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North Casper Elementary students stepped off the bus with great excitement. The previous day they had learned of the surprise in store for them. As a reward for their dedication and hard work on recent PAWS testing the 3th, 4th, and 5th grade students at North Casper Elementary celebrated with a field trip to see the critically acclaimed Disney film, McFarland, USA. The film is based on the inspiring true story of a 1987 high school cross-country team who, against all odds, win the state championship. After a trip to the movie with his daughter to see McFarland, USA, Principal Phil Hubert knew this movie would be perfect for the students at North Casper, “I was really moved by the film and was able to make a ton of connections personally and to my work. I believed it would be a great way to celebrate the hard work of students on PAWS testing, as well as a way to connect with the students and pull applicable messages from their own life, such as: perseverance, goal setting and working hard.” Little did he know, North Casper Elementary school counselor, Missy Nack, had also recently seen the film and had was dreaming of a way to share this inspirational film with her students, “I was very inspired by the movie and knew immediately that our students would connect with it.” Together, with the help of their coworkers, Principal Hubert and Missy Nack began arrangements to surprise the students with a trip to the theater to see McFarland, USA.
In her classroom work Missy Nack is discussing dreams with students, where they come from and how to set goals to achieve these dreams, “I often talk with the students about our “broken hearts” and how sometimes they can hold us back. We are talking about tools that we can use to prevent our “broken hearts” from holding us back.” Sharing the experience with students was an awe-inspiring opportunity and the school will continue to work with the students to relate the lessons learned in the film back to the student’s everyday lives.
“These students have shared many things that have impacted them in their lives. We are amazed each day by their determination and perseverance.”
Leonardo- 5th Grade, “I liked how they had determination and they didn’t give up. I learned I should never give up.”
Nubia- 5th Grade, “My school has prepared me for junior high by teaching me to always show integrity.”
Hugo- 4th Grade- “The movie showed me that courage and hope can get you wherever you want to go.”