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  • Rick Joseph

The Power of Powell Township


Powell Township is power. The power of community. The power of individualized attention. The power of belonging.

There are 43 students in Powell Township School out of a community of roughly 700 people - a close-knit place where the atmosphere is decidedly one of an extended family. Powell Township is located on the shores of Lake Superior in Marquette County. The students attend school in mixed-age grades Pre-K to eighth grade.

I had the pleasure of spending time with Mrs. Wright's 5th and 6th graders. They presented book talks which helped generate excitement and a love of reading in their tight-knit group of 12 students. It's clear that the power of literature enjoys a meaningful role in these students' lives.

One of the most amazing habits that the students and educators at Powell Township School practice is their daily walk. Each morning, upon arriving at school, the entire school takes a walk outside at the start of their day. What an incredibly simple yet critical way to build a healthy habit of movement in an era where we spend so much time sitting. This activity should be replicated far and wide, and is a reminder of how lessons and insight may arise from anywhere to inform and inspire educators everywhere.

Fifth and sixth graders partner up to share a common read at Powell Township School

Students were intrigued to hear classmates' reactions and thoughts...

...which inspire them to seek new stories and information in a variety of genre

I was able to spread the word that these students are geniuses, thanks to The Junkyard Wonders

Mrs. Wright's 5th and 6th graders in the hallway outside their classroom

Jill Bevins teaches music, special education, and technology while Seth Hoopingarner serves as principal and superintendent

Lunch in the cafeteria offers uniquely delicious food and provides an opportunity to enjoy social time for both students and teachers

Shelly Beaudry prepares home-cooked meals every day for the students and staff at Powell Township School. The pride she takes in running the food service program - from the meals to the decor - shows her deep commitment to the students and their learning


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