School Spotlight: Crest View Elementary Students Try Cross Country Skiing
A partnership between Osseo Area Schools and the Loppet Foundation is giving more kids the chance to try out cross country skiing.
On Loppet’s website, it explains that its Minne-Loppet program teaches some Minneapolis and Osseo kids skiing skills on school grounds. All that practice leads up to a race in February.
On Wednesday, Jan. 10, some Osseo Area Schools kids got a chance to try out Theodore Wirth’s loops a month early. Like any winter sport, in skiing it can take some time to find your footing.
“I am learning about how it’s really hard to ski. So we’re going to be falling down,” one kid said. “It’s really fun!”
Students from Crest View Elementary told us they are learning the challenge firsthand.
“Kids have been practicing at school on the gym floor mats,” said Kaitlyn Leininger, a teacher at Crest View. “This is the first time they are on snow, skiing this winter.”
Leininger teaches third grade. She said it has been a joy to watch the students, many of whom have never strapped into ski boots before.
“Academics are one part of school, but being out in the community and watching them try something new for the first time… it melts my heart. It’s exciting. It’s fun,” Leininger said.
A Diverse Mission
The Loppet Foundation strives to teach kids of all backgrounds to love the outdoors in all its elements. To do that, it partners with schools that have most of its population qualifying for free or reduced lunches.
“At Crest View especially, but in our whole district, we are working to get these kids out into new experiences and trying something new that is not in their norm,” Leininger said.
On the course, kids were certainly embracing the elements. Tycell Page, a fourth grader at Crest View, said this was his first time out there.
“Mostly, I’m just here to have fun. Nothing else!” Tycell said.
It was fourth grader Daleyva Vargas’ first time skiing, too. She said she hopes to come out again with her family.
“A little bit hard, but it’s kind of fun,” Daleyva said.
Through every stride and stumble, kids are taking a new skill home. Its a different kind of field trip, but its no less valuable.
“Being out here is learning! They are learning to put skis on, say ‘Excuse me’ when they are on skis. So, lots of learning opportunities when they are out here,” Leininger said.