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CCJHS students watch presidential inauguration, discuss ideas


Cove Leader-Press 


Students at Copperas Cove Junior High School witnessed history in the making and applied their writing and critical thinking skills with an assignment that incorporated the inauguration of the 46th president of the United States, Joseph Biden, on Wednesday morning. 

Sixth grade Humanities teacher Sheila Gilbert showed the class a clip of a video explaining the significance of the presidential inaugurations throughout history as well as a clip of President Biden taking the Presidential Oath of Office. The class then read an article that further detailed what an inauguration is and what the Presidential Oath is. Gilbert then tasked her students with the assignment of picturing themselves as president and outlining what their top three priorities would be and why. 

The students bounced their ideas around in pairs and groups before putting pencil to paper to create their outlines. 

Sixth-grader Alexander James Rios said he would halt the taking of immigrants from their families, stop cults and stop the selling of personal information online. He said he chose these three because of the problems he has seen on the news and felt that these were all things that are wrong. 

He added that he felt proud to be taking part of the historic occasion through this assignment. 

Brooke Doolan said that her first priority would be to try and control the COVID-19 pandemic by trying to find a cure and make masks and hand sanitizer more available and share tips on how to stay safe. Her second priority would be to make education systems easier for teachers by adding more aides and give students mental health help if needed, as well as provide supplies like notebooks and pencils. Her third priority was to try and help the homeless population by creating more volunteer homeless shelters and providing education opportunities and more affordable healthcare so that they can obtain a job. 

Doolan said she chose these priorities because people would be happier without the pandemic; teachers would be happier if they could teach better; and if homeless people had the assistance and got jobs, they could help boost the economy. 

“I feel like I am able to understand why the presidents make their decisions and the vice presidents, how they decide that and how important it is because you can’t really mess up on that,” Doolan said about the assignment.  

Gilbert said that her students were definitely aware of the current issues the country is going through. 

“I’m very proud of them because they’re all very aware of issues that are going on today, and they’re aware of the things that are happening in our country,” Gilbert said. “I think that as young adults, they really truly see the vision of things getting better and making things better and they have great ideas, and they want to act on that. That’s where we need to put our young people on a positive path to where they can make change and things can change and things can get better. I think it’s important for them to have opportunities to express themselves, and I think that this is an occasion where they can do that and then see the historical significance and just really feel that they can contribute to society.”

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