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Bouncy Bands focus students

A local middle school math teacher wanted her students work off nervous energy and concentrate at the same time.  A Mid-Nebraska Community Foundation grant from John Applegate let her buy "Bouncy Bands." (SOURCE: Kaylie Crowe/KNOP-TV)
A local middle school math teacher wanted her students work off nervous energy and concentrate at the same time. A Mid-Nebraska Community Foundation grant from John Applegate let her buy "Bouncy Bands." (SOURCE: Kaylie Crowe/KNOP-TV)(KNOP)
Published: Oct. 29, 2019 at 5:14 PM CDT
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Most people think of rubber bands as a way to wrap things together. A local math teacher uses giant rubber bands in a whole different way. Heather Harvey teaches math at Madison Middle School in North Platte. She wrote a Mid-Nebraska Community Foundation grant and got enough money to buy Bouncy Bands.

They attach to the bottoms of chairs and let students use them to work off extra energy. Harvey says in the process students are more focused and doing better on tests.

Justin Matterin says the bands helped him with his anxiety. "Whenever I do a like a paper or something and if my anxiety picks up a lot I can use it and it will slow down my anxiety," says Matterin.

Harvey noticed there are a lot of kids that need movement. She says they are tap their pencils and feet and play with erasers and papers.She says it was very distracting. Harvey went online to see if there was a strategy that would help. That's when she found Bouncy Bands.

Heather Harvey says, "Kids with anxiety have mentioned that it helps them. Kids with ADHD, autistic kids, just your general kids who just like to move, squirm and tap, it helps them as well so every kids in the classroom benefits from it."

Henry Klein says he likes how he didn't disturb others since using the band was quiet.

Klein says, "It kind of it just provides you plenty of options with moving around without disturbing other people."

Michael Schumacher enjoys the class with the new bands. Schumacher

says, "I only have it in this class, so I really look forward to this class."

The bands were just placed in the classroom this semester. Harvey believes there's already improvement i test scores by 10 to 15 percent

and she believes the Bouncy Bands get some credit.

Harvey says, "Lots of comments from the kids saying they wish that they were in other classrooms, they really really like them."

The 28 bands were $14 each. She wrote a grant to the Mid-Nebraska Community Foundation and was awarded the John Applegate Grant.

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