“I have an obsession for anything with a bicycle on it.”
That statement alone is why we love Wareham Middle School’s Fuel Up to Play 60 program advisor and physical education teacher Nichole Stahmer of Wareham, MA.
We’re featuring a local program advisor to help Fuel Up to Play 60 schools learn about:
- Programs in their area.
- Best practices and tips for a successful program.
- The many faces of Fuel Up to Play 60!
Let’s see what Nichole’s top tips are.
Why did you become a Fuel Up to Play 60 (FUTP 60) program advisor?
I became an advisor because it was a fun, motivational program that didn’t cost my school anything. I already advised an after school running club and it helped empower the students to bring part of what they do after school to the regular school day. Students would do morning announcements to tell other students about FUTP 60 challenges to participate in. Since the program was free, I then began to integrate it into all of my physical education classes. The students are excited about winning prizes and helping to earn grants for supplies, which has transferred some ownership of the program onto the students. Students get a voice and a choice.
“Students get a voice and a choice.”
How long has the FUTP 60 program been active at your school for?
This is our fifth year!
On average, how many students make up your FUTP 60 student team?
We have about 20 students and they get the entire school involved!
How did you go about beginning the FUTP 60 program at your school?
It started with my after school running club. We looked at the online FUTP 60 program a lot during the winter when it was hard to get outside to run.
What are the top 1-3 school wellness initiatives that your FUTP 60 team have accomplished?
- In-class activity breaks are the main focus of our group. The students are very motivated to teach the teachers how to do the exercises. Students also explain to teachers how much the exercises are needed and how they help students refocus.
- Marathon Kids.
- Community Playtime.
Have you received any funding for FUTP 60 initiatives at your school? If so, list what you have accomplished with the funding.
- Equipment for making smoothies: Our students love the smoothies and it’s a fantastic way to give them good nutrition.
- Physical activity equipment to motivate students to move: Including parachutes, running ladders, pedometers, FitnessGram resources, and awards to support our 5km.
What is your favorite memory of the FUTP 60 program at your school?
The movement challenges that we have adopted because of FUTP 60. We have a video that students created to share with parents and the community to challenge them. It was fun to make and amazing to see the students so excited to showcase what they have worked on.
The Wisdom Corner
What advice do you have for schools wanting to begin a FUTP 60 program?
Just give it a try and do what works for your school. Try not to adopt everything at once. Ease into it and gradually get familiar with the program. Don’t think of it as adding work to the day, but an opportunity to learn and have fun with the students. The rewards will be greater than you could ever expect!
What is your favorite snack to eat during the school day?
Cinnamon glazed pecans.
How Can YOU Become a Program Advisor?
Contact your local New England Dairy & Food Council school expert or visit FuelUptoPlay60.com.