· Contributors · Organizations ·
The impact of distance education on physical and mental health among 4th graders during the COVID-19 pandemic.
SessionSD2 - System Development
DescriptionThe COVID-19 pandemic introduced additional concerns for childhood obesity, cardiometabolic disorders, and mental health among children from lower socioeconomic status (SES) households. This study aimed to understand how distance education during the COVID-19 pandemic impacted the healthy habits, mental health, and metabolic health of 4th graders in an under-resourced district. 4th graders from 3 elementary schools answered questions about their habits related to diet, physical activity, sleep, and hydration during the pandemic (distance education). Students’ height, weight, waist, and hip measurements were recorded to assess metabolic health. The 4th-grade sample (n = 40) reported an overall more productive learning environment and healthier lifestyle while in school compared to learning at home. Metabolic and mental health screening results suggest that schools and communities should address mental and physical health issues that may have been triggered or exacerbated by distance learning during the pandemic.