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Dibrell Elementary students, faculty party
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Dibrell Elementary students welcomed Lisa Paz Mason as their new principal this school year, and she and her staff have been busy implementing some new programs at the school.
Friday, the entire student body and staff gathered in the gymnasium for their second Celebration, with children being recognized in various areas, such as reading, writing and citizenship. 
“We celebrate the positive here at Dibrell,” said Mason. “It’s about celebrating the community, the achievements in class,  our staff and students.” Her idea is also to recognize hard work and good behavior early instead of waiting until the end of the year.
Mason and her teachers recognized students who have September birthdays, as well as academic honors distributed by teachers. The Dibrell cheerleaders were called to the floor, as well as band members for recognition. During each of these displays, a fun song was played and they danced around the gym to celebrate. Some homework passes were awarded, much to the delight of the recipients.
Blake Miller earned one for his Accelerated Reading points and said, “This is great. I don’t have very much homework, but will use this when I have homework I don’t understand.”
Teachers and staff are not left out of the Celebration, with teacher assistant Judy Martin and teacher Joyce Adcock praised for their hard work and dedication to the school. School resource officer Bobby Pennington awarded the first Wildcat Guardian Award to teacher Tina Mullins.
He said, “This award is about going above and beyond to keep kids safe at school. Mrs. Mullins is very diligent about taking care of her class, always keeping her door locked and secure.” 
To add to the festivities, students, as well as teachers, were encouraged to wear mismatched clothing on Celebration day. Many were seen wearing different shoes, socks, and clothing that didn’t match in any form. Much to the delight of the children, Mason donned a rainbow clown wig for the day. 
Celebration is also about learning. To help with this aspect, Jere Matty AEDC STEM educational outreach specialist,  brought a 16 x 10-foot portable dome for children to tour. It is equipped to project educational movies about astronomy and the night sky.
“The story the children saw today is told from the perspective of a family living in a moon colony in 2085,” said Matty. The IMAX-like movie shows dinosaurs, volcano eruptions and has a geography aspect to it.
Fourth-grader Samuel Horton exited the dome with a huge smile on his face, saying, “It was cool, like 3D or like a IMAX film. It felt just like a huge dinosaur was going to eat us.”