Families gathered early Thursday at Top of the World Elementary to hear second- and third-graders sing during the annual Young America Sings program.
The kids gathered in rows on stage — decked out in red, white and blue — as parents and grandparents waved from the audience, snapping pictures and recording video on iPhones and camcorders. Parents shouted names, trying to find their child among the patriotic sea.
Choral Music Teacher Beth Sand sat in the front with a guitar in her lap, strumming familiar songs that many audience members clapped along to.
Kids swayed back and forth, singing loud and clear, with fun corresponding hand movements, making it hard to believe they were asleep a short time ago.
Brett Morris watched on as his second-grader, Keanu, sang on stage.
"He was so excited this morning," he said. "He's like 'Dad, we got to go to school!"
Patriotic numbers, such as the "Star Spangled Banner" and "Yankee Doodle Dandy" made the list along with some fun songs that showed their historical knowledge, such as "Fifty Nifty United States" and another that named each president in sequential order.