FAIRFIELD, Calif. - UC Davis women's tennis joined Harper for Kids to conduct the final character-based assembly of the academic year at Cordelia Hills Elementary School earlier this week.
Head coach Bill Maze, assistant coach Sara Jackson, sophomore Claire Meunier and freshman Jessie Lee joined Peanut Louie and Tim Harper - founders of Harper for Kids - to cover the final principle of John Wooden's Pyramid of Success.
Using the children's book Inch and Miles: The Journey to Success, based upon legendary coach John Wooden and his Pyramid of Success as the foundation of its youth character development program, last Tuesday marked the third occasion where Coach Maze, Coach Jackson and their team collaborated with the Harpers.
Throughout the afternoon, everyone centered their presentation on the principle of achieving one's personal best to the 700-plus K-6th grade students in attendance.
"We love it whenever Coach Maze is able to do an assembly with us because he's such a natural teacher of Coach Wooden's Pyramid of Success with his humility, knowledge, experience and positive outlook," said Peanut Louie Harper.
Since the start of the 2014-15 academic year, the Harpers have helped numerous schools, including Cordelia Hills, incorporate Coach Wooden's pyramid into their character education program. Hard work, friendship, loyalty, cooperation, enthusiasm, self-control, poise, team spirit and confidence were some of the topics covered throughout previous visits.
During previous visits, the Harpers also work with individual classrooms, and grade levels, to scaffold the information provided during campus-wide assemblies and presentations.
"Their presentations are very kid-friendly and useful, which makes it easy for students, and their family members, to integrate at home," said Jeff Kubiak, principal at Cordelia Hills.
Located in the middle of campus is a giant mural of Wooden's Pyramid, a painting that many individuals referred to throughout their presentation.
Both Meunier and Lee explained how the principals contained within the Pyramid have helped them succeed at school, on the tennis court, and shared personal experiences with an enthusiastic audience.
"Tim and Peanut helped me paint a mural of Coach Wooden's Pyramid of Success earlier this year, which I use to help instill the character program for this school," added Kubiak.
The illustration also doubles as a useful tool for teachers, staff members and students as a reminder to make positive, and successful decisions.
"If there is an issue, I will ask my students, `is this Pyramid-worthy behavior?' We will walk (to the mural) and talk about making smart decisions," added Kubiak.
"Coach Maze, Coach Jackson and team are such great role models, you could see how both are able to influence kids in a positive manner. Said Peanut Louie Harper, "We really wanted to bring him and his team to Cordelia Hills because Principal Kubiak is one of our favorites. He inspires us with how committed he is to teaching his students about the Pyramid of Success."
During each of the assemblies, the Harpers then conducted a mini-clinic and called on numerous teachers, and students, to grab a tennis racquet and participate. After Kubiak dazzled everyone with his forehand and backhand, his staff members, Peanut Louie Harper and both players competed in a spirited game of Around the World.
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