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Community News: Tri-Valley high schoolers spend winter break crocheting


A little determination goes a long way. Just ask members of the Tri-Valley National Honor Society, who spent many hours learning and teaching the art of crochet. After just a few short weeks, NHS advisors, NHS members, students, faculty, family, and friends produced over 100 crocheted squares that will be on their way to Project Chemo Crochet this week.

Advisors Amanda Killian-Shiffer and Amanda White started the school year with a desire to have their honor society members get more involved in their community service. “Our approach this year was to move our students away from passively collecting and donating to being more active in their community service. We want them to understand what it is like to donate their heart and their time to a good cause,” explained Amanda Killian-Shiffer. 

The perfect idea for students to become actively involved came when advisor, Amanda White saw a post on Facebook about Project Chemo Crochet. “My friend and neighbor had recently been diagnosed with cancer, so when I saw the post, I decided to visit Project Chemo Crochet’s website to apply for a blanket donation for her. After exploring the website, I knew that making squares would be the perfect way for our NHS students to become actively involved. Even though neither Amanda nor I had any experience in crocheting, we became determined to learn and to teach our students,” explained Amanda White.

After a little brainstorming and planning, “Crochet over the Holiday” was created. Flyers were made and a mass e-mail was sent to the Tri-Valley faculty. Once the news of the up-coming event began to spread, crocheting was underway in school. Yarn and needles were handed out by teachers who had supplies, and students and teachers alike got to work. Along with the NHS advisors, other Tri-Valley teachers dedicated time to teaching students and teachers how to crochet prior to the event.

For two weeks before Christmas break, crocheting was happening everywhere! Instead of taking out their cell phones between classes, students could be seen walking from class to class holding their balls of yarn and crocheting as they went along! Even during our monthly fire drill, students couldn't put down their yarn! The students really embraced this new found hobby of crocheting; they started adding colors and using Pinterest to look up different stitches and patterns.

NHS hosted this event in Mrs. Killian-Shiffer’s home on Monday, December 29, 2014. Students, faculty, friends, neighbors, and Tri-Valley alumni attended the event and spent the day snacking, listening to music, and crocheting for Project Chemo Crochet. With twenty people in attendance, many squares were made, and even after the event was over, those who attended and learned crochet, continued to make squares.

This event introduced and reignited this calming hobby throughout our school community, and the best part was, students were actively engaged in helping others. People who never crocheted before, learned how, and people who hadn’t for a while, began to love it again. Lilia Alvarez, the Spanish teacher in our school taught many of the students how to crochet a “grannie square.” She had stopped crocheting for a couple years and had to reteach herself how. After refreshing her memory, she remembered just how much she enjoyed it. She is now planning on creating a Crochet Club in the school so that more students and teachers can enjoy this tranquil hobby next year.

National Honor Society advisors were really impressed with the outcome of the event, and are even considering hosting another crochet day sometime in the spring. The Tri-Valley community feels proud to ship the squares to Project Chemo Crochet. We know that our time and efforts will help surround cancer patients worldwide with love and support.




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