What do flag football and brain dissections have to do with each other? Resident kids at Rockwood found out when they signed up for G.O.A.L. (Guiding Outstanding Active Learners) Sports Camp this summer. They knew they’d participate in fun games, sports, and other outdoor activities, but they didn’t expect hands-on science projects designed to help them also learn more about how sports impact the human body.
Created and sponsored by the Dragon Kim Foundation, G.O.A.L. Sports Camp was a part of Jamboree’s REACH approach to customized services that enrich the lives of residents. As an acrostic, REACH focuses on five simple values to frame our services for kids, families, seniors, and those living with special needs. The creative learning projects tied to sports demonstrate the H value – Horizons that open new opportunities in a global world.
Each day kids and students came to our onsite community center, and with the help of volunteers from Oxford Academy, would participate in an interactive science project, then head outside for sports, games, and a group activity. For example, one day the students began by putting together first aid kits and learned about how exercises affect their vital signs. Next, they went outside and jumped rope to measure the change in their heart rate.
The next day students began with a brain dissection activity – with real sheep brains – where they learned to identify and locate different parts of the brain. Then, they learned how to stretch properly before practicing flag football drills in pairs, and ended the day with a scrimmage. Maria, age 10, said, “The dissection was gross, but it was cool to see!”
Other learning projects included building a lung, using a robotic arm to learn about ligaments in the hand, and studying the human heart, along with soccer, track and field, and basketball. "I had a lot of fun, and I learned the names of the parts of our respiratory system," said Elijah, age 12. “I hope they come back next summer.”
Today, we live in a global world, so it’s more important than ever for kids of all ages to have access to learning experiences and opportunities that help them see the possibilities of new horizons. REACH provides these hands-on, minds-on experiences that help open the world for them.