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Barbara Storper

Ed. Notes- Barbara is no stranger to these pages. You might find it beneficial to learn more about her prior to reading what her creative mind has developed to engage young people during these turbulent times. Click here to get up close and personal with Barbara.

Every Friday on the FoodPlay Productions Facebook Page, ToBe Fit, Ace Food Detective, will answer children's burning questions about food, nutrition, and health. ToBe Fit is the inner child of a nutritionist, Barbara Storper, MS, RD, and as a character, also tours schools and communities throughout the country live and virtually in a one-person show called "ToBe Fit, the Juggling Nutrition Magician Show". Now, in light of Covid, FoodPlay has created several fun-filled resources and video kits ideal for online and distance learning, to help kids see through media messages and take charge of growing up healthy and fit. Check them out: https://foodplay.com/shop/

Here are some words from little ToBe Fit, Ace Food Detective for FoodPlay Fridays:

By Barbara Storper

Lots of people are hurting right now, wonder how I can help.

Sometimes when I’m sad or angry or when people let me down, I go to Mother Nature. She’s been around for a long time, and she seems to be very wise indeed. Like I think about how magical it is that we can plant a seed and it grows into a beautiful plant that we can eat to make us grow strong and healthy. Or I look out and see so many different types of trees, all unique in their own way, all making our landscape so rich and beautiful. And these trees, they keep growing and growing through all sorts of difficult times – through rainstorms and snowstorms and dry spells and even sometimes hurricanes.

I think about how a tree has to have really deep roots, so deep, that they can keep a huge tree standing up straight and tall. And, then it turns out, underground, where we can’t see, there is a whole community of roots reaching out, actually helping each other get the nutrients each tree needs, and providing the stability for each tree to grow to be the best they can be. Roots are kind of like what families can be for us kids. Yeah, our roots are like our families, families by birth or chosen. And I think about our ancestors – all the people that came before us, who worked really hard and shared their love so that we could be here today through thick and thin.

I also think about how strong these trees are, the ones that survive a long time. Not only do they have a huge network of roots underground, but trees with their branches, have to be both strong and be able to sway, like when a big wind comes. If they are not able to be flexible and move with the wind, they or their branches can easily break. So, they are both strong and flexible, and this is what makes them able to survive, to be resilient, and move through the changing times.

I see there’s a lot we have in common, us kids with plants and trees. They need nurturing soil, water, fresh air, and sunlight. And, according to the “experts,” plants grow best when there’s a lot of caring and a lot of love. What they need to grow is a lot like what we kids need to grow. We need nurturing soil – like a safe home. We need healthy food, water, fresh air, and sunlight. And we definitely do best when there is caring and a lot of love. And we all need to go toward the light!

But there’s one thing that’s very different between us and trees and plants. And, that is, we kids, can always get up and move towards the light. We can change our position, go outside on a sunny day, or look for good people who shine bright with their caring, sharing their light to help us along our way. Plants and trees don’t have that ability, they’re pretty much stuck where they are.

So, maybe this will help – if you’re feeling sad or lonely or angry or disappointed, try to go for a visit with mother nature – look closely at a tree and think about how long that tree has been there, through how many rainstorms, snowstorms or maybe even hurricanes. Or maybe you can plant a seed, water it, and watch it grow. Or, just maybe you can pretend to be that tree, or that seed, and always remember to go toward the light.

Sending out lots of love so that all kids everywhere have what they need to grow strong and healthy, let's do this! In Peas and Justice, Tobe Fit

ToBe Fit is also the "author" of "Janey Junkfood's Fresh Adventure!" - a fun-filled richly illustrated children's book that arms kids with the skills they need to get off the junk food track and make healthy eating, a fun-filled fresh adventure! To learn more, visit: https://foodplay.com

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About us

Kids Can Make a Difference is a program of iEARN (International Education and Resource Network), the world's largest non-profit global network. iEARN enables teachers and youth to use the Internet and other technologies to collaborate on projects that enhance learning and make a difference in the world.

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