Yesterday we had the pleasure of spending the day in the beautiful sun while celebrating the accomplishments of our young athletes. Students have been working really hard since spring break to prepare for the track meet.
A colleague and I coached the 2000 m race. We began by running our Terry Fox run, which was something familiar to students where they could find success and gauge their performance based on their previous times. By the end of the month we were running nearly 5 km to prepare for a 2 km race. Students came everyday at either 7:30 in the morning or during their lunch break. Their commitment level to represent themselves and their school in a positive way at the track meet was amazing.
What was more amazing though was the fact that we were able to have limited number of people on the team, but yet had 20-30 students show up per day to run, just to increase their fitness levels. Many students, many being the most unexpected, came out to increase their fitness and endurance levels, while getting to hang out with their friends. This group of students was able to create a culture that valued fitness and taking care of their bodies, which ended up being contagious to many of their peers. This also shows how what we do in the classroom is extremely important, but the activities we take part in outside of class time with the kids are invaluable.
Amy and I found this to be extremely motivating and have planned to teach a fitness option together next year. We plan to divide the group into 7’s and 8/9’s where the 7’s will learn about the importance of nutrition when combined with fitness and basic anatomy, while the 8/9’s will learn about the importance of taking care of the body to prevent injury and if they do occur basic treatment methods and both groups coming together for the fitness component. Their final culminating project would have students prepare a fitness package including a fitness video, meal plan that suits the level of activity in the video and information on common injuries that are possible given the exercises in the video and ways to prevent/treat them. In addition, students will be given the opportunity to connect these concepts to careers (nutritionist, personal trainer, fitness class instructor, physiotherapist, etc.) and have the opportunity to meet with experts on the field either by taking a field trip to their place of work or having them in as a guest speaker.
Our hope is to continue to create a culture within the school where fitness is valued by students and all students recognize that they can increase their fitness level and do something great for themselves no matter how in or out of shape they currently are – and we are super duper excited about it!
Until next time,