Johnston Elementary School in Cherokee County became a Power Up for 30 school in August 2014. Since signing the pledge almost three years ago, students, staff and administration at the school have engaged in exciting Power Up for 30 activities.
“When I arrived at the school three years ago, there seemed to be a lack of awareness about the importance of physical activity and the overall well-being of the student and how increasing those levels could benefit our students,” said Josh Philpot, a P.E. teacher at Johnston Elementary. “Since implementing Power Up for 30, our school administration has been fully supportive and willing to provide any resources we need to implement change.”
As part of Power Up for 30, the school has implemented a series of physical activity initiatives such as brain breaks, extended recess and a popular dance/walk program for students. In the morning, students gather in the gym to follow dance movements from Wii Dance, which is projected on the wall. Students easily add a few extra minutes of physical activity in a fun and exciting way before classes even begin.
Students following Wii Dance during the morning dance program at Johnston Elementary
Students are not the only ones enthusiatic about these new opportunities. Teachers and administrators have enjoyed the benefits of increased physical activity and have noticed the positive impact physical activity has had on their students. Brain breaks throughout the school day provide students time to "decompress" their brains and help them retain more of what they're learning in the classroom. The additional physical activity has led to higher test scores, fewer disciplinary actions and improved attendance at Johnston Elementary.