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Students revive caboose

Auto collision students in respirator masks untangled hoses, climbed on ladders and sprayed clouds of paint on the face of a caboose in downtown Ironton Friday. Students enjoyed a day out of the classroom and under the sun as part of Collins Career Technical Center’s Project Based Learning.

Instructor Don Edwards said PBL “ties academics to labs so the students aren’t in the classroom all the time. It’s more hands on.”

This effort is part of the students’ senior project. Mathematics students first visited the location to measure the square footage so the auto collision students would know the amount of paint to prepare. Later, carpentry students will work on constructing a deck and replacing the inside flooring. Science classes will write papers on the chemicals in the paint, and even history and English classes will have assignments related to the project. After the caboose, owned by the city of Ironton, is complete, it will host events, such as children’s birthday parties.

Edwards said, “They love getting out of school and coming down to work. They love spraying (paint) more than anything.”

They expect the painting portion of the project to be finished next week.