Devon Wills works with Dawson Stapleton to pass a ball from cup to cup during Roosevelt Elementary field day games Friday. David Grace photo.
KINGSPORT — “Coopetition” and anti-bullying were the focus of a Kingsport elementary school’s fall field day Friday.
Students from pre-K through fifth grade at Roosevelt Elementary School spent the last day before next week’s fall break (Oct. 13-17) playing field day games that emphasized team cooperation.
The “coopetition” theme for field day, which physical education teacher Rebecca Good coined, kicked off Friday with an anti-bullying flash mob dance by the fifth grade. The students danced to a unity song written last year in honor of Unity Day.
The school celebrated Unity Day Oct. 9 by wearing and passing out Unity ribbons to show support to stand united against bullying.
The student body signed a pledge to stand united, and Kingsport City Schools Superintendent Lyle Ailshie was one of the first to sign a bulletin board that turned into a “pledge to make a difference.”
School counselor Alice Browder said students have been brainstorming on ways to support the school and community.
“Field day is a wonderful opportunity for our students to participate in games/activities that are based on cooperating and working together to achieve a common goal and, of course, have fun doing it,” Good said. “This is a healthy preparation for the participation in a complex and competitive world. Each student’s contribution is important to the whole so that each has a chance to promote the others’ success by helping, encouraging and praising one another’s efforts.”
In Kristy Walters’ second-grade class, 7-year-old Natalie May said her favorite activity was the Hula Hoop or “Loop Da Hoop” game. Students stood in a circle holding hands, and the object of the game was to move the hoop all the way around the circle without breaking the hand holding.
“We can just work together,” Natalie said. “They helped us work together.”
Classmate Landon Dingus, also 7, said he liked the “Monsters Inc.” game the best. In a take on musical chairs, students stood inside the circles of Hula Hoops and when the music stopped, one group lost its hoop. The goal was for the other groups to invite and make room for the displaced inside their hoop.
Destiny Shell, 7, said she learned from Unity activities “not to wake my sister up when she’s asleep” and how to work together with others.
In Katie Salyers’ second-grade class, 7-year-old Emma Kimbler said she enjoyed “playing with classmates” and working together, while Jay Grant, 7, said he learned “to be kind to my friends and be nice to them” and “everybody.”
Jay said his favorite activity was the “pig race,” which Good said was a 50-yard dash. The name came from last year’s event, she explained.