For the past few weeks, we’ve been highlighting our AmeriCorps Coaches and learning about them, their schools, and how Playworks impacts students through the power of play. Our last Coach we would like to introduce is Allie Cutshaw. Allie was the last member to join the Coach program this year but we are so glad she did, and she is too!
“Being a Coach has really shown me how capable I am. I have always had it in the back of my mind that I wanted to work with kids and have a lasting positive influence. This role has shown me that I can do that and so much more. I hope to take the experiences, skills, and knowledge that Playworks has given me and go into social work- Playworks has really set me up for success and I am forever grateful!”
We love hearing Coaches talk about how being a Coach has set them up for success in other areas of their lives and how this experience is going to impact them in the future. It is so important to Playworks that the Coach program benefits our school partners and the students, but it is also important that we equip our Coaches with the necessary skills and experiences that will carry on in their future careers and lives for years to come. By providing this learning and professional development for our Coaches, we know our students and school partners will have a better experience as well.
“I believe that it is important for every school to have Playworks because learning how to have safe and healthy play has a direct correlation with classroom behavior/ behavior in general. If we are able to set the students up for successful play, they will have success in more aspects other than just out at recess. The skills that we teach are not only applicable at recess, but in everyday life- with enough practice and consistency you begin to see positive changes with how the students respond and hold themselves.”
Some of the skills that Coach Allie is referring to are things like conflict resolution, self regulation, leadership, safety, being inclusive, and so much more. Everyday, staff at our partner schools see changes in students from the beginning of the school year to the end.
“On our playground you now hear a lot more encouragement among the students and even teachers. Students also know their boundaries, where things are happening on our playground, the recess rules, and the consequences if they don’t follow them!”
During this series, we hope you learned a little more about Playworks’ 2021-2022 AmeriCorps members and the Coach service. If you missed any of our spotlights, click HERE to get caught up. And, if you are still interested in learning about the Coach service in other regions or applying to be a Coach for next school year, go to www.playworks.org/coach.