The Community Trans-formation Grant focuses on chronic disease prevention for the youth of Chautauqua County. Specifically, the Childcare Sector of the CTG aims to increase the quality and quantity of physical activity children receive.
According to the National Association for Sport and Physical Education, toddlers should participate in 30 minutes of structured physical activity daily, while preschoolers should engage in 60 minutes.
In order to evaluate physical activity within the various types of child care in Chautauqua County, the CTG Childcare Sector Team sent out a survey to capture the types and amount of physical activity taking place with the children ages tow to five years. Providers were asked to record, for one week, the number of minutes of indoor play, outdoor play and the number of times that adult-led physical activities were provided. Once completed, childcare providers were asked to return their completed surveys to the New York State Department of Health. Those that participated had their name placed into a drawing where they could win either a boom box bundle or a parachute for their program.
In Chautauqua County, the TEAM program was the winner. The TEAM Program (Teenage Education and Motherhood) is an alternative school for pregnant and parenting teenage girls. It is jointly sponsored by the YWCA of Jamestown and Jamestown Public Schools.
Currently, the CTG is looking to improve the amount and type of physical activity Chautauqua County children receive through Chautauqua Opportunities Physical Activity Specialist Andrew Krenzer and the Active Play Curriculum. Up to this point, there are more than 180 providers located in 13 day care centers, four group family day cares and six family day cares throughout Chautauqua County who have been trained and are implementing the new curriculum.
Krenzer commented, "Our program, Active Play, is designed to give support to the providers on how to create structured activities that promote vigorous fundamental movements."
Each provider that participates is given equipment, lesson plans, and on-site demonstrations of how to implement the teaching strategies so that children are engaged in at least 30 minutes of adult-led physical activity daily.
Krenzer continued, "For some providers, it is difficult to find time to plan out activities and many of them do not have a physical education background. We are trying to do that part for them and then demonstrate how the activities can work in their setting. We stress trying to give activity time a purpose, because many of the children can get their 'free time' outside of our care at home."
To find more information about this exciting opportunity to increase the physical activity in your child care program, please contact the physical activity specialist, Andrew Krenzer, at Chautauqua Opportunities, Inc., 661-9430 ext 2261 or via email at KrenzerAndrew@gmail.com.