While “clowning around” is not always appreciated in the classroom, it was the lesson of the day last Friday at The Bridge Academy when the National Circus Project spend the morning at the school. The National Circus Project is an arts-in-education group that promotes student participation in school arts and physical education activities, using “circus” as its theme. Students learn and practice physical fitness and motor skills through juggling, plate-spinning, “devil stick” manipulation, and balancing on stilts.
“This is a great way to teach our students eye-hand coordination. And it also allows us to reinforce some skills that they usually don’t have exposure to,” explained PhyEd teacher, Karen Savar.
Unlike the skills needed for more common activities like playing football, most children do not have experience with circus-like activities. Exposing students to these new skills encourages them to try new activities and become adventurous.
“It puts everyone on the same playing field and teaches them life-long skills”, said Savar.
The morning began with a school-wide assembly of entertainment featuring award-winning performers from the circus world. Students were entertained as they learned some of the basic skills involved with the circus acts. After the assembly, members of the National Circus Project spent time with each physical education class to teach skills to the students.
“It was fun to watch the performers, but more fun learning how to do it ourselves,” explained a Bridge Academy student.
The Bridge Academy is an independent school in Lawrenceville, NJ for students with language-based learning disabilities, like dyslexia, auditory processing, ADHD, and/or dysgraphia. It is for students ages 8 – 18 and the only Orton-Gillingham accredited program in New Jersey. For more information on The Bridge Academy, please call 609-844-0770 or visitwww.banj.org.
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