PE department places in competition, inspires students


Joshua Singer

PE teacher Chad Beswick talks to his 7th period Team Sports class about putting effort into exercising. Beswick, two other PE teachers and a former WJ PE teacher recently won $500 for WJ after placing in the Well Aware 365 exercise competition.

PE teachers Chad Beswick, James Whalen, Lauren Fakler and former PE teacher Greg Kellner recently won $500 for WJ by being one of the top 15 teams in the Well Aware 365 competition.

The Well Aware 365 competition incentivizes teachers to become more active by allocating money to schools with teams that place in the top 15. This initiative helps show students the importance of mental, emotional and physical health to their path in high school and beyond.

“We had a PE team where we had to log our activity for a couple of months and we were fortunate enough to all be really consistent with our activity,” Beswick said.

Teachers and MCPS hope that students will be inspired by their teachers and become more determined to be the healthiest they can.

“We view [placing in the competition] as a practice what you preach mentality where we try to encourage our students to be active and lead a healthy lifestyle and this is a way for us to build some credibility,” Whalen said.

By winning money for the school through staying active, the PE department has already motivated some students to work harder and get better at some of the sports they play.

“It makes me realize that no one is born with natural talent and athleticism so in order to get to the next level in basketball or anything other sport you have to put in your best effort like Mr. Beswick and the other PE teachers,” freshman Dylan Himelfarb said.

Looking forward, the PE department would like for the Be Well 365 initiative to be felt by all students and staff schoolwide.

“We would like to encourage WJ to form more teams. We have a team here in PE, but it would be interesting if we could also get a math team and a science team and a social studies team and that way the staff has something going on in the school to promote health, wellness and physical activity across the entire school,” Whalen said.