Fifth graders help teach younger kids


Students at Carlisle Elementary School were treated Friday to special guest presentations from fifth graders in Laura Waltz’s class.

The fifth graders spent the last two months working on websites that host presentations and research about the Aztecs. On Friday, the students carried their laptops throughout the building, giving one-on-one presentations to their schoolmates about the Mesoamerican civilization.

Waltz said the presentations were a valuable experience for her students.

“They have been working on researching ancient Aztec culture, and this is a way for them to practice informational writing,” Waltz said, adding the project also taught students the basics of presentation and building a webpage.

Waltz said she enjoyed seeing her students give the presentations to the lower grades.

“I love watching the pride on their faces and the excitement to come visit the younger grades to show off their knowledge,” she said. “(I’m happy) to see them grow as learners in their researching and writing skills, in their computer skill and their confidence as they share their knowledge with different grade levels.”

Cheyenne Lyons, a fifth grader in Waltz’s class, said she enjoyed the project.

“I think it was good for learning,” she said Friday afternoon. “It was actually really fun to make and to learn how to make it.”

Cheyenne said she’s looking forward to more presentations in the future.

Fellow fifth grader Bella Price expertly pronounced Aztec words such as the city Tenochtitlan during her presentation, adding it was easy with some practice.

“At first it was really hard and then it wasn’t as hard once you kept on saying it and seeing it,” Bella said. “We read articles about it a lot. You get the hang of it.”

Bella said she enjoyed the project and would happily do another presentation like it.

“I liked finding different research and pictures about (the Aztec),” she said. “It was really great. It was really fun. I liked telling them different things about it. I liked telling them they didn’t have certain technology, and (the students) were really surprised about it.”

Evan Kinikin, a fifth grader, said he enjoyed doing research for the project.

“I like to learn about people,” he said. “It was fun to know what they did and what happened in their community.”

Evan added he enjoyed teaching the other students at the school as well.

“I liked teaching them about the Aztecs,” he said. “It’s fun because I know some of them just learned something.”

Kindergarten teacher Theresa Carlson thanked the students Friday afternoon after they presented to her class.

“Fifth grade, we are so very, very proud of you,” Carlson said. “Keep up the amazing work. It’s exciting for us because my students always wonder, ‘Why do we need to learn to read and write?,’ and this is why. Because you guys are doing such great things. We are extremely proud of you.”

After the presentations, Carlson said she enjoyed the visit from the fifth graders because some of them were former students.

“It’s been fun for me because I’ve taught kindergarten and third grade. … I’m so proud of them and what they’re doing,” Carlson said.

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