BOKS (Build Our Kids Success) Program Comes to Plymouth Schools
Since the Healthy Plymouth initiative began in 2011, the collaboration between BID-Plymouth, the Town of Plymouth and Plymouth Public Schools has grown into a movement to make Plymouth one of the healthiest communities in Massachusetts.
Recently, Plymouth Public Schools initiated a partnership with Harvard Medical School, BOKS (Build Our Kids Success) and BID-Plymouth to provide an established and on-going before school program for the 2015-2016 academic school year. BOKS gives participants a “body and brain boost that will set them up for a day of learning.” It takes place at Plymouth’s elementary and middle schools.
A typical BOKS class takes place for an hour before the kids’ school day starts. They begin with free play and a warm-up activity with one of the BOKS volunteer trainers. Then, they participate in a running-related activity and learn an exercise skill (i.e. squats, push-ups, sit-ups). Lastly, BOKS focuses on teamwork rather than competing against one another, so there’s always an end-of-class game promoting teamwork. They end with discussing a nutrition tip called BOKS Bit.
“The BOKS program has a great structure and I really like that it encourages teamwork and sportsmanship,” BID-Plymouth’s Director of the Critical Care Center (CCC), Lisa Bergendahl, BSN, CCRN, has a nine-year-old son who participates in BOKS at Manomet Elementary School. Before BOKS began, she received training to be a BOKS volunteer trainer and now participates once a week for the program. “My son is excited to go to BOKS every morning that he has it.”
Preventing addiction and substance use is BID-Plymouth’s top priority. As a key stakeholder in the community, BID-Plymouth recognizes that action needs to be taken to create positive, healthy opportunities for children in the community. Through research, it’s been proven that developing programs that offer activities inside/outside school can significantly minimize risk-taking behaviors from children. BOKS is a meaningful community- and school- based health promotion initiative that provides children with physical activity before school.
To learn more about BOKS, visit bokskids.org.