HW Smith Students “Walk” to Hollywood
Published on 3/12/19
District News HW Smith K-8 School
There is a Hollywood theme at HW Smith school this year: ‘Lights, Camera, Action!’
So when Physical Education teacher Kim McKenna wanted to find a way to encourage students and staff to move more during the school day, she knew just the activity: a “Walk to Hollywood” contest.
Students in kindergarten through eighth grade – along with teachers and staff – would work together over the course of the school year to collectively walk the 5,674,940 steps it would take to get from Syracuse to Hollywood. The Onondaga County Health Department provided 30 pedometers and tracking charts to help with the effort. Teachers selected a two-week period to sign out the pedometers, and during that time, students worked to get as many steps as possible. Some classes chose to spend recess on the school’s indoor walking trail; others took a short walk during a five-minute brain break; others offered walk time as a DOJO reward.
“The kids have really liked it,” Ms. McKenna said. “They are really interested in using the pedometers and seeing how many steps they take! At first, they thought our goal was out of sight… they’ve been shocked to see how far they’ve gone already, and they love to compete with the other classes. At this time of the year, we tend to be more sedentary because we are inside more. This has helped encourage all of us to get moving and walk the long way!”
Every two weeks, Ms. McKenna provides an update to teachers with the school’s progress, along with a fitness activity they can try in their classroom. Classes competed individually, as well as by grade level – and at the end of the school year, the grade with the most collective steps will earn an incentive. What a great way to help students stay fit and healthy!