This is my 6th year teaching at Tuscan School. It is my 16th year of teaching overall. I can honestly say that it was one of my favorite days ever. Tuscan has always been a very active and physical school. The students have Phys Ed twice a week and recess everyday. Teachers give “brain breaks”, which are moments of movement throughout the day to keep the students stimulated, focused and on task. We do not having school buses at our school, as it is a neighborhood school so this year, a “walking school bus” was launched. http://www.walkingschoolbus.org/ (A walking school bus is a group of children walking to school with one or more adults).
This week, we found out that our school was chosen to be photographed for The Let’s Move Active Schools Campaign. It was quite exciting to be chosen. Our town is known for it’s diversity and perhaps that is one of the reasons. There are six elementary schools in our district and atmosphere and positive energy is apparent at all of them. I know that they also looked at the facade of the school when choosing where to do the photos. Tuscan School is nearly 100 years old and the Tudor style of the school adds to its charm. I have no idea why Tuscan was chosen, I just know that it was exciting for us!
Let’s Move! Active Schools is a comprehensive program that empowers school champions – P.E. teachers, classroom teachers, principals, administrators, and parents – to create active environments that enable all students to get moving and reach their full potential. http://www.letsmove.gov/active-schools Started by First Lady, Michelle Obama the Let’s Move! Active Schools program began to help schools across the country make quality physical activity a part of every kid’s day. After reading more about the program, I learned that, “It is an unprecedented effort to bring physical education back to America’s schools. The problem is severe — we are raising the most sedentary generation in history. Only six states require P.E. in all grades, and only one in three kids is physically active on a daily basis”.
Early this morning, photographers showed up to join the Walking School Buses and take pictures along the routes. They spent the entire day at the school, going in and out of classrooms, the gymnasium, the cafeteria and on the playground. There is always a lot of energy at Tuscan School, but today, the school spirit was even more evident! My class was one of the classrooms that was visited and as they danced to The Razzama Tazzama song, by Peter and Ellen Allard the kids could barely contain their excitement. One of the girls in my class told me she felt like she was a model in a photo shoot!! A fifth grade class was doing Zumba. Second graders were chanting their word wall words with body movement. All of these activities are going on during most days at school, but today the excitement brought it to a different level.
My favorite part of the day was when we did a “Project ACES” on the playground. (Project ACES is usually celebrated in May, to kick off National Fitness Month – I wrote about in another blog, that coincidentally happened to be on another fun day, my birthday, https://aprojectforkindness.wordpress.com/tag/project-aces/ ). The whole school was out on the playground dancing and exercising together. Parents and teachers were joining in as photographers were weaving in and out of the groups of children snapping photos.
At the end of the day, our Physical Education teacher was beaming as she talked about the positive energy that was flowing through the school. Our principal was radiant and said that she felt like she was “in the clouds” as she told us about the praises and compliments the photographers were giving her about the students of Tuscan School. It is just another reason that help to validate why I love my job so much. I have written before how fortunate I am to be able to wake up everyday and go somewhere that I love, with families, coworkers and students who make Tuscan, not just a school, but a community. Today, just confirmed this for me even more.