• Benner students participate in activity that promotes a healthy heart, body and mind

    aiden and braydyn When Benner Elementary School physical education teacher Eric Cyone challenged the fourth- and fifth-grade classes to see what students could jump rope for the longest time, classmates Braydyn Grove and Aiden Swentosky were the last two. Braydyn just barely edged out Aiden by half a jump.

    The boys were with a group of other students outside during a phys ed activity, called Kids Heart Challenge, that aimed to promote heart health among youth. It was formally called Jump Rope for Heart. The jump roping event is the culmination of curriculum that teaches second- to fifth-grade students all about ways to stay healthy, while also helping to raise money for the American Heart Association.

    brayden 1 This year, Cyone said the goal was to raise $3,500, which they exceeded. A final calculation is not counted yet. In the 13 years the school has participated in the event, more than $44,000 has been raised, which doesn’t include this year’s total.

    “It’s just that overall idea of how to take care of your body, and exercise and eat right,” Cyone said. “And it’s not just for a healthy heart, but also a healthy body and a healthy mind, and I feel like jump rope is a really great skill for them to get involved in and have an appreciation for, because it’s fun and there are endless challenges that come with it.”

    jump rope x Students were divided into two groups – second and third grades, and fourth and fifth grades. Following COVID-19 guidelines, each participating class was provided space within their own grid in an area outside where students could line up on a marked X that was at least six-feet apart from the next. All jump ropes were also thoroughly sanitized between sessions.

    By participating in the activity, Cyone’s PE class is also provided funding by the AHA that he annually puts toward updating equipment and purchasing new equipment.

    *By Brit Milazzo, public relations director, BASD