Students learn about Memorial Day while raising money for scholarship fund

PLYMOUTH — As Memorial Day approaches, Washington Elementary first grade teacher Lauren Cooper searched for a creative way to teach her students about the holiday.
“We spend a lot of time talking about the calendar and current events,” said Cooper. “
To explain Memorial Day, Cooper told her students about her childhood friend, Capt. Brandon Barrett, a Marine from Marion, Ind. who had died in May 2010 in Afghanistan.
Together, Cooper and her class decided to raise money to donate to the Capt. Brandon Barrett Scholarship Fund. The first grade students wrote letters to Capt. Barrett’s family, created posters to hang around the school, and organized a fundraiser selling flag keychains for 50 cents each during lunch Thursday and Friday. They also produced a commercial about the fundraiser which was shown to other classes in the school.
“I think they understand a lot more (about) the sacrifice of the armed forces,” said Cooper. “This gave them a personal interest in it.”