Students at Rykers' Ridge Elementary School helped their hearts while helping others with heart problems.

The students raised money for the American Heart Association by participating in Jump Rope for Heart on Friday at the school.

"It's for people that need heart surgery," second-grader Nicholas Biallas said between jumps.

Students were asked to get donations from friends, family members and neighbors, and as a reward they got to play games and jump rope while music played in the gym.

Autumn Dempler, right, with her friend Alexia Sullivan, raised $35.

"It's fun and it's exercise," she said.

Teacher Erin Thomas said the school set a goal to raise $2,500 to donate to the American Heart Association.

Each Madison Consolidated elementary school will host a Jump Rope for Heart session in February for Heart Awareness Month.

(Staff photo by Ken Ritchie/