HEALTH & FITNESS
To combat the rise in mental health disorders, and preventable health issues like youth diabetes, ASAS focuses on three aspects of health: social-emotional learning (SEL), exercise, and nutritional education. We also understand that kids, like adults, need a break from schoolwork and/or stress in their lives. We incorporate mindfulness activities and free play time to just let kids be kids.
ASAS adapted our curriculum to address the social-emotional needs of our students. Research clearly demonstrates the significant role social-emotional learning (SEL) has in promoting the healthy development and academic achievement of all students.
Devereux Student Strengths Assessment (DESSA)
ASAS uses The Devereux Student Strengths Assessment (DESSA) tool, a social and emotional assessment, to identify kids who are “in-need” of additional one-on-one counseling supports or alternative resources. ASAS is committed to providing individualized social-emotional learning (SEL) instruction and consistently reinforcing positive behaviors. Staff utilizes the DESSA toolkit quarterly to individually assess students behaviors related to resilience, social-emotional competence, and school success. Utilizing the toolkit, staff can access a vault of resources and lesson plans online to best support our students in their areas of weakness and help to encourage their areas of strength. With this information, ASAS is able to individually grow and develop our students social emotional skills and create growth as a whole which will promote more positive interactions during programming and also during the school day, thus expanding our impact.
ASAS recognizes that our students can achieve their personal best in school and in life when they are equipped with the tools to lead healthy, active lifestyles. “More people are developing type 1 and type 2 diabetes during youth, and racial and ethnic minorities continue to develop type 2 diabetes at higher rates. By addressing diabetes, many other related health problems can be prevented or delayed.” (CDC, National Diabetes Statistics Report, 2020).
ASAS uses sports activities to get kids physically active, and to connect kids to lessons on leadership, teamwork, resilience, discipline, and gender equality. Also, ASAS partners with community organizations to educate students on how to read nutritional labels, how to prepare healthy food, and how to grow an urban garden.