Archery in the Schools

By: Carrie Cline Email
By: Carrie Cline Email

Building self-esteem, confidence and discipline through shooting! We're talking about a bow and arrow and the highly skilled sport of archery.
It's the latest technique teachers are learning to put every student on an equal playing field for success.

Bowhunting is big sport in our region. Many people grab their bow and arrows and hit the great outdoors in search of big game.
But, local teachers are bringing archery out of the woods and into the classroom. They're learning to teach a lesson that will last a lifetime.

The West Virginia Department of Natural Resources is hosting a two-day training for teachers. It's called Archery in the Schools. It's eleven steps to the bullseye.

“It’s a great way to teach students self-esteem,” says Pam Vencill.

Vencill teaches P.E. at Kenna and Sissonville elementary schools in Kanawha County. She got involved at a parent's request. Now, the rookie is learning the sport and already sees the benefits to sharing it with her students.

Steve McClure is a volunteer coach. He helped start the pilot program at Ripley Middle School three years ago. Now, he's arming other teachers with the knowledge to change lives.

“It’s a great joy to see them learn,” said McClure.

That satisfaction is pretty easy to come by. In a few moments, Steve turned me--a fairly new archer--into a little bit better new archer.

“No matter the size, all kids can do this,” said Scott.

Since the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources implemented the program in 2004, over 125 schools have started it reaching nearly 25-thousand students.
If you'd like to learn more about the program, we've made it easy for you. Just click on the following link:

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