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Immaculate Students Chat Live with Olympic Athlete

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pictured from left to right - Bryan Coyne (Gr. 3), Ethan Jensen (Gr. 4), Teacher Tania Lacroix, Megan Smith (Gr. 6) ad Breanna Coyne (Senior Kindergarten) surrounding Olympic Athlete Kristina Groves on the computer

June 14, 2010 - Over the past year, Immaculate Conception teacher Tania Lacroix has given her students the amazing opportunity to be penpals with a true Canadian Olympian. The grade 1/2 class has been following the training and athletic performances of Kristina Groves, a Canadian long track speedskater who won both a silver and bronze medal at the 2010 Olympic Games. Approximately eight years ago, Lacroix had a friend that worked at the Calgary Training Centre and she asked if there were any athletes who would be willing to be penpals with her class. Groves volunteered and has been communicating with her classes ever since. Groves has connected with this year's class since September through letters, and the hope was that she would be able to visit the class. During the Winter Olympics, Groves even held up a sign that had the name of the school on it for all of Canada to see. Due to scheduling conflicts, Groves was unable to come to Sudbury to visit the students but they came up with the next best thing. On Friday, June 10, the entire school gathered in the gym to take part in a a Skype call with Kristina in Calgary. The students were able to see and hear Kristina describe her races as a digital projector projected the video on the wall of the gym. Groves answered questions asked by the students in all of the different grades and even showed the group both her bronze and silver medals. It was evident that Groves was having as much fun with the call as the students in the gym as she commented on the great questions the kids were asking and smiled and laughed as the entire group clapped and screamed for her. Lacroix was happy that Groves was able to communicate one on one with the school and was pleased that they were able to finally connect live.

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