September 29, 2009

The Swine Flu is No Match for SCORES

The SCORES season is well underway.  We had a great game day on Friday, and a special apperance from Futbol Kingdom at the Munroe vs. Cheltenham match up made the day extra exciting. 

With the weather changing, and germs slowly filling the classroom, now is a very important time to keep our poet athletes healthy and energized.  Swine flu scares have been filling the newsrooms, and "washing your hands" commercials have been running rampant around Denver.  But do not fear, for there are a few myths about Swine Flu which I am about to disclose to you so that you can know the truth and can keep your families and athletes healthy...(for more information please visit HERE)

Myth #1:  Swine flu is much worse than seasonal flu - FALSE
   So far, the swine flu hasn't shown signs of being more powerful than the seasonal flu, but it is slightly more contagious.  Part of this reason is that most people don't have any immunity to swine flu, unlike other season flu strains to which we may have been exposed to before.

Myth #2:  Young, healthy people shouldn't worry about catching the Swine Flu - FALSE
   Unlike seasonal flu which has the most serious health effects in people older than 65, 75% of serious Swine Flu cases and 60% of deaths have occured in people younger than 49.  In fact, 1/3 of adults over 60 have a pre-existing immunity to the H1N1 strain which may be due to a similar strain being present during their childhood.

Myth #3:  The flu vaccine can cause the flu - FALSE
    Flu shots are made with dead strains of the virus, which means they can't replicate.  While you can get swelling and achiness at the injection site and a low-grade fever, this is just how some peoples' bodies respond to the vaccine.  They are not symptoms of the flu, only a minor side effect of getting the shot.

Myth #4:  It's better to get the flu than get vaccinated - FALSE
    The problem with the flu is that there is no way to tell how a person will respond to the infection.  The risk of side effects from the flu vaccine is very low, and right now the risk of contracting the flu is very high.

Myth #5:  If you get the Swine Flu, go to the ER - FALSE
    If you get a mild case of the Swine Flu, the best thing to do is stay home and treat the symptoms (take a fever/pain reducer, like acetaminophen or ibuprofen, and get plenty of rest and fluids).  A trip to the ER will only end up exposing more people to the infection.  However if you start having complications such as difficulty breathing, pain in chest or abdomen, sudden dizziness, or severe vomiting, you should see your doctor right away.

Myth #6:  You should go back to work once you feel better - FALSE
    Experts urge Swine Flu sufferers to stay home for at least 24 hours after the fever goes away without using fever-reducing meds.

And there you have it...stay healthy out there!

September 24, 2009

Fall Frenzy Meets Round Robin...

With snow now in the daily forecast, it has become apparent that Fall season has hit Denver.  And with the beginning of Fall marks the date for the our yearly round robin tournament...the Fall Frenzy!  On Saturday, October 3rd, our poet athletes will hit the Regis University field in a morning filled with soccer and hopefully not snow.

The question of the day is where did the term "round robin" come from.  Well, fret no longer because I am about to reveal the secret to the origin of this wonderful phrase.  According to the Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins by Robert Hendrickson, the round robin was originally a petition, its signatures arranged in a circular form to disguise the order of signing.  The original phrase was "ruban rond" or "round ribbon" stemming from 17th-century France where government officials devised a method of signing their petitions on ribbons that were attached to the documents in a circular form.  This way no signer could be accused of being the ring leader of the grievance, and risk having his head chopped off.  How a phrase originally describing peition signing formed into a sports term is something that I do not have the answer to...but if you have the secret to this little known connection we would love for you to reveal it to us.

September 22, 2009

Exercise that Makes you Smarter

The correlation between exercise and health has been a hot topic of research now for over a decade.  Ten years ago scientists at the Salk Institute in California published a ground-breaking study that linked exercise to the stimulation of new brain cells.  Since then, publications on the benefits of exercise have become hugely popular.  In fact, typing "benefits of exercise" into a google browser yields over 6 million hits.  Exercise benefits include improving your mood, helping to manage your weight, combating chronic disease, boosting your energy level, promoting better sleep, and above's fun!

The fundamental question that scientists have been asking themselves is what kind of exercise is the most beneficial to a person's cognitive health.  The options are endless - yoga, weight lifting, running, bull riding - but recently researchers have tried to tackle this seemingly unanswerable question.  And what, you may ask, has been found to be the exercise that makes you smarter.....running.  It is thought that aerobic activity, such as running, has the ability to pump blood into areas of the brain that in turn start molecular cascades that create new neuron and brain connections.  The dramatic change in blood flow that occurs during aerobic activity is, in some ways, making you smarter.  So, get on your running shoes (or soccer cleats), and do your body...and mind...a favor.

For more information on this incredible and fascinating topic, please visit the NY Times

September 17, 2009

Brandon for the next Healthiest Executive Director!

That's right, our one and only Brandon Blew, Executive Director of SCORES, is competing to be the be Colorado's next Healthiest Executive.  This award is part of a nation-wide program that recognizes male and female senior leaders who model healthy lifestyles and promote health and wellness in their organization and community.  There are a few criteria that nominees are judged on, and we need your help in ensuring that Brandon makes it to the top.  Here's how you can help:

1.  CLICK HERE to support Brandon by racing in the Best of the Boardroom 5K on October. 15th, 2009.  The event will take place at Cherry Creek State Park.  If for some reason you are unable to race in this event, or if racing really isnt your thing, you have the option of running a unique virtual 5K.  To be a 'Virtual 5K' participant, visit, or to find a running route that you can then run on your own time - this is a great opportunity to get your friends and family involved!  Before Oct. 14th, register as a virtual 5K racer, complete your individual 5K, and post your results.  During registration as an actual or virtual 5K runner, be sure to select Brandon Blew as the next Healthiest Executive.

2.  You can also vote for Brandon online.  Online voting will not begin until after race day, so be on the look out for more details.

September 15, 2009

Futbol Kingdom

Exciting news!  The performers of Futbol Kingdom will once again be visiting our SCORES classrooms.  Now, many of you might be asking yourself...what is Futbol Kingdom?  A year ago, the Burger King Corportation partnered with a soccer entertainment group called Soccer Showdown.  Soccer Showdown is an internationally renowned organization focused on freestyle soccer, with a mission to continuously offer innovative and creative concepts within the soccer industry.  Soufiani and Kenan, the two creators of free style soccer are the cornerstone of the performance.  Their moves might not be as good as some of our SCORES athletes, but they sure are close...check out some highlights below.

September 10, 2009

Nothing That We Can't Do

I have found another wonderful song presented to us by the students at Obadiah Knight Elementary school with the help of singer/songwriter David Rice.  It is very catchy, and I promise that you will find yourself smiling and singing to it for the rest of the day. 

We have our first game day tomorrow, so I wanted to give you guys the schedule just in case you wanted to get in on the action:
     Cheltenham @ Eagleton
     Brown @ Barnum
     Newlon @ Munroe
     Knapp @ Cowell

Be on the the look out for work from our Denver SCORES students, and enjoy watching a little soccer in the mean time...

September 8, 2009

American Poet Comes to SCORES Classrooms

It is with great enthusiasm that America SCORES Denver welcomes Jack Collom, famous poet, teacher, and essayist, into our eight schools for our Fall 2009 season.  Jack has published over 17 books of poetry including Red Car Goes By and Arguing with Something Plato Said, and is the editor of three collections of writing by children. 

Jack was born in Chicago, and received his BA and MA from the University of Colorado.  He has been a free-lance teacher (mostly as Poet-in-the-Schools) for the last 25 years, and teaches part time at Naropa University.  Currently he resides in Boulder, CO, his adopted hometown, where they have recently declared and celebrated a "Jack Collom Day".

Tomorrow marks his first day in the classroom for this upcoming season, and we look forward to his contribution to the SCORES program.

For more information on Jack Collom, please visit these websites:

September 3, 2009

This Land is Your Land

I would now like to take this time to introduce you to the vocal stylings of the students of Tubman Elementary School in Washington, D.C... 

America SCORES has recently partnered with the ASCAP Foundation (American Society of Composers, Authors and Pubishers) in an effort to bring local artists into SCORES classrooms to transform poems into songs.  So far SCORES programs in Dallas, Chicago, Bay Area, New England, and D.C. have been able to take advantage of this program, and it is our hope this year that local artists in Denver will be able to work in our schools.  Be on the look out as our SCORES kids take on the music industry...

This Land is Your ...

September 1, 2009

What is Poetry

Tomorrow is the big day...Our eight schools are all geared up, over 25 passionate coaches are ready to hit the field, and 256 students are ready to join their new teams.  Before we get started, I thought it would be good to begin the season with the big question...what is poetry?  Last year at the National Poetry Slam where two of our SCORES students Fidel and Nayeli had the chance to perform, participants were asked the same question.  Watch the video below to find out the answer to the never ending question...what is poetry?