Explore Takes 2nd Place in ‘Power Up’ Challenge

(May 8th–Jersey City) Explore Middle School 8th grade students placed 2nd in the “Power Up Your Body Challenge” and were awarded a $1500 prize for the school.

Cabot Creamery’s Power Up Your Body Challenge engaged students in grades 6-9 to design a campaign to educate their peers on the importance of building strong bones, brains, and habits.

Students from the 5 boroughs of New York, Westchester and Rockland counties plus Hudson, Bergen, Essex, Somerset, Morris, Middlesex, Hunterdon, and Passaic county were invited to enter a campaign.

Over 100 entries were chosen to showcase their project at the Liberty Science Center, including Explore, and were judged on persuasiveness, originality, and educational value.

Explore 8th graders created a campaign about healthy habits through their health and wellness experience in the classroom. Students participated in a 4-week long workout routine with Ms. Shannon Mattern and Ms. Norrey Benito.

“In order to determine the students’ fitness baseline, we implemented the middle school fitness test which included a mile run, pacer test, and flexibility assessment. Scores were recorded for Week 1 and Week 4. The students showed improvement physically, mentally, and academically. They were also encouraged to eat healthily and be conscious of the foods they ate which they learned from class, workshops, and research,” Ms. Benito explained.

8th graders Chanel Cao, Tara Pathak, Olivia Franco, Angelina Torres, Ashanti Crockett, Skye Warner, Samantha Rice and Daniela Correa presented at the Liberty Science Center on behalf of Explore.

“We did an experiment where for 4 weeks we exercised for 30 to 45 minutes every day and watched our diets. We documented all of progress. We created a website where we shared our journey so that other’s could see what we did and learn how they could lead a healthy lifestyle themselves,” Tara Pathak shared. “Originally when it came to presenting we were nervous but very excited because we had prepared for 4 weeks.”

“We were really looking forward to presenting. Whether we won or lost didn’t matter to us because we were so happy to be there. We couldn’t wait to show off what we had accomplished. I was super proud of the website because we put a lot of time into it. We knew it was organized and full of information people would really want,” Chanel Cao added.

“The judges were very engaged by our presentation. A few of them even participated in the push-up challenge we presented to them. It was cool that they were really enjoying what we did. It made us so happy to see that they understood all of our hard work,” Olivia Franco said.

The students recall holding hands as they waited for the judges to announce the winners. They felt they had truly done their best and wanted to see if it paid off. They were proud and overcome with excitement when they heard their name called for 2nd place.

“I hope the prize money goes towards activities that help students learn how to lead a healthy lifestyle. Hopefully, it can help expand the health program. Maybe next year even more kids will join the challenge,” Pathak concluded.

“I would like to commend the students who volunteered to participate in this challenge and were able to complete it. The motivation and character of these students provide insight into the young adults they are becoming and their future accomplishments. They were able to inspire others about the importance of one’s overall wellness and inform their peers of the benefits of ‘being healthy’ and how much it has impacted them,” Ms. Mattern proudly shared.

To visit the students’ Power Up Your Body Challenge website visit:
Power Up Your Body Challenge Website

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