LHS F.O.L. Students Hold Annual Multicultural Fair
All 9th graders at Lexington High School participate in a Foundations of Leadership (F.O.L.) course. This course is designed to enhance and support the learning experiences of 9th grade students to become knowledgeable, responsible, and caring students as they transition into high school. Students are active partners in creating an environment that both promotes strategies for academic success and excellence, and also integrates social and emotional learning. Throughout the school year, freshmen work on a variety of collaborative projects to help foster teamwork, social awareness and understanding, problem solving, compassion, servant leadership, and decision-making skills.
Most recently, the whole 9th grade class was very busy in their F.O.L. course preparing for the 2023 Multicultural Fair which was held this year on March 8th. This event is planned, organized, coordinated, and run by the freshman class. This year there were 14 countries represented at the Fair. This year, each F.O.L. class selected one or two countries to study in-depth and learn about the culture, traditions, geography, economics, customs, foods, popular sports/kids’ games and activities, etc.. The countries featured in this year’s fair included: Nicaragua, Jamaica, Iceland, Spain, Switzerland, India, Philippines, South Korea, Samoa Islands, Qatar, Egypt, Ecuador, Argentina, and the Dominican Republic.
After the freshmen learned all about their chosen country, they worked in small groups to devise/create/plan interactive learning activities to share/for the target audience. This year’s Multicultural event attendees were Sandoz Elementary and Bryan Elementary students. Led by high school ‘tour guides’, the 2nd and 3rd grade students had the awesome experience of “traveling around the world” to various countries, getting stamps in their passports, and learning about each country’s culture by participating in a variety of hands-on, fun-filled experiences.
For 2023, Mrs. Archer’s Foundations of Leadership class voted to learn all about the Philippines. Why this country? Well, the Philippines was their country of choice because earlier in the school year, these 9th graders participated in an outreach servant leadership project – Operation Christmas Child – and some of their shoebox gifts were sent to the Philippines and received by kids in that country. Hearing back from one of those shoebox gift recipients triggered a keen sense of curiosity, and Mrs. Archer’s students wanted to learn all they could about the culture and life in the Philippines. Karlianys Santiago-Rivera, one of Mrs. Archer’s F.O.L. students, shared that she really learned interesting things about the Filipino culture and had an awesome time creating fun activities to teach the children about the Philippines. Karli shared, “Planning and holding the 2023 Multicultural Fair was a great experience. Sure, it was a lot of work…but seeing the kids having a blast while learning about the various countries was amazing. I was a tour guide to start, so I led students to the various countries, got to interact with them, and encourage their participation. It was cool to see all of the creative activities from each country and how the little kids loved everything. The second half of the event, I worked at one of the stations my FOL class organized about the Philippines. Sharing what I learned with the younger children was great – it was fun and rewarding. I’ll never forget it!”