From the eyes of students

Once more the summer holiday is winding down, and thoughts are turning to the beginning of a new school year. On Aug. 19 — only a couple of weeks away — kids will be pouring into the schools.

Recently, the opportunity arose to chat with some of our Clovis Municipal Schools students to check the pulse, so to speak, from the student perspective.

Madeline Wright, 9 years old, will be a fourth-grader at Mesa Elementary this upcoming school year in Debra Lusk’s classroom. Madeline’s favorite subjects are art and reading. She loves to read “chapter books about animals!” In last year’s third-grade classroom (AMY Marshall), Madeline’s favorite activities were raising caterpillars until they became butterflies…” and also when we hatched baby chicks; it was awesome!” she enthusiastically added.

During the summer, Madeline has gone on several trips and particularly enjoyed Girl Scout Camp in the mountains. “I also drew a lot; there are pictures all over our walls. I am a pretty good draw-er,” she confided. She thinks fourth grade will be harder with more homework and getting to do more projects.

My next interviewee was Andrew Mulhair. This 11-year-old will be a sixth-grader in middle school next year. Most community members will have heard about the completed construction of the brand new middle school, Gattis, and the move of all sixth grades to one of the three middle school campuses (the other two being Marshall and Yucca), to complete the conventional middle school model.

Andrew was at Zia Elementary in Sara Peffer’s fifth-grade class last year. His favorite subject is math, a subject at which he is strong, working well above grade level. Although he prefers math, reading is also a strong subject, and one of Andrew’s favorite activities last year was when students got to do their spelling words in shaving cream. “What!?” I exclaimed. Andrew explained, “Mrs. Peffer sprayed shaving cream across our desks, and we would use our finger to spell out our spelling words. The teacher would come by and check our words, then we’d smooth it out and spell the next words. It was so cool!”

With middle school as Andrew’s next destination, he said he was just a little bit scared, but mostly excited. “I am really excited about the electives!” He’s taking tech lab, band and robotics. “I can’t wait to get my hands on my trombone!”

Andrew’s little sister, Journi Mulhair, will be starting kindergarten. Journi said she was excited and not scared at all. In pre-school last year, her favorite things to do were numbers and shapes. Journi has been doing her before-school shopping and has her school clothes, backpack, erasers, pencils and beach towel ready to go. “Beach towel?” I queried. “Yep,” she replied, “It’s on the list! Also,” Journi continued, “in pre-school, I didn’t always have to go every day, but in kindergarten, I will have to go every single day,”

We wish these and all of our students a successful school year!

Cindy Kleyn-Kennedy is the instructional technology coordinator for the Clovis Municipal Schools and can be reached at