When SBS students, parents, faculty and alumni think about second grade, they fondly remember the Parade of Presidents program. A treasured tradition at SBS, the Parade of Presidents honors the men and women who served as leaders of our country, giving special thanks to those in our own community who served in the armed forces. With songs like God Bless The USA and Blessed is the Nation, patriotism abounds in this program. Many alumni state they can even remember all the words to The Presidents Song, claiming this knowledge has helped them along the way!
“Many of the student programs at SBS are time-honored traditions, and the Parade of Presidents is special in its own way,” said alumna McKinzie (Jones) Howard ’11. “I remember the stories that my classmates and I shared as we learned about the presidents who gave their lives in service to the United States of America. Although it was twenty years ago that I walked down the Sanctuary aisle as former First Lady Betty Ford, I remember it like it was yesterday!”
Through programs like this at SBS, students are immersed in comprehensive research projects that help not only seal in the knowledge they need for the program, but plant the seeds toward becoming lifelong learners. From amazing library resources to cross-curricular alignment through art and music class, students begin to understand how fun learning can be!
“Each student researches their own president or first lady. Our amazing librarian, Lana Wallace, put together a library guide filled with websites, videos and books that students use to gather information,” said Alison Tidmore ’91, second grade teacher. “While they are writing research papers in class, activity teachers are working with the students as well. In art with Mrs. Long, students learn how to draw portraits and then create a portrait of their president or first lady. In music, students learn the songs for the program and work with Mrs. Brown to add expression to their speeches. In Technology, Mrs. Manion helps with more research through various sources.”
An important skill students learn through this program is the ability to speak in front of a large group. The confidence this instills in our students from a young age is part of what helps set them up for success later in life.
“It takes a ton of self-control, attention and patience to do a show like this,” said Tidmore. “As we were reading about the American Revolution, we read a quote by Thomas Paine:
The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.
These second graders worked incredibly hard and now get to experience glorious triumph! They will have these memories forever."