Jenks class sends eagle for national time capsule

Friday, December 17th 1999, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

TULSA, Okla. (AP) -- A fourth-grade class in Jenks is leaving its mark on the next century. The children from Jenks East Elementary School are the only Oklahomans chosen to submit an item for the National Millennium Time Capsule sponsored by the White House.

The vessel will be opened in 100 years. "When we got the letter from the president, we all went`Ahh,"' said Catlin Armstrong. "We thought it was really cool because we're going to be famous." The students are taught by Lynn Peacher, 1999 Oklahoma Teacher of the Year and a finalist for national teacher of the year. Each state teacher of the year was invited to have students submit a brief statement about their hopes for the future and select an item for the time capsule.

Ms. Peacher's class chose the American eagle. They constructed a paper eagle with origami feathers representing each student's name and their favorite freedom. Peter Pham's feather carried the freedom to live and move wherever a family chooses, something the Vietnam-born child has cherished since moving to the United States.

Shae Foster chose the freedom to shop. "I'm a girl and I like to shop," she said. Ms. Peacher said the task was not an easy one for 9 year olds. "One hundred years from now is like fantasy," she said. The class also had to scramble to get their project completed. Ms. Peacher had just returned from a three-week trip to Japan on a Fulbright Scholarship when she discovered the White House letter seeking the contribution. That left only one day to get the project to Washington, D.C. "It was a job," Shae said. "Not an adult job, but a fun job."

The design of the National Millennium Time Capsule and its contents will be presented during the opening ceremony of America's Millennium in Washington on Dec. 31.