Principal leads wellness program at Goessel Elementary School

GES principal John Fast chats with students about healthy snack choices.

Students from Goessel Elementary School spent the 2007-08 school year walking.

In the interest of encouraging healthy lifestyle and habits, John Fast, GES principal, offered an optional walking program for students in grades kindergarten through five, giving students a chance to earn a charm bracelet.

The walking was done at the noon recess time, but did not take the place of recess and was not required. Students participated, but still had time to play.


He prepares for a walking session during the noon recess time.

Twice a week, Fast gathered outside to walk with the students. Weather and schedules occasionally dictated changes.

Students in kindergarten to second grade could walk one full lap around the playground area twice a week and receive a mini-walking foot for their charm bracelet.

Students in grades three to five needed to walk two laps twice a week. When students accumulated two mini-feet, they received a T-Walker charm for their bracelet.

After they earned three T-Walker awards?six weeks of walking twice a week?they received a medallion for their bracelet.

After they earned three medallions, they earned their giant Big Foot walker award. At that point they received a certificate and a Big Foot charm.

Although a voluntary program, each semester ended with having more than 90 percent participation, which resulted in having a party and lots of healthy food snacks.

The Kansas State Depart?ment of Education mandates that schools have a wellness program.

This was part of the GES Wellness Program, along with the hope of encouraging students to develop regular exercise routines they will want to carry on in their life and foster an active lifestyle.

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