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Harper Woods

Middle school students teach elementary children all about trees

October 31, 2013

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Middle School students pose for a photo in Johnston Park, where they taught Beacon Elementary students about trees last week.
Middle school students teach second-graders about trees.

HARPER WOODS — Some lessons reap so many rewards that teachers make sure to incorporate them into their plans each year, and that is exactly the case when it comes to tree day with Harper Woods Middle School and Beacon Elementary students.

Every year, middle school science teacher June Teisan and her students embark on a unit about trees. Then, they take what they’ve learned and incorporate it into lessons that they can teach to second-grade students from Beacon.

On Oct. 29, the annual tree day tradition took place in Johnston Park with groups of second-graders gathering to listen eagerly to the lessons the older students were eager to teach.

“I thought it was fun teaching the little kids new things that they didn’t know,” seventh-grade student Kimberly Familara said. “I feel like all the kids had a fun day.”

Middle school student Jesse Collins also enjoyed the event.

“It was fun and it was good for the kids, and it was a learning experience,” he said.

While the students teach their younger counterparts on one day each fall, the work leading up to the event takes much more time for learning, organization and planning.

“You were being such a great teacher,” Teisan said to a student during class the next day.

“They rocked it. They prepared for about a month,” she said.

While the middle schoolers are working on their units on trees, Beacon teachers do their own lessons to coincide with the middle school students prior to the tree day activity.

Teisan has been doing the tree day activity for years. During the activity, the students set up stations with different lessons that touch on leaves, seeds, fruits and other tree-related information.

Despite all of the work, middle school student Keven Thomas said he wouldn’t mind doing something like this in the future.

“I had fun with the second-graders and I’d like to do it again,” he said.

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