Research shows that the first few years of life play a critical role in children’s health and wellbeing. Whether you’re an expecting parent, new parent or someone who cares for young children, it can be overwhelming to figure out what it takes to raise healthy kids.
Let’s Move Pittsburgh, a program of Phipps Conservatory modeled after former first lady Michele Obama’s Let’s Move initiative, recently launched the 5-2-1-0 Speaker Series to serve as a resource for helping children to learn and grow. Participation in the series is free and open to the public. 5-2-1-0 is a movement, and a simple formula, to reinforce four healthy lifestyle choices: 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables, 2 hours or less of recreational screen time, 1 hour or more of physical activity, and 0 sugary drinks and more water ‒ every day!
There have been two presentations to date and the third installment of the popular series, called The Building Blocks of a Healthy Life, takes place on Thurs., March 9, from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. This fun, informative session offers facts and tips from professionals about topics like breastfeeding, movement and introducing foods for children in the early years.
“Our goal is to allow parents and caregivers the chance to learn directly from topic experts,” says Mary Kathryn Poole, program director of Let’s Move Pittsburgh. “We also build networking opportunities into the event so that participants can engage in dialogue with the speakers and their peers.”
Leading the presentations for the March installment are two health professionals, a dynamic health coach and renowned pediatrician.
Janine E. Jones, a registered dietitian and UPMC Health Plan health coach, will kick off the session with an interactive lesson and discussion about health in early childhood. Jones will draw on her extensive experience working with families as a diabetes educator and healthy lifestyle advocate.
Next up, Dr. Todd Wolynn, chief executive officer and President of Kids Plus Pediatrics, will share his recommendations for keeping health at the forefront of a child’s early years.
According to Poole, “Dr. Wolynn has a wealth of knowledge to share about healthy habits for kids. In addition to being a pediatrician and certified lactation consultant, he is also deeply committed to local initiatives related to play and early childhood development.”
Before and after the presentations, participants also will have the chance to speak with Let’s Move Pittsburgh Champion Schools and UPMC Health Plan health coaches. The goal of the Let’s Move Pittsburgh event is to provide caregivers with new connections, knowledge and ideas for how to grow a healthier generation of young children. The Speaker Series is made possible with support from UPMC Health Plan, the Hillman Foundation and The Heinz Endowments.
Interested in attending but need childcare? A free health education session is available for young children ages 2 – 8 while parents attend the presentations. For both the speaker series session and childcare, advance registration is required and space is limited. Click here to register today.