The halls of Mahoning Elementary School were alive with the "Sounds of Winter" recently as the third and fourth grade students presented the annual Winter Concert.

"The students did an excellent job with the concert and should be proud of all the hard work they put into learning the music," said long-term substitute music teacher Jessica Schafer. "They did well with not only learning the music, but adapting to me as a new director teacher."

Under the direction of Schafer, the third graders opened the program with Jill Gallina's "Winter Fantasy." Students Katie Maier and Chaz Remaley read "Dear Santa, Here's My Christmas List" by Kenn Nesbitt. "Winter Wonderland" by Richard B. Smith and Felix Bernard followed.

An original piece written by Schafer, "Christmas Memories" was read by Jonathan Porambo and Kendra Mosteller. Next, the students performed "Somewhere in My Memory" by Leslie Bricusse and John Williams. The third graders concluded their portion of the program with "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year" by Edward Pola and George Wyle – a perennial favorite popularized by Andy Williams.

During intermission, a video was presented with students answering questions about their favorite Christmas traditions and songs.

"It was humorous to watch some of the students attempt to name Santa's reindeer in the video," said Schafer.

Students Mazzy Mickey and Joshua George opened the fourth grade portion of the show by explaining the meaning of an alma mater. Accompanied by Elijah House and Ryley Fahringer on drums, the students sang "Lehighton Alma Mater." "Santa's New Idea" was read by Kaleena Craig and Austin Schweibinz. The traditional "Jingle Bells" followed. Written by Shel Silverstein, "Christmas Dog" was read by Roger Pomposello and Mackenzie Light.

Next, the students performed Bruce Springsteen's version of "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" – "A clear favorite of the class," according to Schafer.

The concert concluded with "We Wish You a Merry Christmas."

"It was wonderful to have so many people come out and support our students in the winter music program," said elementary principal Aaron Sebelin. "We hope everyone enjoyed the Christmas concert. This was a wonderful program to help spread the Christmas spirit."

"Ms. Schafer teaches our children a love of music and ways in which to express themselves in a positive manner," concluded Sebelin.

Laura Cressley was gratefully acknowledged for her recorded musical accompaniment for the "Sounds of Winter" Concert.

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