Making a difference: Teachers honored

June 2013 Posted in School
Former Duck and NFL player Anthony Newman presented Jenny Matzka and Audrey Delgado with their awards.

Former Duck and NFL player Anthony Newman presented Jenny Matzka and Audrey Delgado with their awards.

By Kristine Thomas

Robert Frost Elementary School fifth-grade teachers Audrey Delgado and Jenny Matzka thought they were attending an early morning staff meeting on May 15.

They were surprised to learn they were named Oregon Advisors of the Year for Fuel Up to Play 60. They were chosen from 240 advisors at 600 Oregon schools.

Fuel Up to Play 60 is helping develop healthy students by encouraging students to enjoy nutrient-rich foods and to be active for 60 minutes a day.

Former NFL and Oregon Duck player Anthony Newman presented Matzka and Delgado with their awards, which included Nike running shoes.

Robert Frost Principal Kirstin Jorgenson nominated Matzka and Delgado for the award because they have made the program a part of the school’s culture. She said the pair started a Run/Walk Club with a half-mile path around the campus for students to use during recess. Teachers also take their students to the path for a break between studies. The students receive a ticket for each lap they complete.

To increase healthy eating, they started the Color of the Month lunch program. For example, in February the color was red and students were encouraged to eat red foods.

Jorgensen said she has seen many positive changes in students who are becoming more active and eating healthier.

Newman congratulated Delgado and Matzka for their dedication to the program. He called teachers at Robert Frost the real role models and heroes in students’ lives. “This is not just about helping kids understand eating healthy and exercise is about today or tomorrow but it’s a lifetime situation,” Newman said.

Delgado and Matzka said the program wouldn’t have been possible without the support they received from their fellow teachers and staff.

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