Macon Chronicle-Herald - Macon, MO
  • A Summer Journey of learning

  • Summer doesn't mean there still isn't room for learning. Find out what kids are learning in summer school this year here.
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  • Summer school is going strong at Macon R-I. Renovations in the elementary school have caused classes to be moved in the middle school and high school buildings, but a little inconvenience has not slowed down the learning or the fun. This year's Summer Journey has included many special activities and programs. Approximately 450 students have been attending the summer school program in kindergarten through eighth grades.
    Last week, middle school students in the 6th hour class appeared as "Phantom Car Washers" as a part of their Service Learning Class.
    The students picked out random cars in the school parking lot and washed them, sleuthing away, leaving only a clean car and a sign reading "We have haunted your car because it was dirty."
    You might be wondering what washing cars has to do with education? For instructors Sheryl Youngblood and Angela Laudwig the learning process is more about the preparations than the activity itself.
    Youngblood discussed the problems that had arisen during the previous days' washes before heading out to look for new cars.
    Better organization of water carrying, what equipment was needed, what type of soap would be used and behavior expectations were some of the topics covered.
    "We need to make sure the job is done correctly," Youngblood told the students. "When we get out there it is time to do the job, not a time to play."
    Splashing seem to be a major concern and students discussed not getting people wet who did not want to be splashed.
    "We try to wash two cars a day," laughed Laudwig. "And I do mean try!"
    By the end of the class period last Thursday, the students had accomplished their goal and washed two cars by using their team building skills to work together.
    "I like doing this," said Kandace Inskip of Bevier. "No matter what, we are all going to get wet!"
    At the end of several class days they ended their project with a total of nine cars washed.
    Class members also held a bake sale at school and off-site over the weekend which netted $302.56. The students decided to donate the money to Terri Hackett to help with her medical expenses.
    The fifth hour class raised $79.79 selling snow cones. They are sending their money to the Moore Oklahoma Public Schools.
    "We let the students decide where the money they earned is going," said Youngblood.
    The 7th hour class is planning a mini basketball camp for selected elementary classes.
    Also last week elementary students in kindergarten through third grade attended a presentation of Food Power Young Adventure - Healthily Ever After. The program was performed by Kraig Kensinger an edu-tainer program assistant with the University of Missouri Extension.
    Page 2 of 2 - By using professional grade nursery rhyme puppet characters like Mother Goose, Humpty Dumpty, Little Miss Muffet and Jack-be-Nimble, Kensinger brought the message of good nutrition to the students.
    "Kids do not often get the chance to see a professional puppet show," said Kensinger. "By attending this program kids can learn about nutrition and the performing arts at the same time."
    Kensinger does programs and workshops all over the state of Missouri.
    "I probably reach over 10,000 kids a year," he said.
    Topics included eating from the five food groups, germs, handwashing and being physical active to be able to live "healthfully ever after".
    The Summer Journey will continue at Macon R-I through June 28.
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