Sometimes the older we become the more difficult our birthdays are to face.
Landon Blankenship isn’t too worried about the prospect of growing older just yet.
“Today’s my eighth birthday but I’m really only two though,” Blankenship said with a giggle while sitting in his second grade classroom at Skyline Elementary Monday morning.
“I was born on Leap Day,” he added as an explanation.
One of two Leap Day birthdays in Hilary Owens class this year, Owen decided to use the day as a way to have a special celebration while teaching math concepts.
“I haven’t had a student born on Leap Day before,” said Owens, who has been teaching for five years. “Since I have two Leap Day babies this year I decided that I really wanted to make the day special for all my students.
“I found out this morning that Landon’s classmate, Brylee (Kendrick) went to Chicago for her birthday today,” Owens added. “I hate that she is absent but we are still going to celebrate today.”
The students started the day with an explanation of what Leap Year is and the necessity for the day that occurs once every four years.
A year, or 365 days, measures how long it takes the earth to revolve around the sun. It actually takes 365 days and six hours for the complete orbit to occur. Every four years an extra day is added to the calendar, Feb. 29, to include the extra four hours.
“We’ve been studying fractions,” Owens said. “This was a good way to teach my students about what a quarter or a fourth of something is.
“We also are spending some time with the number 29,” Owens added. “I’m letting my students spin the wheel and whatever activity they land on that is what we do.”
The activities including running in place or jumping for 29 seconds, or doing 29 toe-touches or sit-ups.
The activities help to teach the additional math concepts of counting and time.
“We really cover a lot of material with our students and they work very hard,” Owens added. “It’s nice when we can have the time to celebrate and have a fun day that gives the students the opportunity to do something different and gives them the opportunity to color and have conversations with each other.
“They have had the time to color their Leap Day birthday hats, and talk to each other while they are working and just have some fun,” Owens added. “They are really so sweet all the time.”
Blankenship was happy with the fun his class was having and for another opportunity to spend time celebrating his birthday with friends.
“We had my birthday party this weekend,” Blankenship said. “It was when my family could come and we had a really good time.
“My little cousin Brooklyn and Collin came and so did my grandma and my aunts were there,” he added. “We played dinosaur ball and with some cars that my mom and dad gave me that you control with an app that we put the phone.”
Blankenship said that to cap off the weekend, some of his friends came to his home for a sleepover.
“We watched ‘The Good Dinosaur,’” Blankenship said. “It’s a really, really good show; I think you should watch it.
“Today has been fun too, but the sit-ups wore me out,” he added.
Blakenship and his classmates will need to rest up for the next round of birthdays.
“I have three students who all have a birthday on March 25,” Owens said “I’m already planning what we will do to celebrate them.”
Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484