Activities Beyond the Classroom strives to provide every child who attends Cincinnati Public Schools should access to athletic programming including our elementary school students. We strongly believes that introducing elementary aged students to athletics at a younger age helps them to develop critical skills both on and off the field.
Soccer is a sport that is played worldwide reaching across cultural and language barriers, allowing students from various backgrounds, skill levels and physical compositions to work to achieve a common goal. In this program, ABC partners with members of the community to teach students the basics of soccer while allowing them to participate in a team sport. Students have multiple practices each week, where they learn and work on the basic rules and concepts of the sport. Students then compete against teams from other schools, during a brief season.
ABC partners with numerous community partners to deliver this program to students completely free of charge, providing all equipment and transportation the students will need. In addition, professional athletes from FC Cincinnati, participate in the activities encouraging students to pursue their physical talents.
Last year, ABC’s youth soccer program was offered at to over 1,500 elementary students at 23 CPS schools.
ABC partners with Cross Country For Youth to offer Cincinnati Public School students the opportunity to participate in a team sport, which requires the discipline to compete as an individual. Founded by cross country legend Reggie McAfee, Cross Country For Youth is an organization that teaches character while instilling healthy habits in school-aged children. In the fall of 2019, ABC partnered with McAfee to bring his amazing program to students at Cincinnati Public Schools.
The core focus of Cross County for Youth is not running, it’s character building. Cross Country For Youth created a 10-week curriculum and fitness regimen, students focuses on instilling strong character traits, such as discipline and focus. Students met two times a week to practice their newly learned skills. Each 90-minute session includes 30 minutes of classroom instruction in the areas of character building and nutrition, and 60 minutes of distance running.
In the fall of 2021, over 200 students from six CPS elementary schools participated in the cross country program. The season culminated with a meet at Withrow High School, held on October 27, 2021. Students gathered and ran through a carefully crafted course, at the back of Withrow High School’s athletic complex, in front of a crowd of over 300 parents and supporters.
Partnering with Five White Tigers Martial Arts allows us to offer Cincinnati Public School students an opportunity to learn self-defense and personal awareness. Each year a number of CPS students are invited to participate in an annual district-wide martial arts tournament. Student who participate in Martial Arts are taught three core values. Learning these core values improves students’ performance and behavior inside and outside of the classroom.
ABC is excited to offer students who live in close proximity to Mt. Airy and Hartwell Elementary the opportunity to participate in the sport, even if they do not attend classes at the aforementioned schools. We are also inviting our legacy students, older students who were formerly involved in our Martial Arts programming, to participate at these locations.
The sport of tennis is a great way to teach both physical and mental toughness to elementary-aged students. Tennis teaches students to be resilient and agile both on and off the court. The use of modified equipment allows us to turn any flat surface into a tennis court. Often considered an elite sport, our goal is to place a tennis racket in the hands of every student in the Cincinnati area. Tennis programming is offered both during the school day in gym class and through after school tennis clubs.
Learning to swim at a young age can provide a variety of physical benefits including enhanced motor skills. It is also the only sport that is considered life-saving, as learning to swim can help prevent accidental drowning (in the Cincinnati area, drowning is the #1 cause of death for children under 5).
In its pilot year of ABC’s Swimming Program, 30 students at Taft Elementary were taught water safety skills and how to tread water. During the 2018-2019 school year the program expanded to teach various strokes and was offered to 130 CPS students.
ABC’s Swimming For Safety program was forced to pause in the 2019-2020 school year for the COVID pandemic. After going on hiatus for the past two years for a reorganization, ABC plans to have the program return in 2023.