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Jarvis Field Days are a lesson in teamwork and fun

Photo of students in a tug-of-warWhat do you do on the last full day of middle school? Testing is over and despite teachers’ best efforts, students look longingly out the window, wishing summer vacation would arrive sooner.

One thing is for certain; a school cannot stop teaching.

“Education can’t stop. It just needs to take a different form,” said Gregory B. Jarvis Middle School Principal Melissa Hoskey.

With that in mind, the school took learning to a different level, holding its first Field Days on Monday, June 23. On the school athletic fields, students visited 16 different stations including an obstacle course, jump rope challenge, parachute game, beach volleyball, and a cup stacking game.

“Each station is an opportunity for students and staff to use their problem solving and social skills to reach a common goal. No student stands alone in these challenges. This takes teamwork,” said Mrs. Hoskey.

Students divided into teams by grade and their faculty advisors. To promote light-hearted competition, teachers encouraged students to develop team identities. Some teams made tee shirts and others came decked out as superheroes. One team went all out, dressing as nerds.

Mrs. Hoskey made certain to include herself in the fun, taking a turn in the dunking booth. To no surprise, students stood in a long line hoping for a chance to dunk their principal.

“The day is filled with competition, but it is designed to be fun. Too often middle school students feel pressured to grow up and think they can’t be kids anymore. This gives them a chance to be kids and to have fun. That’s an important lesson, because even as adults, we have to remember it’s okay to have fun once in a while,” she said.

The day proved to be a hit for students.

“It was fun. I enjoyed the games and the food. We got to dress up which was cool. I also enjoyed having lunch with both teams,” said eighth grader Shivam Patel.

Fifth grader Sohum Patel said, “It was awesome because we got to see the parachute again. There was a lot of snow cones and cotton candy and popcorn. The tug of war was fun because the boys lost—because Mrs. Bowman was on the other team. “

Sixth grader Brady Murphy captured the serious side, saying, “The field days were an intelligent way to show our leadership skills and how we can work together to solve any challenge that comes our way.”

Two hours of outdoor activities were balanced by time indoors, eating lunch with the teams, watching The Lego Movie and cleaning out student lockers. Eighth graders also took a few minutes to gather signatures on the class panoramic photo.

“We reinforced valuable life lessons and had a great time doing it. I can’t imagine a better way to bring a school year toward an end,” said Mrs. Hoskey.

Photo of students in jump rope race Photo of students passing hula hoops

Photo of students with giant multi-colored parachute
Photo of two girls dressed as nerds