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WVU Parkersburg students create ‘sensory pathways’ for Criss and Franklin Elementaries

Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 4:12 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) -Kids at Criss and Franklin Elementary Schools can be seen hopping, skipping and jumping across what are called sensory pathways, thanks to WVU Parkersburg’s Kappa Delta Pi.

Members of this education honor society painted these pathways after collaborating with 5th grade Criss Elementary teacher Terri Keiser.

“We did this because we wanted them to work on fine motor skills, balance, and just a way to get some energy off of their chest. I chose a lot of stencils that kind of hit all of the grade levels,” Keiser said.

“Anywhere from counting from 1 to 100, the alphabet, counting by 5s. And then for the 5th graders, it’s more like jumping and using your hands and things like that.”

The kids at Criss Elementary are doing that while also working on their math and spelling skills. Fifth-grader Ashton Spears shares that this apple tree full of letters allows kids to improve their balance and spelling skills.

“It’s important because, especially for the younger kids, they can learn how to do their ABCs and counting and for us, you can do muscle memory with that,” Spears said.

Over at Franklin Elementary, Pre-K teacher Christina Hinkle says having these pathways will come in handy once her students are ready to pick up the books.

“There’s such a connection between being able to have the coordination and the balance and reading,” Hinkle said.

“You have to be able to get your whole body organized before you’re going to be able to focus on just your eyes and hands and go to the smaller muscles of the body.”

This project was funded by the SNAP-Ed grant, which aims to educate families on healthy choices and promotes active lifestyles…something that these kids are already practicing every day at school.

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