Dexter Kids’ Ads are Back!


1st Place: Dexter Orthodontics by Liam R.

Creekside sixth-graders recently put their artistic talents to work in the world of business marketing.

Students were assigned to create a newspaper ad for sponsoring businesses. Winners would be published in the newspaper. All ads would be posted online. Creekside teachers Jane Webby and Amy Robke organized the project.

“All the students involved in this project are 6th grade students who are a part of the Summit Learning Community at Creekside Intermediate School,” explains Robke. “Summit Learning is a hands-on, project-based approach to learning with real world applications, such as this project. We were excited to work on this project with the Sun Times, along with local businesses, as it allowed students to take on the role of a copywriter, graphic designer, and marketing manager.”

2nd Place: Daisy Tree Service by Alana M.

“Each student was assigned a business,” explains Webby. “Their assignment was researching the business and deciding what images and phrases would best represent it in an advertisement. The students were not allowed to change their initial assignment. But, when they completed their assignment, they can do another one of their choosing.”

The students learned about such elements of advertising as logos, slogans, and catchy descriptions. They learned the basics of layout, arrangement, and eye appeal.

Each sponsoring business got two or three ads created by the sixth graders. The company then reviews the ads and selects the one it feels best represents them. All the winning ads are published in a special section in the February 15th newspaper for the Dexter area.

All the ads are posted online at

This year the project has grown to 72 sponsoring businesses, with approximately 100 sixth-graders creating more than 200 ads.

3rd Place: Renew Hope Counseling by Vivienne S.

“The kids love it. The teachers love it. It’s great for the schools,” says Sun Times News Publisher Chuck Colby. “The parents love seeing their kid’s ads in the paper. The businesses love seeing these ads and have a lot of fun choosing the one they want to be published in the paper.”

The project culminated in the “Grand Reveal” on Wednesday, February 15th, the day the paper was published. One hundred excited students gathered in Creekside’s Innovation Center, where Chuck Colby announced the winners selected by each business. Clapping and cheering accompanied each winning announcement. Several talented students, who entered more than once, won multiple times.

Many businesses stepped up big for the Big Reveal, providing prizes for their winners and all those who created an ad for them. The Dexter Pub gave away $25 gift certificates to its ad designers. The Jolly Pumpkin restaurant gave each designer a free meal for their entire family. Opus Design gave its winner a $50 gift certificate to the Dexter Pub. Other businesses provided gift cards, bags of swag, and gift certificates.

The Dexter Creamery gave away free ice cream tokens to all the participating students. Dexter Builders, Cribly Drilling, and Rankin Audiology provided the pizzas. The Sun Times News bought the ice cream.

The Sun Times News awarded $50, $40, and $30 to the First, Second, and Third Grand Prize winners, respectively.

“This project helped students demonstrate their ability to communicate accurately and precisely and develop skills with multimedia in communication (both being cognitive skills developed throughout the Summit Learning Program),” says Robke. “Students built connections with local businesses and were able to have an authentic audience for their work.”

The Summit Learning Program is available within Dexter Community Schools for students in 5th - 8th Grades. If you’d like more information about the program offering, there will be an Information Night on Wednesday, March 15th, at 7 pm at Creekside Intermediate School.

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