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Showing posts from January, 2018

Carrie Ann Olson works at the crux of healthy living and good decision making

For more than 25 years, Carrie Ann Olson has been working at the crux of healthy living and good decision making.

In order to live more healthfully, people need to make good choices, based on good information about nutrition and health. "Nobody wants to put junk into their body once they understand what they're eating," Carrie said.
Carrie's philosophy is that healthy living is fun. She has designed cook-offs and other challenge events that challenge youth to think about what they're cooking. "We don't tell kids 'You're going to make this.' We leave it open ended because they learn more when their interests lead,' she said.
The causes of obesity and poor health do not lie in the food itself, Carrie says, but rather in the way many people approach it. "Food gets a bad rap. People say we're eating too much or we're getting too serious, but it's really simple to throw good ingredients together and eat well instead of being …

Becky Meyer loves getting young people outside exploring science

Feeling stressed? Head outside for a five-minute walk. Research (and your grandpa) will tell you - you'll feel a bit better afterward.

The restorative benefits of being outdoors are well-documented. And it's not just your emotional health that improves from time outside; you can also contribute to the environmental health of your community.
Becky Meyer is an Extension educator with expertise in environment and science education. She believes that young people learn best when immersed in the content. In other words, if you want to study nature, go outside.
Case in point: Last summer Becky, together with 4-H program coordinator Tracey Anderson and partners from Lake County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD), ran a summer camp to connect young people to their natural environment. Over the course of six weeks, youth in two sites got outside and investigated a shared research question: Are there any invasive species in our lakes?

Youth make healthy choices through gardening in Willmar, Minnesota

The kids of Kandiyohi County started to DIG this summer. With the help of 4-H summer intern, Ashley Warren, 15 youth, ages four to 12, got their hands dirty in a garden to table experience that changed the way they look "yucky vegetables."

Their learning started by building an above-ground garden at the Sunwood Apartment complex in Willmar, Minnesota. They filled large water tubs with recycled pop cans for easy drainage and added fresh soil that was donated by the city. Then the kids planted all types of vegetables from carrots to peppers, radishes and herbs.

DIG (dirt, insects, and gardening) lessons, led by Ashley, were incorporated into each meeting with the youth gardeners, helping them learn more about what goes into the food they eat and how food is grown.