Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- There are two new cities on the Midlands map, a least for today.
Second graders at Lonnie B. Nelson Elementary have turned their classrooms into cities to help bring their lessons to life.
"It was really fun and I think that it will teach us more about our community," said Student Emma Wooten.
Some students campaigned to become mayor with promises to their classmates.
"I told them that I would try to make the community a better place," said Student Mayor Zoe Kaplan.
"I would help them with their work if they needed me to help them," said Gregory Bailey II, another student mayor. Other students who ran for mayor became council members.
Students also created homes and business for their communities based on places real places and some they just liked.
"Toy R Us is one of my favorite stores and so that's how I got the idea," said Leroy Washington.
"My mom works at a bank so that's why I really wanted to do it," said Kaplan.
Other business and places of interest in the classrooms included police stations, schools, banks, pizza shops, gas stations, hospitals, farms, and even hair and nail salons.
Teachers Rashidah Brown and Shelley Long say the hands on approach helped the students to learn and enjoy themselves at the same time.
"Interacting with hands-on experiences and actually building the communities themselves, they'll never forget it. If I just gave them a worksheet or a test it'd go into one ear about out of the other," said Brown.
"We learned what it means to be a good citizen how to treat others, rural, urban, suburban communities, goods and services, all that was tied in here," said Long.
Students say they enjoyed the project, but they also took away some important lessons as well.
"We learned about how all the people in a community should work together," said Wooten.
"You always have to care about other people not just yourself, you have to earn it and be nice," said Lauryn Gaddy.