5-2-1-0 in SCHOOLS

By Lauren Kollauf on Thursday, May 7, 2020

15 Iowa schools awarded $500 mini grants

The Iowa Department of Education awarded 15 mini grants (up to $500) with Iowa Childhood Obesity State Funds to schools that attended the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count! Summit last fall.


Schools were encouraged to use the funds for items or activities that align with the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count! initiative. In order to be eligible to apply for the sub-grant, schools were required to sign-up as a 5-2-1-0 Registered Site

Some schools were able to purchase materials and complete projects earlier this spring and others are looking forward to implementing their 5-2-1-0 efforts this fall.

Here is how the schools spent their funds:

Andrew Community School

Andrew Community School used the grant to:

  • Create a "Take Home P.E. Tote": A student who shows leadership during P.E. class will get to take the tote (full of small P.E. equipment and a journal) home for a week and then share how their family participated in physical activity together using the tote.
  • Purchase a variety of participation prizes to incentivize greater middle school student involvement in P.E. class.
  • Purchase 24 ball chairs for their new P.E. and health classroom.
  • Purchase bean bags for use during P.E. period.
Dallas Center Elementary School (Dallas Center-Grimes CSD)

Dallas Center Elementary used the funds towards purchasing sensory decals for their K-2 hallway to support students' physical, social and emotional learning.

Garner-Hayfield-Ventura Elementary School

Garner-Hayfield-Ventura used the grant to host a first-ever Family Fit Night at their elementary school for K-6 students and their families. The event featured four fitness stations including yoga and a Pound workout. A healthy snack and fruit-infused water was also provided after families completed the fitness stations.


Grinnell-Newburg Community School District

Both Bailey Park Elementary and Davis Elementary in Grinnell were recipients of the sub-grant. Both elementary schools participated in monthly taste tests while school was in session that introduced them to new fruits and vegetables, including spinach, pears, bell peppers and clementines. Lessons on each new food were provided by a local dietitian. Both schools also used funds to purchase additional physical activity equipment to keep kids active throughout the day. 


Independence Community School District

Independence Community School District used their grant to support their monthly staff wellness challenges. Staff members who complete their challenges are entered to win prizes.

RELATED: 5-2-1-0 resources for schools and teachers

Pineview Elementary School (Iowa Falls-Alden Community School District)

Pineview Elementary used their funds to purchase blenderless smoothie ingredients and bananas to serve as healthy snacks for Pre-K through first grade students. The school also purchased an assortment of non-food rewards, such as water bottles, pencils, notepads and bracelets. 


Hoover Elementary School (Mason City Community School District)

Hoover Elementary used their grant to fund a presentation and materials about oral health and the importance of drinking water for their 2nd grade students. Students ate apples and received an electric toothbrush, toothpaste and refillable water bottle. Parents also received follow-up information about oral health and 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count!

mason city

Lincoln Elementary School (Osage Community School District)

To support their addition of not using food-based rewards to their District Wellness Policy, Lincoln Elementary School used the funds to purchase non-food based rewards for Pre-K through 5th grade students including temporary tattoos, stickers, pencils, stamps and zero sugar drink mixes.

Riceville Community School District

Both the elementary and middle school in Riceville were recipients of the sub-grant:

  • Kindergarten and 1st grade students received a presentation on oral health and the importance of eating fruits and vegetables and drinking water. Those students also received 5-A-Day Fruit and Veggie Bands to help them remember to eat healthy.
  • An indoor smart garden was purchased for the 5th grade classroom with the goal being to grow produce that could be used in taste testing activities or served in the lunchroom.
  • At the middle school, funds were used to purchase pedometers for the 7th and 8th grade students to use during P.E. class.


Sacred Heart Catholic School

Sacred Heart Catholic School in Boone hosted a Family Fun Night featuring healthy activities and food. Students and families could participate in roller skating, Zumba, Tai Chi or other games. A blender bike from 4-H Extension was also at the event. 

St. Cecilia Elementary School

St. Cecilia Elementary School in Ames used the grant to help fund the design and purchase of sensory decals to create a sensory motor pathway in one of the school's hallways. Students can use the pathway during indoor recess time or teachers can utilize it for brain breaks.

RESOURCE: 5-2-1-0 printables and coloring sheets

South Middle School

South Middle School, part of the Waukee Community School District, previously had limited access to age-appropriate equipment for their post-lunch "movement break" time. They used the grant funds to purchase a variety of balls, frisbees and disc golf sets for students to use.

West Liberty Early Learning Center

West Liberty Early Learning Center, part of the West Liberty Community School District, invested in some small kitchen equipment to assist with taste testing activities. The first recipe that students tried was a white bean dip with veggies, from the Spend Smart. Eat Smart. app from ISU Extension.