Toni Gelston’s fifth-grade class at Barcroft Elementary School in Arlington, Virginia, is the January Class of KidsPost. These 21 students admire their dads, listen to Billie Eilish and would tackle poverty if they were president.
We will feature one class in grades two through seven each month of the school year. If you would like your class considered, ask your teacher to download our questionnaire at wapo.st/classofkidspost2019, have students fill it out and send it, with a class picture, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Classes chosen receive a KidsPost Chesapeake Bay poster or Journey to Space poster, a KidsPost pencil for each student and a selection of books. Teachers interested in learning more about KidsPost can sign up for our weekly email newsletter at wapo.st/kidspostteachers.
Favorite author and favorite book: Raina Telgemeier, author of “Smile” and The Babysitter’s Club series, was the top pick with four votes. No single book was the most popular, but some favorite series included Dav Pilkey’s Dog Man, Kazu Kibuishi’s Amulet and Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson and the Olympians.
Favorite singer or musician: Pop star Billie Eilish is the class favorite. The 18-year-old Californian earned six votes. Irish DJ Noisestorm was a distant second with two votes.
Favorite game, sport or hobby: Fortnite came out on top of this category with six votes. Second place was a three-way tie, with soccer, Roblox and Minecraft each receiving three votes.
Person, living or dead, you admire most: Dad is Number 1 for these fifth-graders. “I admire my dad because he always helps me,” said one of five students to vote for their dad. Four students most admired their mom, and three picked their grandmother.
If you could take a trip anywhere, where would you go? These kids have many destinations on their bucket list. Tied for first place were El Salvador, Hawaii and Las Vegas, Nevada, with two votes apiece. Other future vacation spots included Japan, Honduras and London, England.
Favorite birthday food: The clear winner was pizza, the favorite of nine students in the class. In second place, with five votes, was an unusual choice: Buffalo wings. Third place went to cheesecake, with two votes.
Favorite animal: Sometimes cats and dogs are the only animals Class of KidsPost students name. Not so with these kids. Siberian huskies, a dog breed, did come in first with three votes. But lions tied with cats for second. And the kids also named great white shark, panda, wolf, elephant and saber-toothed cat among their favorites.
What do you want to be when you grow up? These students have wide-ranging career interests. Three want to become artists, the top vote-getting profession. Two kids each chose doctor, video gamer, soccer player and police officer. Most unusual choice: explorer.
If you were president, what one thing would you do for the country or its people? The class came up with a dozen suggestions, but “help the poor” was the priority, with votes from six students. Tied for second, with two votes apiece, were “stop smoking or drug use” and create a “universal basic income.” Mentions of affordable housing and college, immigration and global warming suggest that even if they never become president, these kids are becoming educated future voters.