The Algorithm

July 13, 2015

Software Solution for Childhood Obesity

The World Health Organization reports that there are 42 million children below the age of 5 that are considered obese. Obese children are more likely to develop health problems such as diabetes, anxiety, cancer. What can be done?

Fitness performance measurement is now a reality of our culture. With widely available options like FitBit and Apple Health, we now have convenient, technology-based resources that help us to journal our healthy activities. Do these systems work for kids? If they could, would they get the support of teachers and parents?

Founder of the non-profit, 60 Minute Kids Club, Matt Young, tells us more at a recent Ted Talk.

The 60 Minute Kids Club offers a fitness journalling platform specifically made for kids. It is now being used around the world, most notably in over 400 schools across Canada. The kid-friendly, mobile-ready platform allows kids to easily track their Screen Time, Hydration, Nutrition, Sleep, Physical Activity, and Mental Health. Not only does it support healthy habits, it helps children make the connection between healthy behavior and their overall well-being. This application has made a profound impact on its young users since it’s launch, 2 school years ago.

Pencilneck Software provided strategy and implementation for the digital component of this program. An extensive User Experience (UX) Design Study resulted in a kid-friendly interface, one that teachers could support. To summarize the technologies used, we built a highly-scalable Mongo database solution, reporting tools, a BootStrap-responsive design back end, and a mobile-responsive front-end interface. The result is that the 60 Minute Kids Club Application allows educators to ask the question, ‘how do our kids score?’

In the next platform upgrade, the 60 Minute Kids Club will support measurement of Fundamental Movement Skills. These are skills that can be measured and taught, as a part of a well-rounded childhood education curriculum. This Physical Education grading system, will provide educators yet another physical literacy resource and will encourage healthy habits for kids.

To find out more about the 60 Minute Kids Club, visit
To find out more about Fundamental Movement Skills, visit
See the Tedx: