In the popular movie musical The Greatest Showman both a younger and older version of the character P.T. Barnum sings the song “A Million Dreams” about everything he wishes to accomplish in his life. Therefore, it seemed only fitting that the 8th grade Western Wayne Middle School chorus would sing this song in front of their family and friends at the Middle School’s annual Moving-Up Ceremony held on the morning of Monday, June 10, in the Middle School Gym.

“Cause every night I lie in bed/ The brightest colors fill my head/ A million dreams are keeping me awake/ I think of what the world could be/ A vision of the one I see/ A million dreams is all it's gonna take/ A million dreams for the world we're gonna make,” the students sang as everyone in attendance sat and reflected on the students’ time in the middle school and wished them the best for their new journey in high school.

Eighth grade students, their teachers, administrators, and family members all attended the ceremony along with their fellow 6th and 7th grade classmates and teachers.

All 8th grade students received awards in various categories for excellence or improvement in all academic and unified arts classes. In addition, students received awards for good citizenship, excellent work habits, and for a variety of high academic achievements such as making the honor roll for 11 quarters in middle school from 6th through 8th grade.

It is also a Western Wayne Middle School tradition for many years that two outstanding students, one male and one female, are recognized for their patriotism and leadership among other qualities. The local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution and the local American Legion present these awards.

Charlene Edgerton and Eloise Fasshauer presented the Daughters of the American Revolution Award to 8th grader Elizabeth Wasylyk.

Elizabeth received the good citizenship medal from the Daughters of the American Revolution for being an outstanding student in the 8th grade class who exhibits the qualities of honor and honesty, service, courage, leadership, and patriotism.

George Shaffer presented the American Legion Award to 8th grader Charles Dietrich.

Charles received this annual award for being an outstanding student in the 8th grade class who exhibits the qualities of honor, scholarship, Americanism, leadership, and courage.

Both Elizabeth and Charles felt extremely honored to receive their respective awards. They also both, at first, felt shocked to learn the Daughters of the American Revolution and the American Legion had chosen them for these high honors.

“I felt surprised and honored,” Elizabeth said.

Elizabeth is a high honor roll student who enjoys spending much of her free time reading a variety of books. She has been a member of the school’s Reading Team throughout her middle school career. Now she looks forward to new academic challenges in the high school.

“I’m looking forward to taking all of my honors classes next year,” Elizabeth explained. She will take honors courses in the areas of English, history, and science.

Her fellow honoree Charles also looks forward to his honors courses next year in history and geometry. In addition, he feels excited for a new routine.

“I’m excited to be going to a new school with my friends and to have more freedom,” Charles, who plays baseball and basketball for Western Wayne, explained.

Middle School Principal Kristen Donohue gave closing remarks at the ceremony. She cited lyrics from the song “Just One Person” and encouraged the students to reflect on the people who helped to shape their lives in middle school and to remember the importance of, above all else, being someone who believes in him or herself.

As the song goes, “If just one person believes in you/ Deep enough, and strong enough, believes in you/ Hard enough, and long enough before you knew it, /Someone else would think, if he can do it, I can do it.”

It is the hope of the middle school staff that this eighth grade class will take all that they have learned in their middle school careers and use it to guide them into their journey as high school students in the fall.