EAGLE RIVER - Many young kids love to build with Legos. Some school teachers even use the blocks to help kids develop their hand-eye coordination or their understanding of spatial relationships. But a teacher at Eagle River Elementary uses Legos for a different purpose entirely. Library Director Jone Davis uses the blocks to help her students build their creative writing skills.
Davis reads them a prompt, and then they have to depict the story with Legos. On Monday, the prompt described a volcano erupting in a garden.
"The kids have to think about the feelings of their characters, the questions the reporters and things would ask, and kind of the answers that would come," Davis said. "So they do the build, which gets their creativity going and then when it comes to write, they have that picture in front of them, that build so that they can remember what they were thinking about when they put it together.
Davis says she's seen her students become more enthusiastic about writing because of the Lego projects.
She says each student comes up with a completely different Lego structure, leads to different writing perspectives.
"I think it gives you an idea of what's going to happen so you can write about it, so you know which people you're using, and what the scene is," said fourth grader Emma Perry.
Davis was able to buy the Lego kits with proceeds from the school's book sale.
RHINELANDER - A former contracted janitor accused of sexually assaulting a Rhinelander student appears headed for a trial.
Stavros Iliopoulos appeared in Oneida County Court on Friday afternoon. Attorneys told Judge Michael Bloom they had not reached a plea deal. Bloom decided to schedule one final pre-trial conference for late August before a two-day jury trial was set for Sept. 4 and 5.
In late November, police said Iliopoulos, 65, took a girl into a dark closet and hugged, kissed, and touched her inappropriately at Northwoods Community Elementary School, a public charter school in Harshaw.
Iliopoulos worked for a contracted company, Victory Janitorial, at the time.
SEYMOUR, IND. - A chain-reaction crash in southern Indiana killed a Minocqua couple on Wednesday morning.
Glenn Cardelli and his wife, Kathryn, both 57 years old, were traveling in south an RV near Seymour, Ind., on Interstate 65. The RV was behind a semi and an SUV, both of which slowed due to highway maintenance.
Another semi failed to slow down behind the stalled traffic and crashed into the Cardellis' RV. The crash killed the couple and John Mumma, 67, an Illinois man driving the SUV.
The vehicles caught fire. Interstate 65 was closed for about eleven hours for cleanup and crash investigation.
All sorts of animals are affected by icy conditions. Some Northern Wisconsin owls dive INTO the snow to hunt small rodents. But recent freezing rain has formed an ice crust that owls can't break through. That means owls are beginning to starve.
Amanda Schirmer has been working at the Northwoods Wilderness Center for the past four years. She says that owls may hang around birdfeeders to prey on smaller birds. They may also be seen near roads.
A snowmobile rider was injured after colliding with a garbage truck Friday morning in Saint Germain. The crash happened at the intersection of STH 155 and Birchwood Dr. around 10:30 a.m. according to a press release from the Vilas County Sheriff's Office.
Responding officers say the snowmobile was travelling eastbound on a trail. When the snowmobile driver attempted to cross STH 155, they failed to yield to the garbage truck as it was traveling northbound and ultimately struck the driver's side of the truck.
Witnesses on the scene told officers the garbage truck didn't stop and it didn't seem like the driver knew the snowmobile struck it.
THREE LAKES - Plenty of Three Lakes High School students didn't know what they want to do for a career as of Friday morning. By Friday afternoon, many still weren't sure, but dozens got an inside look at possible careers.
The school held its annual Career Day on Friday morning. About 25 presenters included police, an FBI agent, college teachers, and graphic designers.
The school first held Career Day in 2009. Organizers hope students realize they have plenty of opportunities close to home.
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