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States in the spotlight

Posted: Monday, Feb 18th, 2013

Home-schooled students make their way around the FOCHES Geography Fair, held Friday night at St. Thomas More Catholic Church. The annual geography fair focused on U.S. states this year, piggy-backing on the FOCHES geography class that has been studying the new state quarters. Twenty-seven states were represented at the fair. Below, a display on Louisiana includes a King Cake and information on Mardi Gras. Charis Prunty/Register

• Geography fair combines research, presentation and community

BROOKINGS – On a table inside St. Thomas More’s gymnasium Friday evening, 15 white plastic cups held a gulp each of Florida’s Natural orange juice. A few inches away were sunflower seeds, jam, fresh bread, macadamia nut cookies, cactus syrup and a lot of other tasty foods, each representing one of our 50 states.

“Each state is represented here by a different food,” said Christy VanSickle, coordinator of this year’s Geography Fair.

“So here, there’s Arizona we have cactus bread and cactus syrup; and Kansas, their state flower is the sunflower, so she’s brought sunflower seeds. … And Florida, you know, the Florida orange juice.”

For some years now, Brookings-based FOCHES (Fellowship of Christian Home-Educated Students) has held this geography fair. Usually countries of the world are on display, but this year, VanSickle asked students to examine parts of the world that are closer to their own homes. The idea came from a bi-weekly geography class FOCHES offers that has centered this year on the 50 new state quarters.

For the complete article see the 02-18-2013 issue.

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