Fourth grade students make blankets for Presbyterian patients


An Albuquerque Public Schools fourth grade class is making a big difference by making blankets, proving it doesn’t matter how old you are when it comes to helping others.

The roles were a little blurred at Tres Volcanes Community Collaborative School on Albuquerque’s westside this Valentine’s Day.

Teacher Dana Ashcraft let her kids be the instructors for the day at the K-8 school, and they’re showing first and fifth graders more than just how to make a blanket.

“Some people may not have as much things at the other people and we want to make sure that everyone is equal in the hospital,” Brooklyn, a fourth-grader, said.

They’re changing lives of Presbyterian Hospital patients. The massive effort that’s spread to the entire school blossomed in Ashcraft’s classroom.

“We started with an activity where it’s a picture of a broken heart, and they write or draw all the things in the world that break their heart that they wish that they could fix,” Ashcraft explained. “Then they presented them to the whole class and a lot of the kids said something about sick kids.”

A few emails to Presbyterian later, the class settled on blankets. It’s a special idea for Sharron, another fourth grader, who was recently in the hospital.

“I felt so homesick, but now when I think of the hospital, I think of these blankets because the blankets make me feel so much more at home that I want to share it with other kids,” she said.

Ashcraft says among other crucial life skills, they’re developing empathy.

“It also helps them realize that they can be leaders and they can make a difference even when they’re only 9 or 10 years old,” the teacher said. “They don’t have to be a grownup to change the world.”

The materials for the blankets were donated by parents and staff after the fourth graders gave speeches to the other classes as Tres Volcanes.

The goal is to make 100 blankets, but as long as there’s fabric, they’ll keep going.

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