The Kit was trialled in two schools.
Class 5K at Brunel Primary and Nursery Academy in Saltash and 2 classes at Oakwood School in Plymouth were selected to trial the diary.
During the trial we were looking for feedback on the following:
Did the diary concept encourage children to be healthier?
How effective were the teaching resources?
How easy did the diary fit into the curriculum?
How responsive were the children to the diary and the idea?
What ideas did the children have for improving the diary?
How was the Kit delivered?
Oakwood used the diary primarily during registration, whilst Brunel integrated the Kit into 5K's timetable.
To do this 5K Class teacher Ben Kay looked for lots of opportunities to embed the Kit's messages.
During morning registration the children would complete their diary pages whilst practicing their handwriting.
The week's healthy theme was incorporated into the science lesson.
Children were encouraged to access the kid's resources at www.loveourhealth.org for homework, therefore taking the message of the Kit home.
Cross curricula links were made, especially with literacy.
Several of the diary activities and worksheets were used to practice reading comprehension.
Opportunities to link healthy choices with important events were exploited such as choosing healthy fillings for pancakes.
The local media covered the Brunel trial:
An article and picture of the 5K children receiving their Completer's certificates appeared in the Cornish Guardian on Wednesday 9th May 2012.
The children in class 5K enthusiastically embraced the diary. They enjoyed completing the activities and embraced the healthy challenges. They also provided evidence that the Kit had impacted positively upon the choices they made.
Key results from Brunel:
Most children did more activity as a result of completing the diary.
Most children drank more water after completing the diary.
Many children chose to eat a greater range of fruit and vegetables and were happy to try something new.
A selection of quotes from the children:
"The diary has made me healthier by keeping a record of my eating". Bethany (age 10).
"The diary has lots of fun stuff to do". Alex (age 9).
"I like the way it gives you facts about the things we eat". Adam (age 10).
"Using the diary has made me healthier because I do more activity". Daisy (age 10).
"It has made me healthier by making me eat more fruits and veg". Brandon (age 9).
"The things I like most about the diary are the stickers at the back". Robert (age 9).
"Since using the diary I've been more active, got more sleep, drank more water and lots more". Daisy – year 5.
Feedback from the class teacher:
"The Healthy Kids Kit has been a great resource for encouraging pupils to lead a more healthy lifestyle. It was a worthwhile project, which all the children enjoyed. I would highly recommend this resource." Ben Kay.
Feedback from parents:
"I think it's a fantastic idea and should be used in all schools to help kids eat healthier". Year 5 parent.
I think the whole project was very worthwhile and should be continued. As a parent, it's good to have someone else tell your child they need to eat healthily and exercise". Year 5 parent.
"A good and worthwhile exercise for all the family". Year 5 parent.
It's exciting to see through the trial that the diary has had a positive impact on many of the children.
In addition, the trial has helped us understand how school's can get the most value from their investment. When using the diary, we suggest you embed the Kit into the timetable and encourage children and parents to use the online resources at home. By doing this, you will help keep the children engaged and motivated throughout the 12-weeks and maximise the results you see.