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Yadira Felix and Arielie O’Connor look on as Caitlin Gann launches her airplane in a paper airplane contest.

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Imaginations take to the air

Payson pilot uses paper airplanes and a video to give ambitions of fifth-graders wings

Although they have no children of their own, Rory and Donna Hansen volunteer their time to teach fifth-graders in Wayne Gorry’s Julia Randall Elementary (JRE) classroom about flying airplanes for a living and the importance of reaching dreams through education and positive personal values. Rory works as a pilot for Southwest Airlines. The company has an “Adopt A Pilot” program for fifth-grade classes. More than 1,000 pilots nationwide spend four weeks a year teaching kids the F.L.I.G.H.T. curriculum. F.L.I.G.H.T. stands for fearlessness, leadership, imagination, gratitude, honesty and tenacity. The program teaches fifth-graders science, math, geography, writing, and presentation skills through a set of fun exercises.


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