BC PICKLEBALL GOES TO EATON ARROWSMITH SCHOOL
FOR THE HARD OF LEARNING KIDS
On the afternoon of April 14 , a group of 20 students and 6 teachers could be seen walking down 16th Ave in White Rock on their way to Centennial park where two BC Pickleball executive
members were waiting for them , having removed residual water from the night before’s rain, set up four portable sets on one tennis court, with a practice board , two chairs, paddles and balls, ready for the arrival of the students. However , the staff took the students first to a running track and ran them around the quarter mile track adjacent to the pickleball courts to burn off some energy so their concentration would be better during the 2 hr class time on the courts. You see, all these kids have learning disabilities and are restructured and sent back into the school system.
That is what Eaton Arrowsmith does. They also have a school in Victoria.
The standard level 1 course was taught in the two hour period with a few minor omissions. The kids learned to do forehands, backhands, use the practice board 1 on1 or 2 on 2 etc , serve, count, position, do short game rallys , lob and slam the ball. There were no injuries and after starting to play a game, they all seemed to be having fun and at the same time learning a new sport. I was very impressed at how respectful the children were , how they related well to their teachers who participated in the exercises with them . Emily Cooper the Principal was very good at keeping order
and she also participated with the students on the courts. This example of staff is very important in student learning. Also I observed on several occasions that some small and short students were helping other bigger and taller students who were having difficulty with a skill set . This was very good.
So, although we may have thought they were not learning as quickly as we might like, in fact they were learning lots – from each other. In summary, I would say that I was pleased at our first experience with Pickleball as a social, recreational, family sport for these children – with a touch of competition ( as there is a score eh ) . We hope the staff will repeat the experience for them before they forget what they learned. My thanks go to Bill Macgregor – President of the Canadian Pickleball Federation for his help and all the staff of Eaton Arrowsmith for their enthusiasm, participation and Questions. Our next teaching effort will be with St Anthony’s in West Vancouver and BC Society for the Deaf who wish instruction and an event – stay tuned.
Yours in sport and Health,
ph – 604-536-9602