Kids at Auntie Mary Nicoli Elementary in Aniak are getting ready to play. So are kids at elementary schools in Craig, Glennallen, Ketchikan, Kiana, Manokotak, Nightmute and White Mountain.
Around the state, about 80 elementary schools and groups have signed up to help children complete a half hour of organized physical activity — all at the same time in communities across the state. They will be participating in the second PLAAY Day, scheduled for Thursday morning, Feb. 22, 2018. PLAAY stands for Positive Leadership for Active Alaska Youth. Our partner, the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame, is running PLAAY Day to help Alaska children get active for good health.
It’s not too late for schools to sign up to participate. PLAAY organizers are hoping for at least 150 participating schools, so thousands of children across the state have the opportunity to be physically active on PLAAY Day.
“The goal behind PLAAY Day is to galvanize communities to encourage children to be physically active,” said Harlow Robinson, executive director of the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame. “A shared physical activity — especially on the grand scale of our state — has the potential to create enthusiasm around the cause.”
At 10 a.m. that morning, children will participate in a half hour of physical activity in school gyms, classrooms, recreation centers, common spaces or even outside. Students from the University of Alaska Anchorage Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation along with Anchorage-based youth will lead the children in an organized and synchronized fun session of activity. Children will be able to participate at their appropriate levels and physical abilities. Physical activities included during PLAAY Day will be able to be modified and adapted to include students of all abilities, Robinson said.
The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC) and GCI will link all of these schools and groups through a free, live videoconferencing session. Schools and organizations can participate in different ways, from toll free dialing into a conference with video playing at their location to interactive video teleconference participation.
Schools can sign up now for PLAAY DAY and will receive more information about the event as the date gets closer. Interested schools and groups can register as an entire school, a classroom, a home school, or an organization.
Along with organizing PLAAY Day, the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame will run the PLAAY Summit on Feb. 23 and 24, 2018, in Anchorage at ANTHC. The Summit will feature experts from around the state who will help teachers, parents, nurses, coaches, administrators and other leaders address many areas of youth and adolescent health, including psychological, social and emotional development. The PLAAY Summit also will focus on physical activity as a way to improve health.
Partners of the PLAAY Day and PLAAY Summit include Healthy Futures, ANTHC, GCI, the Alaska Center for Pediatrics, Alaska Airlines, Children’s Hospital at Providence, the Anchorage School District, Bristol Bay Native Corporation, Play Every Day, the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, University of Alaska Anchorage, Vidyo, The Alaska Club, Anchorage Running Club, LaTouche Pediatrics, Alaska Pediatric Therapy, Bear Tooth, Kaladi Brothers, and others.
To learn more about PLAAY Day or the PLAAY Summit, contact Wallace Wilson at firstname.lastname@example.org or Harlow Robinson at email@example.com.