First-grader Hannah Abbinanti and second-grader Ben Abbinanti participate in the Whipped Cream Challenge.
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LITTLETON — Shaker Lane and Russell Street elementary schools recently held weeklong Virtual Field Days. Students at both schools had a week to complete as many or as few of the Field Day activities as they were able to fit into their schedule. All students were encouraged to complete the activities outside in the fresh air and sunshine.

“Field Day is one of the more memorable days during the school year and an occasion all of our students look forward to,” Superintendent of Schools Kelly Clenchy. “Our staff was adamant about not wanting our students to miss out on this day just because students were not at school. Instead, we decided to bring Field Day to them and allow each student and their family to virtually partake in an array of activities.”

Fourth-grader Jaxon Liles does sit-ups during a Field Day activity.

Alexa Carlson, a Physical Education teacher at Russell Street School, along with long-term Physical Education substitute Sydney Wood and Shaker Lane Unified Arts teacher Ann Brazinski, organized the events and created fun activities students could do alone, with siblings or as a family while at home. First-grade teacher Rebecca Roper helped organize the activities for Shaker Lane and was involved in recruiting teachers to make videos for each station.

Before the event, letters were sent to inform families of the events and provide a list of possible materials they may wish to gather for some of the games and activities.To kick off the first day of activities, both schools created “opening ceremony” videos. Shaker Lane’s video featured teachers and staff passing a torch, similar to the Olympic Games, while the Olympics theme song played. The video ended with Principal Michelle Kane holding a sign that stated “Let the games begin!”

Russell Street also hosted opening ceremonies with a creative video of their own featuring teachers.

Third-grader Sara Kerrigan rides her skateboard as part of a Virtual Field Day.

Virtual Field Day events consisted of a list of “minute to win it” activities that were flexible enough for students and families to replicate in their homes. Families were encouraged to be as creative as possible and improvise to make use of items around their home rather than purchasing anything for the activities. Many of the games require minimal or no materials.

Teachers at both schools signed up to host different activities and created video demonstrations for each virtual activity. The video links were uploaded to a matrix board that was shared with families on opening day.

“The teachers and staff at Shaker Lane and Russell Street schools are very grateful for the support they’ve received from parents and families, not just to make the Virtual Field Day possible, but also to make all remote learning possible these last 11 weeks,” said Carlson.

Families were invited to share any videos or photos of students participating in this year’s Virtual Field Day. Submitted photos and video clips will be compiled by staff into a slide show that was available to view on the last day of school.

“All of our activities are family-friendly and meant to engage our students using as little materials as possible,” Brazinski said.