gem, we start our class with some stretching and fitness games. Each week the kids are so eager to learn new things and eat the healthy snack (they always ask to bring an extra snack home for siblings).
The after school grant was a great opportunity for collaboration for the East Hartford YMCA and the East Hartford Board of Education. Working in partnership with others to achieve the Y mission is one reason why – I believe.
Senior Program Director
East Hartford YMCA