News: Elementary school students take to the skies, experience kite flying
Story by Sgt. Quentin Johnson
FORT HOOD, Texas – More than 75 third-grade students from Oveta Culp Hobby Elementary School took part in afternoon of kite flying here, April 25, in celebration of National Kite Month.
National Kite Month is a celebration to introduce people to the joys of flying kites, its artistry, history and educational use, according to www.nationalkitemonth.org and the American Kitefliers Association.
Third-grade teacher, Janice Huckabee, said she came up with the idea of kite day to help students relax, have fun, develop math skills and celebrate National Kite Month. A tradition she has embraced during the last few years of her career.
“I started this tradition years ago when teaching fifth grade,” Huckabee said. “I found it was a great stress relief for students; a break they needed after days of the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness testing.”
Kite day wasn’t just a day for students to relax, but an experience for those who never flown a kite, she added. It wouldn’t be a school event if learning weren’t included to the fun.
“With kite day [the students] will have fun, and enjoy math activities based off of their personal kites such as learning graphs, perimeters and other mathematical rules,” Huckabee said.
Huckabee said the event was well received not just by the students but her co-workers as well.
“All four third-grade teachers were very supportive of the idea, as was the schools leadership,” Huckabee continued.
Third-grader, Jayden Miller, 9, son of Jessica Miller, an OCHES counselor, said the day was “pretty cool.” Although he has flown kites in the past, he never enjoyed a kite day in school.
“My favorite part is getting the kite as high as I can and making it do tricks,” Jayden said. “I hope we do this every year after STARR testing.”
Kathryn Cielonko, a student teacher with the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, Texas, said the experience was great for the students and her as well, as she may incorporate similar ideas into her future classroom.
“I thought the experience was great for the students,” Cielonko said. “They definitely learned that even though things [kite flying] don’t always go your way, you could still have fun and make the most of it.”
Huckabee said she is already planning for next year and wants to see this as an annual event.