Vt. students work on 'cool' project for troops - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Vt. students work on 'cool' project for troops

Georgia, Vermont - February 5, 2010

"I feel like I'm giving instead of receiving," Jordan Couture said.

Jordan is part of Ms. Alspach's second-grade class at Georgia Elementary School. The students are working together to make neck cooling straps for our soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"You can sew and you can press the pedal and you can take pins out which is really fun," Jordan said.

"The neck coolers I thought would be a good thing because the children could actually make them themselves," teacher Joyce Alspach explained.

They found the neck coolers idea on a website listing things Vermont soldiers need, and they decided to take it on as a class project.

They fill fabric strips with pellets that expand when they get wet and hold cold water. The straps can be tied on their necks or foreheads to keep them cool in the desert conditions.

The students do everything from cutting the fabric, to pinning the seams, and sewing.

"It makes me more connected with everybody over there," said Kameron Dunsmore, a second-grader.

"They keep saying where are they going? Who will be wearing these? And we go online and we look to see where all these things are going to be shipped and they can see people actually wearing them and say I did that. I'm making a difference for the people that are serving our country," Alspach said.

"It can make you so much cooler and they'll be so happy they might write a letter to us," Jordan said.

Ms. Alspach's class has made quite a name for themselves at Georgia Elementary School with their service projects for the troops and they hope to do more in the future.

"My son and daughter-in-law are in the services. Maybe next year they will both be overseas and we can do something for their units as well," Alspach said.

The class makes about 12 neck coolers a week and plans to send them overseas at the end of April.

Molly Smith - WCAX News

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