STUDENTS AT Longfellow Elementary School have been discovering that little things -- like pennies and acts of kindness -- can add up to big results.

The school held a penny drive last month and will observe Courtesy Day tomorrow.

"In today's society, there's a lack of respect at times," observed school counselor Sonya L. F. Becton. "One kind or courteous act can brighten someone's day. Little actions make a big difference."

Members of the student council, directed by teacher Elaine Mezeivtch, conducted the penny drive in March. The theme was "when you work together, every penny counts," Becton said.

The students raised $1,114.75. NationsBank, one of the school's business partners, contributed another $100.

Half of the money will be used to buy calculators, so that every student in the school will have one. And the other half will be divided between the pediatric unit at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore, and the Help-A-Child Fund of Howard County.

Among the students conducting the penny drive were first-graders Sharrell Wise, Jessica Rizzo, Michael Kappert, Michael Fowler, Chris Malick and Laura Tschirgi.

Second-graders Grant Vickers, Alex Taylor, Daniella Beall and Piyali Kundu helped, too.

Also participating were third-graders Richard Salisbury, Amanda Reeder, Rick Efford, Richard Nam, Danielle Tanner and Menti Fekadu.

Fourth-graders Miles Farr, Andrew Usyk, Aubrey Cronin and Charo Bishop were involved, as were fifth-graders Reamond Parrott, Martine Farrior, David Gers, Mollie Elicker, Michelle Bone, Patrick O'Neill, Hadass Kogan and Paul Tamburello.

Assisting the students were staff members Connie Tjoumas, Ann Foltz, Joan Crawford and Michelle Salamony.

Beginning April 9, the morning announcements have included an act of courtesy to practice each day, such as holding a door open for someone or writing a thank-you note.

Tomorrow, the theme of kindness and respect for others will be incorporated into lessons throughout the day.

An assembly at 2 p.m. will feature speakers from the organizations receiving the pennies.

Students Trevis Ellenbe, Kristina Adams, Jessica Robey and Chloe Gandy will perform a courtesy rap, and students will receive courtesy bags from Parcel Plus and cookies from McDonald's.

Families and community members are invited to attend.

Working with the school on the project are Dottie Packston of NationsBank, Jed Castelbaum of Parcel Plus and Kathy Bell of McDonald's in Harper's Choice.

Local dancers to perform

Two dancers from west Columbia will be among the performers this weekend at Spring Beats, a program of music and dance at Howard Community College.

The production includes Aurora Dance Company, SURGE Dance Company and Music in Common.

Columbia resident Dawn Cooper Barnes founded and directs Aurora Dance Company, the multicultural dance troupe of Howard Community College.

The group will perform "Fanga," a traditional Liberian welcoming dance, choreographed by Barnes, who is an associate professor of performing arts at the college.

Members of Aurora include west Columbia residents Menchu Esteban and Tanya Snell.

A native of Spain, Esteban recently performed in the Kittamaqundi Theater production of "The Curious Savage."

Snell, a member of Aurora since it began in 1994, will graduate from Howard Community College next month.

Performances will be at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday in the college's Smith Theatre.

A shortened program for families with children will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday.

Seats for the evening shows are $10 each. General admission for the family matinee is $6 a person. For tickets, call 410-964-4900.

Music teacher honored

Howard County Parents for School Music has named Sandra Adkins, choral director at Wilde Lake High School, as Music Educator of the Year.

A plaque was presented to her at a concert April 10 at Oakland Mills High School.

The annual award honors a teacher who fosters personal growth in students by enabling them to experience the joy of music as listeners, as students, or as performers.

Members of Howard County Parents for School Music include parents, educators and interested citizens who work to promote access to quality music education for all students.

Pub Date: 4/23/97

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