KEARNEY — Kenwood Elementary School students fueled up for play with an oatmeal breakfast Wednesday morning.
KEARNEY - Kenwood Elementary School students fueled up for play with an oatmeal breakfast Wednesday morning.
"We're encouraging kids to eat breakfast, especially a healthy breakfast, before they come to school each morning," said school nurse Julene Lesher. "A healthy breakfast starts their day off right, gets their body and their mind ready for learning."
The Oatmeal Breakfast Challenge is part of Fuel Up to Play 60, a collaboration between the National Dairy Council and the National Football League.
The program is designed to combat childhood obesity and help youths develop lifelong healthy eating and physical activity habits.
Students pledge to make healthier eating habits and be active and play for 60 minutes a day.
"Our school has been doing wellness activities for about three years, and this year we decided to use the Fuel Up to Play 60 program to help us offer some wellness activities for our kids," Lesher said.
Students can track their healthy eating and physical activity online and participate in challenges.
The Oatmeal Breakfast Challenge encourages students to submit their oatmeal choice online for a chance to win $1,000 for their school and to win tickets to Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans.
"It's encouraging kids to create their own oatmeal creation," said Bryce Abbey, the Fuel Up to Play 60 coach.
Students received a bowl of oatmeal and could add toppings such as fruit, brown sugar, cinnamon sugar, sprinkles and nuts.
"We want to get kids thinking about the choices they make and starting your day off with a whole grain versus processed sugary cereal is a good start," Lesher said. "With oatmeal, you can add toppings like fruit, nuts and dried fruit, which can make it tasty but also very healthy."
University of Nebraska at Kearney athletes served oatmeal to Kenwood students, then ate breakfast with them.
"They came in here to help bring some excitement around Fuel Up to Play 60, around eating healthy and the importance of eating breakfast," Abbey said.
After the students ate their healthy breakfast, they played Wii Dance in the gymnasium.
"We encourage parents to also help their kids make healthy choices at home," Lesher said. "When the schools work together with the parents, we are able to do a better job of raising healthy kids and healthy learners."
At KPS, five elementary schools and Horizon Middle School participate in the Fuel Up to Play 60 program.