It’s been over ten years since Colonial Hills elementary began their elementary cross-country team. It started as a way to motivate students to run at recess and be more active during their outside time. For some students that is still the goal. Others like to compete. Today many of our elementary schools offer running clubs that run either at recess or after school.
Thomas Worthington High School Principal, Pete Scully, recently shared a story about his son’s experience. He said, “My six year old, James, is a first grader at Worthington Estates. He’s a happy-go-lucky kid who’s a huge fan of recess and lunch. So, I was kind of surprised when he decided he wanted to sign up for the voluntary exercise club, Rockin’ Recess Runners. It’s not that he isn’t active; it’s just surprising that he’d want his unstructured time structured. At any rate, the program started, and he was having a blast.
On Thursday last week, he experienced his first elementary fun run. It’s a one-mile course mapped out in the Thomas Worthington flats. With a huge group of young athletes, you can imagine the sea of minivans, parents, grandparents and siblings. It was sunny and unseasonably hot.
As the K-3 race began, a small group took off in a dead sprint. It was likely not the best long-term strategy, but they could definitely say they were leading the race at one point.
James had a more measured pace with a healthy mixture of running and walking. He picked up his pace when he heard someone cheering for him and calling him by name. He would frantically search for the person cheering, then, wave and say hi, with a huge smile.
James did a good job of reminding me that sometimes all kids are looking for is an adult who is present and cheering for them. He didn’t ask for strategy, help running the race, or tips to be more successful. He simply wanted to know someone was there rooting for him and that someone cared.”
It was a simple lesson, but one that we all need from time to time.
-Trent Bowers, Superintendent