Seventh grade students learn life skills at youth health day

| May 17, 2019

Seventh grade students from River View, Ridgewood, and Coshocton learned life skills at the annual youth health day at Kids America on Thursday, May 16. Coshocton County EMS was one of the 12 organizations who had a station at the event and taught kids how to save a person’s life who might be choking.

COSHOCTON – Kids America was filled with seventh grade students from Coshocton, River View, and Ridgewood on Thursday, May 16 for the annual youth health day. Twelve organizations from the community set up stations with hands-on activities for students to participate in with a focus on health.

The day started at 10 a.m. with guest speaker, Frank Polen, retired River View teacher and principal at Warsaw Elementary for eight years. In his speech, he challenged the students to read for at least 20 minutes a day and to put down their phones. He reminded them that potential employers look at social media posts and whatever they put on their page is public.

“I want them to understand that their attitude and making good choices is something they can always take with them in any part of their life,” said Polen after the speech. “It’s something that can last beyond the textbooks and the ball games. Life’s all about choices and positive attitudes. There is nothing more that I would like than to see one of these kids make Coshocton County the place to be again.”

After Polen’s speech, the students broke up into groups. While some students ate lunch first, provided by Coshocton Regional Medical Clinic, others went to one of the 12 stations set up throughout Kids America.

The youth health day originally started as a teens girls health day at Lake Park Pavilion geared toward girls and women’s health. It was then opened to boys as well and focuses more on nutrition, physical activity, safety, and social media safety.

“We just want to get a good message out to them regarding health, social media safety, substance abuse prevention, nutrition, and adding in fun activities,” said Tammy Smith, director of nursing at Coshocton County Health Department and coordinator of the event. “This is all volunteer. All the agencies here volunteer their time and take time out of their schedule to be here. It’s the only way we can pull off stuff like this. We have a great community.”

One of the stations that was popular with students was the Ohio State University Extension Coshocton County’s activity. By pedaling a bicycle, the students used kinetic energy to make a smoothie out of their choice of ingredients.

The students then participated in another activity while Alonna Hoffman, OSU Extension, poured the drinks.

“It teaches them how many minutes it takes to burn off so many calories,” said Hoffman. “We want the kids to know that there are things that can still taste good that are healthy.”

Students had a variety of items to choose from to make their smoothie. They had the choice of vanilla yogurt, strawberries, mangos, peaches, blueberries, bananas, spinach, orange juice, and ice.

Coshocton County EMS was also at the event teaching the students basic first aid.

“We want to teach them basic first aid skills and things that could help somebody,” said Vaughn Steinmetz, paramedic and assistant chief. “The important thing is, so many people want to help other people, but they don’t have that basic know-how. We’re hoping to bring that to the forefront today.”

EMS taught the students how to stabilize an injury, stop bleeding, and save a person who might be choking.

First Step Family Violence Intervention Service was there talking to students about social media safety.

“We’re talking to them about social media safety, particularly sexting,” said Robin Snider of First Step. “I think students already know what it is, but just to reiterate and keep it fresh in their minds that it is illegal and they can get into trouble and it can affect you for the rest of your life.”

While most of the students agreed that getting out of the classroom was their favorite part of the day, Tarryn Morris from Ridgewood said, “We learned how to do a splint to someone’s arm,” she said about the EMS station. “I’m looking forward to the different interesting sessions we are doing today.”

The event was also funded by Coshocton County Family and Children First Council.


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Category: Education

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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