Recently, students in Grades 4 through 7 at Khowhemun Elementary School were able to experience ‘life on the track’ thanks to a generous donation from the Canadian Tire Jumpstart Community Development Grant.
Funding from Jumpstart allowed students to explore a number of different track events over the span of four visits. These visits focused on familiarizing students to the track, the events and rules, and how each event would feel to compete in. Typically, students explored track events on their school’s track day, but with this additional funding students could try these events before they showed up for the school-wide competition.
This familiarization training was the idea of Maria Tarasoff, a Khowhemun teacher, who saw that students enjoyed the previous year’s track events, and wanted more. In late January she applied for the Jumpstart grant and was successful.
“There are lots of ways for everyone to be involved,” Maria
Over the course of their visits, the students could try running events like the 100m, 200m, and 400m, Long Jump, Ball Thrown (for grades 4 and 5) and Shotput (for grades 6 and 7). Not only did participation in these events give physical familiarization to them, but it also opened the door to conversations about emotions of sport and the importance of proper nutrition.
The exploration of proper nutrition was helped along by a generous donation from Sobeys through their Community Action Fund. The $3000 of gift cards donated by Sobeys were coordinated by Duncan Thrifty Foods and were put to good use supplying nutritious foods on the school-wide track day, the district track day, and the end-of-year track celebration. Students were not only able to see how these events affected them, but how their bodies were fueled by these healthy foods, making explicit links between the healthy activities and healthy foods.
With physical familiarity and experience under their belts, these students were ready to take on their track days with confidence.