We had big changes this year with losing all of our program costumes, backdrop, and props because of the fire at GES. We thought of not even doing a program at all. However, we just couldn't see not letting this group have the celebration of UTAH!! So we decided to go ahead and do a slightly scaled back version. We asked parents to buy their student a T-shirt that we had made up with Utah on the front. They were only $6.00 and would be a good memory of 4th grade. We did one program in the morning and one in the afternoon. Since we had 8 classes of 4th graders and had 4 dances, two classes each learned the same dance. On performed it in the morning and one did it for the afternoon. We had an indian shawl dance, the Mexican Hat dance, a pioneer dance (Oh Johnny Oh) and a square dance that went with the Golden Spike song that we sing called Iron Wheels. We sang songs and had some speaking parts. It was much shorter than in the past, but we had a lot of good comments about it. I think parents were just happy that not everything had been taken away because of the fire. The kids seemed happy to show what they had learned also. I think some had their doubts on how it would work out, but I think the kids did an awesome job and made the program a BIG success!!
This year we had our first "Heritage Days"!! We decided since our program was scaled way back that we would love to do something that the students could really enjoy. As you cansee I was in charge of the "Pony Express Relay"!! Since that is the only station I was at, these are all the pictures that I have. These are pictures of my class doing the relay. They each had a stick pony and a hat and a pack for the letters. The had to run to the first basket to pick up their bundle of mail and then down to the end to trade for a fresh mount and exchange their mail to a new pack. On their return trip they then had to deliver their mail to the other basket before coming back to give their mount to their next team mate. It was fun I think, and since it is the 150th anniversary of the Pony Express we had studied quite a bit about it this year. As the day went on I started letting some of the team mates be indians and other hostiles that would try to thwart them from making it back safely. I think I did that for my own entertainment after doing the same thing for the whole day.. LOL!! Other things that the kids did was make butter and enjoy it on a hot roll. They had to do a little math to figure out how they could "Pack their Wagons" to make it out west as a pioneer. They made button spin toys, some military marching (representing Johnson's Army), and some pioneer games. They also had to make their own 3D covered wagon out of construction paper, and learned how to use the Deseret alphabet. All in all I think the kids thought it was a GREAT day!!
We were able to do our annual Field Trip to This Is The Place Heritage Park again this year. Thanks to parents helping with fees and the PTA giving us some grant money. We as teachers always look forward to this trip as it really brings everything our students have been learning about Utah History to light for them. Being there makes a lot of things more real to them. As you can see most of them wore their Utah T-shirts and they thought that was a ton of fun. They sang their Iron Wheels song as they rode on the train around the park. They thought that was great. There was another 4th grade class up there from Tooele (my daughter Jamie's class) and my students had fun having song wars with them as they had sang the same songs in their program just the day before. There's a few things that they have to do at the school house that I wish we could bring back....the paddle for example.. LOL The kids always think that's pretty amazing along with some of the other consequences teachers use to have. All in all it was a great school year with my students. I had a great class that really helped me through a rough year. I'm moving into a bigger portable next year and I hope the extra room will make my life a little easier, and just being farther down the road from all that has happened to our school. I look forward to a great year next year even if the class size is rising. But for now I'm looking forward to the rest of my summer!!
Family Reunion Preparation
10 months ago