Fourth-graders loaded a Salvation Army truck Tuesday afternoon with 1,260 pounds of food that Northwest Elementary School students had donated during their fifth annual food drive.

    "I'm really pleased with the kids stepping up and bringing what they could," said physical education teacher Teresa Lovitt.


Fourth-graders loaded a Salvation Army truck Tuesday afternoon with 1,260 pounds of food that Northwest Elementary School students had donated during their fifth annual food drive.
    "I'm really pleased with the kids stepping up and bringing what they could," said physical education teacher Teresa Lovitt.
    Since Friday, Nov. 14, kindergarten through fourth-grade students brought canned food, juice, pasta, flour and potatoes to give to the Salvation Army before the holidays.
    Fourth-grader Nancy Guox said she brought food that her mom has used before to make chicken soup. She also said everyone brought food to help others that need it.
    "It's for the Salvation Army for when people don't have enough food," she said.
    Alexis Boyles, also in fourth grade, said she brought sugar and nine cans of food from her home.
    Another fourth-grader, David Carrillo, said: "We brought it from home, and some of us bought it. I bought four cans from the store."
    In past food drives, Northwest had collected as much as 2,000 to 4,000 pounds of food, but Lovitt said she was pleased that the students managed to bring more than 1,200 pounds of food this year despite the struggling economy. She said some students even used their own money to participate in the food drive. 
    "They get excited by it," she said. "They know it goes to help people."
    Lovitt and Mark Schuckman, also a physical education teacher at Northwest, tried to incorporate nutrition into the food drive.
    Lovitt said she had students organize the items they brought into food groups. They also learned about servings and eating a balanced diet.
    Younger kids played food tag, in which they had to classify food when tagged and match the names and pictures of less common fruits and vegetables.
    Students and classes also received prizes for their food donations. The class that gave the most pounds of food — more than 300 — earned a pizza party with principal Kathy Ramsour.    

Reach Cherise Forno at (620) 408-9931 or e-mail her at cherise.forno@dodgeglobe.com.