It is that time of year when students all over the country will participate in the American Heart Association Jump For Heart event. This event is an opportunity for schools to not only conduct fundraising but bring awareness to heart disease and promote physical activity for students of all ages. This year, the learners of Victory Place @ Coppell (VP@C) decided to use Jump For Heart to not only promote health and wellness, but to serve their neighbors at Denton Creek Elementary (DCE).
The VP@C learners are involved in an accelerated learning environment which means they could be entering the post-high school sooner than their peers at a traditional campus. With that in mind, it is imperative for these learners to not only complete their academic requirements but also develop important life skills such service, cooperation and being a mentor to others.
The VP@C learners and staff literally “jumped” at the opportunity to do so on Friday, February 24th. Denton Creek Elementary, which is a 5 minute walk from the VP@C campus, was having their “Jump For Heart” event all day on the 24th. The PE staff at DCE welcomed the chance for VP@C learners to come and jump with the little Trailblazers. Not only did the additional assistance from the older learners help with basic things as crowd control, it allowed the DCE learners to interact with the “big kids.”
With each grade level at DCE having roughly 100 learners in it, the extra help was greatly appreciated by Coach Cole Larned, the Physical Education Coach for Denton Creek.
“It was great having them (VP@C) here today. I know our kids loved it and a lot of them learned that big kids aren’t that scary. It was great to see the older kids work with the Denton Creek learners and see that mentorship. I think it would be great to continue this partnership in the future.” Coach Larned added.
It wasn’t just the staff and learners of DCE that got something out of the event. VP@C Learners enjoyed being a part of the day just as much as the hosts at DCE enjoyed having them.
“Honestly I had a lot of fun today. The kids were sweet and really wanted you to jump and turn ropes for them. I would say 1st grade was probably my favorite. There were a couple of girls that grabbed Olivia and I into a group hug and it was just adorable. The workout was pretty great too. I don't have to go to them gym today now!” Victory Place @ Coppell Senior Samantha Smith said.
“I thought that interacting with the kids was the most fun part of the day. The jumping rope got tiring but getting a new group of kids every hour made the day go by so much faster and made it much more fun. They were so happy the whole time which made me happy.” Victory Place @ Coppell senior, Olivia DeMasters, added.
Needless to say, the day was a great success. Not only did learners get the opportunity to be active and gain some physical wellness, but had a great day of mentoring, friendships were created and lifelong memories were made.