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Small bodies, big message: Students sing to heal, uplift community

Published: May. 7, 2021 at 4:15 PM EDT
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CLARKSVILLE, Ind. (WAVE) - People say to be careful what you say and do around children because they’re like sponges.

Clarksville Elementary students are squeezing out everything they’ve learned and dealt with from the pandemic, including the magic they learned from one certain teacher.

We may live in different countries, states, and cities but we share one world and experienced a challenging year together.

A 9-year-old felt the struggles along with us.

“I had two COVID birthdays, which was wowie,” Sanders said.

Sanders lost her great grandfather and second-grade graduation during the pandemic.

“It was weird,” Sanders said. “It was really weird.”

With the help of her Clarksville Elementary music teacher Emmy Bodner, life is getting a tune-up

“I saw the kids they came alive,” Bodner said.

With sharing instruments off-limits, Bodner found another way to bring the nearly 600 students together for a school-wide video performance of “We are the World.”

“We are a family,” Bodner said. “So, I thought about how we can include the entire school together even though we can’t physically be together.”

The song is for them.

“I wanted to give them something tangible to be able to remember the year by,” Bodner said.

And it’s for the community.

“They’re always trying to build people up in here,” Bodner said. “I wanted to give them that outlet to reach further out in the community.”

“‘The greatest gift of all’ — that’s my favorite line I sing,” Bodner said.

When you hear their gift, the students hope the beat drums up your giving spirit.

“It’s been a tough year and it’s great to be here,” Sanders said. “The lesson is kind of like we are the world, don’t judge a book by its cover because nobody’s perfect.”

When the song drops around May 24 and the rap break down and harmony moves through your soul the singers wish your day ends with smile lines.

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