Separated by glass, the students improvised their way through a special program for veterans at The Waters of Huntingburg.
Using two phones and a Bluetooth speaker set up inside the building, they read poems, played the National Anthem and thanked the six veterans for their service. It was a subdued ceremony but for these students, the realization of the sacrifice and service these and other veterans have made left an impression. So much so that as Southridge Junior Bethanie Needhamer took a moment to return to the window to thank them for their service one more time, she couldn’t help but tear up.
Along with the five students who gave their presentation, other tasks were divided up by the 45 students in Erica Holh’s American Literature classes. In addition to the presentation, some students gave presentations at Huntingburg Elementary School, others designed the event t-shirts the juniors wore and some put together plaques for each of the veterans at The Waters.
Hohl’s course is a project-based learning course and this is the second Veterans Day event students have planned and executed.
“When we began to think about what Veterans Day could look like amid the COVID-19 restrictions, we started off by first wanting students to get an understanding of what veterans are, who they are, and what they’ve done in sacrifice,” She explained. “So we read several classic works of American literature, like the Red Badge of Courage, just to give students that perspective.”
They spoke with Indiana National Guard First Sgt. Nick Fischer who felt that with the loneliness some of the veterans in nursing homes were likely dealing with, the students should bring the presentation to them.
For the students at The Waters, the presentation helped them to reflect on the men and women who have volunteered to serve and, with the veterans on the other side of the glass, see and honor a few of the people who have made those sacrifices.