DENVER, Colo. (CBS4) – A Denver School is this month’s Fit 4 Colorado School Challenge Winner. CBS4’s Jennifer Zeppelin made the announcement at Ellis Elementary School.

Staff and students at Ellis Elementary school were awarded a $1,000 check as part of the Fit 4 Colorado School Challenge. CBS4 and The Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children picked the Denver school because of all the healthy changes they’ve made.

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— 85 percent of students get 45-minutes of gym class twice a week.

— The girls can participate on the “Girls on the Run” running club.

— They sponsor a jump rope and dance club, which participates in the annual DPS jump rope competition.

— There are soccer workshops in the spring

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“We work so hard at Ellis to not only improve physical fitness, but attitude, teammanship, getting along , really working on the form of the body which is really hard for kids,” said P.E. teacher, Teri Diaz.

Ellis is also a “Scratch Cooking Sight” where the meals are prepared from scratch every day. Fresh fruit snacks are provided to students every day. And there is a salad bar in the lunch room every day. Students learn where their food comes from through the Community Garden.

“As you get older, I think, kids lose the umph to get off the couch and get off the computer and to really use their body as an instrument. And to really try to increase their heart rate so they’ll be healthier, they’ll be smarter, they’ll be more fit, and their self-confidence will be more heightened, Diaz told CBS4.

Ellis Elementary is the School Challenge winner for March, but CBS4 and The Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children pick a different winner every month during the school year. You can find out how to nominate your elementary school by going to the Fit 4 Colorado section of

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— Written for the Web by CBS4 Special Projects Producer Libby Smith