Students prepare for LEAP testing in way that’s fun

Mary-Glenn Smith
Rudy award winner and guest speaker, Calob Leindecker, left, helped present LEAP Oylmpics medals to students, along with friend, Jake Lefeaux, both of Parkview Baptist School.

Students at G.W. Carver Primary school enjoyed a day off from their normal routine school day Friday.

Instead of the everyday school work, 3rd, 4th and 5th graders spent the day preparing for the upcoming iLEAP and LEAP at the 5th annual LEAP Olympics event.

“We have been preparing for the LEAP test since the beginning of the school year and the LEAP Olympics is a good way for students to practice for the test while having fun,” said thrid grade teacher, Natalie McKinney.

The all-day event was centered on the Olympic theme, complete with an Olympic torch, opening and closing ceremonies, and  medals for the competition winners.

The event was based on skills the students will be tested on by the state-wide iLEAP and LEAP assessment tests on April 12-14.  Students were grouped into small groups and each group participated in each of the “Olympic events.”

Events included: “Jeopardy,” “Who Wants to be a Millionaire,” math, science and social studies constructed response and multiple choice, graph matching, place value matching, spelling, language, and using informational resources. The events stations were run by teachers, parents and students from East Ascension High School who aspire to be teachers.

The event began at 8 a.m. with the lighting of the LEAP Olympics torch and the Pledge of Allegiance.

Also during the opening ceremonies, Principal Barbara Guthrie presented a motivational speech to help inspire the students to do their best in school and in life.

The day ended with the LEAP Olympics closing ceremonies, where all students were awarded certificates for their participation.

 Gold, silver, and bronze medals were awarded for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places in each grade.  A sportsmanship award was also given for the grade level team that displayed a good attitude in competing in all of the events throughout the day.

Calob Leindecker was the special guest speaker at the LEAP Olympics closing ceremonies. Leindecker, a senior football player at Parkview Baptist School spoke to G.W Carver students about working hard to achieve their goals and dreams.

In 2008 Leindecker was injured in a vehicle accident that left him with a crushed leg. His left leg was so badly injured that it had to be amputated.

After 13 surgeries and 20 different prosthetic legs, and only one season off from football, Leindecker returned to his position as corner back, defensive back and wide receiver on the field with a prosthetic leg.  Leindecker is the recipient of the 2010 High School Rudy award. The Rudy Award is an national award that honors and rewards inspirational football players who best define character, courage, contribution and commitment.

“It’s great to have the opportunity to talk to kids and give them inspiration to never quit,” Leindecker said. “I wish I would have had that mentality when I was their age.”