In anticipation of Geography Awareness Week (Nov. 13-19), students at six San Marcos CISD elementary schools and one middle school participated in the 2011 Poster Contest sponsored by the Texas Alliance for Geographic Education.
The theme for this year’s competition was “Exploring Place: Capturing the Interaction of Physical and Human Geography in Your Community.” The alliance encouraged students to focus on natural landscapes, built landscapes, cultural experiences that have shaped the natural environment, or how the natural environment has forced humans to adapt to it.
Trevor Habbit of Hernandez Elementary took home 3rd place honors in the K-2 division. His art teacher is Kay Posey. Gabriel Ortiz of Crockett Elementary placed 2nd and Benjamin Murdoch of Hernandez Elementary placed 3rd in the grades 3-5 division. Katie Bryant teaches Ortiz, and Posey teaches Murdoch. Carl Ahrens of Goodnight Middle School placed first in the grades 6-8 division. His teacher is Cheryl Blake.
Blake said that school-wide winners were Carl Ahrens (1st), Christian Avalos (2nd) and a tie for third place between Abel Godina and Meredith Hall. Ahrens will be honored on Wednesday, November 16, at the State Capitol by the Texas Alliance for Geographic Education, along with his parents, Sharon and Henry Ahrens, and Blake.
At Bowie and Travis Elementary Schools, 1st place posters were submitted to the state competition by 2nd grader Molly McLaughlin (Bowie), 3rd grader Gabriella Medellin (Bowie), 2nd grader Makayla Scobee (Travis), and 5th grader Ellie Coleman (Travis). Sharon Ahrens coordinated the Bowie and Travis art posters. The Bowie art teachers are Margie Scull and Marilyn Schultz. Dennis Torticill teaches art at Travis Elementary and Crockett Elementary.
At De Zavala Elementary, the top school winner in the K-2 category was 2nd grader Daniel Villalpando (teacher Pamela Smith). Winners in the grade 3-5 category were from Darlene Salmon’s 5th grade class: Dakota Fernandez with the Environmental Award, Mariyan Sosa with the Community Award, and Michelle Lopez with the Saluting Industry Award. Marilyn Schulz is the De Zavala art teacher, and Carol Fernandez coordinated the poster contests for De Zavala and Hernandez Elementary schools.
Hernandez Elementary fourth-grader Jade Olivo took the 3-D Community Award for her poster featuring Wonder World Cave. Second-grader Trevor Habbit, took school honors with 1st place in the K-2 division; 5th grader Ben Murdoch placed 1st in the grades 3-5 division. Both Habbit and Murdoch went on to earn state recognition. Kay Posey is the Hernandez and Mendez art teacher.
Mendez Elementary students who moved on the state competition were Purvi Weerasinghe, Christian Alvarado, and Penelope Velero. School winners included:
• 1st grade: Purvi Weerasinghe
• 2nd grade: Jose Loredo (1st), Fernando Alvarado (2ne, Jasmine Guzman and Devyn Machen
(tie for 3rd)
• 3rd grade: Christian Alvarado, Jackson Robison, Valeria Murillo-Gonzalez (1st-3rd)
• 4th grade: Penelope Velero (1st), Michael Santos and Adrian Garcia-Velasquez (tie for 2nd), and
Bobby Rocha (3rd)
• 5th grade: Cassandra Ramos, Brandi Saucedo, Luke Merchant (1st – 3rd respectively).
Crockett Elementary students who competed at state were Gabriel Ortiz, Carolina Govea, and Isabela Davila. Ortiz went on to earn the 2nd place trophy in his age division at state. School winners were:
• 1st grade: Sadie Helgeson
• 2nd grade: Isabela Davila
• 3rd grade: Cassidy Wood (1st), Brianna Pendry (2nd), Ryan Rodriguez (3rd)
• 4th grade: Gabriel Ortiz and Seraphina Bienick (tie for 1st), Phoenix Orta (3rd)
• 5th grade: Carolina Govea, Georgia Barber, Alexia Willis (1st-3rd, respectively)
“The judges told us it was a tough competition this year because there were so many wonderful posters submitted,” said Brenda Butler, who coordinated the Crockett and Mendez poster contests.