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Old 12-14-2017, 04:01 PM
Newton Daily News Newton Daily News is offline
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Default Buckets of gumdrops

Like the song says, it was the most wonderful time of the year Wednesday in teacher Marla Cory’s classroom. Students at Thomas Jefferson Elementary took part in an annual holiday tradition decorating candy houses with their parents and grandparents.

Built from graham crackers and milk cartons with the help of volunteers from the Community Heights Alliance Church in Newton, the houses have been a tradition with Cory for years. As she whipped up her 15th batch of icing, Cory said she loves how the event gives parents a chance to work with the children as their decorate their individualized houses.

“I love to see the parents connect with their children,” Cory said. “They can forget about everything that they have to worry about.”

Pulling this event off year after year requires teamwork, and Cory was quick to point out that she’s had plenty of help. Her fellow kindergarten teachers came up with their own crafts for students to do, and as students rotate throughout Cory’s room during decorating day, there’s an ample supply of volunteers to keep the frosting bowls topped off and the candy stocked. The school’s PTA also helps the project financially, Cory said.

“It’s an important thing for all three of us, you have to have the whole group,” Cory said.

Newton Community School District board member Donna Cook was one of the volunteers helping out in Cory’s classroom on Wednesday. Cook said attending the event was a tradition for her, and before she retired, she always tried to take a day off from work to make sure she was available to help out.

“I love seeing the kids and their families, it’s just such a fun experience,” Cook said.

Contact David Dolmage at 641-792-3121 ext. 6532 or

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