Fifth Graders Take Sides on Debate

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Fifth graders in Ms. Thayer and Mrs. Stelmach's class have been debating over a controversial topic in schools nationwide: Should schools serve chocolate milk, or is the drink too unhealthy? The debate is part of the fifth grade reading and writing unit which includes researching debatable topics and writing researched-based argument essays. "The kids took a stand, created claims and supported those claims with reasons and evidence," explained Ms. Thayer. "In their letters to principal Casale and Cleary, the students cited sources and wrote with persuasion. It was the students' idea to create a courtroom and debate both sides of the argument." Mr. Casale and Ms. Cleary were invited to judge both sides. "We've learned so much from this experience, even public speaking skills," added Ms. Thayer. "Thanks to our principals for taking time out of their day to hear our case!"