Cheney Elementary’s School Garden is Growing Strong

Cheney School Garden

Students at Cheney Elementary are sprouting green thumbs along with a robust crop of tomatoes, onions and yellow peppers thanks to their new school garden.

The garden was started by Cheney’s Healthy School Team and is sponsored by Cheney’s School-Based Health Center (a Central Florida Family Health Center location) along with the Winter Park Health Foundation.  The garden was created in February and has become both a learning tool and fun activity for the students.

Gardening responsibilities are shared throughout the school.   It is loved and tended to by many students — from pre-kindergarten to fourth grade — as well as by staff from the school and the School-Based Health Center.    Students and staff planted a wide variety plants including tomatoes, onions, turnips, green and yellow peppers, sunflowers and milkweed.  The milkweed plants are especially popular because they attract Monarch butterflies.

Aside from teaching the students how to grow plants, the garden is also a useful tool in other areas as well.  The School-Based Health Center uses the garden to teach children about healthy eating and which foods are nutritious.  The garden allows children to have fun with these lessons.  Many teachers are also incorporating the garden into their lesson plans.

Cheney’s school garden is growing fast and becoming a favorite activity and learning tool for both students and teachers.  For more information on Cheney’s school garden, contact the school’s secretary at 407-672-3120.


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Parents – Get Active!

Active ParentsIt is important for parents to encourage their children to be active, and the best way to inspire this behavior is to lead by example.

Being active is important for the mind and the body.  Physical activity is linked to a healthy heart, maintaining a healthy body weight, preventing diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure, as well as sustaining proper emotional health and keeping people in a positive mood.  But many adults have trouble finding the time and motivation to fit in the proper amount of physical activity.  Experts agree that an adult should be active for at least 30 minutes a day five days a week. offers these ideas to help get you started:

  1. Start activities slowly and build up over time.  If you are just starting physical activity, build up slowly. This will help prevent injuries. After a few weeks, increase how often and how long you are active.
    1. Make active choices throughout the day. Every little bit of activity can add up, and doing something is better than nothing. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, go for a 10-minute walk on your lunch break, or park further away from work to get in a little more walking.
    2. Use the buddy system.  Activities with friends or family are more enjoyable than doing them alone. Join a walking group, attend fitness classes at a gym, or play with the kids outside. Build a support network — your buddies will encourage you to keep being active.
    3. Be active your way. Mix it up – there are endless ways to be active.  They include walking, biking, dancing, martial arts, gardening and playing ball.  Try out different activities to see what you like best and to add variety.
    4. Have fun!  Physical activity shouldn’t be a chore.  It can help you feel better about yourself and the way you live your life.  Choose activities that you enjoy and that fit your lifestyle.


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