DOCUMENTARY SHOWS HOW TO IMPROVE KIDS’ EDUCATION & HEALTH
Hear From Experts in Health, Education and Children Behavior
By Mike May
Is there one thing educators can provide to all students (K-12) in Palm Beach County each day that will make them smarter and healthier? Yes! Give them daily P.E. at school. The academic benefits of physical activity breaks for students are numerous. While the benefits of exercise are well publicized, rarely do we hear about the negative side effects of physical inactivity – until now, thanks to PHIT America, a non-profit cause which is dedicated to reversing America’s ‘Inactivity Pandemic.’ While watching a newly released 28-minute PHIT America documentary – Creating Healthier & Smarter Kids: The Power of P.E. – viewers will hear comments about the importance of physical activity from a medical doctor, school leaders, classroom teachers, P.E. professionals, parents, and young students. In this video, you will learn how P.E. and physical activity breaks during the school day stimulate a better learning environment for students.
In addition to the 28-minute video, there’s a five-minute version of the video which can both be found at Videos.PHITAmerica.org. These are ‘must-see’ videos for the general public, especially for parents and grandparents of school-age children — and school administrators — to watch.
Dr. John Ratey opens the documentary by divulging a message about the state of physical inactivity in the U.S.
“We are the most sedentary generation ever on this Earth,” stated Ratey.
It’s bad and getting worse, unless there’s a commitment to change, according to Ratey. And, PHIT America is committed to lobbying for that change.
The national figures on physical activity indicate that two-thirds of U.S. children are not active to healthy standards and 48% of all high schools in the U.S. have no P.E. Daily P.E. classes in our schools will help reverse physical inactivity rates in the U.S., which exceed 82 million people.
Education leaders say the academic benefits of physical activity during the school day are crystal clear.
“It’s just as important as math. It’s just as important as social studies,” said Dr. Julian Reed, Associate Professor of Health Sciences, Furman University (Greenville, South Carolina), who has conducted studies on the power of P.E. “The kids that get daily P.E. are outperforming the kids that don’t have P.E.”
“Exercise wakes the brain up and prepares it to be in its best learning situation,” stated Chad Fenwick, Advisor for Physical Education, K-12 (Los Angeles, California)
“The best behaviors and the best academic outcomes are when they come back in from physical education,” stated Dave Spurlock, Director of P.E., Charleston (South Carolina) City Schools. “Movement can change the whole dynamic of education.”
There are findings revealed in the video that clearly show that higher fitness levels help generate higher academic scores.
Currently, many schools in the U.S. provide the bare minimum of P.E. to their students. That must change. And, again, PHIT America is committed to lobbying for that change.
Since 2015, PHIT America and its partner Kids in the Game have been distributing funds to elementary school P.E. programs in the form of PHIT America GO! Grants, which range from $1,000-$5,000 per school. To date, more than 600 GO! Grants – totaling $1.4 million — have been distributed to schools around the U.S., which have impacted more than 300,000 students. And, more GO! Grants are on the way – with the help of the general public. Two of those grants have been given to a pair of schools in Palm Beach Country – Gove Elementary in Belle Glade and Cholee Lake Elementary in Greenacres.
With its two documentaries/videos, PHIT America is educating the general public about the magnitude of physical inactivity among school children and inviting viewers — especially parents and grandparents — to be a part of the solution and donate to PHIT America to help fund more GO! Grants to more schools in order to generate more support for P.E. Donations to PHIT America can be made by texting PHITKids to 50155 or by visiting PHITKids.org. Those donations will become PHIT America GO! Grants.