HNE Issues New Installment of Children’s Book Series

SPRINGFIELD — Health New England has just published Rusty Sprout’s Nutrition Project, the fifth book in the HNE Whiz Kidz series. So far, each of the books in the series has been well-received, earning national awards and recognition.

The company created the series to fill a void in health-education information for elementary-school children. According to Lynn Ostrowski, HNE’s director of Brand and Community Relations, “we began to research what materials were out there to help kids between the ages of 5 and 12 deal with chronic health problems and discovered that little, if anything, was available. So we developed our own.

“Although we didn’t plan it that way,” she added, “Rusty’s timing is perfect.” She was referring to First Lady Michelle Obama’s impending launch of a national campaign against childhood obesity. A previous HNE Whiz Kidz book, Seymour’s Weight Loss Challenge, addressed this issue head-on. Now, in Rusty Sprout’s Nutrition Project, Rusty, an average elementary-school boy, learns about the importance of healthy eating.

Each Whiz Kidz book addresses a specific health topic. Other previous titles include How ACE Became an Asthma Control Expert, Danny Dice, Diabetes Insulin Control Expert, and Sammie Sportz.

All of the books have been reviewed by panels of physicians, topic experts, as well as a group of junior editors, children between the ages of 5 and 12. “Our goal is to provide important health information in a way that engages children and their parents,” Ostrowski said. “The feedback from families is telling us we are on the right track.”

Topics scheduled for future Whiz Kidz books include self-esteem and stranger danger. For more information on the Whiz Kidz, visit www.hnewhizkidz.com.

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