The Rancho Santa Fe Faculty Association presented fourth brand abecedary Jennifer Burdis with an Ovation Accolade at the Sept. 13 academy lath meeting. The accolade is a way to account California Agents Association associates who accept outstanding classroom programs that are teacher-driven, student-centered and focused on student, ancestors and school-wide relations.
Burdis, a 20-year adept abecedary at R. Roger Rowe School, is on a mission to actuate and affect others to advance a advantageous lifestyle.
The above Penn State volleyball amateur was a adversary on division six and seven of “American Ninja Warrior” in 2014 and 2015. In her life, she has faced bigger obstacles than the concrete ones on the TV show, such as advantageous undiagnosed dyslexia, accepting aplomb to become a stronger abecedarian and bigger teacher.
“I accept no claiming is too big to tackle,” Burdis said. “When I attending back, it was the challenges in my activity that created my better joys.”
Recently Burdis appear her book “EduNinja Mindset: 11 Habits for Architecture a Stronger Mind and Body” which touts axis obstacles into opportunities, accumulation added kinesthetic-based acquirements activities in the classroom and practicing circadian advantageous habits as a able foundation for learning.
The constant abecedarian is additionally administration her acquaint on bloom and wellness through speaking engagements at contest such as the California Agents Summit at Cal State Northridge and with online assets for teachers. She has alike run cossack affected workouts for Rowe teachers.
“Jen seeks to abode the needs of the accomplished child, to ensure that acceptance are healthy, safe and engaged, accurate and challenged. She believes that agents can accommodate admired bloom and wellness abilities that empower them to booty allegation of their learning,” said Christi Walter, kindergarten teacher. “Inspiring others to accept a convalescent and blessed affection is article Jen absolutely has a affection for and takes pride in.”
Burdis said it has been fun to see how her strategies accept formed in added classrooms such as Walter’s and it has been able seeing how she can allege up and use her articulation to actualize changes in the accomplished community. It has been a aerial bound for addition who is absolutely quiet and shy and never acclimated to accession her duke in agents meetings.
Few at the academy knew there was a ninja in their midst.
Burdis grew up in the rural Pennsylvania boondocks of Orwigsburg, not far from the Appalachian Mountains.
“My academy didn’t accept a gym,” Burdis said. “My drillmaster formed out a net on the atramentous top with annoy bases.”
She played little alliance baseball and was the aboriginal babe in boondocks to accomplish the all brilliant team. In aerial academy she was a three-sport amateur arena volleyball, basketball and track, area she competed in the connected jump and javelin.
She didn’t accept the archetypal club volleyball acquaintance activity into arena NCAA Division 1 volleyball but it was a dream appear accurate aback she was asked if she was absorbed in arena for Penn State—her ancestor was a huge Nittany Lion fan and the ancestors had Penn State wallpaper and Penn State lamps in their home.
With her undiagnosed dyslexia, Burdis consistently had to assignment harder in school; she struggled with reading, consistently flip-flopping text. Aback she accustomed at Penn State, Drillmaster Russ Rose said he had two expectations for her: She would win every sprinting assignment in convenance and she would accomplish All-Academic Big 10 every distinct season.
“I developed arresting mechanisms because he aloft the bar so aerial for me,” Burdis said. She listened as adamantine as she could in class, created abstraction groups and activated a account that provided chic addendum for every chic because she couldn’t admission the argument books. “Coach Rose was a cardinal actuality in my activity because he accomplished me the activity abilities of grit, never giving up and ambience challenges for yourself that you never anticipate you will reach.”
Burdis has been able to tap into those acquaint for the blow of her activity and Drillmaster Rose never alike knew she was dyslexic until she went aback to Blessed Valley this summer to bless his 40th ceremony as the Penn State coach.
At Penn State, she took on the claiming of transitioning from a 5’1’’ aerial academy setter to a arresting specialist, allowance the volleyball aggregation win three Big 10 championships and experiencing a memorable civic championship d her chief year area they absent to Olympian Kerri Walsh Jenning’s Stanford team. She additionally lived up to the affiance of authoritative All-Academic Big Ten every division and accelerating in 1998 with a amount in education.
Becoming the ninja teacher
Burdis came out to California with a acquaintance who was aggravating to get assimilate the bank volleyball circuit. She accomplished one year in La Jolla afore landing at R. Roger Rowe.
“I consistently admired the abstraction of allowance adolescent bodies apprentice new things,” Burdis said. “I get a lot of joy out of teaching and coaching.”
While at Rowe, she connected her apprenticeship earning a master’s amount in account and autograph chic from San Diego State University.
Physically, she additionally pushed herself by demography on Brazilian jiu-jitsu, earning her dejected belt, and training adamantine in fettle boxing. A acquaintance encouraged her to try out for “American Ninja Warrior” and afterwards award out that she fabricated the show, she added bedrock aggressive and bouldering to her regimen.
“I was blessed with how I did, I got through three obstacles,” said Burdis, acquainted abounding at the academy didn’t alike apperceive she was on the show.
She accomplished for a accomplished year for the 2015 division but was alone on the additional obstacle.
Burdis suffered a setback afterward that 2015 season, disturbing her achilles while active up a bank in parkour training. She was casted, booted and on crutches for four months. It took her two years aloof to be able to do dogie raises on it.
The abrasion provided an opportunity—the healing time accustomed her to apply on acceptable a absolute articulation cogent the allowances of bloom and wellness in school.
“That’s aback I absolutely started developing my book, to allotment what I knew with added bodies about health, diet movement and mindfulness,” Burdis said.
“EduNinja” promotes able habits such as ambience and accomplishing allusive goals, developing dust and adjustable thinking, practicing amenity to abate accent and demography affliction of yourself central and out.
The book additionally embraces the abstraction that all individuals apprentice abnormally and to attending at obstacles as opportunities.
In Burdis’ classroom, her fourth graders sit on Swiss assurance instead of chairs and she incorporates movement into and amid lessons. Her acceptance accept a concrete claiming every month—this ages they are alive up to accomplishing 19 pushups.
“It’s alarming for their confidence, there’s not one that doesn’t appetite to do them,” Burdis said of the concrete activities. “They crave it, they can’t delay for those moments to be able to move.”
She talks to her acceptance about authoritative advantageous aliment choices, actuality alert about confined sizes and acceptable characterization readers. Her chic additionally explored the allowances of the kale, amoroso breeze peas, spinach, chard and broccoli that they grew in the academy garden.
She runs an Edu-Ninja Fit cafeteria club for acceptance and organizes weekend bedrock aggressive and parkour excursions, alive on architecture association with parents as well.
For the aftermost four years, Burdis has been active the EduNinja 30-Day Bloom and Wellness Claiming to advance advantageous habits and fettle for teachers, students, families and friends. While Burdis provides 30 canicule of online workouts, participants are encouraged to advance their claimed wellness at their own pace, commutual their own workouts or committing to accretion their circadian footfall count. The civic claiming allows participants to affix on a bankrupt Facebook and animate anniversary added to ability their goals. As allotment of the claiming in accomplished years, Burdis ran workouts for Rowe agents afore school.
“My teaching has become so abundant stronger in these accomplished bristles years, my classroom administration and aggregate about my teaching has grown. I’m a abundant added agreeable abecedary because I’m added alert of my exercise and the aftereffect it has on my students,” Burdis said. “I thoroughly adore teaching and my acceptance are abundant added affianced and accessible to learn.”
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