Students get exercise while fundraising | ParkRecord.com

Students get exercise while fundraising

Megan Yeiter , The Park Record

Parley’s Park Elementary School reached its goal this year in raising money for the American Heart Association. The students set their goal at $28,833, which is one dollar more than they raised last year, but they were able to raise more than $29,100, according to Parley’s Park Physical Education teacher Jen Wheelwright, who said the school has participated in Jump Rope for the Heart and Hoops for the Heart for 15 years. The school is the only one in the country to combine the sports for one big event, she said.

Kindergarteners through third graders participated in the jump rope competition while fourth and fifth graders played basketball to raise money. Wheelwright said they challenged each grade to participate and the class with 100 percent participation earned a field trip to the Park City Ice Arena.

"Maestro Ardnanaz’s 2nd Grade Dual Immersion class and Nicole Hopkin’s 5th-grade class reached their class goal and had 100 percent participation and so they got to go ice skating," Wheelwright said, adding that because the school also reached its fundraising goal overall, the students were able to wear their pajamas to school and have crazy hat or crazy hair day last week.

Teaching the students how to live a healthy lifestyle by keeping active is one thing Wheelwright promotes through P.E. class. She also brings in guest speakers, during the time when students raise money, to talk about their personal medical experiences associated with the heart.

"I try to teach them how to keep their own hearts healthy and that this is a great way to volunteer your time to help save lives," she said. "It’s up to them to go raise that money. I try to teach them that it happens to people all the time."

The Parley’s Park students who raised the most money included second-grader Emma Greally, who raised $1,720, and fifth-grader Sarah Pillman, who raised $820.