Last week in Boston Public Schools, and many other MA school districts, was school vacation week. This means that thousands of students across the state had a full week to rest, relax and enjoy this confused Boston winter.
For a group of more dedicated youngsters, last week held the PlayWorks 5th Annual Junior Coach Leadership Convention. SIS and Northeastern played host to 4th and 5th grade students from over 20 Boston Public Schools. The convention served as an opportunity for students, affectionately known as “junior coaches”, to meet JC’s from other schools in the city.
The event was a two-day, fun filled experience for all. The convention was guided by an assortment of PlayWorks coaches along with assistance from SIS staff. The ultimate goal of the convention was to equip the students with tools meant to help them in their bullying prevention efforts as well as their quests to become young leaders. This was all done through unique exercises and simply—PLAY! The JC’s learned about the value in things like teamwork, goal setting and leadership.
As volunteers at the event, we SIS co-ops and interns got the opportunity to jump in the figurative sandbox with the kids and have some fun. I think that I must have given about 1000 high-fives to the JC’s. It felt good to be around their youthful enthusiasm. They were all dedicated to the social responsibility to make their schools a haven for peace and fairness.
For the JC’s, one of the most exciting activities of the convention was the student-athlete panel assembled by SIS. Kicking off the activity was an opening address from our own Dan Lebowtz. During this activity the students had the opportunity to speak with athletes from Northeastern about everything from scholarships to college life. The kids were all thrilled to ask the athletes questions and listened with fascinated ears. The panel had athletes from NeU’s field hockey, volleyball and club lacrosse teams to name a few. It even included SIS’s own ‘Chole and Suze aka “the twin towers”. The athletes definitely stole the show.
All in all, I had a blast and hope to be involved with the program next year.