The Times Journal & Russell County News
Thursday, Apr. 24, 2014 — RUSSELL SPRINGS & JAMESTOWN, KENTUCKY — russellcounty.net
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Students and instructor give up summer break time to stay in classroom
In Aug. 9 issue
Russell County News



What summer vacation are you talking about?

Students returned to the classrooms of Russell County schools this week and very likely the main question passed along the halls was simply, “did you have a good summer vacation?”

This group would very likely reply, “what summer vacation are you talking about?”
This past June as school ended for the year the above group of students started making plans for their summer and their next school year.

These students, Ashley Ford, Chanson Davenport, Alex Hoover, Zach Grider, Cassandra Conner, Mary Beth Warner and Katlin Blakey, like many other students, are involved in several areas of activities and scheduling of classes sometimes is very difficult.

This group had all completed first year Spanish under the leadership of Instructor Devin Edwards and all wanted to continue to expand their language skills but activities and other required classes were making it impossible.

The idea of trying to organize a summer class and talking and pleading with Mrs. Edwards to give up her summer break to teach a Spanish II class, did occur and in fact did become a reality.

School ended last year and three days later Mrs. Edwards and the group of students went back to school. Only this time the Spanish II class bell didn’t ring on an hourly schedule but instead found the students and Mrs. Edwards in classroom work a minimum of four hours each day in order to complete the course.

Even upon the completion of this class, many of the students continued their busy summer regiment as other activities and summer band camp carried them right on through the rest of their summer until school opened this past week. No siesta here.

The students report they are very grateful for Mrs. Edwards to give them her summer time away from her own family in order for them to continue their studies.

Chanson Davenport added, “This was the only opportunity  all of us had to expand our language development and we all are so appreciative of Mrs. Edwards, Principal Darren Gossage, and our Superintendent Scott Pierce for making this happen.”

Would they give up their summer again next year?

They are already pleading with Mrs. Edwards to... next summer, Spanish III, please.

Proves to be a learning experience for both teacher and students

Mrs Devin Edwards had the following to say concerning the summer class she taught in Spanish, which proved to not only be a learning opportunity for the students, but for herself as well.

She stated: “Learning a second language is often difficult, especially when you’re attempting to do it more to meet pre-college curriculum requirements than for sheer enjoyment or ‘want-to.’

“So, when I was approached about teaching a Spanish II course during the summer — and doing so in a few weeks — I simply laughed at the idea. 

“My initial thoughts were that I simply couldn’t cover all the material needed to fulfill the course requirements in the span of only three weeks.  Then, even if I could cover it that the students simply wouldn’t be able to fulfill all the coursework that would be required or retain all the information.

“However, this summer seven incredible students proved me wrong… and it was one of the best experiences of my teaching career to date!

“When I first planned out the three-week Spanish II course even I was overwhelmed. To assure that they completed the same coursework in three weeks as they would in a regular 18-week semester was a daunting task, and that was just my part.

“The amount of work that they were going to be required to do daily in order to fulfill the requirements was almost unfathomable. But, they all assured me that they could do it.

“Day by day they not only proved that they could do it, but that they could do it beyond any of my expectations. I am incredibly proud of what they have accomplished and I wish I could take credit for it. However, it really had nothing to do with me. 

“This summer I was blessed with the perfect class. I had seven highly intelligent, highly motivated individuals that were willing to do whatever it took to succeed.

“Each day they entered with smiles and laughter and were ready to face whatever I had to throw at them—and trust me, it never let up!  There was never a complaint about the amount of work or the number of vocabulary flashcards they had to make almost daily.

“They never complained about the grammar homework, the immense country projects they had to complete, or the 100-question final exam.

“We did share a lot of laughter, though, and even some tears during our time together—and had lots of life lessons to top it all off!

“Seven incredible students proved me wrong.”
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The Times Journal is a weekly newspaper issued on Thursdays. It was first published on October 13, 1949, by Andrew J. and Terry Norfleet.
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P.O. Box 190
120 Wilson St.
Russell Springs KY 42642
Phone: 270-866-3191
Fax: 270-866-3198
Russell County News is a weekly newspaper issued on Saturdays, and is mailed free to every address in Russell County, Ky. It was first published on February 1, 1913.
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Members of the public may attend meetings. Boards or agencies may schedule other meetings at special times, but are required to notify the public.
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JAMESTOWN CITY: 3rd Thursday of month, 6 p.m. in basement meeting room at City Hall
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