First Grade takes younger students on a trip around the world

On the afternoon of Friday, February 24, the First Graders took PreK and Kindergarten on a trip around the world.

First Grade has been reading books from around the world with Ms. Susan Morris, who provides library services in the Student Center. They’ve enjoyed it so much that Ms. Morris had the idea to make an event out of it.

“The best way to learn is to be a teacher,” Ms. Morris said. “We figured, what better way for the kids to learn than to teach the ones younger than them, the PreK and Kindergarteners?”

Polina Creadon and Sereen Shamseddine, both of whom chose Africa, wearing dresses inspired by dashikis

And teach they did. Each of the ten students in First Grade chose a country from the books they’d read to research. They then set up a themed-station for the younger students to visit with their passports, complete with photos, stamps, stickers, and snacks. Ms. Morris told them that they should pick a color or pattern to wear from their country of choice, but many of the students took it above and beyond.

Braylee Rano, wearing an Ao Dai from Vietnam, and Bailey Reynolds, in a Chinese quju and emperor hat

Mrs. Marilyn Reynolds, Kindergarten teacher and mother of First Grader Bailey Reynolds, also teaches a Chinese unit each year so she had a whole box of Chinese outfits for Bailey to choose from. “She was so excited, she wore the outfit out to dinner,” Mrs. Reynolds laughed.

Jayden Washington in an outfit inspired by the blue and white of the Australian flag, and Leila Bakken in a lei from Hawaii

Many other students got excited about their countries too. Leila Bakken, who chose a Hawaiian book, wore a grass skirt and a lei. Finnegan Crawford, who chose Cuba, wore a guayabera shirt and a flat cap. Jana Fackih, who chose England, dressed like a princess in a white dress and fascinator.

Jana Fackih in a white dress and fascinator, and Rylie Costello in a flowered dress and scarf inspired by Denmark

They researched heavily too. Jana was able to name the Queen of England, which even surprised First Grade teacher Wendy Genzel. Luka Vaughn, who chose Italy, was able to name each location in the photos at his station, and was even able to identify gondolas in the photo of Venice.

Finnegan Crawford in a guayabera shirt and a flat cap inspired by Cuba, and Luka Vaughn in a striped short and boater’s cap inspired by the gondoliers of Italy

Of course, everybody’s favorite part (including the adults) was the food. Each station had a snack from the country of choice. Africa had plantain chips, Vietnam had plait biscuits, China had fortune cookies, Australia had gummy worms, Hawaii had Hawaiian rolls, Cuba had Cuban sandwiches, Italy had cannolis, England had cucumber sandwiches and scones, and Denmark had donut holes and rye bread. It was a feast for the students and adults alike!

Thank you to everyone who made this event a fun hands-on learning experience.