LCPS's elementary schools have raised more than $14,000 so far for the American Heart Association through this year's Jump Rope for Heart campaigns.
An annual event at the district's elementary schools, Jump Rope for Heart combines an opportunity for physical education teachers to emphasize the benefits of exercise by jumping rope with schoolwide campaigns to solicit donations for the AHA.
"Our actual event is one day, but we collect money for two weeks before that," Millicant Sanderson, PE teacher at Moss Hill Elementary School, explained. "At the end of the collection period, we have what we call a celebration. We have an actual event to celebrate what we raised. That's when we do different jump rope activities."
This year, Moss Hill had plenty to celebrate. It raised nearly $5,600, the most of any school in the county.
"It's huge here," Principal Elizabeth Pendleton said. "Kids cannot wait for Jump Rope for Heart."
In all, the district's elementary schools contributed $14,023 to the American Heart Association through the program. That total is expected to grow since two elementary schools have not yet completed their campaigns.
Donations are used by the American Heart Association for research and education on heart disease, particularly those heart-health issues that affect young people. An AHA representative visits schools and explains to students the purpose of Jump Rope for Heart and sets parameters for fundraising. "They are told not to ask strangers, but to ask the family, neighbors, people they're in contact with," Sanderson said.
Cosponsored by the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE), Jump Rope for Heart is also valued by PE teachers as a way to promote rigorous exercise.
"We jump all day," Sanderson said. "We do individual jump rope activities and do some long rope activities. Basically we do a lot of jumping."
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