Salute Our Heroes: Kelly Guindon brings fitness enthusiasm to students

North Fairview Elementary students are rolling their way towards a healthy and active lifestyle thanks in part to their physical education teacher, Kelly Guindo
Published: Dec. 14, 2021 at 8:32 AM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - North Fairview Elementary students are rolling their way towards a healthy and active lifestyle thanks in part to their physical education teacher, Kelly Guindon.

Guindon offers unique activities in her gym classes like roller skating, bowling and cup stacking.

“I just get so much joy out of being on my feet and seeing students come in and ready to be active and be like ‘what’s next? what are we doing today?’”

Two of her five years of teaching have been spent in the pandemic but she believes it’s her students’ resilience that wheels in her love of the job.

“I had a student come up to me and say, ‘Mrs. Guindon, I finally found my hidden talent’ and I said ‚“what’s that bud?’ and he said ‘it’s roller skating’,” she recalled.

“Things like that really make me feel good inside, those are those ‘A-ha’ moments and that’s what makes it all worth it.”

She values showing students how mental wellness is just as important as physical activity for maintaining a healthy life.

“During planning time, I talk to students, our counselor and see how to help out with certain students who might be struggling, but really it’s truly important to get them on their level and meet them where they’re at,” she said.

“They could’ve had a rough morning or not gotten enough sleep so really to not be hard on those students and help guide them along each day.”

“Seeing students’ excitement about fitness is what will keep her rolling throughout her career.

“It really does make me happy, my cheeks hurt at the end of the day watching the kiddos have so much fun it brings them so much joy,” she said.

“It’s a lot of work up front but every teacher puts in a lot of work and that’s what makes it worth it.”

Outside of working to keep gym class unique, Guindon helps run wellness nights for families in the district, summer camps and also organized a voting group for the school’s staff.

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