Students make Christmas cards for seniors

Northside Elementary students show holiday spirit

Mrs. Rathke’s 5th grade art class at Northside Elementary isn’t doing your typical art project.

“We’re making cards for the people who don’t have much family,” said Northside student Aidyn Timm.

“It’s part of a program that we were asked to participate in to bring some holiday to residents in area nursing homes,” said Northside art teacher, Amoreena Rathke.

For many students, writing these cards has much more meaning than finishing a school project.

“I always hear their grandparents who are in nursing homes, or who have passed away, and they seem like they are excited to participate, and have a connection to the community and the people that live in nursing homes,” said Rathke.

“We make them to make them feel better for the holidays,” said Timm.

It’s become quite the popular activity as well.

“They asked us for 105 cards, but we have probably made maybe 250 so far, so lots of cards,” said Rathke.

Many students have even gone beyond the call.

“They decided to write letters to the residents in addition to the cards just to tell them more about themselves and their hobbies and their plans for the Christmas season. It was a nice way for them to have a pen pal, or start a relationship with someone. A lot of the kids want to meet the residents now that they made cards for them,” said Rathke.

While it may be just a piece of paper, these students are bringing a little extra holiday cheer to those this holiday season.

“This is a way they can participate on a community level with people in the area that they may not have a chance to meet or interact with otherwise,” said Rathke.

“Basically just to make people happy,” said Timm.

This is the first year of the event.  The program is part of the “Be a Santa for a Senior” effort, brought on by “Home Instead of Senior Care”.