Harlem Globtrotter Scooter Christensen spun and dribbled his away into the hearts and minds of students at and on Tuesday morning as part of a special character-building program.
Christensen was in Agoura Hills to promote the Globetrotters’ CHEER for Character that was launched with the assistance of the Department of Education in 2004 to extol the benefits of positive character development. The acronym stands for Cooperation, Healthy mind and body, Effort, Enthusiasm and Responsibility.
The basketball star, originally from Las Vegas, NV, started the 30-minute program at Yerba Buena by telling the students a little bit about his background and the background of the Globetrotters, which actually originated in Chicago in 1926.
Christensen told the students that he has traveled to over 50 countries and said one of the “coolest” things he’s ever done was to play basketball on an aircraft carrier. He also has the distinction of holding two Guinness World Records, one each for the longest time spinning a basketball on one's head and one's nose.
He then called four students and teacher Enid Stagg from the audience to participate in his demonstration of CHEER. He asked his participants what each word represented in CHEER meant to them. In turn, they each responded with their own personal definitions.
Throughout the program, Christensen kept the young audience entertained with the signature Globetrotter ball handling and humor. He even gave his volunteers a lesson in basketball technique.
“I loved watching him spin the basketball on his head,” said Samantha, a fourth-grader. “That was so cool.”
“When I heard about this program I thought it sounded fantastic,” said Yerba Buena Principal Christina Desiderio. “I thought Scooter was very entertaining and gave the kids a wonderful message. The program even surpassed my expectations.”
Christensen ended the community outreach program by telling the children, “In this world you are born with two ends: one end to think with and one end to sit on. How far you get in life has to do with which end you choose to use the most."