Playworks Utah is honoring Brooks Burr of Riley Elementary for outstanding service this month. As an AmeriCorps member, Coach Burr has beeen instrumental in supporting positive change at his school all year. He recently put out a call for honorary third grade Junior Coaches, prompting nearly every single third grader to apply. Such is the popularity of the program and the honor of being a Junior Coach. Here’s what Coach Burr has to say…
“I am from Springville, Utah. I graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Recreation Management and minored in Nonprofit Management. I have spent time working in city recreation, residential treatment, as a PE teacher, and for the state of Utah as a foster care worker.
I was interested in working for Playworks because I love to be around kids. Working with children helps me to stay connected with my inner child, to not take life so seriously and enjoy the little things. I feel that I can be a positive role model to children who may not have such examples in their lives.
What I am the most proud of at my school is the high level of participation in organized games present at our recesses. It is wonderful to see the playground (depending on the day) overflowing with organized activities throughout. Four Square was a game that did not exist on our playground when the school year started. Now that it has been introduced, the game is incredibly popular.
I have recently expanded the Junior Coach Program to include our third graders. The grade level seemed to be in need of some leadership amongst individual classes. It has been great to see how serious these new Junior Coaches take this responsibility. They have encouraged their classmates to play in a more healthy manner while at recess, and have demonstrated more leadership within the classroom.
As an AmeriCorps member, I enjoy the feeling of being apart of a greater movement to improve and serve in our communities, making our world a better place.”