Christmas in Bridgeville
The 29th annual Christmas in Bridgeville, sponsored by the Bridgeville Historical Society, Saturday, Dec. 4, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Woodbridge High School. Admission is $1. More than 85 vendors will be showing their wares ranging from homemade goodies, crafts, including wooden items, dolls, candles, Christmas decoration, quilts, poinsettias and Christmas greens. Santa Claus will pay a visit between 10 a.m. and noon. Lunch will be catered by Jimmy’s Grille.
Writer reaches out to children in aftermath of 9-11
By Lynn R. Parks
Wilma Caraway expresses herself through her writing.
When she wanted to honor her mother on Mother’s Day, she wrote a poem about her mother’s porch, and the people who enjoy sitting there. After the space shuttle Challenger exploded in 1986, killing all nine crew members aboard, she again turned to writing poetry to express her grief.
And after the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001, she wrote a story about the event and its aftermath. But this time, the story was not for her or for members of her family.
“I just felt like it was something that I wanted to do for children,” said Caraway, who lives near Collins Pond east of Bridgeville. “There was so much information available for adults, in newspapers and on TV, but what about the children? I wanted to do something that they could understand on their level.”
The result was “September 11th Red, White and Blue, Memory Chain and Story,” a kit through which children can learn about the Sept. 11 attacks. The kit includes a 650-word story about the attacks and three lists of vocabulary words taken from the story. The lists, one printed on white paper, another on red paper and the third on blue paper, can be cut apart and the small strips of paper used to make a patriotic 12-foot paper chain.
“When I started, I tried to think of something that children love to do,” Caraway said. “I knew that children enjoy making chains, so I incorporated that into the kit.”
Caraway said that about 2,000 children have used her kit since it was created in 2002. That includes children in Delaware as well as in Texas, Caraway’s home state. In addition, day-care centers and senior centers in Philadelphia have purchased kits.
“I have received very good comments,” Caraway said. “The children seem to enjoy the activity very much.”
The kits include a poem written by Eva Maddox, Seaford, at Caraway’s request. Both women attend Grace Baptist Church in Seaford.
“This paper chain I’ve made today, With colors of the free, Reminds us of that fateful day, The enormous tragedy,” Maddox wrote.
Caraway published the kits herself; they were printed by Rogers Graphics, Georgetown, and Candy Abbott of Fruit Bearers Publishing created the front cover. The kits are available at the Hallmark Store in Georgetown and at The Classroom Corner, Millsboro, as well as through Caraway. They are also available at the Delaware Learning Resource Center, Delaware Technical and Community College, Georgetown.
Cost of each kit is $9.95.
Caraway spent her professional life as a secretary. From 1986 to 1995 she taught secretarial science classes at Delaware Technical and Community College, Georgetown, and at the Woodridge Business Institute, Salisbury, Md. She retired from the state’s Division of Family Services.
Caraway said that she is pleased with the kit; with the story that it tells and with its children’s activity. She hopes that schools obtain the kit; because its copyright allows teachers and parents to copy the word lists for use in the classroom or at home, one kit can do for a whole group of children, she said.
“I am not concerned about the number of kits that I sell,” she added. “I am concerned about creating a good learning activity for children.”