Dec. 15, 2017
Jeffrey Thomas, a special education teacher at Lew Wallace School 107, wanted to do something special for students, so he made more than 600 colorful scarves to keep them warm this holiday season.
On Tuesday, Dec. 12, students from kindergarten through Grade 6 were allowed to choose the scarf they loved most from 40 different designs — all created by Thomas. The day began with a brief convocation where students watched a year-in-review style slideshow of pictures recounting the fun times they’ve had with their Lew Wallace family.
A heartfelt presentation on kindness, one of the school’s key pillars, led to the announcement of Thomas’ generous donation through his Scarves for Students program.
“While monitoring recess, students would often walk up to me and ask if they could borrow my gloves, hat, scarf, etc., and I had been wanting to do something nice for my students, so I decided to make them a warm piece of cold weather gear,” said Thomas.
As each student filed into his classroom — where scarves were displayed on tables and shelves — the hallway lined with students was busy with whispers of excitement.
“The scarf is just beautiful!” said Brianna S., a Lew Wallace 5th-grader, after exploring the choices available and choosing her favorite.
Thomas collected more than $1,600 through generous donations to purchase the materials required to make each scarf (which costs $4 apiece to make). He hopes to expand his Scarves for Students program each and every year. There’s still an active Scarves for Students GoFundMe page to help Thomas continue his efforts.
“I want to be able to give back to these students in fall/winter as this may be the only article of clothing to help keep them warm,” said Thomas.