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Hamilton schools contribute to community during holidays

Hamilton School District students, staff and families showed appreciation for the needs of others during the holidays by contributing to charitable organizations and extending acts of kindness within the community and beyond. Following is a summary of activities at each school.

Willow Springs Learning Center
Willow Springs Learning Center four-year-old kindergartners and their families contributed generously to the Sussex Food Pantry this holiday season. They participated in a service project, “Making Wishes Come True,” that resulted in more than 265 gifts that will be distributed through the Sussex Food Pantry to local families.

In addition, the Willow Springs staff adopted a family for Christmas and donated items to provide a merry Christmas.

Lannon Elementary School
Lannon Elementary School students, families and staff members contributed 100 gently-used items of clothing and boots to the Sussex Food Pantry. They also donated 90 new hats, gloves and mittens to the Parents Place in Waukesha.

Lannon staff members adopted a family and provided all of its gifts this holiday season.

Maple Avenue Elementary School
Maple Avenue Elementary School fifth-graders, through their Uniting Kids and Community (UKC) program, sponsored the Foods for Families Drive that provided 1,602 non-perishable food items to the Sussex Food Pantry.

Buddy classes in first and third grades earned money by doing extra work at home and contributing the money at school. A total of $528.34 was raised and used to purchase items for children served by the Sussex Food Pantry. They contributed 103 items, including 55 board or card games, 31 miscellaneous toiletries and 17 hats, gloves and socks.

One fifth grade classroom participated in a “Buck a Book” activity in which students earn one dollar from their parents for each book they read. The money raised is contributed to a charitable organization each time the class reaches $50. Students chose to contribute the $50 donation to the school’s gift-giving program during the holiday season.

Maple Avenue staff members sponsored three families providing gifts, books, games, educational toys, clothing, gift cards, snacks, holiday décor and lotion for family members. In addition, school staff worked with Kohl’s department stores corporate offices to sponsor three additional families for a total of six families sponsored.

Marcy Elementary School
Marcy participated in several activities at various grade levels.

Students made picture frames and wrote letters to an injured Marine. ther classes made holiday cards for soldiers.

Some students made doggie biscuits, which were sent to the Humane Society.

A first grade class made blankets to donate to needy or hospitalized children.

Classes read books through a Scholastic program that provided books to a needy school for every 100 books read.

Marcy Scout troops also collected books and food for the food panty.

Woodside Elementary School
Woodside students showed kindness and concern for others through a variety of projects. Kindergarten classes, which collect items for the Sussex Food Pantry each week, donated two carloads of food before Thanksgiving to the Second Harvest “Stuff the Bus” food drive. First and third grade music classes collected food items in November and December and donated them to the Sussex Food Pantry. A fifth grade class brought canned goods to their holiday party and donated them to the Sussex Food Pantry.

First and fourth grade classes regularly make 75 to 100 bag lunches for the homeless that are delivered to the Tony Lee Sanctuary in Milwaukee. Students make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and bag cookies, crackers or other snack foods to create meals.

Fifth grade, second grade and student council teamed up to raise money for the Leukemia Foundation to fight childhood cancer and will launch the “Links for Hope” project in which a giant paper chain containing inspirational messages will be created.

Kindergarten students raised money for a charity by showing outstanding classroom behavior. All points for the week of Dec.15 were turned into dollars that were donated.

Two classes made holiday greeting cards for recovering veterans at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C.

Templeton Middle School
The Templeton Middle School Student Council organized its annual Holiday Gift Drive in December, and it was a huge success. The school raised $3,000 to help those in need this holiday season. Donations were given to the Women’s Center of Waukesha to aid abused women and children and Sussex Outreach Services to help families in our community.

The Student Council also conducted a schoolwide Children’s Book Drive for soldiers in Afghanistan. Two hundred children’s books were collected and sent to Afghanistan. The books will be delivered to soldiers who will then choose a book and record themselves reading the book or a chapter of the book on a DVD. This personalized DVD and the book will then be sent home to the soldier’s family so the children can hear a story being read to them by their parent who is stationed in Afghanistan.

Templeton students raised $3,665.83 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to help young people with life-threatening illnesses. Students asked sponsors to donate money based on the number of correct answers in a math booklet or to make a one-time donation.

Templeton students read 823 books two weeks before Thanksgiving in the Read to Feed project through Time Warner Cable. For every book read, a can of food was donated to Milwaukee area food banks.

Hamilton High School
Hamilton High School Student Council conducted a toy drive Dec. 3-5. The toys were delivered to the Sussex Food Pantry in conjunction with Willow Springs’ collection.

The Freshman Seminar class sponsored a 3-year-old Sussex girl through the Waukesha County Christmas Clearing Council and raised money to buy items on a wish list that the girl’s mother provided. Students also brought in toys and clothes they purchased themselves. Students delivered a total of 16 gifts for the girl.

In honor of the German tradition of St. Martin’s Day, the German Club collected men’s and women’s clothing in November. They gathered approximately 428 articles of clothing, mainly sweaters, sweatshirts, jeans and winter clothing. The clothes were distributed through Red Door Clothes, a free clothing distribution in Milwaukee’s central city.

The National Honor Society sponsored a schoolwide Juice Drive that netted 523 bottles (2,700 pounds) of juice to the Hunger Task Force of Milwaukee for distribution in its Holiday Food Baskets to needy families. Some 54 National Honor Society members volunteered at the Hunger Task Force collection and distribution center in Milwaukee and served as ambassadors at the FM 102.9 Hogs Against Hunger Thanksgiving Food Drive at State Fair Park collecting more than $1,200 cash. National Honor Society members also held a Christmas Caroling Food Drive Dec. 14 in the Ridgefield Subdivision in Menomonee Falls and collected more than 200 pounds of food for the Sussex Food Pantry.

DECA members took holiday gifts to boys and girls in the second grade class and the autistic class at LaFollette Elementary School in Milwaukee. Each student put together a gift bag valued at approximately $15 for a total of around $400. DECA members spent time opening the gifts and playing with the students. The two teachers also were presented gift baskets valued at $50 each.

The Spanish Club sponsored an Hispanic family through the Christmas Clearing Council of Waukesha County. The officers of the Spanish Club put together flyers and posters describing their cause and visited each Spanish classroom promoting the service project. Spanish classes were asked to contribute gently-worn clothing or make a monetary donation. Spanish students collected a total of $122.50 that they used to purchase gifts for the family.

Hamilton Library’s “Snowflakes of Hope” program collected items for families in need. “A Novel Idea” Book Group accepted donations for the Women’s Center in Waukesha. They donated sweaters, scarves, hats, gloves, mittens and toiletries.

District staff members
Staff members throughout the district adopted families in lieu of exchanging gifts with one another. They provided gifts of toys, games, clothing, food, personal items, household goods and gift certificates for numerous families in need of support.