CECIL COUNTY — The holidays are timeless, and Yuletide joy can bring together the young and old, just as it did Wednesday and Thursday at sites in Cecil County. Fourth and fifth grade carolers from Charlestown Elementary School and Elkton’s Leeds Elementary School traveled to Calvert Manor in Rising Sun and Singerly Manor Assisted Living in Elkton.
Mr. William Moon, the music teacher and choral director at these schools, and parent chaperones shepherded the Charlestown Singers and the Colts Chorus from Leeds throughout the county this week to bring holiday joy to one and all.
All told, Moon had 42 students from Charlestown Wednesday and 45 students from Leeds caroling on Thursday.
The residents of these facilities have varying degrees of independence, and the children, many dressed in holiday-themed clothing, were welcome guests.
“As an educator, I believe it is important to give back to the community and I enjoy being able to share that joy with my students at a young age,” said Moon on Thursday. “In school we always went out and sang in nursing homes around the holidays and my parents instilled in me the joy of giving back to the community as a child, so I hope to share that importance with my students.”
Moon said the residents of Calvert Manor and Singerly Manor were “so happy” to see the choirs. “[They] are very eager to clap along and are always a great audience,” he said. “They always want us to keep singing. We could sing forever because they are just happy to have us there!”
This isn’t the first time the choir teacher has had students eager to deck the halls for their elders, but it is a special year for him. Moon has taken children from Leeds for several years, but this is his first opportunity to take the students at Charlestown out to sing at area nursing homes.
“For me, it always revolves around being able to rearrange my class schedule around to ensure that I can see all of my normal classes on the days that I am going on the trips, or asking a friend or two within the building to help me out and cover a class so that I can go out with the chorus,” he said.
“I think the students really enjoy it. For them, they really enjoy the Christmas caroling. I traditionally have a couple of optional after school rehearsals for students in the choruses to come after school and sing Christmas carols, mostly because I do not know who knows which Christmas carols. I traditionally have about 20 to 30 students between the two schools stay after school. The Charlestown students have been invited each of the past four years to sing at the Charlestown Christmas Tree lighting — which takes place the first Saturday of December each year. We started this after the second or third year I was at Charlestown, and it is just another way our students get to be a part of their community!”