HOUSTON — Feb. 14, 2016 – Students who enter Joy Bazzle’s classroom at Spring ISD’s Richey Academy may feel like they are entering another world. Inside the colorful room, decorated with numerous examples of Bazzle’s artwork, are standing work stations, stationary bicycles, elliptical machines with desktops, and large exercise balls instead of chairs to sit on, although chairs are available.
Innovation is the norm for Bazzle, who incorporates devices that have movement to help students, who are sometimes fidgety. be able to concentrate. Bazzle was inspired to try these methods by her son’s experience with ADHD.
Bazzle teaches English to sixth, seventh and eighth graders at Richey Academy, often dressing up in costume and acting as different characters in order to help get the lessons across while the students rock on an exercise-ball “chair,” or pedal a stationary bike with a desktop attached.
“I want to teach, but I want to bring the fun back. Sometimes when you come to my class, it’s like a performance, but you are going to get a lesson,” said Bazzle.
Students are currently working on writing assignments during the class. One of her students, Chazman Joseph, said Bazzle makes writing the essays easy.
“She breaks it down to where you can understand it sentence by sentence and word by word. She gets you thinking and gets your mind moving,” said Joseph.
Moving minds and bodies are the standard in Bazzle’s very non-standard classroom where all movement is directed toward learning.
About Richey Academy – The Richey Academy serves as the in-house Disciplinary Alternative Education Program for Spring Independent School District. Designed to accommodate up to 250 middle and high school students, the academy supports learning, development and growth for students who have been reassigned due to conduct or behavioral issues – helping these students stay on track academically and socially to develop the skills to maintain positive interactions with peers and adults. The program is operated through a contract with Camelot Education.
CAPTION: Joy Bazzle, a teacher at Spring ISD’s Richey Academy, encourages a student during a writing assignment in English classroom.