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Friday, October 14, 2016

MISD Students “Nail It” for Families in Need

A stage usually set up for musicals and performances was transformed into a construction workshop filled with tools and supplies to see which North Texas high school team would be named the best builders in the region.

“We were trying to come up with a fun preliminary contest prior to our SkillsUSA contest,” said Gene Schramme, construction technology teacher at Mansfield ISD’s Ben Barber Innovation Academy. “We brought the ‘Nailed It’ idea to the staff at the MISD Center for the Performing Arts, and they helped it all come together.”

Students used teamwork and skill to build their playhouses.
The teams of four from Ben Barber Innovation Academy, Birdville Center of Technology and Advanced Learning, Stephenville High School and Fort Worth’s Green B. Trimble Technical High School spent hours designing and building a playhouse that would be judged by a panel of industry professionals.

The inaugural contest wasn’t all about hands-on learning, though—it was also a way to give back to the community.

“I didn’t know these houses were going to Habitat for Humanity until two weeks ago,” said Jacob Dawson, high school junior and member of the Ben Barber Innovation Academy team. “It made it that much more important to do that job right.”

“The first thing I told [the teams] was, 'We want you to be safe, and we want you to have fun because we’re building these playhouses for kids.' At the end of the day, there are four families, and their kids are getting a playhouse,” said Schramme.

The MISD team was proud of their finished product.
After six intense hours of work, the judges made their final decision. MISD’s Jacob Dawson, Caleb Padgett, Logan Dawson and Hayden Zawodniak earned the coveted winner’s plaque. They were happy that their talents were recognized, but they were even happier to be helping a greater cause.

“About a month ago, we took a trip, and we helped Habitat for Humanity, and we got to meet a bunch of wonderful people,” said junior Caleb Padgett. “Now that we get to do these, it’s such an honor to be able to give those to families in need.”

DEWALT® Power Tools, Huckabee & Associates, Inc. and Upstage Center, Inc. were major sponsors of the Oct. 12 event.

Organizers hope the competition will expand to include even more area schools next year.