Irving Elementary School Students Feel the Love for West Allis

Irving Elementary School Students Feel the Love for West Allis
Posted on 03/20/2020
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When Mayor Dan Devine visited students at Irving Elementary School and delivered a heart-shaped invitation  inviting them to help plan a Valentine’s Party, students were eager to feel the love for their city .  

“We began with two driving questions; What is the West Allis community and how do I make it a great place to be?” said Sarah Matz, Teacher. “With the event falling just before Valentine’s Day, our Project-Based Learning Council thought it would be perfect to hold a Valentine’s Day party to show our love for the West Allis community!”

Grade level teams used collaboration time to create and implement their projects.  

“First grade students chose to highlight the new dog park in the community. Students met with a professional dog trainer to learn about important dog facts and habits before they designed their own dog park. Students created a map and map key of their dog park after learning about what dogs might need. In addition, they visited the Humane Society to learn more about caring for animals,” said Matz.

“In art class, second and third graders explored typography and abstract texture painting to create posters that share all the things they love about West Allis. Their artwork was on display during the event. In music class, fifth graders used the app Garage Band to write “That’s Why West Allis” jingles. Families that attended the event voted on their favorite song.”

“Fourth grade researched the State Fair and collaborated with two marketing directors who came to assist the students with their projects and answered specific questions. Students had a choice (e.g., create a physical model using math or use balanced literacy skills to write a presentation) as part of their research,” added teacher, Sue Herbert.

On February, 13, 2020, Irving Elementary School held a “Feeling the Love for West Allis” community event. When families arrived, they received a checklist that covered all the projects and activities on display. Visitors were able to talk with students about their final projects.

“It’s important that students interact with the public and communicate their own thinking and learning,” explains Hebert. “
We were glad local organizations participated too. We had representatives from the West Allis Library, the West Allis-West Milwaukee School District Recreation Department, and the West Allis Historical Society in attendance. Families went to the gym to talk with local organizations, make Valentine’s Day cards for patients at Aurora West Allis Medical Center, vote for their favorite ‘That’s Why West Allis’ jingle and took pictures in front of different West Allis landmarks using a green screen.”

“We were all really excited to have Wisconsin State Fair mascot, Cravin D. Cream Puff, join us for the evening too!” added teacher, Matz.