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Tag Archive | "Grand Valley State University"

Jingle bell run/walk for arthritis 


Arthritis Foundation honors 7-year-old who has arthritis 


Named one of the nation’s “Most Incredible Themed Races,” the Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis will be held on Saturday, December 13, 2014, at 9 a.m. at the Grand Valley State University Eberhard Center, 301 West Fulton Street, EC210, in Grand Rapids . More than 1,000 participants are expected.

Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis raises funds to fight and cure arthritis, the nation’s leading cause of disability. Participants dress in holiday-themed costumes and tie jingle bells to their shoes creating a fun and festive atmosphere. This family-friendly event includes a competitively timed 5K run with walk option, 1K kids’ Snowman Shuffle, prizes for best costume and top fundraisers, and medals for the best run times in 13 age categories. Entry fees are $30 for the run/walk and $12 for the kid’s Snowman Shuffle. All proceeds support the Arthritis Foundation’s programs, services and research.

Register by going to www.Arthritis.org/Michigan or calling (855) 529-2728.

Arthritis is a serious disease that causes slow and painful deterioration of the body’s joints. Often mischaracterized as an “old person’s” disease, arthritis affects more than 50 million Americans, including 300,000 kids. In Michigan, more than 2.3 million adults and 10,300 children have arthritis—that’s 31 percent of the population!

Owen Barrett is a 7-year-old from Walker. When he was 3-years-old, he developed a recurring rash that was misdiagnosed several times. Owen was referred to a pediatric rheumatologist who accurately diagnosed him with juvenile idiopathic arthritis. The doctor said he had active inflammation in every joint he checked and that he probably had arthritis since birth.

“My husband and I were shocked,” said Aimee Barrett, Owen’s mom. “Owen never complained of pain. Not once. The doctor explained that most kids who have arthritis don’t know a life without pain, so they don’t know to complain about it. Pain is their norm. It broke my heart.”

“We hope for Owen, when he has his own children, that he can tell them, ‘I had arthritis as a child, but they found a cure,’” said Aimee. “And we hope to make so much noise about this disease that people aren’t shocked when I tell them, ‘My son has arthritis. He’s only 7-years-old.’”

For more info on the Jingle Bell Run/Walk or to register you can visit jinglebellrungrandrapids.kintera.org/faf/home/default.asp?ievent=1121965


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Olympic athlete visits Cedar Teams

Middle school and high school track teams

Middle school and high school track teams

Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein

Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein

Track and field athletes in Cedar Springs got a real treat last week. Middle school as well as high school athletes gathered to listen to advice from a world-class athlete—three-time Olympian Dathan Ritzenhein. The runner visited Cedar Springs to speak to the teams and join them on a run around the campus.

Ritzenhein, who graduated from Rockford High School in 1991 and set several state and national records, explained to the students the importance of working hard. “When I was starting with running, I was not that good. I was a middle-of-the-pack runner,” he said.

Times change. His career has taken him through college and into professional distance racing where he has represented the United States in three Olympic Games. Ritzenhein said he enjoys seeing the passion the younger runners have for the sport.

Middle school track runner Sarah Martin said, “I thought it was interesting what he shared about working hard and seeing the payoff.”

Cedar Springs athletes running on campus

Cedar Springs athletes running on campus

While Ritzenhein said he had benefited from hard athletic work in school, he advised the runners to try to enjoy their time as students. “Just enjoying the time in school is important,” he said. “You have to build those close friendships and don’t lose sight of the lessons you learn here.”

The Grand Rapids Press reported that Ritzenhein would soon be moving his family back to West Michigan, from Oregon, and will serve as assistant coach to runners at Grand Valley State University.


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Youth wrestlers finish strong


On Sunday, March 2, Grand Valley State University hosted one of the last two regular season tournaments at the campus field house. Competition was fierce, as over 600 wrestlers from all over the state of Michigan attended. Seven Red Hawk youth wrestlers brought home medals.

First place finishers were Caleigh Wood at 37lb in the 5/6 age group, Tommy Stevens at 6lb in the 7/8 age group and Allexis Gonzales at 122 pounds in the 13/15 age group.

Second place finishers were Pistachio Gonzales at 55lb in the 5/6 age group and Wyatt Cooper at 82 lbs in the 7/8 age group.

Third place finishers were Carter Falan at 80 lb in the 9/10 age group and Gage Gardner at 145 lb in the 13-15 age group.

On March 9, 10 wrestlers won medals at the last regular season tournament hosted by Cedar’s backyard rivals, Rockford.

First place winners were Veronica Tapia at 37lb in the 5/6 age group, Pistachio Gonzales at 58lb in the 5/6 age group, Tommy Stevens at 58lb in the 7/8 age group and Landon Demorest at 51lb in the 9/10 age group.

Chase Sarniak took second at 46lb in the 5/6 age group.

Third place finishers were Caleigh Wood at 37lb in the 5/6 age, Wyatt Cooper at 82lb in the 7/8 age group, Lane Wiggins-Russo at 112 in the 7/8 age group, Aiden Bowens at 95lb in the 9/10 age group, and Sergei Byxbe in the 110 pound 9/10 age group.

These youth wrestlers spent the last three months conditioning and competing at developmental tournaments in preparation for MYWAY regionals and state finals. Regionals were held March 15-16  at Kenowa Hills. MYWAY state finals will be held at the Kellogg Arena in Battle Creek,  Michigan on March 28- March 30. Be sure to check next week’s Post to see which of your favorite Red Hawk wrestlers placed at Regionals and will be going to State Finals. Anyone wishing to attend state finals may get information online at www.cedarspringsyouthwrestling.com or www.mywaywrestling.com


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Emmorey earns All-American honors

Grand Valley State University senior Tyler Emmorey, a 2007 Cedar Springs graduate, finished eighth in the 5,000 meter run last weekend, to earn United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) All-American honors, crossing the line in a time of 14:28.66. It is his fourth All-American honor overall and his first All-American honor during indoor track season.

Lake Superior State University freshman Justin Balczak (Cedar Springs class of 2011) also competed last weekend in the NCAA Division II National Indoor Track and Field Finals. He took second in the high jump, fifth in the 60-meter hurdles, sixth in the long jump and 10th in the heptathlon.


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CTA Middle School Language Arts to participate in collaborative research with GVSU professor

Dr. Elizabeth Stolle

Ms. Jenny Yonkman

Dr. Elizabeth Petroelje Stolle, a reading professor in the College of Education at Grand Valley State University, is collaborating with Ms. Jenny Yonkman’s sixth grade students at Creative Technologies Academy and Ms. Lisa Campbell’s students of Cross Creek Charter Academy on an exciting opportunity. Ms. Yonkman, Ms. Campbell, and Dr. Stolle have been working on this collaborative project for three years now, connecting adolescent readers around texts through online discussions. The project will continue in January and February of 2012 as the students read and discuss the novel, Phantom Tollbooth.
It was important to the three educators that they establish a project that is beneficial to all involved. In that way, Ms. Yonkman, Ms. Campbell, and Dr. Stolle have established clear goals for the students within the project and have collaborated extensively to insure that their goals will be met. The hope is that the sixth grade students will: (1) experience honest talk about texts, that is, that students can share their ideas and opinions about the novel; (2) understand the various aspects of communication, that is, students come to experience how audience and purpose play important roles in the ways by which we write and communicate; and (3) make a true connection to their reading and writing as they engage in an authentic reading and writing experience.
With these established goals, the sixth graders will be placed into groups and asked to communicate online for four weeks discussing the chosen novel. In the discussions, all individuals will be responsible for framing discussion questions, sharing insights and ideas, and exploring the text in terms of language use, theme, etc. During this time, the sixth grade students will access an educational website, nicenet.org, in order to post responses, questions, and reactions to the text. Nicenet.org is a secure site where only our students will have access to the discussions by using usernames and passwords. Therefore, each student will be issued a username and password to this project’s discussion board only. With that, all posts will be monitored by Ms. Yonkman, Ms. Campbell, and Dr. Stolle. Usernames and passwords will be made available to the parents of students, as well so they can see the exciting discussions unfold. Data will be collected through both the online discussions and classroom observations.
Participation in this study is voluntary and will not influence student grades or their standing at school.  If a student chooses not to participate or to withdraw from the study at any time, there will be no penalty. All collected data will be coded and name and identity will be removed. The results of the research study may be published, but student names will not be used to protect confidentiality. There are no direct benefits from participating in this study other than the benefits of adding to the knowledge base regarding online discussions and 21st century literacy skills.
All data collected through the online discussions will only be accessible to the researcher with a password.  All online discussion interactions and threads will be saved to an external harddrive at the end of the four weeks. Dr. Stolle will code all names on the online discussion transcripts and the written observations.  After three years all data will be deleted, keeping student confidentiality.
CTA is pleased to work with Dr. Stolle once more in research to improve middle school language arts instruction and enhance student reading experiences.  Plans are underway to expand collaboration with Dr. Stolle to the high school language arts in the near future.

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