CARLYLE - Natalie Bloomfield is a Carlyle Elementary School learning support teacher who has been introducing young school children to the sport of curling for many years.
Together with educational assistant Nicole Turgeon, Bloomfield holds regular practices every Monday afternoon after school.
Each week, 15-20 children in Grades 4-6 meet at the Carlyle Curling Club for on-ice instruction. Many of the group are new to the game, and these young and willing athletes started out on the ground level just learning the basics.
“I am pleased to see the steady improvement in our students since the start of the year,” said Bloomfield. “From learning the turns, being able to slide, and just sweeping the rocks, the kids have come a long way. We are now starting game-based practices and many of them will move up to the high school program next year.”
Robin Mryglod and Chris Horn are the proud parents of nine-year-old son Orlando, who is part of the program.
“This is Orlando’s first year curling and he really enjoys it,” said Robin. “Thank you to Natalie and her assistants for teaching our kids about the curling game. Their guidance and patience are greatly appreciated.”
Recently, Bloomfield curled competitively in the Viterra Scotties Tournament of Hearts held in Estevan. Her team included sister Tamara Kapell and cousin Kristy Johnson. Cindy Ricci was their skip.
Students only require bringing shoes and a helmet to the rink. The Carlyle Curling Club supplies brooms and sliders to anyone in need at no charge. It is simply an inexpensive way to introduce someone new to the game.
“The kids have been simply amazing,” said Bloomfield. “They listen well and are wonderful to work with. It is great to see the interest being generated with our youth. Thank-you to Nicole Turgeon, Carrie Rutten and Melissa Roy-Brown for helping me out this year.”