Students ‘travel’ world during 2-week camp

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Macey Howell, Trent Johnson and JP Thomasson show off their dragon they made during their Chinese studies.| Kendra Bolling/Star-News

Students throughout the county are going “Around the World in 10 Days” without even leaving the comforts of Covington County.

About 55 students have been participating in the Straughn Middle School’s 21st Century Learning grant two-week summer program.

Director Paula Simpson said the students had the option of choosing if they wanted to learn more about Africa, Mexico, China or India.

“It’s been really hands on,” she said. “They’ve done everything from pottery to learning about the culture.”

Students who picked Africa learned about the culture, pottery, food and music and were taught by teacher Lisa Walker and teacher’s aide Nigel Byrd.

Down the hall, students were busy making posters with native Indian arts.

Taught by librarian Alison Thomasson, students said they’d had fun.

“We have done a bunch of art, “ said Charday Chatman. “And we’ve learned that they have a lot of religion options. Also, they don’t have bathrooms. They have to go outside.”

Kennedy Smith said she learned that the people of India invented chairs.

“We’ve learned a lot this week and last,” Smith said.

Additionally, students got to make their own Henna tattoos, Simpson said.

“The students were allowed to choose what design they wanted,” she said.

Students who chose to learn about traditions “south of the border” were busy making piñatas on Tuesday.

Taught by Deidra Burleson, students designed the piñatas from scratch.

“They have also made pottery and Mexican flowers, and are learning the Mexican Hat Dance, as well as sight words and the alphabet,” Simpson said.

Students in the Chinese group learned about fashion, attractions and schools, along with making paper lanterns and a dragon similar to the ones used in a Chinese New Year celebration, teachers Donna Rambo and Jessica Meadows said.

A showcase will be held Thursday night at the Straughn High School cafeteria beginning at 5:30.

“We will cook for them,” Simpson said. “And it’ll be like a feast around the world.”

Students will wrap up their two-week session with a trip to Montgomery, where they’ll have a riverboat lunch cruise and visit the Montgomery Zoo to see what types of animals are native to the area they studied.