Archived Story

Lions poster winners named

Published 10:32am Wednesday, January 15, 2014 Updated 12:34pm Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Congratulations to the following 6th graders on their Lions Youth Outreach Posters: Anna Rasmussen – 1st Place, Jade Zierden – 2nd Place, Alex Anderson – 3rd Place; and Honorable Mention recognition to Delanie Filippello, Grace Kaseman and Krishanna Lindsey. These students will join the winners from the Lions Peace Poster Contest for awards and supper with the Lions Club of Fergus Falls.

Paraprofessional Recognition Week

Governor Mark Dayton has proclaimed the week of January 12, 2014 as Paraprofessional Recognition Week. Paraprofessionals are individuals who work in a variety of positions throughout our School District. Their roles include, but are not limited to those who work as para educators, Title 1 paras, special education paraprofessionals, job coaching, lunch room and playground assistants, hall monitors, media center assistants, and more.

During Paraprofessional Recognition Week, it is appropriate to recognize and celebrate the contributions of paraprofessionals working in schools. At the Fergus Falls Public Schools, we are very fortunate for the quality paraprofessionals that enhance our learning environment for the benefit of our students. Thank you for your amazing work.


Kids active at recess

Active Recess experts from Concordia College and North Dakota State University were invited by the Fergus Falls School District Wellness Committee and funded by PartnerSHIP 4 Health (PS4H) to observe the Kennedy Secondary School – Middle School Outdoor Recess. PS4H gave me permission to use this information from a recent newsletter.

The unstructured recess area for the Middle School students is now subdivided into four to five separate activity areas with one adult supervisor per area. And, depending on the day, nerf footballs, volleyballs, hula hoops, four-square balls, tennis rackets and balls, and stretch jump ropes are in use.

Erika Yoney, School Nurse and School Wellness Committee Chair, stated that, “Students are definitely moving more; allowing for a variety of activities has encouraged less active kids to try new things or start with a small activity.”

Liz Hanstad, recess supervisor, reports that recess time is more fun and more active for both staff and students. A positive change related to student safety has also been noted.

According to Yoney, “We are so thankful to PartnerSHIP 4 Health for partnering with us to create Active Recess for our Middle School students.”

PS4H provided funding for salary reimbursement for recess supervisors to participate in the Active Recess training and funds to purchase much needed recess equipment.

Lessons learned at the annual School Wellness Summit resulted in the formation of an Active Recess Committee (ARC).

ARC members include Yoney, the Middle School principal, recess supervisors, and Wellness Committee members.

Members were engaged in the decision to restructure the recess time as well as the creation of a communications plan.

The Fergus Falls 544 Education Foundation provided funding for walkie-talkies to enable the supervisors to communicate with one another and the office.

Some pre-recess training was needed in order to encourage appropriate use of the Chinese Jump Ropes.

Linda Bowhall instructed sixth- and eighth-grade students during FACS class and observed that boys and girls were equally engaged and were taking turns at holding the bands and jumping.

All sizes of students have enjoyed the jump ropes — with a DVD being a key to teaching students the routines.

Moving middle school recess indoors for the winter was another opportunity for growth as the indoor gym is much smaller than the outdoor fenced in area.

The ARC has already integrated the zone structure and has brainstormed the addition of two potential new venues, the auditorium stage and the north region of the cafeteria.

According to recess supervisor, Brenda Stoen, “Students are more active in the gym this year as compared to last year. We have less kids sitting along the wall.

And, we are sending fewer kids to the office during recess.” There are still challenges to active recess, however, with ARC in place, these challenges become opportunities to address in order to support increased daily, physical activity among the Middle School student population.


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