Spring Break is officially here!!!! This is a great time of year to get out and play, revamp your flower beds and gardens and do some Spring Cleaning! For kids it is a time to relax from the everyday grind of school and explore the world around them! I hope you all have an excellent Spring Break and I hope you all plan to be active everyday! I personally am going to be working in my flowerbed, giving my house a good Spring cleaning and then I am going to go kayaking with my family! I want to know how you plan to spend your week off, so let me know in the comment section under the blog! Have a great week!!!

Toodles ~ Mrs. Lindsay 
Friday morning I was awakened by a text from a friend, she simply said "Is your Dad ok ?" I said," I guess so, he is in Japan". She replied "I know, they just had a huge earthquake devastate the country!" I immediately turned on the news and tried calling my dad, but could not reach him. I was frantic and didn't know what, if anything, had happened to him or how I could even help, I didn't know what to do. I am happy to report he is ok, as is my step-mother, but it was such a scary moment. Having to watch such devastation and not be able to do anything about it is so hard.I know many people have encountered similar situations in their own lives, family members being sick, friends needing help, large communities of people suffering from a natural disaster and you just aren't close enough to help or don't know how to help.

As a Physical Educator I have learned that many people use fitness & sports to help raise money for a cause when they really don't know what else they can do. For example, you may not be a heart doctor, but you can participate in a Start! Heart Walk, Jump Rope for Heart or Hoops for Heart events all supporting the American Heart Association. You may not be a cancer researcher, but you can participate in the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life events. People hold softball tournaments, and charity basketball games to help people in their local town with illness. You can donate money to the Red Cross or other organizations that help with worldwide relief. The options are limitless if you are wanting to help someone in need. 

I urge you to find a cause that you believe in to help support in any way that you can; whether that be giving of your time, donating money, organizing an event or participating in an event yourself. During this time please remember those in Japan in your thoughts and prayers and the many people in our local community who need our help and support as well. 
Today 13 students from DeWitt Elementary School participated in the Little Rockers Marathon! The students completed the first 25.2 miles of the marathon over the last 2 months and completed the last mile today on the official Little Rock Marathon race course! 12 of the students were part of the DeWitt Dragon Runners 3rd, 4th & 5th grade running club and 1 student was a 1st grader who participated as an individual! I am so proud of all of my students who participated today! Stay tuned for pictures from the event!
Hello Everyone ~ I hope you are ALL having a great weekend. With such beautiful weather I hope you took a chance to play outside, to turn off you air/heat, throw open your windows and let the fresh air flow through you house. I spent part of my time enjoying the weekend but the other time reflecting on the importance of Physical Education. Now, before you say, why spend you weekend reflecting, I did have a reason; I have recently been nominated for the NFL Network PE Teacher of the Year and I had to complete my award packet over the weekend! Out of the many questions the two that stood out the most  were, what are the challenges and issues facing physical education and how would I encourage others to support the needs of physical education. 

As I answered those questions I asked myself, why not voice your opinion about something you are passionate about now? Why wait to see if I am chosen as the award winner? While it is a great honor to be nominated, and would be totally awesome if I won, it doesn't matter if I win or loose, what does matter is if I stand by my beliefs as a PE teacher and share my ideas with others.

Those in charge of education in our country frequently talk about the importance of educating the whole child by implementing many types of academic integrations but they often time overlook the importance of physically educating a child. They are being pressured so hard to achieve high scores on standardized tests that everything else in the school (PE, Music, Art) gets pushed to the wayside. If we could convince our politicians and education professionals that physical education is a vital part of improving the standardized test scores I think we could see a turnaround in the amount of time each child will spend in physical education classes each week as well as more funding for physical education programs.

Studies have shown that students who participated in programs where daily physical education and activity was increased the students either maintained or even improved their daily classroom grades as well as maintaining or raising their scores on standardized tests compared to their counterparts who did not have an increase in the amount of time they spent in physical education

.I am truly happy that I teach in a school where Physical Education is still an important part of the elementary curriculum. I am truly blessed to have been given the funds to purchase a wide variety of equipment and to have a gym to teach my classes in every day! There are many schools throughout the nation where PE is outside all the time or in a tiny classroom. I am very lucky to have great facilities and an administration that supports my physical education program. 

I would encourage everyone to remember their childhood and their experiences in physical education. If they were positive experiences I would encourage them to crusade to keep physical education a vital part of our education programming and to encourage their peers to do the same. For those who did not have positive experiences I would encourage them to seek a change for the current generation of students. As a child I did not enjoy my physical education experience so it is my goal as an adult and a physical education teacher that all children have an enjoyable and relevant physical education experience. Change cannot be made without the voices of many, so I encourage everyone to help change physical education programming for the better.  I would also encourage everyone to look at the studies showing the importance of physical education for the child as a whole and that removing it would be detrimental to their educational experience.  

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Physical Education and the importance it plays in the lives of our students. I do hope my students love physical education as much as I do and that it will encourage them to live lifelong active and healthy lives!
On this last Friday of February and in the last full week of American Heart Month I cannot urge you enough to be mindful of your personal Heart Health! If you do not know your family history, search it out; if you are not active everyday, start a little at a time; if you aren't a healthy eater try changing things a few meals at a time. Heart disease is the #1 killer in America! I was reading online just this morning about an 8 year old boy suffering a heart attack yesterday while at his school located in North Carolina. All I can say is WOW. Reading that made me just pause and think #1 how lucky I am and #2 that I need to get on the ball with my own health. I hope as the DES PE teacher that I can be a role model for my students. I do not want to stand idling by, teaching one thing to my students and then doing something else on my own time. I am really going to try as hard as I can to always do as I say and not just tell kids to themselves do what I say and not what I do. Are any of us always going to be perfect, no. Can we strive to be our best, Yes! Please join me in trying to lead a healthy and active life! Below are links to articles concerning heart health:

8 Year Old Suffers Heart Attack - http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41767547/ns/health-heart_health/?gt1=43001
Heart disease can be serious, silent in young women - http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41537115/ns/health-womens_health/
Many stick with fast food after heart attack - http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41670065/ns/health-heart_health/

Click on the American Heart Association Icon above to take the FREE Life's Simple 7 My Life Check Assessment, to get your personal heart score and life plan, it could truly save your life

As March quickly approaches so does Physical Fitness Testing at DES! The Presidential Physical Fitness Challenge is loved by some and dreaded by others. As a kid I loved the competition aspect of the challenge and it was always my goal to score in the Presidential Range on the test! Would I always score Presidential, no, but did I try my very best each year, yes! 

I want to encourage parents and kids alike not to be afraid of fitness testing but to see it as a challenge. Encourage your child to do the very best they can and give 100% effort! Each child is only in competition against themselves, not anyone else. Just like the students have been preparing for benchmark tests throughout the school year all of the activities we do in PE are preparation for the Presidential Physical Fitness Challenge. If you would like to practice the events that are specific to the challenge go to www.presidentschallenge.org and you will find the information about the Physical Fitness Test and how each activity is scored under the Choose a Challenge tab. Students at DES will be doing curl-ups, shuttle run, endurance run/walk, right angle push ups and the v-sit and reach.

If you have any questions about testing leave a message in the comments section under the blog or in the contact section of this website!

I love teaching PE and I hope all of my students love PE as well!!!!!

Mrs. Lindsay
This weekend Kyle and I went to Russellville to watch the last conference meeting of Arkansas Tech University and Delta State University. When I was a student at TECH it didn't matter what sport was in season, if we were playing Delta State it would always be a great game, and Saturday was not a let down to say the least! In my husbands words "that was the best girls basketball game I have ever seen played at any level" and I totally agree! Both teams showed great athleticism and drive throughout the entire game. I am happy to report that the Arkansas TECH Golden Suns took the victory in their last conference game against DSU! The mens teams also played well and the TECH Wonderboy's took the win by a mile!

While at the game I was also pleased to see kids who still loved being kids! Everyday I see so many girls and boys who are afraid to do something or like something just because they think their peers would not approve. I remember having those thoughts and feelings as a junior high and high school student but not as a kid in elementary school. I would encourage everyone big or small to take a cue from my little friend in this picture - - she doesn't care what anyone else thinks, she wants to be a fun, crazy fan and support the team she loves! We should all be as bold as she is in everything we do! It is easy to fall into the same mold as everyone else, but I hope we can all develop a new self confidence in ourselves and break away from the mold to create a new one that fits each of us perfectly in our own way! The world would be a boring place if we all looked the same and did the exact same thing every day, so try something new, don't be afraid to like something your friends might think to be a little silly, or try and activity or sport that everyone else does not play, mainly just don't be afraid to BE YOURSELF!

Hello everyone! Today we were at DeWitt Elementary School as FTA students shadowing Mrs. Lindsay Beaton. During the classes we noticed how much more you learn today compared to our days in P.E. We taught crab kick soccer, and volleyball skills using the Omniken ball( an Overly large beach ball)!!!! Being an Elementary School teacher takes lots of patience and tender care! We would love the job because of all the physical activity and fun it involves. After the activities were done we talked with the children about how February is American Heart Month and asked how much fun and easy it is to get your heart racing without doing boring exercises. After today we would love to participate in Elementary P.E. all the time!! Check out the pictures below to see what fun we had!
                                                                              Amanda & Meg 

Hello everyone! 

Can you believe we are halfway through February already. As most of you  know February is American Heart Month. American Heart Month was set aside to create awareness for cardiovascular disease, the #1 killer in America!

There are many ways to join the fight against Cardiovascular Disease in America, you can donate money to the American Heart Association (the DeWitt Junior High & Senior High Cheerleaders are selling shirts that benefit the American Heart Association - click on the DJH Cheer tab for more info!), you can visit the American Heart Association website - www.heart.org - to educate yourself about the warning signs for heart attach and stroke, and if you are a smoker you can stop smoking immediately. One of the best things you can do for yourself and your family is to try to eat a Heart Healthy diet and Play Everyday!  It is recommended that children under 18 be active a minimum of 60 minutes a day and adults over 18  a minimum of 30 minutes a day. I urge all of you to carve out time each day for active play, it could save your heart and your life!
I hope you enjoy Physical Education as much as I do! I am still working on my website so stay tuned for more blog posts!