I have to give a shout-out now to Girls on the Run. It’s a non-profit organization that works to develop self-esteem and healthy relationships in young girls through training to run a 5k. It’s a fabulous concept, and you will fall in love with the founder if you watch her TED talk here.
My school started in the spring with Girls on the Run for 4th and 5th grade girls, and this season we’re also implementing their program for 6th-8th graders (Girls on Track). I’m coaching, and I’m ridiculously excited about it. I had to go to a training just to start to understand all the logistics, but they also handed me the entire season’s worth of workshop materials (they do more than just run) and a SCRIPTED curriculum (hello, no extra planning time). It’s a pretty big project to start it up, but I think it’s going to be worth it. We gave out applications yesterday afterschool and told the girls they would be accepted on a first-come-first-served basis. (There’s a limit of 15 girls so that the right community can be formed with enough adult attention.) I had girls outside my classroom this morning before the school was even supposed to be open, and I was putting people on the wait-list by 10am. Turns out the girls are excited too.
Cross your fingers this goes well, but it seems promising to me. I’m all about self-esteem, I’m all about running, and I’m definitely all about already-planned lessons!