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Fourth graders learn about empathy, community with card project

Fouth-grade students learn about empathy and community through a holiday card project.
Fouth-grade students learn about empathy and community through a holiday card project.(Anchorage School District)
Published: Dec. 18, 2020 at 6:48 PM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Spreading a little holiday cheer, Rabbit Creek Elementary fourth graders created works of art.

The fourth graders from Holly Rinehart’s and Claudia Liebsch’s classes were learning about empathy and connection, so they decided to reach out to community members with homemade cards.

The learning unit combined art, empathy, social studies and health. The project started with a Zoom call with the executive director of Hospice of Anchorage, Amy Tribbett.

“We zoomed with her at Hospice of Anchorage and the kids got so excited about the idea,” says Rinehart. “So we turned it into a unit of we are Alaska strong, we are never alone and when times are tough we connect and support.”

The cards were distributed to Hospice of Anchorage, the governor’s office, frontline health care workers and various hospitals. The students even got a chance to talk with Gov. Mike Dunleavy on Zoom.

“They had an opportunity to share with him and I think it was so powerful to see that connection and that they are empowered as fourth-grade students, they’re empowered to make a difference in our community,” Rinehart said.

Besides the governor, cards were also made for Chief Medical Officer Dr. Anne Zink and Department of Health and Social Services Commissioner Adam Crum.

In all, the 39 students made 117 cards with messages like: “Hello. Happy holidays. Hope all is well and you are doing good. Times can be tough but you have to go through that to feel good,” and “I wish I could give you a hug right now.”

Rabbit Creek Elementary fouth-graders learn about empathy and community through a holiday card...
Rabbit Creek Elementary fouth-graders learn about empathy and community through a holiday card project.(Anchorage School District)

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