James W. Parker Middle School is engaging students through interactive technology to improve students’ cardiovascular fitness. Through the IHT Spirit System, students now have the opportunity to manage their individual health and fitness. The technology includes heart monitor watches, docking stations, PC’s to run the IHT Spirit system software and the software itself. The watches provide motivation by instantly sending them an email with their heart rates throughout the period, ensuring that they challenge themselves and hit specific heart zones.

The first step? Inspiring students through an artistic new room – thanks to a joint project between the health and physical education department and the art department. A former storage room, the health and physical education department’s new Exercise Technology Room connects the middle school physical education curriculum with the IHT technology. Seventh-grade art students participated in the collaboration by creating wall murals for a one-of-a-kind activity-themed design in their new room. The theme for the room is movement.