• Smart Snacks:

    Whole grain-rich product; OR have fruit, vegetable, dairy product, or protein food as first ingredient; OR be a combination food that contains at least ¼ cup of fruit and/or vegetable; AND the food must meet the nutrient standards for calories, sodium, sugar, and fats as depicted below: 


    Calories: 200 carlories or less

    Sodium: 200 mg or less

    Total Fat: 35% of calories or less

    Saturated Fat: Less than 10% of calories

    Trans Fat: 0g

    Sugar: 35% by weight or less



    Calories: 350 calories or less

    Sodium: 480 mg or less

    Total Fat: 35% of calories or less

    Saturated Less than 10% of calories

    Trans Fat: 0g

    Sugar: 35% by weight or less


    A list of foods and beverages which meet the smart snacks nutrition standards and a smart snack calculator can be found on the Healthier Generation website. 


    Alternatives to food celebrations, food fundraisers, school celebrations:

    • Plan special party games and activities
    • Provide game supplies, pencils, erasers, stickers and other small school supplies instead of food
    • Create a healthy party idea book. Ask school staff and parents to send in healthy recipes and ideas for activities, games and crafts. Compile these ideas into a book that staff and parents can use
    • Give children extra recess time instead of a class party. For birthdays, let the birthday child choose and lead an active game for everyone
    • Provide special time with the principal or another adult, such as taking a walk around the school at recess
    • Instead of food, ask parents to purchase a book for the classroom or school library in the birthday child’s name. Read it to the class or invite the child’s parents to come in and read it to the class
    • Instead of a party, organize a special community service project, e.g., invite senior citizens in for lunch, make an item for a service organization. Involve parents in planning the project and providing needed materials
    • Create a “Celebrate Me” book. Have classmates write stories or poems and draw pictures to describe what is special about the birthday child
    • Create a special birthday event. The birthday child wears a sash and crown, sits in a special chair and visits the principal’s office for a special birthday surprise, such as a pencil, sticker or birthday card
    • The birthday child is the teacher’s assistant for the day, and gets to do special tasks like make deliveries to office, lead the line, start an activity or choose a game or story


    Alternatives to food rewards:

    • Elementary School Students
      • Make deliveries to office
      • Be a helper in another classroom
      • Read morning announcements
      • Sit with friends
      • Have lunch or breakfast in the classroom
      • Have a private lunch in the classroom with a friend
      • Play a favorite game or do puzzles
      • Extra recess time
      • Free time at the end of class
      • Dance to music in the classroom
      • Walk with the principal or teacher
      • Fun physical activity break
      • Trip to treasure box filled with nonfood items, e.g., stickers, pencils, erasers, bookmarks, school supplies
      • Teacher or volunteer reads special book to class
      • Certificate, trophy, ribbon, plaque
      • Teacher performs special skill, e.g., singing, guitar playing
      • Listen to music or a book on audiotape
      • Read outdoors or have class outdoors
      • Extra art, music or reading time
      • Access to items that can only be used on special occasions, e.g., special art supplies, toys
      • Commendation certificate or letter sent home to parents
      • Show-and-tell
      • Earn points or play money for privileges or nonfood items
    • Middle School Students
      • Sit with friends
      • Choose partners for activities
      • Listen to music while working at desk
      • Brainteaser puzzles, group activities and games
      • Earn points or play money for privileges or nonfood items
      • Computer time
      • Free choice time or chat break at end of class
      • Assemblies
      • Field trips
      • Eat lunch outside or have class outside


    Alternatives to removing/withholding recess:

    • Alternative Disciplinary Measures
      • Write an apology letter to the person who has been wronged
      • Use it as an opportunity to discuss the importance of seeking and giving forgiveness
      • Miss a class trip or school event if he/she cannot behave properly (loss of a privilege)
      • Do community service
      • Write a letter to parents/guardians explaining why behavior is inappropriate or disruptive and stating what student will try to do to change behavior
      • Take away privilege of choice for class or individual activity when choice is built into activity
      • Do make up work during free choice time
      • Have student work with teacher to develop a plan for behavior change tied to incremental privileges
      • Develop a behavior chart with students that identifies a target behavior and agreed upon reinforcements and rewards for chronic behavior issue


    Staff as role models:

    • Encourage the consumption of water
    • Walk with students during recess/afterschool
    • Providing physical activity opportunities during lunch or during study halls
    • Setting up walking programs with competition of miles log with the use of punch cards and visual charts of progress
    • Have positive health announcements as a part of the morning announcements
    • Have physical activity breaks during class time or transitions
    • Having healthy options in school stores and concession stands
    • Making healthy food and choices themselves and being physical active