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MA Children at Play is a childhood obesity prevention program which aims to improve the nutrition and physical activity policies and practices of child care settings.

The goals of the program are to:

  1. Provide child care facilities with an easy way to evaluate their nutrition and physical activity practices, and identify areas for improvement.
  2. Help Massachusetts facilities reach the state requirement for 60-minutes of active, structured play each day.
  3. Promote age-appropriate, active play in preschool children
  4. Promote healthy eating in preschool children
  5. Improve foods offered in child care settings
  6. Provide information and handouts that child care providers can give parents to help children live healthy at home.

MA Children at Play also aims specifically to help kids:

  1. Replace junk food with fruits and vegetables
  2. Increase physical activity
  3. Decrease consumption of sugary drinks
  4. Decrease recreational screen time
  5. Increase quantity and quality of sleep

As part of the MA Children at Play program, a Mentor works with child care providers to conduct a self-assessment of the facility, set goals, and create an action plan that works for each child care provider’s unique setting.

To help child care providers achieve their goals, MA Children at Play provides workshops, resources and structured activities to be used in child care settings.

The Massachusetts Children at Play program combines two well-known programs: Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care (NAP SACC) and I am Moving I am Learning (IMIL).

Child care providers and centers that use the MA Children at Play program provide information for parents, too. Parents can use the information to keep their kids eating better and moving more at home.

Read more about MA Children at Play.


This information is provided by the Department of Public Health.