Bellefontaine Examiner

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7 Habits showcased

Pupils at Northeastern Elementary School might only be between 5 and 10 years old, but Wednesday, they led a daylong program for area residents and also individuals from other cities to showcase what they have learned through the Leader in Me program.

Among the nearly 100 guests in attendance who saw students’ work were parents, police officers, firefighters, city council members, and also teachers from other school districts, including Findlay, Newark, Toledo and Greenwood, Ind.

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Attendees at Northeastern Elementary School’s Leadership Day Wednesday check out flowers that lined the gymnasium stage. The flowers were potted in milk cartons recycled by students in the school’s Green Club.

This school year, Northeastern Elementary, along with Southeastern Elementary and Western Intermediate schools, each received a grant to implement the program that focuses on the late Dr. Stephen R. Covey’s book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

Western Intermediate hosts a similar Leadership Day program from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Friday.

Throughout the year, teachers at each of the buildings have implemented the seven habits in their classrooms, with principles that include being proactive, to putting first things first, beginning with the end in mind, and to synergize or “together is better.”

Northeastern second-grader Katelyn Esh said learning about these leadership concepts has made her school a better place.

“I think it’s pretty cool. It gives us a chance to be happier and to have a better emotional bank account,” she said, explaining this type “bank account” relates to the kinds of feelings you have.

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Caitlin Stolly, left, shares her data notebook that tracks her progress on school assignments with her mother, Cindy, Wednesday during Northeastern Elementary School’s Leadership Day that celebrates the school’s participation in the Leader in Me program. EXAMINER PHOTOS | MANDY LOEHR

In preparation for the Leadership Day, Northeastern pupils have been meeting for the past six weeks to develop various projects.

“All 400 of our students had some kind of job or responsibility relating to putting on Leadership Day,” said Phil Forsythe, Title I teacher.

“They have synergized or worked together to form 17 different clubs this year. For example, some students were part of the serving club, where they were in charge of serving our guests their lunches today.”

Some of the other student-led groups include the Safety Club, the News Team that creates a school newsletter, the Right to Read Club that assisted with Right to Read Week, and the Green Team, which collected 13,500 milk cartons from the school lunchroom.

Green Team members then turned the cartons into flower pots that were displayed around the school gymnasium for guests to enjoy.

Another club, the Brilliant Busketeers, helps keep students in order before boarding buses at the end of the school day, member Emily Fissel said.  

“We help both the younger ones and the older students to be leaders,” she said.

Read the full story in Thursday's Examiner.

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