Fitness and Excerise Week

Wow! Fitness and Exercise Week was such a blast! Whether indoors or outdoors, the children worked hard all week long! Read on below to learn about this fantastic week!

The children kicked off the week with a very intense exercise session outdoors. Using hula hoops, the children worked on jumping, running, skipping, jumping jacking, and more! Watch the video below to see some of the children in action.

Later during their morning workout, the children broke into partners and practiced throwing and catching with the big balls. Watch below to see two superstar throwers and catchers who were really on a roll!

After finishing their workout, the children returned to school and there was a BIG surprise waiting for them. A very special librarian friend of the teachers made a donation of two baskets full of audio-books to PPA! The children could hardly contain their excitement when they learned that the books would now be a regular feature of their classroom and even a new station! The audio-book station will be a new addition to Park Prep where the students will get to follow and read along with the story being read. It will surely be a hit!
During the afternoon, the children created a card to say a special thank you to Denise DeMarzo and the rest of the library staff at the Old Tappan Public Library for being so thoughtful and helpful! Later in the week, Miss Jocelyn delivered the card to Denise. Needless to say, the card made her feel very special.

f.y.i. The Old Tappan Public Library is in the town where Miss Justine and Miss Jocelyn grew up.

The fun kept coming on Tuesday as the children eagerly awaited the arrival of the Surprise Guest! Throughout the morning, the children were trying to guess who the surprise guest could be – Spongebob?  Dora?  A lion?  All of these guesses were mentioned but the only hint that the teachers would give them came during morning work. The special guest had something to do with baseball – and so did Tuesday’s craft!

The children worked with Miss Elizabeth to “stitch” (or lace) their very own baseball.

Shortly after the children woke up from rest-time, the surprise guest had arrived! It was Canadian-American Professional Baseball League Player, Jon Gossard – known to us as “Baseball Jon”.

Baseball Jon entered PPA and the kids’ faces lit up! At 6’3″ tall and 230 lbs, they could hardly believe how big he was. With their necks craned, the children smiled up at Baseball Jon and welcomed him to the classroom.

Baseball Jon was carrying a very large bag that the children could hardly wait to hear about. Miss Jocelyn introduced Baseball Jon.  Then Baseball Jon led a very informative lesson all about baseball during which he showed them different types of gloves and all of his catcher’s gear! He even let the children try some gear on!

After learning a lot from the presentation, the children taught Baseball Jon all about preschool as they invited him into their afternoon stations.  Baseball Jon was clearly enjoying “playing like a preschooler”. He even enjoyed a juice box!

After a fun-filled afternoon, Baseball Jon had to say goodbye and head on his way. The children had such a blast with Baseball Jon that they did not want to let him leave.

Baseball Jon headed off to his baseball game but before he left, he informed the students that they would be going home with his team’s schedule and could come to a game anytime!

After school ended, Miss Justine, Miss Jocelyn, and Miss Elizabeth headed to Baseball Jon’s game to cheer him on and present him with something very special that was created during after-school. Baseball Jon and his team, the Sussex Skyhawks, crushed their opponent, the New Jersey Jackals, by a score of 12-4. Perhaps the Park Prep children were a good luck charm!

What a great surprise guest!  Thank you again Baseball Jon! We all had such a fun time and hope you come back to visit us soon!

For more information on Baseball Jon and his team, the Sussex Skyhawks, visit the Canadian-American Professional Baseball League website.  Also, if you are interested in attending a Sussex Skyhawk game – see Miss Jocelyn for information to be put on Baseball Jon’s V.I.P. list for free admission into the stadium!

Considering how humid the weather was on Tuesday, the teachers were not surprised when it POURED all day on Wednesday.  The teachers decided it would be the perfect day to do a Rainy Day art project.

Using fluffy stuffing for clouds and blue paint for rain, the children created their Rainy Day picture while singing the song, “Rain, Rain, Go Away!”

One student completed her project and her rendition of the song then looked confused as she looked at the window and noted, “the rain is still here”. Despite her and the rest of her classmates’ attempts, the rain held steady through the morning but did eventually lighten up as the day progressed.
During the afternoon, the teachers broke the students up into small groups and played an exercise version of Simon Says.

Wednesday’s rainy day surely did not affect the afternoon fun!
Thursday was Field Day at PPA!  The children headed right outside and the teachers created a very elaborate obstacle course for them to navigate through.  Balancing, ducking under, jumping through, and handing off were just some of the tasks the children had to do to finish the course.  They even split up into groups and competed in teams!  The competitive juices were really flowing!  Regardless of which team finished first, cheers were given and everyone felt like a Field Day superstar!

Later in the afternoon, the children put their feet to work as they took turns moving through an agility ladder.  The children proved to be lightning fast as they hopped, high-kneed, zig-zagged their way through the ladders.  One thing is for sure – the Park Prep kids are very agile!  Look below to see some fun and fancy footwork through the ladder.

Quite ironically, Fitness and Exercise week ended with a field trip to Rita’s Ice.  To keep up with the exercise theme, the teachers made sure it was a walking field trip!  Throughout the morning, the children expressed their excitement about the trip as they detailed their favorite Rita’s flavors.  For their morning work, the children created their own ice cream cones that were a bit different from the ones served at Rita’s.  These were silly ice cream flavors!  Take a peek at the ice cream cones (with sprinkles) pictured below to see some of the funny flavors of ice cream – they are a riot!  Although we doubt that any of these silly flavors will be featured in an ice cream shop anytime soon, the teachers felt that the silly ice cream cones would make a beautiful bulletin board.  By the afternoon, the children were beyond ready for their trip!  They trekked down Central Avenue to Rita’s shop and boy, were they excited.  Their enthusiasm continued to grow when they learned that they would get to vote on which flavors to get.  After a quick vote, it was determined that chocolate and cherry would be the lucky flavors.  After the Rita’s employee filled our buckets, one lucky student handed over the school’s credit card to pay for the entire group.  Once all the groups returned from their visit, the fun really began!  The children rushed over to the tables to dig into their ice!  Whether they chose just cherry, just chocolate, or both cherry and chocolate, the students devoured up all of the cold treat before heading into their afternoon stations and then home for the weekend!  While eating her ice, one child was overheard saying, “This is the best day at school – EVER!”

Like we said, Fitness and Exercise week was outrageously fun!  As always, thank you for reading and we will see you next week!

-PPA