Finding Aim

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Published on: Jul. 2, 2009

Last revision: Dec. 15, 2010

Archery in the Schools

million kids will participate this year alone.

Last year, the number of NASP schools in Missouri doubled. Today, 76 Missouri schools are teaching NASP to more than 12,000 kids.

One reason for NASP’s success is that, unlike most other sports taught in schools, nearly any student can be successful with archery. “You don’t have to be athletic, fast, big or strong to be good at archery,” says NASP’s president and co-founder, Roy Grimes. Students of all sizes and abilities learn archery together, and at competitions, boys and girls are at the shooting line together.

NASP improves kids’ lives at school

Teachers and school administrators have discovered that archery class can be a great motivator for students. Greg Byrne, a teacher at Flynn Park Elementary School in University City, has noticed that at least 50 percent of his students are participating more in class since he started teaching NASP. Some schools require students to maintain good grades in order to participate in archery. Teachers also report that NASP reduces student behavior problems and improves class attendance.

“It’s incredible!” says Steve Lanier, a PE and NASP teacher at Longview Farm Elementary in Lee’s Summit. “Parents have told me their kid wants to come to school when they’re sick just so they can shoot archery.”

When Tracy Flood heard about NASP, she knew it would be a good fit for her outdoor education class. Tracy, a teacher at Crane Middle School, has a waiting list of kids who want to take her class. “Archery is the most popular class in middle school. Once they’re hooked, they’re hooked. Kids want to shoot, so they make sure they keep their grades up.”

Karla Snook, principal at Crane Middle School, says it is easy to see the benefits NASP has brought to her school. “NASP has allowed a new special bond between the kids that teachers and parents have noticed. It’s also improved parent involvement with the school. Just last night, members of the school board asked me how we could get NASP started in the high school.”

Twins Shelby and Karley Andrus are both in Tracy’s class. “Archery is just so different from my other classes,” says Shelby. “I just put everything else out of my head and focus on where I want the arrow to go.”

NASP improves kids’ lives at home

Shelby and Karley liked archery in Tracy’s class so much that they asked for their own bows for Christmas. The twins’ mom,

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