Eight exceptional Huntington UFSD fifth and eighth grade students garnered Suffolk Zone leadership awards for their outstanding effort and performance in physical education.
The Suffolk Zone of New York State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance presented its Student Leadership Award to the top students in schools across the county for “exhibiting a physically active lifestyle, demonstrating responsible behavior and leadership, valuing physical activity and wellness and overall excellence in physical education.”
Fifth graders Zackary Smith and Brianna Purcell from Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School and Zoe Chiclacos and Gabriel MacManus from Woodhull Intermediate School along with J. Taylor Finley Middle School eighth graders Ruby Baliber, Xavier Garcia Grenados, Ruth Amaya Rivera and Alexander Morris were all recognized.
The students have been working with physical education teachers John Walsh, Natalee Schaeffer, Eric Triolo, Carrie Postel, Travis Smith, Jordan Ioviero and Marissa Bergmann at the three schools.
Teachers were asked to nominate students who “are not necessarily the best athletes.” (This is not an athletic award.) Students were required to be exceptional at meeting the following standards:
Standard 1: Demonstrates competency in a variety of motor skills and movement patterns.
Standard 2: Applies knowledge of concepts, principles, strategies, and tactics related to movement and performance.
Standard 3: Demonstrates the knowledge and skills to achieve and maintain a health-enhancing level of physical activity and fitness.
Standard 4: Exhibits responsible personal and social behavior that respects self and others.
Standard 5: Recognizes the value of physical activity for overall wellness, enjoyment, challenge, and/or self-expression.
Standard 6: Recognizes career opportunities and manages personal and community resources related to physical activity and fitness to achieve and maintain overall wellness.
According to the group’s website, the New York State Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance is a professional organization composed primarily of teachers of health, physical education, recreation and dance; agency, community and worksite health professionals, youth coaches and future professionals who are “interested in promoting health, physical education, recreation and dance in kindergarten through higher education settings throughout New York State.”