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PARENTS' DAY AT MILEAGE CLUB|
Parker School Parents Participate at Kids' Recess Lap Program.
Feature and photos by Carol Goodrow
RECESS MILEAGE PROGRAMS|
These programs are the hottest thing in kids' school fitness programs this year. They're simple and effective. Kids run at recess, and with the help of parent volunteers, they track their mileage. There is a built-in award schedule in which kids can earn toe tokens and other awards.
Kids Tie the Tiny Plastic Toe Tokens on their Shoes
Almost a Marathon
Prizes: T-Shirts, Sports Balls and More
Take your pick. All the colors are great!
Lisa Dutton and Mileage Club Kids
See the pink toe token on the girl's running shoe!
|How the Program Works|
The program is run by the PE teacher with the help of parent volunteers. It is funded by the school's PTO which provides the means to buy: toe tokens, mileage cards, trophies, and raffle prizes.
Each recess period, the parent volunteers are stationed at the start/finish line of a 1/4 mile lap which is around the circumference (outer edge) of the recess playing field. Kids can either play in the center of the field, or participate in the mileage club. The kids pick up their 'Mile Marker' card from the parent volunteers, and hold it while then they run or walk their laps.
At the end of each lap, they stop at the volunteer station and get a 'little footprint' punched on their cards. At the end of their laps, they give the card to the volunteers who organize the cards by recess periods, in alphabetical order. If the child has completed 5 miles, he/she chooses a toe token to be attached to a pair of running shoes.
There is a schedule of various mileage awards. The program is positive, positive, positive. Kids run/walk at their own pace, by choice, and they cover the distances with which they are comfortable.
Mom joins Colton for a brisk run on this special 'invitational' day.
Mileage Club is held at recess 4 days a week during each of Parker School's many recess waves. The fall season has just about come to a close and so in the spirit of an open house, Lisa Dutton, PE Teacher/Leader of the Kids' Mileage Club and Bob Lincoln, Principal, agreed to invite parents to a Parents' Day at Mileage Club. Even with less than a week's notice, the response was terrific.
Over 130 families joined the kids during recess time. Kids ran or walked with parents, logging their miles to reach their goals.
Dad and Son
Daughter and Mom
Great Way to Spend your Lunch Break
A little sprint halfway through a lap.
Mileage clubs allow kids to run or walk at their own pace. Many kids choose to run steady laps for the whole recess, some combine jogging and sprinting, while others do both running and walking. Some run a couple of laps, then play, then run another at the end of the recess. The individualized nature of this program, along with the enthusiasm and support of P.E. teacher, Lisa Dutton, the parent volunteers, and the principal (who often makes schoolwide mileage club announcements over the P.A. system) all contribute to its success.
It was great to have the parents join in the fun and exercise. We noticed many things about this day:
1. Parents of all levels of physical fitness and experience took part. Some walked slowly carrying their pocketbooks arriving straight from work. Others were decked in full running gear and used this time to get in their daily run. Some led their kids, others struggled to keep up.
2. The kids were enthusiastic. Their faces lit up when their families arrived. More kids participated on this day. Remember, the program is totally optional. It's the kids' choice as to if they want to participate each day and to what extent.
3. Kids were encouraging their parents almost as often as the parents were encouraging the kids.
4. It was a beautiful day. This might have accounted for the large turnout, but we runners know that once you start exercising outdoors, you realize that exercise makes any day seem more beautiful.
Principal Bob Lincoln and Senator Tony Guglielmo joined in the Activities