Rosemores VIVARAP kids find new ways to connect

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Messenger photos by Dianne Garrett

Mahlet Kinde, left, and Zaineb Bekele display a collage designed by Rosemore VIVARAP students. The Whitehall students put together a collage to help to get to know one another better. The pictures they cut from magazines represent their different likes, dislikes and personality traits.

Rosemore Middle School VIVARAP students ham it up during their showcase for visitors and family Dec. 6. The Whitehall students participate in the afterschool program, and are able to share their diverse backgrounds. Later in the school year, they will produce a video with Ohio State University.

During the KIDSConnect VIVARAP community showcase Dec. 6 at Rosemore Middle School in Whitehall, students shared their recent projects with visitors and family members.

The afterschool program helps middle school students who are not reaching their full potential to overcome social and academic challenges, according to Julie Ramirez, the program’s coordinator.

KIDSConnect is a program of the Educational Council that provides afterschool programs for intermediate and middle school students in the Whitehall, Groveport, Hamilton Local and Canal Winchester districts. It is made possible through funding from the school districts, local communities, United Way of Central Ohio and the Ohio Department of Education. Each district receives over 10,000 hours of service.

During the Rosemore event, every visitor was politely greeted at the door with a flyer that stated, "We all smile in different cultures! It’s important to have cultural awareness because it helps prevent different criticism towards other people."

The students presented multicultural- themed projects which merge awareness about cultural diversity, and strengthen academic skills. Incorporated into their work were topics such as acceptance, stereotypes and imagery.

Jordan Sullivan explained a game called Gobble, a team building exercise. They decorated water bottles like turkeys. The object is to throw little paper balls into containers decorated to ollok like turkeys. Whoever fills up a bottle first shouts "Gobble Gobble!"

Maurice Walls shared an activity where they wrote their names vertically, and after each letter of their name, made a word that described their personality traits.

Cultural books were made by students about their family’s home country to share with their friends about their country’s customs, traditions and landmarks.

Mahlet Linde and Zaineb Bekele worked in a group that put together a collage of pictures clipped from magazines that reflected likes, dislikes and personalities.

The same concept was used to do a coat of arms, shared by sisters Ashley and Alyssah Coleman. It also included what the youths would like to do when they grow up.

Ashley wants to work with animals, horses in particular, while Alyssah would like to be a librarian and/or singer. She most enjoys singing and reading in her spare time.

Students compiled a list of goals, checking them off as they accomplished each one. Dylan Smith and Manuel Vargas said that they learned a great deal about setting goals and working toward them. They also played a game called Lollipop Getting To Know

You, where they had to place a lollipop in their mouths, and without biting down on it, ask and answer questions about themselves.

The group also participated in Make A Difference Day in October by helping with a community clean-up. They picked up trash around the high school, toured the fire department and carved pumpkins.

Marissa Bell and Sabrina Hudson said they learned a lot about one another, had great fun, and gave something back to their community. They also handed out candy to children during the annual Halloween Walk.

Later in the school year the group will film their annual video through Ohio State University for a film festival.

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