Step Up Day

We’re hitting a much needed rainy spell in South Dakota. We’ve been in a drought, and the rains softly falling on the fields are a sign of hope. While we are extremely grateful, it has put a damper on some of our scheduled activities here at St. Joseph’s Indian School.

Last night, our student vs. faculty softball game was rained out. With an already crowded end of the year schedule, there are no free times left for a makeup date. We also had Field Day activities planned, though many of them were able to be moved indoors.

All St. Joseph’s students gathered in the Rec Center after school on Monday for the announcement of the spring sports awards. Trophies and medals were passed out for bowling, archery, track, softball and t-ball.

Thanks to the coaches and umpires who give so generously of their time! The way some of those kids clutched their trophies I could tell it meant a lot.

In school, we had “Step Up” day.  Our Native American students spent time in the classroom they will be in next year and spent some time getting to their teacher and vice versa. Teachers reviewed some of the new materials or subjects the kids will tackle, and talking about rules and expectations.

Currently, we have one second grade class, which will be split into two as they reach third grade. The fourth graders who are moving to fifth physically move from the middle floor of the building to the top floor.

I asked them if that was going to be a big adjustment. Since they go to the top floor for library, they didn’t think it would be a big deal.

“The biggest difference,” their teacher Brock explained, “is that there are no longer bathrooms attached to the classrooms – you have to ask for a hall pass!”

I walked past the computer lab and peeked in on what the students were doing. Seventh grader Jay was playing a racing car game. When I was about to tease him and ask how that was educational, I looked closer and saw that it was actually a lesson from Nitro typing! The faster and more accurately he typed the words on the screen, the more power and speed his car had around the racetrack. There’s lots of ingenuity in the latest generation of learning games!

Author: St. Joseph's Indian School

At St. Joseph's Indian School, our privately-funded programs for Lakota (Sioux) children in need have evolved over 90 years of family partnership, experience and education. Because of generous friends who share tax-deductible donations, Native American youth receive a safe, stable home life; individual counseling and guidance; carefully planned curriculum based on Lakota culture and individual student needs and tools to help build confidence, boost self-esteem and improve cultural awareness. All of this helps children to live a bright, productive, possibility-filled future.

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