Every year, middle school students rely on a day to not worry about homework and academics but instead have fun. This year, field day activities were dramatically different because of COVID-19 safety protocols.
Normally, four different teams compete against each other during field day: orange team, black team, grey team, and red team. Each team plays a variety of activities and competes to win.
Sixth-grader Ida Chapman was very excited to experience her first field day at KO. In past field days, Ida explained that it was great to have a day to run around and work with her peers in a non-academic way. “In elementary school, we did lots of team-building activities,” she said.
This year, field day accommodated different skills students have. For example, students had the choice to play indoor or outdoor games. Some of the intellectual games consisted of Kahoot or Bingo, whereas the athletic activities included Flag Tag, Ping-Pong Basketball, and a water balloon toss.
History teacher Peter Burdge was in charge of planning field day with the help of the student government and other teachers. “The most stressful part about planning a field day was the schedule. I had to make sure that every subgroup played every game but didn’t play the same team,” he said.
Mr. Burdge also had to figure out how to create a fun field day, while also staying safe. First of all, field day was much shorter, and games like dodgeball and capture the flag were removed from the field day schedule. Also, each team was split into multiple sub-groups while playing each activity.
Additionally, it came to many students’ and teachers’ surprise that field day was even able to occur even during the pandemic. As for eighth-grader Sara Feged who played on the black team for both sixth and eighth grade, she was eager to win this year. Sara also explained that she was perfectly fine with wearing a mask. “I always have to wear a mask for my sports games so I was used to it. Plus, I know wearing the mask is for the safety of others,” she said.
Another major component of planning field day was figuring out how to include online students. Sara did not realize how hard it must have been for the student government and teachers to incorporate them and she believes that the school did a good job of giving the online students the ability to participate online. Mr. Burdge asked the online students what they would like to do for field day and if they wanted to participate.
Teachers were aware that field day was a necessity for middle school students because of how impactful a day of fun can be even during a pandemic. Students really enjoyed field day and it turned out to be successful this year.