Playworks Milwaukee: Where do you work as a coach and what was your previous background?
Coach Mitch: My name is Mitch and I'm the Playworks Coach at Garland Elementary. For the past few years I've been PM Program Director and staff member at Cahill Playground Summer Day Camp in Whitefish Bay. In college I was a camp counselor for Camp Kesem, an organization that puts on a free one week camp for kids whos parents have or have had cancer. Finally, last year I worked at an elementary school in Illinios as a special education aide.
PM: What drew you to being a coach with Playworks?
CM: I love working with kids and making a positive impact on their lives. The games are an added bonus because I've been involved with sports my whole life.
PM: What are some highlights of your first month as a Playworks Coach?
CM: Helping out with the school dance, working with my Junior Coaches, assisting with my schools volleyball team and having my own after school program.
PM: Could you outline your super-creative approach to your after school program (ASP)?
CM: In college I was a foreign language major and was lucky enough to have studied and travel abroad. While traveling I saw the importance of learning about other cultures and traditions. The goal of my ASP is to share some of this knowledge with the kids through sports and physical activities. I want to get them excited about the world! I do this through games some of which they definitely know like soccer, and others I'm sure they've never heard about like Gaelic Football. Each sport or recess game has its own individual unit lasting from a few days to three weeks. Within each unit I try and teach the kids who plays this game, where it's played, where the game came from, and some of the advanced skills used in the game. I do this through trivia questions, mini history lessons and activities in the gym. My goal is to teach them something new and exciting everyday, both physically and academically.
PM: Any other details you would like to share with us?
CM: I love Playworks!