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Girls Learn Lessons With Dolls In New Class At Danbury's Wooster School

From left, Sadie Drahzal, Angela Pacheo, Grace Lyons, Kaitlyn Anderson, teacher Elyse Felicione, Sariah Lewis and Hope Wenzel take part in the "Follow Your Inner Star" class in Wooster School's Enrichment Academy. Photo Credit: contributed
Sariah and Angela working on their interviews in class. Photo Credit: contributed
Daily Voice writer Sandra Fox giving a journalism lesson. Photo Credit: contributed
Sadie, Kaitlyn, Angela and Hope showing the crafts they made in class. Photo Credit: contributed

DANBURY, Conn. — A new class at Wooster School in Danbury helps girls gain self confidence and develop big goals.

The class, called "Follow Your Inner Star," is part of Wooster's Enrichment Academy, which is open to Wooster students in grades 3-5. It runs Friday afternoons for eight weeks through March.

In the class, which is taught by fifth grade teacher Elyse Felicione, students learn through American Girl Dolls, which they bring to class.

"Each doll represents positive attributes of girls who may have lived during a particular time period in the past. The dolls represent attributes such as courageous, bright, capable and adventurous," Felicione said.

By learning of the experiences of girls from past eras, the students "are encouraged to stand tall, dream big and overcome obstacles that may come their way. They learn to take pride in being a girl and learn how they, too, can grow up to be a woman who makes a difference," Felicione said.

To explain the role of American Girl Doll Kit Kittredge, who loved reporting and lived during the Great Depression, Daily Voice writer Sandra Fox visited the class and spoke to students about journalism.

Fox told the girls why news is important, how people find out about the news and what kinds of information should go into a news story.

Students then became reporters themselves by pairing up and interviewing each other. They learned successful interviews are all about asking the right questions.

Sadie Drahzal, 10, interviewed Angela Pacheo, also 10, about her favorite hobby — dance. "How does dance make you feel?" Sadie asked. Angela replied, "When I'm on stage, I feel like a professional ballerina. It feels really good to hear all the claps and cheers."

Hope Wenzel, 10, asked 10-year-old Sariah Lewis how she became interested in softball. Sarah replied, "I started playing with a T-ball stand and then my dad would pitch the ball to me."

There are a dozen other classes in Wooster's Enrichment program, including "Amerikid Ninja Warriors," "Dancing Around the World" and "Let's Paint."

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