Forty Clarke Elementary girls participated in the Girls on the Run 5k program on May 24 in Des Moines.
Girls on the Run is an extracurricular program coached by teachers and parents that teaches girls life skills through interactive lessons and running games. Meeting twice a week through the season, the program encourages lifelong health and fitness, and teaches the girls to take charge of their lives and motivates them to set and achieve goals.
The Clarke students had several coaches and running buddies that included community members as well as Clarke Schools staff. The school staff involved were Regina Haltom, Michaela Lane, Stacey Manternach, and Randi Johnson. The program is fortunate to have community members participate, as well, including Josefina Avalos, Jacqueline Shinn and Lindsay Wade.
Not only do the girls set fitness goals, they are also taught the importance of giving back to the community. There were three teams within the Clarke program and each team took on a different community impact project. One team made cupcakes for the custodial staff, another made toys for shelter animals and the third team decorated cookies for teachers.
“Girls on the Run has positively impacted students’ mental and physical health,” said Clarke Elementary Vice Principal Jill Kiger. “Students gained skills, created friendships, and learned ways to keep their bodies healthy. We are thrilled with our response in year one and the support from our families. We can’t wait for next year and are pursuing a similar type program for boys.”
Girls on the Run is a national program that focuses on positive relationships, positive self-talk and self-confidence during discussions before their workouts each week. All forty girls completed their first 5k run at Water Works Park in Des Moines and were awarded completion certificates in a ceremony at Clarke Elementary on May 30.
For more information on the Girls on the Run program or details on future opportunities for students at Clarke Elementary, contact ELL Teacher, Randi Johnson at RJohnson@clarke.k12.ia.us or the Clarke Elementary Vice Principal, Jill Kiger at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Elementary directly at 641-342-6320.
You can see more about the Girls on the Run program at: (https://www.girlsontherun.org/).