Jackson Elementary students participate in wax museum project

If you could step into the shoes of any famous person, past or present, who would you choose?

Fifth graders at Seymour-Jackson Elementary School answered that question recently as part of the school’s annual wax museum project.

Students spent time researching different notable figures as part of a lesson on writing biographies.

[sc:text-divider text-divider-title=”Story continues below gallery” ]Click here to purchase photos from this gallery

“We have been doing the wax museum for a few years now,” teacher Jill Waskom Kloss said. “We wanted to expose the children to longer writing pieces.”

Along with writing the biography, students had to create a bibliography showing a minimum of three sources they used in their research and a poster with pictures and information about their famous person.

“It helps further their knowledge of the genre of a biography and how to write a bibliography,” Kloss said. “Plus, students learned how to research.”

Using internet sources, students learned they had to cross reference websites and make sure the information they were using was factual.

Oftentimes, students struggle with writing, so they don’t like it, Kloss said. She hopes the wax museum project changes their feelings.

“I hope the students grew even more of a love of reading and writing,” she said. “When you introduce it in a fun way and let students have choice, they are more respondent and eager to write.”

Students had to give a speech to their classmates and then could participate in Evening at the Wax Museum, where they presented their projects to parents, family members and the community.

During the wax museum, they got the opportunity to dress up as their famous person. Standing still as a statue with their arm extended out in front of them, the students would come to life when anyone pressed the drawn-on button on the back of their hand.

Kloss said she was proud of the students’ work and effort to make the wax museum a successful event.

“Their biographies were well-written, and costumes were spot-on,” she said. “All the kids did a fantastic job.”

Student Cohl Moore chose basketball legend Michael Jordan for his project.

“He is one of my favorite NBA basketball players and is my idol on the court,” Moore said.

In his research, Moore said he learned Jordan went to the University of North Carolina.

“I liked writing the biography,” he said. “It was fun to look up fun facts about that person.”

Jaylynn Hernandez chose Frida Kahlo for her project and learned the famed Mexican artist was bisexual and an LGBT icon.

“She had a rough and sad history,” Hernandez said. “I liked doing the wax museum because I learned more about her life.”

Brian Westmoreland said he chose William Shakespeare for his research project because he wanted to learn more about the man who is responsible for authoring so many famous plays and poetry.

His Shakespeare costume drew a lot of compliments from people attending the wax museum.

“What I liked most was dressing up because you got to show your creativity,” Westmoreland said.

He learned what a bibliography is and how to create a proper one.

“I also learned how to not trust one specific website for information,” he said. “You need to look at other sources, as well.”

Sallie Nicholson said she chose Susan B. Anthony to research because she admires her for fighting for women’s right to vote.

“I strive for people to treat each other equally,” Nicholson said.

She learned Anthony demanded women have the same rights as men, and eventually, her voice was heard.

“I liked being able to stand there and tell people about Susan B. Anthony and what she did,” Nicholson said.