Building bridges: Four Corners students have been studying them; will perform skits, songs, dances tonight
Four Corners 2nd grade students form an Arch Bridge with Samantha Disciullo as an abutment, Emily Canuso as the arch, Brielle Widelo as the other abutment and Lily Savoi on top as the decking.
Four Corners 2nd grade students form a simple beam bridge with Gabe Osciak and Mariah Hasan as the abutments and KK Santiago on top as the decking.
Four Corners 2nd grade students form a suspension bridge with abutment Clara Donivan, tower Matt Provencal, cables Maelin Manning holding up decking Caleb Duncan with tower Ethan Melnik and abutment Matt Dillon. At bottom Trevor Kuchieski represents a boat passing under the bridge.
Four Corners 2nd grade students KK Santiago and her twin sister Nereyda Santiago with the model bridges they built as part of their study of bridges.
GREENFIELD — For the past three months, students at the Discovery School at Four Corners have had a case of bridge fever.
They’ve gone out and looked at bridges, heard from a construction crew that builds them, created small bridges of their own and learned about figurative generational and community bridges.
Tonight, they’ll perform skits, songs and dances in a culminating performance of the unit — at the Greenfield Middle School at 6 p.m.
Some students will tell the story about a “Red Suspension Bridge” that once existed in Turners Falls. Another group will sing, in French and English, “Sur le Pont d’Avignon” — which tells of a dance on a famous medieval bridge in France.
“Our purpose when we do our themes ... is really trying to find a topic that engages children in a lot of ways,” said first-grade teacher Marianne Harcourt. “Kids have had a lot of fun building different types of bridges and experimenting what holds a bridge up.”
Each child in the 210-student school was charged with building a small bridge model, using materials of choice.
The students were visited by guest speakers from Northfield company Lane Construction. in January, and then took a tour of some Franklin County bridges a few weeks later.
They can now identify the parts of a bridge and the different styles that exist, said Harcourt.
But they also learned that the word “bridge” has more abstract definitions, as well.
A grandparents day in February bridged generations. Students showed their elder relatives what they were working on in school and were able to ask questions about what school and life was like generations ago.
A pen pal project between elementary schools, and service projects like a fundraising event after Hurricane Sandy, allowed students to form community bridges as well, school officials said.