How to be Healthy, by Annabella (4th Grade)

During the PacificSource Healthy Life Schools Challenge, studentsHL-Schools-challenge-logo_blue-text entered an essay contest, answering the question, “How do you live a healthy life?” The responses were truly inspiring, though, Annabella’s essay rose above the rest. Here is her original, winning essay:

How to be Healthy

by Annabella Friedrich, 4th Grade

Riverbend Elementary

Do you know how to keep a healthy life? I do and I know its all about decisions. Decisions on exercise, moderation and even being organized.

One important thing to be healthy is exercise. Having fun is just like exercise. One way to have fun exercising is playing out side or walking to the park. Theres also computer program called go noodle it has exercise videos and more.

Another thing about how to keep a healthy life is moderation. Moderation means only a little bit of something like food. Only a little bit of ice cream, chocolate, sugar free gum, candy and sweets.

One more thing about being Healthy is being organized. One way to be organized is righting down everything you eat or every time you watch TV.

Take my advice if you want to live a long and strong life you should exercise, moderate your self, and be organized.

Congratulations, Annabella! For your great work, you will be treated to a week at the Jordan Kent Skills Camp for you and a friend. Way to go, and keep living your healthy life!

Local Teachers Reach for the Veggies

HealthySchools-FruitsVeggiesEver consider removing the unhealthy snacks in your life, and replacing them with fruits and veggies? Well, that’s exactly what local teachers have done these past four week!

To eat healthy for themselves, as well as demonstrate their habits to our youth, the Bethel and Springfield school districts have partnered together in the PacificSource Healthy Life Schools Challenge. During the challenge, teachers have replaced unhealthy and high-calorie snacks with fresh produce, and have been very successful doing so!

  • In four weeks, 1,449 Bethel and Springfield School teachers and staff participated in the Healthy Life Schools Challenge – that’s 74% participation!
  • Participants consumed a healthy 24,015 fruits and veggies throughout the Healthy Schools Challenge.
  • 6,479 unhealthy and high-calorie snacks were replaced with healthier options.

These teachers have set a higher standard for their health, and are setting a great example to our students, schools, and community! Though, you may have noticed that this is a challenge, and what is a challenge without a little competition! With each school tracking their habits, PacificSource has awarded $1,000 to the winning elementary, middle, and high school for the highest consumption of fruits and vegetables. Each school will use the prize to improve the health of their school! The winning schools are:

  • High School Winner: Kalapuya High School, Bethel School District
  • Middle School Winner: Shasta Middle School, Bethel School District
  • Elementary School Winner: Thurston Elementary School, Springfield School District

Congratulations, and thank you, teachers, for being great role models!

Teachers as Role Models for Healthy Habits

Healthy Eating
Two Oregon school districts—Bethel and Springfield—participated in a friendly Healthy Life Schools Challenge from April 14 to May 10. Teachers, faculty, and staff from 33 schools competed to find out which elementary, middle, and high school could eat more healthfully by replacing one unhealthy snack a day with a fresh fruit or veggie.

Throughout the challenge, 1,288 participants replaced 5,847 unhealthy snacks with 22,714 fresh fruits and veggies. PacificSource Healthy Life pitched in and donated some fruits and veggies to encourage participants to eat healthy along the way.

And, while this was a friendly competition to raise awareness for healthy eating, there were winners. Congratulations to Thurston Elementary, Briggs Middle School, and A3 (Academy of Arts and Academics) high school for consuming the highest percentage of fruits and veggies during the challenge! PacificSource Healthy Life will award each of the winning schools $1,000 to use for health and wellness initiatives in their school.

Active Living
Casa Run GrandsonIn addition to the competition to eat more fruits and veggies, the challenge also encouraged students, faculty, and staff to lace up their running shoes. PacificSource Healthy Life donated 50 race entries to Bethel and Springfield teachers and students for the Casa-Re/Max Integrity Champions for Children Run/Walk, which took place on May 10 at Skinner Butte Park in Eugene, Oregon. To help participants get ready for race day, a free Couch-to-5K training program was offered, which nearly 100 participants used to prepare for the Casa-Re/Max Run/Walk event.

If you’d like to train for your own local run or walk, you can use the free Run for My Healthy Life Couch-to-5K training program (shown below).

Couch to 5K_four week_family guide

Run for My Healthy Life Couch-to-5K

Visit to find races in your community.

Links between Health and Education
School communities are increasingly becoming places where healthy habits can flourish. Teachers are in a good position to act as positive role models for students, parents, and the community. A teacher who is on a personal journey to wellness—including healthy habits such as healthy eating and regular physical activity—can have a good influence on the health of students and others.
As more and more schools, parents, students, and communities realize the strong links between health and education, the more progress students can make toward healthy choices and lifestyles.

Learn more at