WHITMIRE — During this season of counting blessings and giving thanks, the kindergarten classes of Whitmire Community School have much to be thankful about. One of the recent blessings came from Alison Cody’s sixth and seventh grade English/language arts classes helped out the younger students.
Each year the kindergarten students, prior to our field trip to Riverbanks Zoo, write a report on an animal they desire to learn more about. This year Cody’s seventh grade English/language arts third period class helped Sally Shouse’s students and sixth grade English/language arts fourth period class helped Carley Farmer’s students research their animals. After selecting an animal for a research project, the kindergarten students went to the media center to locate books and magazines about their animal. Next, they began a graphic organizer listing questions they had about the animal. Our friends from middle school arrived, where they paired up with a kindergarten student to assist them in finding the answers to their questions. They went to the computer lab next, to search for a picture to accompany their report. The following day our new friends returned to help write the rough draft and assist the kindergarten student write the final draft of their animal report.
As the time together drew to a close, the students began to discuss when we could be together again. With the assistance of the middle school students, kindergarten had a wonderful first experience with research and reports. The teachers watched the older students pass along their research and writing skills to kindergarten. It was a pleasure to have former students return to their old kindergarten rooms in a leadership role. Not only did vast amounts of learning take place, but so did a great amount of joy and love.
Our unit on animals came to an end as we traveled to Riverbanks Zoo to see the animals first hand. The kindergarten represented WCS well with their behavior, manners and knowledge of the animals. The weather was perfect and the chaperons were enthusiastic as the students covered every inch of the zoo. The day was concluded in the recently renovated picnic area outside of the zoo. Whitmire resident Chrystal Harsha donated her time to drive the bus. She was paid in hugs by the students.
There are many blessings of this year and one blessing is Whitmire Community School, a school that is a community, a family, a place where opportunities like this one example can happen.