Students hold community day to help others

 Clawson Middle School sixth-grader Grace Reilly, 11; seventh-grader Shayla Pippins, 12; seventh-grader Makayla Richardson, 12; and sixth-grader Aidan Pounders, 11, make cards for soldiers.

Clawson Middle School sixth-grader Grace Reilly, 11; seventh-grader Shayla Pippins, 12; seventh-grader Makayla Richardson, 12; and sixth-grader Aidan Pounders, 11, make cards for soldiers.

Photo by Donna Dalziel


By: Kara Szymanski | Royal Oak Review | Published November 29, 2017

 Eighth-grader Jimena Garcia, 13, helps to get the conversation started with sixth-graders Emily Landry, 11, and Morgan Kleiner, 11.

Eighth-grader Jimena Garcia, 13, helps to get the conversation started with sixth-graders Emily Landry, 11, and Morgan Kleiner, 11.

Photo by Donna Dalziel

 Sixth-grader Dominic Pounds, 11, makes cards for the troops.

Sixth-grader Dominic Pounds, 11, makes cards for the troops.

Photo by Donna Dalziel

CLAWSON — Clawson Middle School students recently participated in various activities centered around helping the community before Thanksgiving break. 

During their first three hours of school Nov. 21, two groups of students participated in three rotations that taught them simple ways to help the community while completing fun, interactive activities at their school. The activities also celebrated the school community and that while people are different, they can find ways to relate to each other.

Each of the two groups of students participated in interactive activities planned by sixth-grade English language arts teacher and Students Against Destructive Decisions adviser Michelle Haight.

In all, 275 students participated in outreach activities, team building, meal sharing and the movie “I Am Eleven,” which is about children from different countries and how everyone is part of a global community.

Clawson students in grades six through eight came together to benefit the community and celebrate the connections they share as a school and with the larger community.

“Students need a sense of belonging. It’s important that they are an important member of the school community. Thanksgiving is an American holiday centered around the community, and it seemed fitting that we do something with the entire student body to celebrate our special school family,” said Haight.

Students worked together to create Christmas cards for those in the military. Haight said that most of the cards would be sent to “a recovering American solider,” care of the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C. To contribute locally, cards are also going to Cards for Soldiers in Grayling.

Some other activities students participated in that day were Thanksgiving-themed “would you rather” questions; fowling, the football-bowling hybrid; basketball; a community lunch; and locker cleaning.

Student Drew Lossing said his favorite activity was the community lunch at which everyone ate lunch together as one big group. He got to see his friends.

Student Jimena Garcia said she enjoyed talking to different people with different backgrounds during the event. 

“You have the chance to start new conversations and learn new things you normally wouldn’t,” she said.

She was a leader during the event and helped her group keep the activities going.

Student Miranda Chunn could relate to the Christmas card activity for those serving in the military.

“My brother has friends that are in the troops and don’t get to come home for the holidays. Cards make them feel appreciated and still connected to the community back home. They get something in return for their services. You don’t realize they don’t get to experience the holidays like you do,” she said.

She said she didn’t think of it that way until the community day event.

Student Emily Landry shared how she learned that even though we are all different, we are all still the same.

“Being different is OK, and Thanksgiving is a holiday that brings us all together to celebrate it,” She said.