For one week in late February, Gr. 8 students found themselves playing the role of parent, as they were required to carry and attend to flour sacks for the duration of the week. All of the five-pound flour sacks were required to wear real clothes at all times and could not wear beanies, which often make breathing difficult for babies.
The object of the week-long activity, which is a part of the students’ sex education curriculum, was to give eighth graders some insight into the enormous responsibility required to be a parent. It also had some academic implications, since students received points for the project in their science classes.
Some measures were implemented during the week to make sure that students could still enjoy school activities and be responsible parents at the same time. Students were allowed to babysit up to three children if one of their classmates wanted to play on the blacktop, and a special “day care” program was set up for students who had after-school obligations to meet, such as performing arts or athletics.