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Forest Hills Pre-K students make eye-catching projects M A I NLI NE newspapers

Vol. 109 No. 47

USPS 439-000

By Amanda Petrunak of Mainline Newspapers

“My eyes see; his eyes see,” whispered the Forest Hills Pre-K students, as they gathered around for a reading of Dr. Seuss’ “The Eye Book,” on Wednesday, Nov 13. Kim Lehman of the Cambria County Blind and Handicap Association came in for a visit, and she brought along her handy stuffed animal sidekick, See-Well Bunny. Lehman began her presentation by asking the students what they do to protect their eyes and improve their vision. Some of the students said they wear their glasses, just like See-Well Bunny. Others said they use sunglasses in the summer, and some even said they make healthy food choices to protect their eyes. “It is important to think about healthy foods such as milk and oranges, which provide our bodies with nourishment,” said Lehman. She then went on to ask the students who liked to play in the snow in the winter. Every single hand sprung up in the air; the students

Portage, Pa.

began to talk about building snowmen, sledding, and of course, snowball fights. Lehman told the students it is important to be cautious when having a snowball fight because there could be a rock or small stone bundled up amongst the snow. “We want to protect our eyes, so we do not want to throw a snowball at someone’s face and risk the chance of hurting another person,” said Lehman. She went on to ask the students what other objects were a danger to their eyes. The students responded with fireworks, pencils, and the sun. With each new topic, Lehman held up a sign, depicting See-Well Bunny, and his choices he made to protect his vision. This topic struck home for Lehman. She told the students a personal story about her child’s eye injury growing up. She told the students that the children were playing and waving a wand around at a birthday party, and a piece of metal broke off the tip of the wand. Luckily, the doctors were able to remove the piece of metal

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Jody Summits’ Pre-K class shows off their stylish visors they created during the Vision presentation at Forest Hills Elementary School. Photo by Amanda Petrunak.

from her child’s eye. This situation, along with Lehman’s field of work, prompted

her to reach out to children to let them know the dangerous and how easily accidents can happen.

Lehman travels from school district to school district, reaching out to

By Amanda Petrunak

idea to allow the high school students to put on a presentation for our younger students. It is better if they hear words of wisdom and advice from other students rather than someone out of the district. It will make the presentation more personal and effective,” said Ralph Cecere, the junior-senior high school principal. The high school students are also creating several posters that will be displayed in the hallways of each school building to help reinforce positive behavior and take a stance against bullying.

Portage School Board talks bullying program, Goodwill partnership of Mainline Newspapers

Arts and crafts time

(814) 472-4110

On Wednesday, Nov. 13, the Portage School Board met for their monthly meeting at the elementary auditorium at 6:30 p.m. The board began the meeting by showing recognition to Brian Randall, SADD advisor and high school math teacher, who was nominated as the SADD Advisor of the Year. Randall is currently working with the high school students to establish a anti-bullying program for the elementary students. “We decided it would be a good


Forest Hills Middle School hosts Operation Ranger program Sydney Martin, Carrie Pringle, and Connor Johns work on their sun visors at Forest Hills Elementary. Photo by Amanda Petrunak.

By Amanda Petrunak of Mainline Newspapers

An average of 240 students participated in the Operation Ranger program on Friday, Nov. 8, and there were roughly 50 veterans who came in for this special occasion. The students completed a total of 2,179 miles in the six-week timeframe for the challenge. They were able to beat last year’s record of 1,531 miles. The number of the students who participate in this event continues to grow year after year. “The involvement is tremendous, and the students take on the event. It is a student led presentation,” said Robert Sakmar, the middle school history teacher. The students completed 11,197

push-ups, as well. All of the 240 students took part in the obstacle course, which consisted of a military crawl, tire roll, ropes, pumpkin run, skis, hay bale climb, and military puzzle. The obstacle course was divided into a six-member and a eight-member group competition. “The students look forward to this event each year. They have family members and friends who have served or are currently serving in the military; this event is very personal to them,” said Judy McIntyre, the middle school physical education teacher. All of the students came together for this celebration. The students even decided to create an American flag out of the eagle emblems they made for their

Emily Rozum escorts veteran, Timothy Troy Submitted photo.

to the stage.


annual wall of honor. They took it upon themselves to make sure they had enough red, white and blue cut-outs of the eagles to create the stars and stripes to represent the American flag, which they displayed in the main entrance of the school. The chorus and band also took an active role in the ceremony, along with the local boy scouts, who said the Pledge of Allegiance. The art club, under the direction of Doctor Jennifer Motter, the art teacher, painted the cafeteria windows in honor of this special day. Even the English classes wrote research papers on Veterans Day to get a better perspective of what this day represents and truly means. SEE RANGER, PAGE 16A

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