It looks like all fun and games in Ken Buchanan's class. But his interactive wellness course deals with life lessons. "A lot of kids are pretty sedentary. These video games that they play so much, that we try to alter them an alternative that they really need to get up and be moving some."
On this day, Buchanan's class competes in a round of whiffle ball, an activity he says they can do the rest of their lives. But along with exercise, students keep food logs and analyze what they eat. "Its usually and eye opener when they look at how much fat they've had or how many calories they've consumed, how much of it is junk food. It shocks all of them, because they don't think about it."
Buchanan didn't set out to become a school teacher. He started working with kids in the pool at the YMCA. "And they kept saying you need to teach school. That's not what really pushed me into it. But I just at a point decided I wanted to do something a little bit different."
Buchanan believes in community too. During the recent tornado crisis, he organized student teams to assist families and classmates in need.
Now, he's providing them with volunteer opportunities as he helps coordinate the school's prom. 11th Grader Jonathon Kell says "he's a really kind guy, really nice. He gives great instruction. He's very organized. He gives us right done to the detail." 11th Grader Sarah Book agrees, "I had him, actually, for a class last year in aerobics. And he worked us out hard. He's a good teacher. He works with the students well."
Buchanan hopes students leave his instruction thinking about choices, and planning ahead for their futures.