Families find walk to school fun and a good time to talk
Posted: October 4, 2012
The Winchester Star
WINCHESTER — Heather Wilson finds that walking and talking go hand-in-hand.
During family jaunts, Wilson and her 6-year-old daughter, Brie, talk about homework, school life and how to treat other people.
“I love walking,” Brie said.
On Wednesday, she and her mother were among about 100 John Kerr Elementary School students, staff and parents who participated in International Walk and Bike to School Day and Virginia Walk to School Day — initiatives to get students out of the car and onto the sidewalks.
“We have good family time,” Wilson said. “The world is busy. This gives us quiet time.”
Wednesday’s walk began at 7:10 a.m. behind Handley High School. The group traveled up the hill behind the school, across Tennyson Avenue and down Harper Drive to John Kerr.
“[Walking] promotes physical fitness, it’s good for our environment, and it also provides great family time,” Principal Nan Bryant said.
Wednesday’s event marks the beginning of a yearlong initiative called Walking Wednesdays to encourage John Kerr families to set aside at least one day a week to take a stroll as a family.
Parent Natalie Gerometta said walking to school brings staff, parents and students closer.
“It’s an opportunity to socialize,” she said. “It’s about building those connections.”
Gerometta added that children are likely to chat more during physical activities like walking.
“It’s fun,” said 7-year-old Carter Gerometta. “I like seeing my friends.”
Megan Shickle walks to John Kerr most mornings with her son. It is one of the reasons she wants a replacement school — the division is exploring options for replacing the facility — built on the same site.
“It’s very important,” she said. “It makes it a neighborhood school.”
Students at Berryville Primary also joined forces Wednesday to walk to school. They started at John H. Enders Fire Company and traveled down Main Street.
— Contact Rebecca Layne at firstname.lastname@example.org