Photo: SI KIDS.com
The Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University partnered with Andrew Luck to create Change The Play, an eight week physical education program that teaches children ages 5-14 about proper health and wellness.
The program began in 2013 and something kids could do at home with their parents. It is now being tested in 30 schools statewide as a pilot program for schools to use on a regular basis.
Changes from the original program to the pilot one include modifications to some of the activities as well as updates on information around nutrition.
Chief Medical Officer at Riley Dr. Paul Haut says the strong relationship between Riley and the Indiana Association of School Principals gives Change The Play access to a variety of schools.
“We are able to reach out through this network of school principals and get a selection of schools that represented different geographic areas and different demographics to start with,” Haut said.
Haut adds that Riley is piloting Change The Play in this specific group of schools to grasp an idea on if and how they might need to tweak the program for the best possible results.
Clear Creek Elementary School in Monroe County is one of the schools chosen to participate in the program, and Assistant Principal Susan Dick says the administration hopes to continue the program annually.
“With our scheduling, our students are only able to get physical education in their gym class twice a week,” Dick said. “And so with the Change the Play program, they are able to get physical activity in their classroom everyday on a daily basis.”
Dick also says the goal setting piece that allows students to track their own progress is the most impressive part of the program because it puts all accountability back on the student for weekly growth.
School and officials within the program hope to roll this initiative out to any school within the state of Indiana that wants to participate.