Essex Town School moves full S.T.E.A.M. ahead with The Y
After school enrichment program extends school day learning
The Y and the Essex Town School District began a new collaboration that incorporates S.T.E.A.M. – Science,
Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math – into a new Y Enrichment Program at the end of September.
The program is created as a multi–week out of school modular learning series. Essex Town Elementary School teachers and Katelyn Irwin (former Y Director of the Before and After School Program for Essex Town) create the programs. Irwin will work full-time as the Y Enrichment Coordinator.
“Our program is a seamless extension of the school day,” said Julie Peterson, Director of Y School Age Programs. What’s different is it takes learning outside the traditional classroom and teaches through hands-on experiential activities. We believe a safe and enriching after school setting for children sparks curiosity, the very foundation of lifelong learning.”
Carol Speranza, a Tech Teacher at EES, began a six-week long “Blast Off to Engineering Enrichment” program on Sept. 30.
The children learned about the different types of engineers: mechanical, electrical, computer, civil, geological, biomedical, etc. They also learned the engineering process: explore, design, create, evaluate and re-create. They were given materials and told to design something as an engineer and then create it.
The class runs every Tuesday and Thursday after school from 3-4:30 p.m. until Oct. 30. It is open to first- and second-graders.
Start with ‘Wonder’Jessica Beliveau Eighth-grader at ADL
2014 saw students from across Vermont read the award-winning book “Wonder,” authored by R.J. Palacio. The story itself centers on fifth-grade August Pullman, a boy with a unique face and a pure heart. The short novel was chosen as this year’s Vermont Reads book because there is much that students can learn from young Auggie.
His first year learning at school instead of home was difficult. But it wasn’t the academics he struggled at; rather, it was his classmates’ disgust at and fear of his face that plagued him. Although, those who reached out to Auggie discovered that “the Freak” was as ordinary and kind as any other fifth grader. What Vermont students can take away from his story is simple: Don’t judge a book by its cover.
One Vermont school is taking the study of “Wonder” to another level this school year: Albert D. Lawton Intermediate School in Essex Junction. Every student there read the novel, discussed it with their classmates, and was assessed on it. Rather than leaving it at that, however, ADL is incorporating “Wonder” into every school day: they use Kindness Cards – which students pass along to others who are nice to them. Every afternoon, a ‘precept’, another concept drawn from “Wonder,” is broadcast for everyone to hear. ADL also does the occasional school wide activity and assembly with a focus on the book. The aim of all this energy is to encourage a kind and accepting atmosphere at school.
So many Vermont schools and their students are positively impacted by Auggie’s story, thanks to R.J. Palacio, the DCF award committee and Vermont Reads. They are teaching the lesson that the whole world needs to learn – but hey, Vermont’s a start.
From Principal Laurie Singer
It was a pleasure to see so many families attend our fall student-led conferences. Now that we have moved to standards based learning and reporting school-wide, for the first time ADL was able to open the Power School portal during this mid-trimester reporting period, allowing families and students a live view of attendance and habits of learning and assessment data as it was inputted by teachers. As we become more proficient at recording student growth in this way, we will eventually have the portal open all the time. Until then, we will continue to open the portal for the two weeks in the middle and end of the trimester this year. For those families who don’t have the technology to access the portal, we ask that you call our main office at 878-1388 and we’ll gladly send home a printed copy of student progress.
Order Your Yearbook
Orders for the 2014-2015 ADL Yearbook are being taken. Ordering information is available on the school website or by picking up an order form in the main office at school. The price of the yearbook is $20.
Tech Meeting Scheduled
Tech information meetings are scheduled for parents and students who would like to learn about the responsibilities necessary to take their Chromebook or mini computers out of the building. These meetings are scheduled for Oct. 20 at 6:30 p.m. in the cafeteria and Oct. 22 at 7:15 a.m. in the library. Parents are invited to attend one of these meetings.
Hiawatha Kindergarten Visits Chapin’s Orchard
On Sept. 30 all three kindergarten classes took a field trip to Chapin’s Orchard. At the orchard they visited the trees, picked apples (and ate one), made apple cider, and learned that bees need to pollinate the apple blossoms in order for an apple to grow. They even saw bees in a beehive in the orchard classroom. The field trip was a kickoff to an apple unit the classes have begun. Students will learn about the life cycle of the apple tree, how they grow, the importance of bees to the apple tree, and about what can be made with apples. The unit on apples will help students develop many literacy, math and science skills.
Nov. 11 – PTO meeting at 6:30 p.m.
Nov. 14 – Third Grade Talent Show
To All Families – The PreK playground is for PreK children only. Thank you for your attention to this.
Mark your calendar for Oct. 24 and join PTO members for this fun-filled evening from 5-7 p.m., including delicious food and special entertainment. Families will also be able to visit the Scholastic Book Fair in the Learning Center. Volunteers are needed to help with setup, serve dinner, and to help with cleanup. To donate items needed or to volunteer visit: www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0b44ada828a4f85-thespaghetti
Scholastic Book Fair
Summit Street School’s annual Fall Book Fair will be held during the week of Oct. 27-30. The book fair hours are Monday-Thursday, 7:30-8 a.m. and 2:45-3:30 p.m. As a special bonus this year, the fair will open for family shopping during the Spaghetti Dinner on Oct. 24. The hours will be the same as the Spaghetti Dinner, 5-7 p.m. All children attending the book fair must be accompanied by an adult. We are also in need of volunteers to work the book fair during our hours of operation. You may volunteer here: bringitsummitlc.bringit.bz/public/9d9b43 and choose a time that fits into your schedule. Our book fair proceeds are used each year to purchase Scholastic BookFlix subscription as well as numerous high-interest books. Thank you for your support. If you have any questions, contact email@example.com.
Come cheer your runners, as the ninth annual Summit Street School Fun Run will take place in the afternoon on Oct. 31. During the Fun Run, students will run, skip or walk one mile (eight laps) around the playground while listening to motivating music. All students will enjoy a healthy snack and a great time with classmates. This is not a race, it’s all about fun and wellness. If you have time and can volunteer for this event email Rosalind Hutton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Partner Reading Time
Partner Reading is a valuable time in Mrs. Filipek’s classroom. It helps to reinforce important reading skills for children and allows them time to engage in meaningful reading partnerships with their peers. During this reading time, the children sit close together and take turns reading. They help each other decode unfamiliar words and have book discussions about what is happening in their reading or what they have learned from a non-fiction text. Reading aloud gives the children opportunities to practice reading fluently and to develop better oral expression.
There is no school on Oct. 17.
Math in Mrs. Ellen Pariseau’s Class
Using the Common Core (C.C.) standards in the classroom, first-grade mathematicians at EES are working on understanding the concepts of more and less to help us learn to compare numbers and understand how many more and how many less (1.NBT. B.3). They are learning about combining numbers, and looking for ways to help ourselves be more efficient as we add (1.OA.C.6). Students have been making number staircases (which demonstrate ordering numbers and addition facts) and playing games with dice, 10 frame cards and number cards. Students are also noticing patterns emerging as the class fills the Hundreds Chart (1.NBT.C.4). Together the class is discovering that they can locate the position of a number by what comes above or below it and beside it. The class reinforces daily math learning with Number Talks to learn more about being flexible and accurate in our math thinking. They also use data from our Daily Questions and Weather information to understand charts and graphs. (1.MD.C.4). Another important piece of first-grade math is representing numbers in a variety of different ways (for example: 10 the number, groups of tally marks, 5+5 and other number combination that equal 10, fingers, dot cubes, and the word ten. Ten can mean 10 different objects.) All these skills and activities are part of the process to develop deep understanding of numbers.
First grade math is filled with exciting discoveries and possibilities. Visit your child’s classroom and join the fun.
.Note: The Common core Standards for First Grade Mathematics are: Operations & Algebraic Thinking = OA., Numbers & Operations in Base Ten = NBT, Measurement and Data = MD, and Geometry= G.
News from the EMS Art Program
There are two new additions to the art program this semester. First, student teacher Claire Hanafin has joined the team; she studies at UVM and is also majoring in special education. Claire is now teaching the seventh graders about surface design for ceramics. They are practicing sgraffito, stencil and relief techniques with clay. All students have been working independently on choice projects. Collages, assemblages, sculptures, paintings and drawings are the results of students applying new skills to an art medium and direction of their choice.
Second, the PTO has generously funded the purchase of a clay extruder for the art program. This expands the range of ceramic techniques that students will be able to experience. This summer, Michelle Badji studied with ceramic artist Hayne Bayles to learn more about extruded clay work.
Thanks to the PTO for also funding a two-day workshop called Girl Stories. On Sept. 27 and 28, 12 girls joined Emily Collins and her colleagues for an introduction to digital animation. The girls created clay portraits and props, made voiceovers for their scenes and used stop-motion animation to bring their stories to life. The goal of the program is to expand the interest of girls ages 12 to 15 in this industry.
As the art students create, discover and make connections throughout the school year, they are recognizing that art connects people globally. The March 2015 Youth Art Month theme is “Imagination encircles the world”, and we celebrate that every day.
October is Bullying Prevention Month
October is National Bullying Prevention Month. Schools all over the United States are working to address and stamp out bullying. Research suggests that one of the best ways to stop bullying in its tracks occurs when kids themselves stand up to those who are bullying. More than half the time, bullying ends in less than 10 seconds when kids intervene. Unfortunately, less than 20 percent of kids try to stop bullying.
At Founders, students are encouraged to be up-standers, rather than bystanders through classroom lessons and school wide initiatives. Up-standers stand up to bullying when they see it happen. Research also indicates that kids won’t stand up to bullying if they don’t know what to do. Students are taught various methods and techniques so they know what to do. Parents and community members can help by talking with kids about different strategies.
Say Something: When you say something, the person doing the bullying knows that people don’t agree with what they are doing. The person who is being bullied knows that they aren’t all alone. It doesn’t take much. Sometimes a simple statement like, “that’s not cool,” is all it takes.
Help Them Get Away: Bullying can’t happen when the target of the bullying isn’t there. Up-standers can help the target of bullying get away by simply inviting them to go somewhere else or just walking away with them.
Be A Friend: Being an up-stander can look very different. Sometimes, being friendly to a person who was bullied helps them feel like they are not all alone; invite them to play at recess or sit together on the bus.
Tell an Adult: If kids see bullying happening, they should get help from adults at home and school.
Founders will be doing an Up-Stander comic strip contest to recognize Bullying Prevention Month. Students will have the opportunity to create their own comic strip that uses creativity and innovation to depict different ways students can be up-standers to bullying. A panel will select a group of comic strips to be published and used to send out positive messages about bullying prevention. All students can submit entries, which are due at the end of the month.
Thank you to all who made the annual Eggstravaganza “Egg Drop” a successful and fun event. The Egg Drop is a design technology exercise for the fourth-grade students and a Fleming School tradition that has been enjoyed by this school community for two decades.
Walk To School Day
Approximately 215 Fleming students walked, biked or rode scooters to school on Oct. 8 to celebrate International Walk to School Day. Congratulations to Mr. Guilmette’s fourth-grade class and Ms. Downing’s fifth-grade class for having the most walkers in their classrooms. Kudos to Fleming students for their 85 percent participation rate in this annual event. Keep on walking, biking and scootering.
We are fast approaching the end of Spirit Week, but Friday is Blue and Gold Day for everyone (students, faculty and staff). Get decked out in our school colors and show your school spirit.
We are looking forward to the activity packed weekend ahead:
Oct. 9 – Bon Fire at the stadium
Oct. 10 – A return to the Homecoming Parade tradition. The parade is a fun way to kick off our big weekend and students have been working on every detail for their class floats. The parade will start at the VFW parking lot on Pearl Street at 5:30 p.m. and proceed down Pearl Street, through Five Corners and ending at the high school. Come watch the parade and cheer for your favorite class float There tailgating begins at 6 p.m. and continues until kickoff, which is approximately 7:05 p.m. Fireworks are set to go off immediately preceding the football game.
We welcome alumni young and old to come celebrate at all our events over the weekend. The EHS website has lots of information around all the events, as Homecoming affords the opportunity to run into old friends to share and celebrate the weekend.
Reminding parents that conferences are going on Oct. 9 until 8:30 p.m. and again on Thursday, Oct. 16 from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m.
Quarter 1 Ends Oct. 31
Quarter 1 for the 2014-2015 school year ends on Oct. 31 with report cards scheduled to be mailed by the end of the following week. If students have assignments still due, now would be a good time for students to confirm make up timelines with individual teachers. Quarter 2 begins on Nov. 3.
The Vermont Student Assistance Corporation, in collaboration with Essex High School has scheduled a Paying for College presentation at EHS on the evening of Nov. 20. As the time approaches, more details will be available but parents should mark their calendars for this important informational meeting. Among the topics covered are: types of financial aid, ways to apply, how a family contribution is calculated, how financial aid is awarded, student and parent loans, and alternative paying for college options.