Ashley Park PreK-8 School fifth grade English teacher Barry White Jr. has an elaborate, personalized handshake for each of his students.
“They know when they get to the front door we do our ‘good mornings,’ and then it’s time to go,” the teacher out of Charlotte, NC told ABC News. “I’m always pumped up and then we start doing the moves and that brings them excitement and pumps them up for a high-energy class.”
White attributes his idea to LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
“You see that bond and how close they are,” he said of the Cavaliers. “I wanted to bring that feeling into the entire fifth grade.”
“I started with one simple handshake last year with a fourth grader,” White explained. “She would wait for me every morning before she’d go to class. She’d get in trouble sometimes for being late because she’d wait on the handshake.”
“This year I started making handshakes with the kids at recess. It was just one or two students and then it became contagious,” he continued. “I saw how much it meant to them, so I said, ‘Come on. Everyone come on.’ Then it was my full class, then it was kids from other classes. Now I have third graders wanting to do it too.”
The students helped create their own routines, which they perfected during lunch and recess.
According to White, it was not difficult to learn the all of the handshakes.
“It’s muscle memory at this point,” he said. “I do it so much with them. They love coming up to me and doing it. I just know the certain moves that go with certain kids because it’s personalized.”
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