Families get taste of the world at Mechanicsville Elementary


March 25, 1997|By Sherry Graham | Sherry Graham,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

IMAGINE BEING ABLE to visit several areas of the world in one evening.

Students at Mechanicsville Elementary School and their families enjoyed a whirlwind tour in a multicultural event, "Around the World in 80 Minutes," Friday evening.

"We always try to have several family oriented activities throughout the year," said Cynthia Eckenrode, principal at Mechanicsville. "The idea for this event simply blossomed from our original art show idea into food tasting, and then went on to include geography studies as well."

Parent volunteers and faculty support were key to the success of the event, Eckenrode said. She praised co-chairwomen Nancy Wolfinger and Martha Bubert for their efforts.

"The parents and teachers did a great job," Eckenrode said.

Families received a travel packet complete with an itinerary and tickets to events and displays as they entered the school lobby, which was decorated with travel posters from around the globe. They spent the next 80 minutes touring the world.

The Laur family was among the participants. Second-grader Brooke Laur and her mother, Edie, eagerly set out with their schedule and made their way to the gymnasium, where they took in the International Art and Food Tasting Exposition.

They sampled tidbits from Australia, Spain, Sweden, Mexico, the Far East and the Middle East as they viewed artwork by Mechanicsville students. The students had explored the styles and influences of art and artists from around the world under the guidance of art teachers Leanne Gilland and Jennifer Yust. Brooke made sure she pointed out her own art contribution, a plaid paper turtle.

The Laurs were then transported to Mexico with a stop at the Latin American percussion workshop led by instrument expert Jared Denhard. Visitors were invited to participate as Denhard played lively music.

Next came Ireland, where the Laurs watched closely as Linda McHale led them through some Irish jigs, reels and clog dances. Brooke was in awe of McHale's green velvet dancing costume.

Brooke was excited to have floor seats for their visit to Africa with storyteller Fellisco Keeling. Dressed in richly colored African garb, Keeling kept her audience spellbound with stories and expressive movement.

At evening's end, the Laurs examined display cases filled with donated artifacts from around the world.

"I was amazed at the variety of items people donated for the displays." Edie Laur said. "The artwork was everywhere. It was really impressive."

Learning about others

Second- and fourth-grade students at Freedom Elementary School learned important life lessons yesterday morning. Through the program "Kids on the Block," students learned about people with disabilities.

Large puppets were used to teach children about physical disabilities such as deafness and blindness. After watching the show, students soon realized that disabled people can do many things.

The program was sponsored by the school's PTA.

Fishing tournament

Registration is being accepted for the annual Early Bird Fishing Tournament at Piney Run Park. The tournament is scheduled for Saturday and is sponsored by the Maryland Recreation and Parks Association.

Up to $20,000 in prize money will be available. Prizes will be awarded in various categories for both shore anglers and boat fishermen, including $10,000 for a specially tagged crappie. There will be about 40 tagged fish worth $100 each.

Registration for shore anglers is $30; boat fishing costs $35. To obtain a registration form, call 410-942-7205.

Easter worship

Three churches in our area have planned an Easter Ecumenical Sunrise Service.

Faith Lutheran, Springfield Presbyterian and Wesley- Freedom United Methodist churches will have their annual Easter sunrise service at Piney Run Park on Sunday. Park gates will open at 5: 30 a.m., and the service will begin at 6 a.m.

The Rev. James Stoltenberg of Faith Lutheran Church will present the sermon.

Coffee and doughnuts will be available in the Nature Center afterward. Guests are encouraged to dress warmly and casually.

Information: 410-795-2777.

Sherry Graham's Southeast Carroll neighborhood column appears Tuesdays in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

Pub Date: 3/25/97

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