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Wellness Committee Update

With the start of a New Year, we wanted to take this opportunity to share with you news from the Wellness Committee at IAMS. We are a new group formed this year whose mission is to foster and promote physical and mental health among our community of students, teachers, and families. We are advocates for innovative approaches to increase healthy lifestyles through education and programming specific to nutrition and physical activity.

We meet once a month and our next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, February 15 in the Escuelita room on the first floor at IAMS. Everyone is welcome to attend! Bring your own drink, we supply the treats.

Since our inception this past fall, we have accomplished many things and hope to grow our efforts so that our community can remain strong and vibrant. Some of our efforts are listed here:

1. With the generous volunteer efforts of parent, Isabel Mulcahey, we have implemented an indoor recess dance program. While completing her masters degree in dance from Columbia College, Isabel is providing our children with Zumba classes when it is not possible for them to go outdoors during recess. The classes provide music, movement, and the rhythmic activity that our kids need in order to go back to their classrooms ready to sit-down and learn.

2. We will be hosting another free IAMS ice skating afternoon at the Rink on Wrigley at the end of February. Come out with your children and enjoy the fresh air, hot chocolate and treats. Bring snow pants, hats, and waterproof mittens or gloves. Please contact the address below if your child needs extra outdoor winter gear. Date to be announced.

3. This spring, our IAMS campus will be greatly enhanced with new painted black-top markings to bring back games like four-square and hopscotch—we will also have supply bins with jump ropes, balls, and soccer goals so that recess is more active and inclusive! Look for an invitation to come out and paint!

4. IAMS will receive a sample week of Playworks, a program coming to CPS next fall. More details on Playworks can be found on their website: www.playworks.org. Come see this program in action during our trial week of May 9. Teachers, students, and administration will receive training in conflict resolution strategies, team building, and social games to insure that recess is safe, supportive, and active for kids of all ages.

Please send your child to school this winter with snow boots, snow pants, hats, and gloves so they are prepared to go outdoors for recess. Children who come prepared to play are more active and return to the classroom ready to sit-down, learn and listen.

Thank you for your support! Any questions, please contact Nancy Zwick at nancy@nancyzwickstudio.com

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