School News

Students take on 30-day challenge for Healthy Eating Month

Artwork by Dana Roberts

 During October, area 2nd grade classes are taking part in a 30 day challenge to improve their eating habits and the amount of physical activity they are getting. Valley Food Partnership (VFP), a regional 501c 3 non-profit has teamed up with several Montrose County School District 2nd grade teachers, The Colorado Health Foundation, Colorado Trust and the Montrose Community Foundation to launch the 2nd annual Healthy Eating and Active Living challenge.

VFP feels that the earlier kids learn to feed their bodies with healthy food and the importance of daily movement the better off our community is as a whole. The challenge has the students keeping track of their daily amounts of fruits and vegetable and the number of minutes a day that they are getting active play in a journal. There are also some fun learning activities that they are asked to do on a weekly basis, such as learning the different types of plants that fruits and vegetables grow on. Learning about gardening and the tools needed to plant seeds, and a monthly calendar of activities to help inspire the kids to keep going.

In 2016 Oak Grove Elementary shined above all other schools who participated in the 30-day challenge. Every second grader from Oak Grove engaged in writing in their journals and keeping track of daily nutrition and activity. “We were very impressed by the participation we were shown by the 2nd grades at Oak Grove. They all really seemed to take something away from this program. As shown in the Thank You Letter from one of the students, each child really learned something that we hope will stay with them,” said Greta Steil, VFP office and partnership manager.

There were some great success stories from 2016, which led Valley Food Partnership to focus on the 2nd grade classes. This year 2nd grade students will have the opportunity to build synergy around their nutrition curriculum learning requirements and this month’s 30-day challenge. The eager 2nd-grade students started this year’s challenge on October 2nd. The elementary schools that have opted into participate this year are Johnson, Northside, and Oak Grove.

At the end of the month, all of the journals are turned in to VFP, and each classroom is awarded a gift certificate to purchase needed classroom supplies, and every student is given a jump rope to encourage more active play at home.

If you are interested in finding out more, learning how you can participate next year, or show your support to Valley Food Programs and projects, please visit the website at:

For any questions about the 30-day challenge, please call or email Greta at 970-249-0705

About the author

Mavis Bennett

Mavis Bennett

A western Colorado resident for most of her life, Mavis Bennett is the publisher of the Montrose Monitor. She has written for newspapers and magazines more than three decades and founded the popular Monitor Magazine in 2003. This web site is the logical progression for the Monitor.