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Museum of Vision Provides Free Curriculum Guides in Honor of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! Campaign

08/22/2011   08:30:00 AM

Public Service Program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology Teaches Kids That a Healthy Body Means Healthy Eyes

SAN FRANCISCO - Over the past three decades, childhood obesity rates in America have tripled, and today, nearly one in three children in America are overweight or obese. Obesity affects a child's overall health. In fact, if this trend continues, one third of all children born in 2000 or later will suffer from diabetes at some point in their lives.

According to the National Eye Institute, between 40 to 45 percent of Americans diagnosed with diabetes have some stage of diabetic retinopathy, a leading cause of blindness in the United States. That is why the Museum of Vision, a public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, has teamed up with the Let's Move! Museums and Gardens campaign. As a part of this national effort, the Museum is offering FREE curriculum guides for parents and educators to teach young people about the connection between healthy eyes and a healthy body.

Launched in May 2011, Let's Move! Museums and Gardens is the museum component of First Lady Michelle Obama's national initiative dedicated to solving the challenge of childhood obesity within a generation. One of the objectives of the campaign is to ensure that every family has access to affordable education about being healthy. The Museum of Vision supports and encourages teaching children about living a healthy lifestyle. To that end, the Museum has composed a curriculum guide for parents and teachers to use, when teaching their children the importance of maintaining a healthy body. The curriculum guide, Healthy Eyes, Healthy Body, is FREE and can be downloaded at www.museumofvision.org/education.

The Healthy Eyes, Healthy Body curriculum is designed for multiple uses, including classrooms and home schools. While the concepts in this curriculum can be appreciated by children of all ages, it is targeted to students in the 6th, 7th and 8th grades. These children will be best able to grasp the concepts of life science, health and environment.

The first chapter of this curriculum, an introduction to the eye and the human visual system, will teach children about the parts of the eye and how they function together to allow them to see. The following two chapters focus on eating right and exercise. In these chapters, students will learn about the important vitamins and minerals in eye-healthy foods like strawberries, sunflower seeds and of course… carrots! Each chapter contains fun demonstrations and activities designed to help students understand these concepts with hands-on learning.

The Museum of Vision has partnered with the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus and the National Association of School Nurses in order to help distribute the guides.

The Museum's Healthy Eyes, Healthy Body curriculum is just part of the American Academy of Ophthalmology's mission to empower consumers with sight-saving, eye health information. As a part of their EyeSmart initiative, the Academy has created the internet's most trusted source for accurate, timely and relevant eye health information, www.geteyesmart.org.

At geteyesmart.org, visitors can learn about eye diseases, conditions, risk factors and treatment options. Informative videos and interactive tools will help educate consumers about how to take care of their eyes at every age and all of the site's content is reviewed by a team of ophthalmologists to ensure clinical accuracy. To learn more, visit geteyesmart.org.

About the American Academy of Ophthalmology
The American Academy of Ophthalmology is the world's largest association of eye physicians and surgeons—Eye M.D.s—with more than 30,000 members worldwide. Eye health care is provided by the three "O's" – ophthalmologists, optometrists, and opticians. It is the ophthalmologist, or Eye M.D., who can treat it all: eye diseases and injuries, and perform eye surgery. To find an Eye M.D. in your area, visit the Academy's Web site at
www.aao.org.

About the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology
Established in 1980, the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology (FAAO) has worked diligently for 30 years to raise financial support and implement programs that advance ophthalmic education and patient care. The programs created through the Academy Foundation's efforts ensure the best possible eye care for the public. More information can be found at:
www.faao.org

About the Museum of Vision
The Museum of Vision is an educational program of The Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology. It is the only institution in the United States whose sole purpose is to preserve the history of ophthalmology and celebrate its unique contributions to science and health. The Museum of Vision strives to inspire an appreciation of vision science, the ophthalmic professions and contributions made toward preventing blindness. More information about the Museum can be found at www.museumofvision.org

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