Author Archives: Brett Otis

Third edition of award-winning, evidence-based curriculum released!

EatWellKeepMoving3rdE_Cover_TiltedEat Well & Keep Moving, Third Edition (Human Kinetics), is a
school-based program that equips children with the knowledge, skills, and supportive environment they need to lead more healthful lives by choosing nutritious diets and being physically active.

Designed for fourth- and fifth-grade students, its six interlinked components—classroom education, physical education, school-wide promotional campaigns, food services, staff wellness, and parent and community involvement—work together to create a supportive environment that promotes the learning of lifelong good habits. Continue reading

Keeping an eye on screen time – An interview with Dr. Gortmaker

In a recent interview with the Harvard Gazette, Dr. Steve Gortmaker discussed screen time, obesity, and our Outsmarting the Smart Screens guide for parents:

First there was too much TV, then computer and video-gaming addictions. Today, the proliferation of smart screens gives kids a three-in-one box, portable enough to be watched from anywhere, out of sight of watchful parents.

With parents and kids in back-to-school mode, refocusing on the daily demands of homework, sports, and activities, time spent staring at a screen comes at a premium. Steven Gortmaker, professor of the practice of health sociology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, has been studying how we have used and sometimes abused screen time since the 1980s, when he published one of the first studies linking TV watching to obesity. [Read the full interview on the Harvard Gazette]

STUDY: Boston’s executive beverage policy decreased sugary drinks and increased availability of healthier drinks in city-owned properties.

A study by the HPRC, working with the Boston Public Health Commission, evaluated the impact of the Healthy Beverage Executive Order for city agencies in Boston and found that the policy decreased the availability of sugary drinks, and that healthier, low-sugar beverages were more likely to be available for sale.

HBEO Evaluation Graphic_v3 Continue reading

“Outsmarting the Smart Screens” Guide featured in NY Times, Today.com

Our Outsmarting the Smart Screens guide, a resource to help parents take control of their children’s screen time, was recently featured in the New York Times’ Well Column: “How to Cut Children’s Screen Time? Say No to Yourself First:”

Source: NYTimes Well

Source: NYTimes Well

Two experts at the Harvard School of Public Health, Steven Gortmaker and Kaley Skapinsky, offer a free guide, “Outsmarting the Smart Screens: A Parent’s Guide to the Tools That Are Here to Help,” as well as healthy activities to pursue to counter the weight gain that can accompany excessive screen time. Young children should not have their own cellphones or televisions in their bedrooms, they say, adding that even with teenagers it is not too late to set reasonable limits on screen time…[read the full article]

The guide was also mentioned in a similar piece on Today.com, “Cut back your child’s screen time by cutting back your own first.”