Big kids share the ABCs of learning


Last time Rob Hicker saw Stephanie Richards, she was a student in his fifth-grade classroom at Nautilus Elementary school.

On Friday, more than 10 years later, Hicker saw Richards again when he was visiting her classroom at Brigadoon Elementary.

Five students from Hicker’s seventh-grade Geography Expo class at Saghalie Middle School completed ABC books for

countries on the Pacific Rim. On Friday, they presented the information in their books to students in Richards’ kindergarten classroom.

“I think it’s a good way for them to show their work,” Richards said. “The little guys are excited that the big kids are coming.”

Seventh-grader Jesse Oleson came up with the idea to read to the kindergartners after completing his project. Oleson, a former student at Brigadoon, thought the books might help the younger students learn their ABCs.

“They’re just learning to read, so helping them learning to read would help them learn,” he said.

Oleson completed his project on China. For each letter of the alphabet, he chose Chinese cities, food, traditions or landmarks to illustrate. He chose the country because he noticed that the United States imports a lot of food, toys and electronics from China.

“It’s big and it’s really old and we deliver a lot of stuff from China,” he said.

One of the most interesting things Oleson learned was that the Chinese once used silkworms to create their clothing. He also really liked the Chinese fairy tales involving dragons.

Another seventh-grade student, whose parents were unreachable for permission to print his name, said he chose his project on Mexico because that’s where his family is from. Most of the information he learned by researching on the Internet.

“The whole thing was really fun,” he said. “Everything seemed really interesting for me to learn.”

The kindergartners, too, seemed to enjoy the event. They listened intently as the older kids read their books. And afterward, they enjoyed snacks that Hicker’s class brought to share.

Contact Margo Horner: or (253) 925-5565.

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