Contest whets student appetites

Contest whets student appetites

Image Credit: Dave Mast

Eating healthy is something most parents and schools promote, but when the message comes directly from young classmates, it can have an even greater impact.

The message of developing a healthy eating lifestyle is at the forefront of one county contest that recently took place.

The annual East Holmes MyPlate poster contest for seventh-graders from Wise, Mt. Hope and Chestnut Ridge took place Thursday, Nov. 3 at Chestnut Ridge School, where seventh-graders from each school were invited to create a nutrition poster that was not only creative and beautifully crafted, but also implemented all the nutritional aspects of daily food intake and a message about 60 minutes a day of activity.

Janna Mast, Chestnut Ridge family and consumer science teacher, said the MyPlate project offers a way for the seventh-grade students to use their creativity, but at the same time, it serves as a conduit for the coming year when they participate in the eighth-grade miniature dream bedroom contest.

“The girls seem to have a lot of fun creating the posters, but it is always neat to see them come in after the judging and take pictures and explore everything the eighth-graders came up with in the miniature bedroom contest,” Mast said.

Judges for the contest were former East Holmes teacher Jane Mast and former Chestnut Ridge School family and consumer science teacher Shannon Stutzman, who put their heads together to try to discern which posters showed the greatest creativity, neatness, uniqueness of design and presentable message.

Stutzman taught for 32 years, and for the latter many years of her career, she was the one running the bedroom and MyPlate show. She said she is amazed at how creative the seventh-graders have become in designing their posters.

“Over the years the posters have just gotten more and more impressive, and the display of creativity and artwork now is incredible,” Stutzman said.

The overall winner of the contest was Kira Coblentz of Chestnut Ridge, who went with a bee theme and presented creativity and neatness in her presentation. Second place went to Kari Yoder of Wise, who created some whimsical food characters sitting around a campfire, and third place was awarded to Kayla Mullet, who fashioned a treasure map on craft paper amid her colorful work on the edges of her poster.

“This project is both educational and fun, and hopefully, it inspires them and others who see this to get their daily fruits and vegetables and strive to live a healthier lifestyle,” Mast said.

The two former educators had a blast moving from poster to poster, discussing each while trying to determine what made one stand out over another.

“It’s a difficult job because there are so many wonderful posters,” Jane Mast said. “Some of them stand out because you can tell how much effort they put into them.”

For the individual school winners, first place in Mt. Hope went to Amber Miller while second went to Julitta Miller.

Kari Yoder was Wise’s winner while second place went to Mari Jo Hershberger, third was Laina Miller and honorable mention was Mary Esther Mast.

Coblentz won at Chestnut Ridge, and Kayla Mullet was second, Ellie Nicole Mullet third and Mindy Miller honorable mention.

The winning posters will be on display at Berlin Fabrics from Nov. 18 to Dec. 2.