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Tyrone sixth graders place second in video contest

A group of Tyrone Area Middle School sixth graders recently took second place in the elementary division of the Blair County Commissioner’s ninth annual Environment Awareness Video Competition, one of two groups from the school to be awarded in this year’s contest.
Hannah Halter, Grant Gonder, Jesse Shaffer and Kevin Seiner will be recognized by the commissioners at a May awards ceremony for their video “Breakfast Penalty.” The video is done as a commercial and is a spin off of the popular Budweiser referee commercials, but in this one, two breakfast eaters are penalized for not recycling what they buy.
Eleventh graders Nate Barber, Mike Thomas, Chris Bradigan, Rebecca Diehl and Zac Yeaton took honorable mention in the high school division for their video which uses elapsed time photography, combined with hard-hitting statistics to reinforce the importance of recycling.
Both groups will receive plaques in recognition of their achievement at a ceremony at the Blair County Courthouse in Hollidaysburg on May 3. The sixth graders will also receive a check for $300 for their educational needs.
Students were also recognized at a recent Tyrone Area School District School Board meeting. Teacher Kerry Naylor introduced the sixth graders and gave a video presentation to school board members, administrators and guests.
He said the effort required a lot of teamwork and said the project couldn’t have been done without senior high art teacher Eric Feather, his class, parents, families.
It was the second straight year a Tyrone Middle School group was recognized in the contest which is open to all Blair County Schools. Last year, a group of sixth graders received an honorable mention.
This year’s contest theme was “Recycle What You Buy, Buy What You Recycle.” In all, four groups from Tyrone Middle/High School entered.
According to a release from Naylor, just two years ago, the district received a grant that allowed them to purchase state of the art digital video equipment and supply training for a group of teachers.
“When we first were trained on this equipment, I never thought it would be this accessible to the students this quickly,” said Naylor. “They pick up on it very quickly and young people generally enjoy the challenges of working with technology. But more than that, the kids wrote and directed a very creative video.”
Naylor, a gifted support teacher at the middle school, worked on the project with the sixth grade group. Feather worked with the 11th grade group as part of his digital video class.
“This is the first year for my class, so I’m proud the students can be successful so quickly,” said Feather. “I’m proud of the work they did and look forward to continuing our participation in activities like this one.”