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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Teachable Moment - Ashrita Furman, Record Breaker

Grab your pogo stick and hop your way right into the Guinness Book of Records! That's what I think my students will be doing after our lesson on MAIN IDEA and supporting details. 

The worksheet being used to review the skill had information about a gentleman who climbed up and down Mt. Fuji on his pogo stick.  Imagine the stamina and strength it would take to accomplish this feat! As the students continued reading they became fascinated by Ashrita Furman, the man who holds over a hundred other records in the Guinness Book of Records.

The students started asking lots of great questions.  Why did he decide to break the records?  How many records did he break? Where is he from?  Why did climbing Mt. Fuji on a pogo stick bring inner peace? (the paragraph mentioned it brought Ashrita inner peace)  What is inner peace?  Is he still alive?

Not realizing the interest this would spark, we decided to take a few moments to research this unusual record-breaker.  His website, which you can reach it by clicking HERE, has all kind of fun and amazing information.  It also includes the video below:

Students each wrote a letter to Ashrita in their writing journal.  They asked their questions about his records while also telling him about the records they would like break.  One student wants to be the first to eat the most gummy bears in 5 minutes while another wants to pass a football non-stop and still another wants to write continuously in cursive. We have contacted Ashrita through his website and hope to hear back from him!

One never knows where the learning will take us.  The key is to take those teachable moments and follow where it leads!

Advice on "How to get started" by Ashrita Furman himself can be found on this page of his website: How to Get in the Guinness Book.

Please share in the comment section the record you would like to break!  

top photo credit: Scott Beale via photopin cc


  1. Loved it!

    I used to have so much fun breaking my own record for jumpts (got up to 100!) when the kids were little. I think I'll try that again.

    As always, thanks for the inspiration.


    1. Wow - 100 jumps on a pogo stick! That would be world record in this house. Thank you for teaching Samantha how to pogo too! Let the games begin!!

  2. What a great lesson to teach writing and help students set their own creative goals. I would love to break the record for teacher with most students having fun learning all at once!


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