Before the last bell of the day rang to signify the end of the school year, there was one last thing to do before summer vacation at Towamensing Elementary School. It was time to acknowledge all the students who accomplished great things during the school year and for sixth grade students to say "Good-bye" to their alma mater as they prepare to begin junior high.
Before the awards were announced, Principal, Christine Steigerwalt asked everyone to stand and offer a moment of silence in honor and memory of the school's two losses, that of Camryn Zelinka, a first-grade student, and fifth-grade teacher Blaine House.
Members of the sixth-grade class sang the school song, "Towamensing Elementary, the school that we've come to love."
Natalie Madeira, music teacher, recognized students in the band, fourth-sixth grade chorus members and all those who received an outstanding for all four marking periods.
Rebecca Sabo, art teacher, named all the students who received an outstanding in all four marking periods from K-sixth.
Darlene Broderidge, librarian/gifted teacher and peer tutor adviser, recognized all the students who were peer tutors, fifth- and sixth-grade students who worked with other students who needed extra help.
Eileen Long, adviser of the Environmental Club acknowledged all the students who participated.
Jodi Kocher, recognized all the third-sixth grade student council members who were elected by their classmates. She also recognized students who had perfect attendance records.
All those in third-sixth grades who made honor roll and principal's list had their names called out.
There was a special appearance by a couple of "Blues brothers," sixth-grade teacher Ralph Andrews and third-grade teacher Bill Zeky, playing the flutophone and electric guitar wearing cool shades, who sang a song written for the graduating class "because we know how sad you are all feeling about this being your last day."
It was titled, "The Sixth Grade Blues." The sixth graders loved it so much, they gave the duo a standing ovation and the other students joined them, wildly clapping their approval.
Steigerwalt congratulated this year's first-place winning Sixth Sense Team from Palmerton. Two Towamensing students Matthew Binder and Ezekiel Himmelwright were part of the team. They each received framed certificates.
Sixth graders Matthew Binder and Wade Haydt were named as the recipients of Sen. David G. Argall's Good Citizenship Awards.
Steigerwalt awarded the Principal's Plaque, donated by the PTO, to those named to the principal's list every marking period since third grade. Those sixth grade students were: Matthew Binder, Ezekiel Himmelwright, Devyn Hauser and Benjamin Serfass. Their names will also be added to the permanent plaque in the office.
Kocher then announced the names of the sixth-grade class as each accepted their diplomas from their homeroom teachers.
Rodney Strohl, health/physical ed teacher, presented flowers and read two poems to acknowledge the retirement of Darlene Broderidge and fourth-grade teacher Kris Hoffner.
Steigerwalt wished everyone a happy summer and told the fifth graders that they will now become role models for the underclassmen.
"Sixth graders, the teachers and staff and your parents have offered their guidance to help you soar. Do the best you can. It's been a pleasure having you at Towamensing," she said.