Mr. Ric Smith’s class from Birchwood ABC Elementary just returned from a six-day trip to Washington, D.C. There, 19 fifth- and -sixth-graders, along with 13 chaperones, spent the week visiting the memorials, monuments and museums.
Smith is known for his love of history, deep respect for the military and proud sense of patriotism. He has shared that enthusiasm with his students.
As an example of those deep ties, a former student who is now an active duty U.S. Marine, surprised the class at the National Museum. Former student Sean Hamp works as an MP and patrols the museum. Hamp noticed the Birchwood ABC class was listed to visit that day, so he planned the surprise.
On the last day of the tour, as a gift to the Worldstrides tour guide, the group sat on the steps of the U.S. Capitol building and sang the state song, Alaska’s Flag, to her.
The kids held fundraisers throughout the school year to help fund the trip. This was Smith’s last school trip. He retired this year after 27 years of teaching in the Anchorage School District.