Planting seeds of greatness at Pass Christian Elementary School


In this current era and struggles with COVID-19, schools nationwide are doing a balancing act, working to keep students safe while also keeping lessons interactive.

Pass Christian Elementary School is using a storybook pumpkin patch to grow students’ creativity through hands-on assignments.

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You know what they say about idle hands, but no worries at Pass Christian Elementary School. Students have been busy, even in quarantine as seen by the school’s storybook pumpkin patch display. Assistant Principal Stacy Mooney said, “Our children were very excited to be able to choose their favorite story and decorate a pumpkin to display their character. We were really excited about all of the participation we had. We had over 130 students participate in our pumpkins.”

Since Halloween is just around the corner, how fitting to choose a story about a cat. That’s just what second-grader Elijah Bunn did. “We read the book about “Pete the Cat.” We were in quarantine and doing Zoom, and I really liked it so that’s why we did “Pete the Cat” for my pumpkin. We were going to put shoes under it, but we didn’t do that.”

Another student chose ‘Maddy’s Mad Hair Day,’ and that’s what this exercise is all about: tapping into students’ creativity. “It doesn’t matter where you are. At Pass Christian School District, our expectations are that every child will learn and have the opportunity, and it’s a shared responsibility with our families. We have had some of our e-learners participate in this, and their parents brought in their pumpkins. So, they still feel a part of our family here at Pass Christian Elementary School, and that’s what it’s all about.”

A new chapter in this new era of learning where the kids and teachers are making the most of it all, hoping hands-on, interactive lessons will stick with these students for years to come.

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Toni started at WXXV News 25 in December of 2013, just three months after the news was launched. She has served as Assignment Editor, anchored for nearly two years, worked as a reporter for several years and hosted Coastal Connections for more than four years. Toni graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Southern Mississippi where she was editor of the Student Printz. She then did an internship on Capitol Hill, working for a U.S. Senator, then returned to Mississippi as a reporter at WDAM in Hattiesburg. After that, she moved to the Mississippi Gulf Coast, working as a reporter for FOX 25 in Biloxi, then crossing city lines to work at WLOX-TV news in Biloxi, starting out as a producer, then working as a photographer, reporter, weekend assignment editor and weekend anchor. She was among the station team that won the Edward Murrow and Peabody awards for coverage during Hurricane Katrina. Toni moved to the Lone Star State where she worked as the morning and noon anchor, investigative reporter and live shot reporter for KZTV Action 10 News, then KRIS TV News in Corpus Christi, Texas. Toni moved back to the Magnolia State to be with and take care of her family, working as a multi-media journalist and fill-in anchor at WDBD Fox 40 news in Jackson. After almost completing a second degree in filmmaking at the University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast, Toni transitioned back to news at News 25. Toni is blessed to have a wonderful support network of close family, friends and mentors, and she hopes to pay it forward. She has a three-legged chiweenie named Rocky Balboa because of his fighting spirit. She loves writing and has completed a novel that has been adapted into a screenplay, and has just finished another screenplay called "Delta Rose." She's currently working on a new legal thriller called "Fall From Grace." Stay tuned....