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Part of the SNAP-Ed Strategies & Interventions Toolkit.*

Culture of Wellness in Preschools: Nutrition Education and Physical Activity (COWP NE/PA) is a direct education and PSE change intervention designed to increase fruit and vegetable intake and physical activity levels in children and their parents, as well as to reduce their risk of obesity and chronic disease. In addition to providing nutrition education and physical activity in the classrooms, COWP works with Head Start Agencies and other preschool centers to identify and change school PSEs around nutrition and physical activity by working with preschool wellness teams to impact the health of the students and their families. COWP is also designed to improve the likelihood that persons eligible for SNAP will make healthy food choices within a limited budget and choose physically active lifestyles consistent with current Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the USDA food guidance.  

University of Colorado-Anschutz Colorado School of Public Health. Rocky Mountain Prevention Research Center.
Culture of Wellness in Preschools with Toolkit Strategy logo
Funding Source
Free Material
Cost ($)
SNAP-Ed Toolkit Classification
  • Validated
Evaluation Information

Outcome Evaluation Tools: 

  • SOPLAY Methods
    • (PDF, 36KB)
  • SOPLAY & Accelerometer results   
  • Plate Waste Protocol/Results  

Formative Evaluation Tools:  

  • Focus Group Protocols  
  • All- Day Retreat Agenda and Meeting Minutes   

Process Evaluation Tools:  

  • NE/PA Classroom Observation Tool 
  • Teacher Feedback Forms  

PSE Change Evaluation Tools:  

  • The Culture of Wellness in Preschools: Policy, System and Environment Change Process (COWP) Evidence-Based PSE Menu/Checklist

Additional Research Articles:

  • Farewell, C., Powers, J., Maiurro, E., Scarbro, S., Quinlan, J., Puma, J. (in press). Sustainability of Health-Promoting Best Practices in Early Childcare Settings. International Journal of Child Care and Education Policy. 
Evaluation Framework Indicators
SNAP-Ed Connection Comments

*SNAP-Ed Strategies & Interventions: An Obesity Prevention Toolkit for States is a compilation of interventions. The toolkit was developed by USDA's Food and Nutrition Service, The Association of SNAP-Ed Nutrition Education Administrators (ASNNA), the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Center for Training and Research Translation (Center TRT), and the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research (NCCOR), a partnership between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institutes for Health (NIH), the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the USDA. It is designed and updated to help state SNAP-Ed administrative and implementing agencies identify evidence-based obesity prevention programs and policy, systems, and environmental (PSE) strategies and interventions to include in their SNAP-Ed plans.

Review date
Reviewer Initials