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home : education : area schools (other)
March 24, 2018

3/3/2018 7:29:00 AM
First-grade pen pals meet for the first time
Mike Cheslock
Community Education Coordinator

First graders at Pelican and Crescent Elementary Schools have been pen pals since September. Students in Megan Biscobing and Wendy Dietz's first-grade classes have only learned about each other through the writing of letters.

This week, on Digital Learning Day, a day to celebrate the innovative ways teachers around the world are using technology to enhance instruction and student learning, the two groups had an opportunity to learn more about each other through a different form of communication.

On Feb. 22, students in Biscobing and Dietz's classrooms participated in a Google Hangout, which is similar to Skype. In this platform, they were able to see each other "face to face" on the SMARTboard in their respective classrooms. The two classrooms were able to do this with the help of a webcam and the Google Hangout app.

During the Google Hangout session, students stood up to see what their pen pals looked like before having time to ask each other questions. They learned that first grade at both Pelican and Crescent Elementary schools have similarities and differences. They both do reading and writing workshop, math, word work, science and social studies, but their playgrounds look different and they have different teachers for their specialized classes (art, music, physical education, library, and guidance). Finally they shared their opinions on a variety of topics.

With technology today, School District of Rhinelander students are connecting in many different ways. First graders in Biscobing and Dietz's classrooms will continue to write letters back and forth to each other throughout the remainder of the school year.

Pajama Drive at Pelican Elementary

For the second year in a row, Pelican students and staff participated in the Scholastic Great Bedtime Story Pajama Drive. Scholastic partners with the Pajama Program, a nonprofit organization that provides new pajamas and books to children in need - especially those living in group homes, shelters, foster care and orphanages. In this program, Scholastic then pairs a brand new book with each pair of pajamas donated so children and teens can receive the cozy gift of reading for the holidays.

Pelican Elementary, with the help of other community members, collected 132 pairs of pajamas for the Great Bedtime Story Pajama program, 17 more pairs than last year. Pajamas were counted and boxed up by Ms. Biscobing's first-grade students. All 132 pairs of pajamas were donated to the Women's Community Center in Wausau, a non-profit organization that serves victims of domestic and sexual abuse in Marathon County. The staff of the Women's Community Center were very appreciative of the donation. Staff commented that they are always in need of pajamas.

Pelican Elementary would like to thank everyone who donated to this cause.

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