celebrate education - brought to you by the amarillo globe-news

High school citizenship classes - March 2009

Claude High School

Two high school citizenship classes in Claude schools are being recognized as the Celebrate Education March Class Act for demonstrating hands-on learning.

Teacher Rebecca Yelverton said the class objective is community-based projects, but her goal is to teach students there is life beyond them.

"We need to put ourselves aside and do something for other people," she said. "Believe me, that is not an easy lesson."

Students bake cookies, chat with residents and play Wii on visits to the Palo Duro Nursing Home.

"This really gives the residents something to look forward to," said Jami Conrad of Palo Duro Nursing Home.

The Class Act recognition acknowledges outstanding achievement in education. The classes were presented a $200 check from the Amarillo Globe-News' Celebrate Education initiative.

Instead of reading a history textbook, students also researched owners of historic Claude buildings and interviewed them.

"The kids went to the tax office and looked up all the record books," Yelverton said. "That alone got them into the courthouse talking with the tax assessor - these kids didn't even have a clue about paying taxes."

Yelverton said the students' research is in the process of being put on Wikipedia, a free online encyclopedia with articles contributed by volunteers.

"One student interviewed the owner of the old movie theater and they were showing Alfred Hitchcock's 'The Birds,'" said Yelverton.

"They told a story of how boys threw live chickens from a balcony on all the people during the movie."

The citizenship classes also conducted a mock election for Claude's kindergarten through 12th grade.

"I tell them a goal and it is up to them to decide how to accomplish it," Yelverton said.

Students set up a voting booth, informed parents and created visual necklaces with pictures of the candidates as a voting tool.

calendar of events
  • January 11
    Kickoff of 2009 Program
    Find out what Celebrate Education is all about in this special section in your Sunday paper.
  • March 7
    Regional Spelling Bee, West Texas A&M University
    The annual Regional Spelling Bee will feature the top spellers from the Amarillo area. The top five winners will receive scholarship money ranging from $500 to $5,000 and the winner will travel to Washington, D.C., in June to represent the area in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
  • Spring and Fall
    Amarillo Reads community-wide reading projects.
    Dates and details TBA
  • April
    Amarillo Education Matching Grants Program. Exact date TBA
  • April 10
    What's a Kid to Do Special Section
  • April 12
    What's a Kid to Do at the Amarillo Civic Center
    This event will focus on activities and camps for children to participate in during the summer..
  • May 8-29
    Beating the Odds
    A series of stories published daily in the Amarillo Globe-News during the graduation season that profiles people who have inspiring stories to tell about the degree they are about to receive.
  • May 12
    Ready for the Real World program at Amarillo Civic Center
    AISD juniors get training on what's going to face them in a little more than a year.
  • May 16
    Best and Brightest Special Section
  • May 16
    Best and Brightest Event at West Texas A&M University
  • Fall
    Discover College Day
    Fifth graders from area schools visit college campuses.
  • October 1
    Great Jobs Special Section
    Focusing on well paying jobs available in the area that people may not know about.
  • November 2
    Career Education Special Section
    Focusing on businesses and others in the community helping young people gain a career vision.
  • November
    Yes You Can Event
    Designed to help people gain information about the next level of education from GED to PhD. Date TBA.
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