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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Margaret Hegge


health behavior in South Dakota children, health education, South Dakota elementary curricula, health promotion


Comprehensive school health education has been identified as an essential mechanism for providing children with knowledge and skills necessary for development of healthy lifestyles which may continue into adulthood. Approximately one-half of public, private, and governmental agency school districts within South Dakota have implemented Growing Healthy, a comprehensive school health education curriculum. This research evaluated the impact of Growing Healthy on the health promotion behaviors of fourth grade students in South Dakota. The self-report questionnaire "How Often Do You" (Stember, 1984) was utilized to assess frequency of selected behaviors in 116 fourth grade students enrolled in schools implementing Growing Healthy and 102 fourth grade students enrolled in schools not implementing Growing Healthy. Results indicated Growing Healthy students engaged in only two of thirty-six behaviors assessed with statistically significant increased frequencies. Mean frequencies of positive behaviors were higher for non- Growing Healthy students in 23 of the 36 behaviors. Female students reported higher frequencies than males in 33 of the 36 behaviors.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Health behavior in children -- South Dakota
Health education (Elementary) -- South Dakota -- Curricula
Health promotion -- South Dakota



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


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