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RU Ready to Bowl?!

students bowling

RPS 205 had the pleasure of partnering with the Rockford Park District's Therapeutic Recreation and Rockford University for an inaugural event, RU Ready to Bowl?!

The event was created, organized, and implemented by eight Rockford University students in Professor Tammy Schiek’s Methods of Teaching Adaptive Physical Education course. A big part of what students learn in this course is how to modify recreational activities for students who are impacted by their disability. And what better way to put this into practice than by creating an actual event for students with special needs? That is exactly what this class of future PE teachers decided they would do.

Special education students in the PLUS Program from Auburn and East high schools came out for a fun day of bowling at Don Carter Lanes; meanwhile, the students from RU got hands-on experience running a recreational activity for these students and their individual needs.

“My intent was to provide my students with an authentic learning experience allowing them to put theory into practice,” said Tammy Schiek, assistant professor of kinesiology at Rockford University. “In the spirit of teamwork, this was a remarkable, collaborative effort among Rockford University, the Rockford Park District, Rockford Public Schools and Don Carter Lanes.”

“This was a great event to get the community involved and served as a stepping stone to future collaboration among various community agencies,” said RU graduate student Jon Kaifesh.

RU Ready to Bowl?! was such a success that Professor Schiek said she hopes this inaugural event becomes an annual occurrence.

The sheer joy on participants’ faces was priceless. We are so appreciative of everyone’s contributions and look forward to it in 2023. 

Professor Schiek

Rockford University students also expressed their excitement over what a great learning opportunity the event turned out to be.

“It was an extraordinary event,” said RU student Matt Seger. “There is no replacement for real world experience, and that is what this project offered. It allowed us to apply what we learned in the classroom and bring it to life. The enjoyment of the event was shared not only by the students of East High School and Auburn High School, but by the RU students as well.”

On behalf of Rockford Public Schools, we would like to thank the Rockford Park District for their collaboration on this event, Don Carter Lanes for hosting, and Rockford University’s Professor Schiek's Adaptive PE class for creating this inclusive event for our special education students. The smiles on their faces that day will be something that will be hard to forget!


Jordan Hagerman headshot

Jordan Hagerman

Jordan Hagerman was born and raised in Rockford. She obtained her degree in elementary and special education at Lewis University in 2009. This is her 14th year working in RPS 205. Jordan started as a special education teacher at Guilford High School and has been serving as the Special Education Academy Coach for the last four years.

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