My students need table tennis for sport, recreation & community building.
Poverty has many negative effects on teenagers. High risk students need activities, such as table tennis, to keep them away from harmful pastimes.
The students who attend my school are from an impoverished, high risk neighborhood.
They face gang problems and poverty every day. 95% of the students who attend my school are Latino, and 80% of them qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. Despite the odds against them, students are highly respectful and motivated to make something of themselves. They attend a charter school that encourages them to be the first in their family to attend college. The school has the highest high school graduation rate of Latino students in all of its county! Their school even provides individual mentors for seniors to help them apply for scholarships and register for their freshman year of college classes.
My school is a small charter school where everyone knows each others' names. Community and relationship building is very important, especially with my students demographics. By teachers bonding with students and students bonding together, students are more excited to attend school and are more comfortable with teachers. Our school does this in a variety of ways, but one of the main one is sports! At lunch, during break, before and after school, students are playing sports to stay fit and to be occupied. We have a ping pong table at my school that gets played on every single day; it's worn out. The simple act of playing table tennis has an enormous positive effect on my school. Students love playing with teachers and each other. We have tournaments and usually half the school turns out to watch. A new table will keep students off the streets and in school. Students will get exercise and keep adding to the camaraderie that defines my school's culture.
Students from low socioeconomic, high risk neighborhoods need school.
It's sad, often we have to tell students to leave the building and go home because school's closing. Many students will stay for hours after school go out because they want to stay and play. Getting a new ping pong table will help keep students where we want them to be, at school and off the streets. You would be amazed at positive effects of a new ping pong table.
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