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Members of the CPU Biology Club helped organize the effort to set a world jumping jacks record.

Led by the High School Biology Club and high school teacher DeEtta Andersen, the Center Point Urbana School District tried to set a new world record Wednesday afternoon.

At 3:05 p.m., 387 students began doing jumping jacks in the CPU Middle School gym. Another group of elementary and high school students began at the same time at the school building in Center Point. The goal: Get in the Book of World Records for the largest group of people doing jumping jacks for two minutes straight.

Bio Club members and sisters Taylor Fenton, a sophomore, and Makayla Fenton, a junior, said the club tries to get the rest of the student body involved in projects to take care of the environment, as well as their physical health.

They said the group decided to try to find some way to get in the Guiness Book of World Records, and they contacted the organization headquarters in London. The biggest challenge: The 7-hour time difference between Iowa and England made it hard to find a time when the students could call during London office hours.

Eventually, the students learned what they needed to do to earn a spot in the famous listing. They learned about the event they needed to plan, and how to document its veracity.

They had to take tickets from each participant to verify the number of participants, as well as document the event by video (yes, they will put it on Youtube soon).

The clock was set for two minutes, and at 3:05, the order to start echoed across the gym. The organizers actually let the kids jump for approximately 11 seconds before starting the clock, so they could be sure there was no doubt about meeting the 2-minute goal. When the two minutes expired, the children cheered and the Bio Club members tossed balloons and beach balls into the crowd.

The students began arriving in the gym at around 2:40, and lined up in 34 rows of approximately 12 students.

The Bio Club has led a variety of activities in recent years, including a hot dog roast featuring a solar-powered hot dog cooker.



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