MOUNT VERNON — Dogs, energy, sea creatures, volcanos, big bikes and different languages were the topics explored during the second semester Kenyon Mentor Tea held Tuesday at the Knox County Educational Service Center.
The tea marked the culmination of independent study pursued by gifted and talented pupils from various Knox County elementary schools with guidance from Kenyon College students, and family and friends were treated to presentations about the various projects.
Parent Tom Huber said the mentor program is a great thing.
“My daughter really enjoyed everything,” he said. “She’s really going to work hard. She said she wants to do it when she grows up, so I think it’s a really good thing.”
Huber’s daughter Zoe and fellow Centerburg fourth-grade students Chloe Jarrett and Cate Wheeler worked with Kenyon mentor Anna Wilhelm to study energy. Their presentation included information about energy, electricity, kinetic energy and alternative energy sources. They also used wires, a lemon and a human chain to demonstrate how a circuit works.
Chloe said she loved the mentor program.
“It was fun and I learned a lot,” she explained.
Kristy Vargo, also a fourth-grader from Centerburg, likes to write, as does her Kenyon mentor Dan Kipp. They teamed up to write a story about her dog Webster, who “helped” with the presentation. Kristy wrote the story as if Webster was telling it, because, she said, “I thought it would be interesting and fun to see things from his point of view.”
Centerburg second-grader Brady Bland, assisted by Kenyon mentor Amelia Lavin, learned about different sea creatures. They shared some 3-D models of several creatures with the audience, gave some pertinent facts and used a length of string to point out how big a basking shark really is — 30 feet long.
Kenyon mentor Jen Brown worked with Fredericktown third-graders Chance Beeman and Blake Dowalter. Chance researched facts about American Pitbull Terriers and Blake discovered information about Czechoslovakian wolfdogs.
The project presented by East Knox first-graders Sierra Arnal and John Mazza, with help from Kenyon mentor Kali Greff, was an explosive one. The pupils first talked about jungle animals, then set off a model volcano.
Lucas Wood, a second-grader from Danville, likes wheeled vehicles, and his Kenyon mentor Avril Ho helped him develop a presentation on big bikes.
Another Danville second-grader, Justice Ferenbaugh, taught the audience how to say certain words such as, happy, thank you and family, in different languages. The languages included Spanish, Chinese, Japanese and Finnish.