FOND DU LAC, Wis. (WBAY) - A hands-on learning experience at St. Mary's Springs Academy in Fond du Lac is not only putting students in the Christmas spirit, but it takes learning outside of the classroom.
St. Mary's Springs Academy 8th graders operate a Christmas store (WBAY photo)
The Elves R Us shop inside St. Mary's Springs Academy is bustling this holiday season. For the 26th year in a row, the eighth graders in the middle school are running the store as part of a service project.
"The purpose really is to teach the kids about the real world, we've heard that, with jobs and interviewing," said a parent who volunteers to help with the store.
After applying for jobs like cashier, personal shoppers, and even Santa Claus, the students interviewed for the positions before opening the store.
Student Donovan McGalloway says, "It got me ready for the real world and interviewing and applications and jobs with bigger higher-ups and bigger people, and it's just really nice that we can learn this."
Elves R Us isn't all about work; it's fun, too. With the store open, and students assigned to their jobs, the eighth graders work with younger kids in 4K through fifth grade, helping them shop for gifts for their families this Christmas. Other students add up the cost of the purchase, while even more work as cashiers. There's also a wrapping room where even more eighth graders help package the presents for Christmas.
"It's tiring, but it's also really fun. So, we go around and we help little kids, and it's really fun to see what the little kids do and interact with them," says student Sophie Vande Slunt.
Proceeds from the Elves R Us shop help to buy the gifts that will be sold by next year's class, fund an eighth grade class trip, and also provide a charitable donation.