By Joey McWilliams
BRYAN COUNTY – Helping children to keep a healthy lifestyle and remain active is something good for not only physical health, but also mental health.
The Bryan County Health Department through the TSET program is doing its part to invest in the community.
The TSET recently hosted a Let’s P.L.A.Y. event at Bloomer Sullivan Gymnasium and brought in Scott Robison for the weekend. Robison is the Community Health Director at the Wewoka Indian Health Center and has been a workshop presenter for more than 16 years.
P.L.A.Y. is an acronym for Physical and Lifelong Activity for Youth.
The workshop was offered on a Friday and Saturday as a one-day event, available for those who could make one day more easily than the other, such as childcare workers or school faculty.
Lesa Curry, wellness coordinator with the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust program in Durant, said people came out representing many areas in the county and beyond.
“We had everyone from other TSET grantees, who came to observe the event, so that maybe they could hold this type of event in their area so they could educate their P.E. coaches, to youth pastors, Boys and Girls Club workers, and after-school care workers,” Curry said.
“All Bryan County school districts were invited. We partnered with Southeastern Resource and Referral to have the curriculum certified for CECPD (Center for Early Childhood Professional Development) credits for our childcare workers, so that while they were learning they could also earn the credits required to keep their CECPD status.”
Curry said there was a pretty good turnout and the workshop participants not only learn how to engage the students in physical activity with alternatives activities to keep the kids active, but also they were actually involved.
“It was very interactive and some of us couldn’t move the next day,” Curry said.
New activities included a revised version of Duck, Duck, Goose. In the standard game, only the person chasing and the person being chased were active – all the other students would just sit there. With revisions to the game, all the students are more active. Curry spoke also about a moving Connect Four game, with moving pieces and more running. The participants learned games that would be good for students when they had to be indoors on a rainy day and can’t get outside to do P.E.
“He just gave you alternative to keep everyone active to keep the kids engaged, a lot of positive reinforcement. A lot of times when coaches or teachers have large groups, it’s hard to keep them on task and not let them get astray. He gave some really good insight as to how to do that.
“It was a great training and I’m glad we brought it.”
Curry said the feedback was positive and the TSET is looking at bringing Robison back for another workshop he teaches.