“Imagine Harriet Tubman sitting next to Malala Yousofza discussing their lives and troubles. Picture Henry Ford having a conversation with Mickey Mantle and JFK. Welcome then to Jessica Herb’s fifth grade classroom at the Pine Bush Elementary School,” said Linda Smith, public information specialist for the Pine Bush Central School District.

She was covering a program created for the third year by teacher Jessica Herb and her students. Throughout the month of December each student chose to write a biography of a famous person they admired to be part of a “Living Museum." They stepped into character by dressing as the figure, and even decorated the part of the room they were assigned as a museum.

Sapphire Lopez chose Wilma Rudolph because she was the first African-American woman to run track at the Olympics, winning three gold medals and a bronze. Maya Martinez chose a young woman, Malala Yousofza, who was an activist for women wanting an education. For her efforts she won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Classrooms of students visited the museum, stopping at each station to learn about the people chosen.

“This is the third year Ms. Herb has put the project together,” said Linda Smith. “Not only do the fifth grade students learn from the program, but they enjoy doing it. The entire school took turns visiting the museum. Parents, too, came to visit.”

“This is a wonderful way for the students to learn about people who have made an impact on our country and our world,” said Superintendent Tim Main, who took the tour with the visitors. “It’s a great way to learn,” he said.

Coming up

The Mamakating Library will offer a Repair Cafe from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday at the library at 128 Sullivan St. in Wurtsboro. The Repair Cafe is a fairly new concept embraced by libraries as a way to save favorite items that often get thrown away. The library’s solution is to fix it yourself with a team of volunteer teachers/fixers.

The library program is popular. It continues to attract people who can qualify as experts and those who enjoy the service. If a lamp plug needs a new plug, you can learn how to fix it yourself. It’s amazing how much you can save by fixing the old instead of going for the new.

Among the things repairable are clothes, zippers, electric clocks, small pieces of furniture, picture frames, brass instruments, jewelry, and odds and ends that just need a replacement part or ones that just need a switch. For information, call Peggy Johansen at 888-8010.

Seasonal nature walks

Through a generous gift from the Thomas and Corinne Nyquist Foundation, Historic Huguenot Street in New Paltz will host four seasonal nature walks. They will be at the Nyquist Harcourt Wildlife Sanctuary and the Mohonk Preserve and led by Justin Wexler, ecologist and founder of Wild Hudson Valley, who specializes in folklore and land use among the native people of the Hudson Valley.

The walks have been named. They are:

• "The Midwinter Hunt: Bears, Stars and Snow," Feb. 9.

• "The Springtime Fishing Camps: Shad, Birds and Flowers," May 11.

• "Summers of Growth: Fruits, Greens and Sun,” Aug. 10.

• "Autumn Harvest: Maize, Nuts and Venison," Nov. 9.

For information, contact Frances Vigna at 255-1660.

 

Barbara Bedell’s column appears daily. She can be reached at 346-3125 or by email: bbedell@th-record.com.