Creating Healthy Eating & active Environments Tool

The CHEERS tool provides early learning and care centres an assessment followed immediately by a personalized report. 

What is the CHEERS Tool?

The development of the tool began in 2009 and gives you information that helps you reflect on the nutrition and physical activity environments in your early childhood education and care setting to support the healthy development of your preschoolers.


What Do I Get Out of Completing the CHEERS Centre-Assessment Tool?

When you have completed the CHEERS centre assessment tool, you will be provided with a personalized report that gives you one area where your centre is doing well (What is Going Well) and one opportunity for change (What to Work On) for each of the four areas: foods served; healthy eating environment; healthy eating program planning; and physically active environment.

This report provides evidence-based best practice recommendations, information on the relationship between the recommendation and child health, and direct links to resources for more information.

The centre-assessment tool is a fast and easy way to screen the eating and activity environment in your early learning and care centre.

Why is it important to assess your healthy eating and activity environment?

Eating and physical activity habits developed in early childhood profoundly influence dietary and movement behaviours that span a lifetime. Parental influences in this critical period are significant. However, with children spending increased time in early learning and child care environments, educators play a powerful role in shaping healthy eating and physical activity habits of young Canadians.

The CHEERS tool is specifically developed for the Canadian population to provide early learning and child care licensed facility-based programs with the ability to identify possible gaps in knowledge or practice and to facilitate the ability of these programs to strengthen positive eating and activity environments.

What is the role of the early childhood educator in healthy eating?

It is important to serve healthy food while young children are developing eating habits for a lifetime. Watch this video to see what else is included in nutrition that supports children's health.


Four areas that the tool assesses

Foods Served
Healthy Eating Environment
Healthy Eating Program Planning
Physically Active Environment

Curious About How You Can Get Involved?

We offer a certificate to complete our 12-week well-being professional development course. Educators will also have opportunities to connect and share their experiences virtually with other educators across Alberta.