Program focuses on students' health

February 16, 2023

Comanche Elementary School is participating in a program to help young children through dietary changes and physical activities.

The Eagle Adventure program was developed with funding from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program through a collaboration between the Chickasaw Nation Nutrition Services Get Fresh! program and SHINE Partners in Indian Country from the Oklahoma State University Department of Nutritional Sciences. Today, the multidisciplinary team has reorganized and continues their SNAP-Ed work together as Oklahoma Tribal Engagement Partners (OKTEP) an Oklahoma SNAP-Ed implementing agency.

Using an interdisciplinary approach, the Eagle Adventure aims to provide youth and their families with a vision of hope that diabetes can be prevented through dietary and physical activity changes.

Today, more than 6,000 children have participated in the Eagle Adventure.

Students in first and second grades are introduced to the program through the Eagle Adventure play, which embraces traditions of Native American storytelling.

The play is followed by four in-class lessons, designed to engage children in discussion about their own health and nutrition habits.

Students also participate in hands-on activities and food experiences. Children are encouraged to share the messages with their parents and family members through take-home activities, including Nestwork (health homework), simple recipes and fun physical activities.

An Eagle Adventure medal is awarded to each student at the conclusion of the program for their participation.

The Eagle Adventure was developed using the Eagle Books as a central theme.

Through this series of four books, wise animal characters are brought to life.

Mr. Eagle, Miss Rabbit and a clever trickster, Coyote, engage Rain That Dances and his young friends in the joy of being physically active, eating healthy foods and learning from their elders about traditional ways of being healthy.

The books were developed by the CDC Division of Diabetes Translation’s Native Diabetes Wellness Program, in collaboration with the Tribal Leaders Diabetes Committee and the Indian Health Service, in response to the burden of type 2 diabetes among Native Americans and the need for type 2 diabetes

prevention materials for children.