Coach Hannah is a second-year AmeriCorps member at Balsz Elementary School in Phoenix, AZ. A true superstar, Coach Hannah is seen not only as a Playworks Coach but as an essential Balsz staff member who integrates herself into the school day . . . and beyond!
This term, Coach Hannah took on the task of revamping two recess spaces so that they could run simultaneously with roughly 200 1st and 2nd graders at a time. By utilizing her Class Game Times, she was able to set clear expectations for the changes that were made this school year and ensure that the transition would continue to promote Playworks Core Values of inclusion and healthy play. When visiting this particular recess, things are always running smoothly, core games are present, and everyone is engaged in play!
Inclusion, however, continues to guide this coach’s role at Balsz Elementary. Recognizing that more boys were playing soccer than girls, Coach Hannah spearheaded a 6v6 soccer tournament in which one of the requirements was to have a minimum of three girls per team. She not only had girls and boys sign up but 7 full teams sign up to participate. The tournament was a huge success and Balsz students cannot wait for the next one!
Additionally, Coach Hannah is working closely with 6th grade Junior Coach alumni at the request of 6th grade teachers who want to keep JC’s on the right track. With no hesitation, Hannah was willing to continue mentoring them even though the program is usually only for 4th and 5th graders. She is in the process of coordinating with these alumni to assist during 6th-8th grade recess. A champion beyond the playground, Coach Hannah is soon embarking on the trip of a lifetime with Balsz students to the Grand Canyon.
Throughout the month of October, Coach Hannah has exemplified a positive, team-player attitude and has demonstrated a natural willingness to always lend a helping hand. We are proud to honor Coach Hannah in leading our movement to #EnergizeAZ.