A unique collaboration between Reed and Portland Public Schools makes everyone a winner
A spring-like afternoon at Rieke Elementary School in Portland. Twenty-three fifth-graders charge into John Lehman's class, a typical classroom (paper cut-outs dangling from a clothesline, half-finished projects crowding the windowsill) except that today the children find three young Reedies in t-shirts, jeans, and sneakers in front of the blackboard.
"Hi, I'm Jenn," says senior Jenn Dolan, "I'm a fourth-year biology major from Reed College, and I think plants are really cool, so if you have any questions about plants, I'm the one to ask, but we're here today to talk about microbiology."
Minutes later, Dolan asks for a volunteer who likes candy. Faces light up, hands rise. Dolan picks one student, grabs two handfuls of M & Ms, and coughs vigorously on one. "Which handful do you want?" she asks. The boy points to the other hand. "Oh," says Dolan. "Why?"