"It's Sparty Time!" announces 9-year-old host Sailor, as popular Michigan State University mascot Sparty leads a group of kids through jumping jacks.
“The MSU Alumni Association and the Sparty Mascot Program are very excited to partner with WKAR on this important project,” said Clint Stevens, MSU Sparty mascot program director. “The chance for Sparty to go beyond the sideline and engage the public about promoting health and wellness was a perfect fit.”
Thanks to this “perfect fit,” WKAR Family will continue to produce more Sparty Time! videos to further encourage and teach children the importance of physical fitness.
“Nobody works harder or has more fun than Sparty,” said Susi Elkins, WKAR director of broadcasting and general manager. “We thought he’d be a great partner for kids who want to demonstrate the importance of physical fitness and how you can build good habits even at a young age.”
Episodes during the initial launch of Sparty Time!, such as Sparty Time! Exercise Fun with Kids, featured a variety of fun exercises. In addition, Yoga Zen-Time shared how children can gain self-regulation and stress-reduction skills as well as strength and flexibility by practicing yoga.
"I'm hopeful children will see the spots and be motivated to move," said Karin Pfeiffer, MSU Department of Kinesiology associate professor. “Evidence shows that physical activity has positive effects on concentration, memory, and behavior in school.”
The second round of Sparty Time! videos include Get Active with Sparty Time!, which teaches kids how aerobics, strength training, and motor skills are all important physical activities to grow up healthy and strong, and – of course – to have fun!
"The collaboration on Sparty Time! has been a wonderful way to expand the reach of our efforts to promote physical activity among young people in our community," said Alan Smith, MSU Department of Kinesiology chair and professor. “It is critical to become habitually active during childhood, and Sparty Time! offers positive encouragement and information that can support this goal."
Sparty Time! and other WKAR Family videos can be seen at various times on WKAR TV between shows on WKAR-HD (23.1) and WKAR PBS Kids (23.4), and any time on the WKAR App on streaming devices and at video.wkar.org.