FRESH Program Encourages Healthy Habits

Teens offered after-school classes in yoga and healthy eating

Rylee Arms, Staff Reporter

    Fauquier Reaches for Excellence in School Health, FRESH, is a county-wide program aimed at teaching students and staff healthier habits.

    Mary Harper, history teacher, is the FRESH representative at Kettle Run.

    “The school board approached me and told me that they would give me a budget to hold activities throughout the school to promote healthier

living,” Harper said.

    Harper reached out to her colleagues for help. Three of them were excited to pitch in.

    Psychology teacher Jessica Murphy kicked off FRESH by offering Yoga classes to students and staff after school. The class was offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays, for eight weeks, in the Distance Learning Lab.

    “Strength and flexibility are the major physical benefits of this type of exercise,” Murphy said, “but it is also a wonderful way to relax and center myself mentally at the end of the day.”

    Kristie Hebler, special education teacher, regularly attends Murphy’s class.

    “Yoga has helped me to slow down and take time to focus on myself,” Hebler said. “Yoga also focuses on strengthening muscles I don’t usually work and increases my flexibility.”

    In just a few weeks, Hebler has noticed several differences.

    “ I find that I have become a little stronger and recover easier from tough workouts because of yoga. I never thought I would like yoga, but I do. It is not easy, which I like. I have always  enjoyed fitness that challenges me and yoga certainly does.”

    Just as Yoga begins winding down, Kathryn Kiser, culinary teacher, is gearing up teaching her FCCLA club members how to make healthy snacks. Club members meet every Tuesday for eight weeks, learning to create snack that are both healthy and easy to pack.

    “The purpose of this is to heighten awareness for kids to eat healthy snacks,” Kiser said. “Kids that stay after school for sports or other activities need to learn to pack their own healthy foods.”

    “It’s important to learn how to be healthy if you live on the go or have school and work all the time,” junior Gillian Seuter said. “People should always put their health into consideration.”

    Club members create a new meal each week. “Each meal includes each food group,” senior Payton Fiel said. “We are hoping to teach club members how to get enough nutrition throughout the day.”

    Tristan Brown, senior, is learning a lot in the after school program.

    “I’m getting ready to go off to college, and eating healthy is really important,” Brown said. “I want to learn how to prepare meals myself for when I go to college.”

    Chad Wright, Interact sponsor, will start his program in the spring. Wright and his club members will plant a garden and maintain it. All fruits and vegetables that are grown and collected will be donated to the cafeteria  for use in fresh school meals and to culinary classes for use in culinary creations.