Extension > Extension history > Number of obese school children reaches new heights

Number of obese school children reaches new heights

Children and nutrition

From 1976 to 2004, the percentage of overweight grade-school children in the United States nearly tripled, from 6.5 to 18.8 percent. In 2007, Extension nutrition experts and nutrition education assistants began piloting an activity-packed curriculum, "Go Wild with Fruits and Vegetables,"? in 22 Moorhead-area schools. The program uses stories, songs, games and "mystery food"? taste tests to make the lessons fun, and is based on studies showing that children are more likely to believe and act upon a message if they hear it from multiple sources. So far, 3,600 grade-school children have learned that good food and physical activity are smart choices. The Go Wild curriculum is expected to go statewide in 2009-10.