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Learning to teach

FDSH students get to try out coaching methods with Riverside kids

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
Nelson Cone, 17, a junior at Fort Dodge Senior High, gets to enjoy the experience of being a human basketball hoop Wednesday afternoon while working with Riverside Early Learning Center preschooler Deklen Crossett.

Some of the students at Riverside Early Learning Center got new teachers Wednesday afternoon.

At least for a little while.

The new instructors were Fort Dodge Senior High School students, all members of the Iowa Central Tech and Theories Coaching Class, along with their own teacher, Andi Adams.

“They’ve been studying kinesiology,” she said. “They had to develop a lesson plan using all sorts of balls.”

They went all out: basketballs, footballs, tennis balls, wiffle balls, ping pong balls and soft foam balls.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
Sophia Klinger, 16, a junior at Fort Dodge Senior High, greets some of the preschool students she and her classmates were working with at Riverside Early Leaning Center Wednesday afternoon.

Nelson Cone, 17, a senior, was working with preschooler Deklen Crossett on his basketball skills: dribbling, passing and shooting a basket.

There wasn’t actually a basket in the classroom, so Cone improvised. He formed one with his arms.

“It’s pretty fun,” he said. “It’s exciting for the kids.”

He’s interested in eventually coaching.

“Hopefully baseball,” he said.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
Addilynn Fogelman, wearing a full-size batting helmet, works on her ball tossing skills Wednesday afternoon at Riverside Early Learning Center.

He liked watching the younger students learning.

“It’s really fun to see them develop,” Cone said. “They can learn a lot from even small things.”

Sophia Klinger, 16, a junior, cracked a big smile when her group of classmates arrived at the classroom door. Several of the younger students welcomed the group.

“I’m going to be working with them on dribbling and throwing a basketball,” Klinger said. “It’s going to be kind of hard, I didn’t even play basketball. It will be fun for them.”

She wasn’t sure if teaching or coaching was going to be in her future.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
Riverside Early Learning Center preschool student Blaze Benedict works on tossing a football with James Daniel, 17, a junior at Fort Dodge Senior High as they work on a lesson Wednesday.

“I’m not sure yet,” she said.

While James Daniel, 17, a junior, did have a lesson plan, he knew that he might not get to follow it exactly.

“I just go with the flow,” he said.

The preschool students regular teacher, Hilary Ronnfeldt, was on hand to watch and help out. Among her duties was helping Addilynn Fogelman catch and toss a tennis ball.

It brought back a few memories for her from her own days as a student teacher.

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
Riverside Early Learning Center preschooler Addilynn Fogelman turns a cone used to catch balls into a hat Wednesday morning finding it much to her liking.

She was also impressed with the flexibility of the students leading the lessons.

“I’m watching them adapt their lessons on the spot,” Ronnfeldt said.

She said that’s an important characteristic for them. Students often get sidetracked, distracted or bored and a teacher needs to be able to be flexible.

The variety of balls the students used to teach the students were a perfect tie-in.

“They help develop gross motor skills,” she said.