Gardner School held its 31st annual One Room Schoolhouse celebration on November 15. It is a tradition for all students to dress in One Room Schoolhouse outfits, be placed in multi-aged classrooms, and combine lessons for each classroom. Area 12th graders, who graduated from Gardner School in 8th grade, are invited back to assist teachers and have a reunion, especially since they often go to different high schools.

This year’s theme focused on firefighting, safety, and the succession of a forest fire. The day included many hands-on projects. First students studied what constitutes a safe campsite then built one in each classroom using the “old fort in the living room” style. They learned why Smokey the Bear’s philosophy was not always correct and why he needed an update to reflect a more advanced position. So, the groups gave him a style update. Each class designed a new vest for him and volunteers, including board member Jaye Sudar, stitched the outfits together. Then the students made 3-D floor plans from milk cartons and put a string through the house to identify an escape plan. For science, the focus was on tree rings with burn scars. Several volunteers enhanced the day including the local volunteer fire department members, a smoke jumper and CK Morey who had a demonstration on the playground with his truck. We thank everyone who was involved in making the day a success.

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