Ecole Mother Teresa School, in partnership with Red Deer Catholic School Division and Alberta Health Services, is looking to help the families of their students be active, eat healthy and develop positive relationships with the Move Your Mood Family Challenge.
From January 20 – March 20, families who registered will be given ways each week to meet the criteria in a light-hearted challenge designed to bring families together in positive ways.
“During the next eight weeks your family will be provided with a challenge each week outlining different ways you can be active in the community, eat healthy and develop assets in your children,” a Move Your Mood message to parents stated. “The Move Your Mood goal is to encourage all families to be active and healthy together.”
Each time a family reports back to their school, their names will be put into a draw to win a Heart Math Unit for their school from Alberta Health Services.
The advantages of physical activity, according to the Move Your Mood message to parents are that families will:Concentrate better, learn and remember
Cope with anxiety and stress
Be more positive and feel in control
Decrease depression or feeling down
Improve mood and energy
Improve how we feel about our selves
Improve social opportunities with friends and families
Develop fundamental movement skills needed to be active for life
Improve physical well being; stronger muscles and bones, improved heart health, balance and maintain a healthy body weight
Have fun with family and friends and be involved in the community
The assets of eating properly are well known, however Alberta Health Services provided participants with scientific information on how a proper diet affects us:Brain chemicals (neurotransmitters), such as serotonin, dopamine and norephinephrine affect the way we think, feel and act
Food and brain chemicals work together to give us energy throughout the day
Eating regular meals and snacks is important for mental health
A healthy diet may help you feel better emotionally and physically
The pamphlet also included how to strengthen positive relationships with your family including supporting and loving your child; empowering your child; setting clear and realistic boundaries and expectations; and helping your child use their time in meaningful, constructive ways.
While Red Deer Catholic Schools and AHS did provide tips to families on how to meet these goals, there is ambiguity and families can develop strategies that work for them.
“The family challenge is a great way for you and your family to get active, eat healthy and develop positive relationships together,” the pamphlet stated.