Students Work for Healthy Hearts

The John F. Kennedy Intermediate School joined the efforts of the American Heart Association (AHA) to raise funds for the organization while promoting a healthy lifestyle for students. Since 2006 the school has participated in the “Jump Rope for Heart” and “Hoops for Heart” community service programs, which support life-saving research for heart and blood vessel diseases and stroke.

During their physical education classes, students were educated on AHA research, which shows that the habits and choices developed in childhood directly influence whether or not a person develops heart disease later in life. Reducing the risk of many forms of heart disease can be as easy as maintaining a regular exercise routine.
Motivated by the health statistics, physical education teachers designated two weeks in January to help students learn about the importance of heart-healthy exercise. All students participated and became active in aerobic activities, which included Skip-Its, hula hoops, swing bars, straight bar ropes, jump ropes, long ropes, hopscotch and jumping lines. Through the generous sponsorship of students’ family members and friends, the school was able to raise more than $16,000 for the AHA and its mission. This year the school donated in honor of fifth-grade teacher Dennis Maffei who suffered a heart attack this winter.