As a separate program within the Laguna Beach Unified School District, it serves a total of 40 children in grades 1 through 4.
Three modular classrooms are tucked away in a secluded corner of the Top of the World Elementary School campus; two grades are housed together in each of two classrooms, with one teacher per room. A third modular is used as an additional workspace as needed.
At the party, the students worked together at clusters of tables in both classrooms.
The pachydermal creations were dreamed up by a mother who went on a cruise where the hospitality staff would arrange the room's towels into a different animal every day.
Now they're one of the most popular crafts at the annual CLC event.
Students also made paper chains with friendship-related words (second-grader Ellie Spurlock decided on the word "caring"), and decorated containers of donated coffee from the Starbucks of Laguna Niguel.
A variety of businesses contribute goods for the event each year, parent Jennifer Baker said. She ticked off floral arrangements from English Garden, chocolates from Albertsons and a slew of other donations.
"The people here in Laguna are very generous," she said. "I'm sure if we did even more next year, there would be a greater response."
After carefully wrapping toiletries in towels and putting them in gift bags, the students cut out snowflakes to decorate the bags.
"I just think it's one of those things every kid should know," said parent Jan Hutcherson, as she taught students the finer arts of snowflake-making. "I didn't learn until my kid was in second grade."
By the end of the snipping extravaganza, the carpet was covered in bits of white.
The children also wrapped chocolate bars and stuffed mini umbrellas in tube socks.
Fourth-grader Ben Polins-Jones, now in his last year of the program, waxed philosophical when he talked about all he had experienced in the CLC.