Right Here - Right Now: Point-of-Decision Prompts

Point-of-decision prompts are signs that are placed in areas around the school where everyone can make choices regarding healthy behaviors.  This approach has been shown to be an effective strategy for increasing physical activity behavior in communities.  Prompts encouraging physical activity should be placed near exits or areas where people pass on a regular basis.  Prompts encouraging healthy food choices should be placed at cafeteria entrances, on the food line or near vending areas.  Change the location of the signs regularly. Signs that remain in the same location are often ignored or not seen by everyone.  Rotating the signs to new locations once a month will make them visible to a larger number of people. 

For more information, check out this President’s Council Research Digest

To expand on this idea, try placing signs around school with some of these prompts:

In hallways:

  • Stop! Try doing 10 toe raises and 10 jumping jacks before you move to class!
  • Got a minute? Take a minute to run in place!
  • On your way to class? Raise those knees up while you walk!
  • On your way to class? Do some lunges on the way!
  • Carrying books? Raise them over your head a few times to work those arms!

Near exit doors:

  • Leaving School? Don’t forget to get your 60 minutes of activity today!
  • Recess? Find some friends and play tag or have a relay race!
  • Going Out? Do some leg lunges on your way home!

In Classrooms:

  • Come on in – and do a few toe touches before you sit down!
  • Get busy and get active: Do ten jumping jacks before you sit down.
  • Sharpening a pencil? March in place while you do it!

Brainstorm more ideas!  

Another Type of Prompt: Make an Awareness Bulletin Board

Help your team start to change the culture of the school by creating, with the permission of the administration, a “healthy mind-healthy body” bulletin board, emphasizing Fuel Up to Play 60 and the importance of nutrition and physical activity.  An excellent location for a bulletin board is near the front entry of the school, where parents are able to see upcoming activities and points of emphasis related to the program.  Not only should bulletin boards be changed on a regular basis, but they should also be interactive when possible.