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Second graders meet city officials

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OFFICER: Officer Sims opened up his police cruiser for second graders fromLincoln Elementary School on Thursday during their field trip.
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FIREFIGHTER: A firefighter from the Huntington Fire Department EtnaAvenue Station demonstrates his gear to second graders fromLincoln Elementary School.
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MAYOR: Mayor Brooks Fetters speaks to second grade students from Lincoln Elementary School and explains how his profession is similar to that of a school principal.
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Lincoln Elementary School: second grade students listen to Mayor Brooks Fetters in the Mayor’s Conference Room on the third floor of the Huntington City Building during a field trip on Thursday.

by James Ehle - jehle@h-ponline.com

Second grade teachers at Lincoln Elementary School took their students outside of the classroom for a social studies lesson with Huntington officials.

Second graders from Lincoln Elementary met with Mayor Brooks Fetters, Officer Steve Sims of the Huntington Police Department and Huntington firefighters at the Etna Avenue Fire Station.

At the Huntington City Building, the students had a chance to hear from Mayor Fetters, who explained his occupation as much like that of a principal of a school.

“He does a really great job of tying it into things they can relate to,” said second grade teacher Amanda Stephenson. “He tied it to how the principal oversees everything in the school but he doesn’t do every job.”

Fetters also shared some of his favorite parts of being a mayor along with a list of his responsibilities. Stephenson says the trip to meet with officials is especially applicable for her students.

“It’s really cool this year,” Stephenson said. “When they go to computer lab and library, Diane Arnold and Tabby Hall are working with them, and each class is going to elect a mayor. They’re doing it across different grade levels.”

The students headed downstairs in the City Building to meet with Officer Sims who opened up his police cruiser for the kids to look around. Stephenson said it was a great opportunity for the kids to have a positive interaction with an officer.

“(Students) were definitely willing to interact with them,” Stephenson said. “One of the little boys just climbed right up in that police cruiser and had a seat.”

The class moved to Huntington Fire Department’s Etna Avenue Station where firefighters put on their equipment to help children feel less afraid if they find themselves being rescued in a building fire. The students also watched a movie about fire safety.

The kids enjoyed a picnic at Memorial Park, where one student dubbed the field trip day as “the best day ever” according to Stephenson.

Stephenson expressed concerns that many school corporations have gotten away from taking class field trips to meet officials within their own city. She says it’s important for her students to have the experience outside of the classroom to learn from.

“Our goal is always for them to learn through experiences as much as possible and it’s just a bonus when we can do it outside of the classroom,” Stephenson said. “HCCSC does a great job of allowing us to take field trips and have those experiences.”