Candace Bilbrey, a kindergarten teacher at Van Buren Elementary, smiles for the camera as she and her teaching team play Duck-Duck-Goose with the Caldwell Police Department. Van Buren Elementary hit the pavement in downtown Caldwell to hide painted rocks for the Caldwell students, one of the tasks of a teacher scavenger hunt the week before school started.
The team building activity sought to bring the school and community together with a fun spin. The entire Van Buren staff met at the Caldwell Train Depot where they painted their rocks with messages for students. The teachers learned at the last minute that they had a long lists of tasks to complete while they were out hiding the rocks for the kids. This long list was no match for Van Buren teachers as they conquered all 31 tasks in only an hour. The Caldwell community made it much easier for them. “People were so friendly and up for whatever we needed. It was really fun,” commented Rebecca Rigsby, third grade teacher.
The Caldwell community was even willing to share bites of cookies and sips from drinks. Miss Arbon, third grade teacher, tastes a sip of coffee and Mrs. Hartvigsen, fifth grade teacher, gets a cookie treat. Everyone looks all too happy to share in the fun. The staff at the local establishments even got in on it all. It had everyone in laughter. “The activity was really great for team building. We got to play off each other’s strengths and funny bones,” Amy Gonzales, second grade teacher.
Van Buren third grade teachers hug our heroes, the Caldwell Fire Department. These gentlemen had a great sense of humor and agreed to pose with the team so they could get the extra points. Caldwell Fire Department came to the rescue again. “Our community members became part of the fun and were quite amused. Some even were thinking that they won a prize when we stopped to sing them a song. It was all really fun,” recalled Mrs. Logan, third grade teacher.
The staff all agreed that a great perk to the day was being able to see all that Caldwell has to offer. “We have a lot of great things happening here in Caldwell. I’m excited to have folks that do not live here, nor spend much time in the community, visiting and seeing all of the exciting events and changes taking place,” said Jenna Zamora, Van Buren Lead Secretary. Van Buren salutes the flag from the bridge before reporting back to the Train Depot. We thank you Caldwell for making our day so much fun!