Adriana Briscoe, News Editor

P.E teacher Cristen Sprenger’s heart melted after seeing a few of her students interact with each other and help one another in a way she had never quite seen before. 

“This is one of the highlights of my teaching [career], and this is my 21st year of teaching,” Sprenger said. 

From September 16 to October 2, lifeguards and students in Sprenger’s 4th period Lifestyle Fitness class helped students with special needs in that class get more comfortable in the water during the swimming unit.

Senior Ryann Harold was the first lifeguard to step up to help when she was informed that there were five students who would need some additional help. She mentioned that one of her most memorable moments as a lifeguard during those two weeks was helping a student learn how to back float. 

“You could just tell how excited he was, and Sprenger was really excited too,” Harold said. 

Senior Natalie McPherson volunteered to help the students as soon as she realized how hard it would be for them to be in the pool alone, especially because their aides can’t go in the pool with them.

“I think it’s a stressful thing to not have the support you need in the pool, so just being able to help out was really awesome,” McPherson said. 

Additionally, McPherson has experience working with kids who have special needs through Northwest Special Recreation Association (NWSRA), and she has volunteered at the swim program there as well. 

The help that the students offered had a big impact on not only the students with special needs, but also Sprenger, who noted that it changed her outlook on teaching.

“I got emotional,” Sprenger said. “I cried. It was just surreal to see that.”