The Indiana school systems of Indianapolis in Marion County and Kokomo in Howard County launched school cricket programs at the end of January, after receiving training from Jatin Patel. Patel leads Indiana Youth Cricket and is 2nd Vice President of USYCA.
Patel worked with Indianapolis Physical Education teachers at a coaching camp on January 29. More than 40 teachers were trained in game knowledge, along with the basic skills of cricket. Teachers learned and demonstrated cricket skills during the camp, and many of the teachers now plan to attend a secondary clinic to further advance their skills.
Most of the schools in Howard County, which received their sets on January 25, will be launching cricket this spring, during their PE classes or recesses, with teachers also prepared to incorporate cricket into social studies lesson plans.
There are also plans to expand the game to outdoor sessions by this summer.
Vicki Boles, who organized the cricket rollout for Kokomo Schools, likes the level of activity the game brings to students and is also impressed with the teamwork elements. “Cricket can keep our entire class actively involved all the time. It brings new challenges, for example, trying to learn about cricket in the first place, but the children love this game and we are moving forward with cricket.”
Sarah Hemmerich of Kokomo High School said, “Cricket also helps our students to learn about other cultures, which is important for Kokomo’s international schools. Our students will be learning much more than just cricket, as it’s one of the oldest team sports, with a rich history and vast popularity.”
Matthew Shirk of Gambold Preparatory Magnet High School in Indianapolis wrote, ‘I just want to say thank you for your excellent clinic on Tuesday evening. As a teacher at Gambold Prep High School, we instruct our scholars using international mindedness and since cricket is one of the world’s most popular sports I can not wait to expose this wonderful game to our scholars. Learning cricket will not only keep my scholars physically active, but will also open the door to the past times and sports of other cultures. Having local clubs and competitions gives Gambold Prep the opportunity to volunteer and support cricket with in the community. Please let me know of any events around Indianapolis and I will post them on our website, facebook, twitter, and newsletter. Thanks again for all of your help and training.”
Each of the schools received USYCA American Cricket Champ sets after their training was concluded.