Jan 11, 2012 7:24 PM by David Ortiviz
Tim Tebow is now America's favorite athlete according to a new ESPN poll. He beat out Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning and Kobe Bryant. Tebow is known for his strong christian beliefs and those nail-biting 4th quarter comebacks. Now the sports icon is inspiring a generation of young fans.
If you want kids to pay attention these days just mention the name: "Tebow." Kindergarten teacher Jessica Ortiz says Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow has energized her classroom at Fountain International Magnet school. "A lot of people didn't believe in him, did he give up? No," said Ortiz, while talking with her students.
The kids have been reading stories about fictional characters who overcome the odds. The theme of the literacy unit is called "stick to it." Ortiz says what better real-life role model for the kids than Denver's star athlete. "It's nice to have a guy like that, that the kids can be excited about," said Ortiz.
Ortiz wants her students to learn about teamwork, setting goals and perseverance. "It's about never giving up," said Ortiz. "Not listening to the negativity and just pushing forward and that's what Tim Tebow has done," she added.
Not a believer? Read what Tebow's wide-eyed little fans wrote in these letters: "Dear Tim Tebow."
"You are the best football player."
"I hope you win."
"He doesn't give up ever."
You won't find these lessons in a textbook, but Ortiz says it's a fun way to engage students with an inspirational athlete.
"Down on one knee... And tebow!"
The Broncos face the New England Patriots on Saturday, January 14 at 6 p.m. tebowtime... we mean Mountain time.