Healthy Learning Paths began in 2005 with a family practice physician who wanted to stop the cycle of preventable diseases that were showing up in her young patients. The adverse health effects of childhood obesity, Type 2 diabetes, too little physical activity, depression and anxiety were skyrocketing. That is when Healthy Learning Paths started to go into schools and communities teaching kids how to be healthier by using interactive tools like "health labs" to make the experience fun and engaging. HLP has grown slowly but steadily, and its reach has impacted thousands of children and families in the Front Range.
Current Programs and Activities: For the 2019-2020 school year, HLP has operated in 104 classrooms, covering 3,000+ children, primarily low income ECE and elementary, but also middle and high schools in across the Front Range, teaching curriculum for physical fitness, nutrition, social emotional health, sleep time, screen time, and sex education.
Evidence-based and Interactive: Two things are built into the DNA of Healthy Learning Paths: That our programs are evidence-based and that they include an interactive element. Evidence-based: Our programs have been designed by healthcare professionals and are based on science. We include teacher and parent pre- and post-evaluations so we know what works and where we need to improve. Interaction: Kids do not learn best by hearing a lecture alone. They learn best when offered information and then are allowed to experience the learning in an interactive, hands-on way. Therefore, all of our courses include a "health lab" aspect.
Train-the-Trainer = Sustainable: Our train-the-trainer model is what makes our programs sustainable. Our instructors co-teach with the classroom teacher during every lesson. Over the course of the lessons our health instructors move more into the observation role so that the classroom teacher can fully teach the lessons by the end of the year. We provide teachers with the curriculum and materials they need to be successful in continuing or programs long after the Healthy Learning Paths instructor has left. We want teachers to feel confident in utilizing these materials so they can continue changing the health of kids.