Health & Wellness
Welcome to the Health & Wellness section of the Riverside PTA website, covering information about Allergy Awareness and Wellness Committee events.
All parents and students should be aware and have a basic understanding of the risks faced by their children's friends with food allergies. The Allergy Awareness committee’s goal is to help increase awareness about food related allergies that affect nearly 8% of young children nationally or roughly 1-2 children per classroom, according to FARE (foodallergy.org). The committee will disseminate important allergy information and tips over the course of the school year and try to include allergen friendly treats at PTA organized school events. A food allergy awareness week will also be planned for May. To learn more about ways in which you and your child can help a food allergic friend, download the district's new food allergy brochure.
The three main events over the course of the school year are listed below.
Halloween Candy Donations
During the first week in November, Riverside students and families donate Halloween candy for a good cause. With the help of local Greenwich Pediatric Dental Group’s Dr. Stacy Zarakiotis, we have raised hundreds of dollars for Operation Smile. Dr. Stacy has matched $2 for every pound of our candy donation (in the past over 400 pounds) and donated that amount to Operation Smile. Because of our school's donation, we funded more than three cleft lip/palate surgeries last year!
Through the Teal Pumpkin Project, we have also attempted to raise awareness about food allergies so that all children can have a happy and safe Halloween.
Fruit & Veggie Challenge
Each year, Riverside students are encouraged to participate in a week long challenge to eat a healthy and colorful array of fruits and vegetables. The goal of this week is to promote healthy eating in a fun and positive way, both inside and outside of school.
We will be asking parents who pack lunches to include items that match the color of the day. For instance:
Monday - Red day (red peppers, cherry tomatoes, strawberries, watermelon, etc.)
Tuesday - Orange day (carrots, clementines, cantaloupe, etc.)
Wednesday - Green day (cucumbers, broccoli, sugar snap peas, honey dew melon, etc.)
Thursday – Yellow Day (corn, banana etc.)
Friday – Parent’s choice! (anything goes; make it fun and have them try something new!)
Parents will be in control of what their children try – a good way to develop healthy eating practices from the home and help keep children with allergies safe in school. The cafeteria will also be serving coordinating colored fruits and veggies so that those who buy school lunch can also participate, as appropriate.
Over the course of the same week, students are asked to complete a chart that indicates their fruit and veggie consumption. Participants in every grade who hand in their charts will be entered into a school-wide raffle and are eligible to win a prize.
The annual Fitness Challenge week typically falls around the time of the Riverside Run. Students are encouraged to complete a Fitness Form with their daily physical activity with a goal of getting 60 minutes per day.
In the past couple of years, Bill Bogardus has also led a quick "warm-up activity" each day during the morning announcements to get everyone in the fitness mood. At the end of the week, the Wellness Committee will randomly select 1-2 students per grade who has submitted a completed form to win a prize.