“Are we ready to get some jumping jacks done?” Chrissy Chang asked the 590 middle school students and staff who had gathered at the Blackford quad. A rousing cheer went up as the middle school prepared to join National Geographic Kids and United States First Lady Michelle Obama in Let’s Jump!, an attempt to break the world record for the most people doing jumping jacks at the same time.
Chang, the K-8 physical education department chair, said that in addition to Let’s Jump! being a great physical activity for everyone to participate in, the White House’s sponsorship influenced her decision to get the middle school involved. “I think it’s great that the First Lady is promoting the importance of physical activity and healthy eating with her Let’s Move campaign. At Harker, we are fortunate to have a phenomenal physical education program. By participating in Let’s Jump!, our students can say that they played a role in setting the record, and can help increase health awareness,” Chang said.
The students were enthusiastic, as well. “It’s really cool!” said Alexandra Michael, grade 6, about the First Lady’s world-record breaking idea.
To set a new record, more than 20,425 people across the globe will need to perform jumping jacks for one minute during the 24-hour time period between 3 p.m. ET on Oct. 11 and 3 p.m. ET on Oct. 12.
Chang led the students and staff in the minute of jumping jacks on the morning of Oct. 12, playing music to get everyone pumped up and excited, and leading a countdown during the last 10 seconds.
Jerrica Liao, grade 6, said it was “really exciting” to be part of the record-breaking attempt. She, Chang and all the other students and staff at the middle school will be waiting anxiously to hear if the record was broken.
Let’s Jump! is part of National Geographic Kids’ movement to get kids outdoors and living active, healthy lives.
For everything to be official, Harker recruited friends of parents and neighbors who were all needed as neutral observers of the jump to verify it to the Guinness Book of World Records. Special thanks to those individuals: Nancy Morgan, Mack Johansen, Helen Azbill, Michael Canziani (Prestige Potraits), Nahla Nijmeh (Diamond Quality Printing), April Medina (Diamond Quality Printing), Judy Crow, Laura Parker (Jostens), Jayson Rocha, Kay Rooney, Steve Malik (California Sport Design), Bella Mahoney (Our Lady of Fatima Villa, Saratoga), Denis Hoye, Jeanette Murphy, Armando DeGraca, Andrea Taylor and Steve Tedesco (former SJ Chamber director, and Campbell Union School District board member).
“It was awesome. Unbelievable. It’s great to be able to see our entire school participate,” Chang said after the event.