The members of Woodland Middle School’s Peer Helpers club inspired sixth-graders to make a positive impact on others during their “Pay It Forward” assembly.
English Language Learners (ELL) and third-grade students at Meadowbrook Elementary School celebrated the Chinese New Year on February 12, by immersing themselves in traditions associated with the holiday and leading a schoolwide Lunar New Year parade through the hallways.
To put context to the celebration, students learned some of the history behind the Chinese New Year by reading stories, taking part in musical and dance ensembles, and learning phrases like “gung hay fat choy” (“may you become prosperous”).
ELL students prepared for the festivities by creating Chinese noisemakers in the traditional colors of red and gold, fashioning dragon puppets to ward off evil spirits, and constructing an origami dog, in honor of this year’s animal on the Chinese zodiac. They also embellished their classrooms with customary decorations and listened to traditional Chinese music to create an authentic atmosphere.
The festive props were used to lead the entire third-grade class in a parade through the building. The procession was made complete with a dragon that the third-graders had designed using cardboard boxes, streamers, pipe cleaners and paint.
The East Meadow School District hosted the 11th annual Long Island Regional Braille Challenge for students of Braille on Feb. 3 at W.T. Clarke High School.
The Braille Challenge is an academic competition developed by the Braille Institute to motivate school-aged visually impaired or blind children to continue their study of Braille.
During the event’s opening ceremony, members of the W.T. Clarke High School band performed as the participants gathered in the cafeteria to the cheers and applause of Board of Education members, central administrators, parents and community members.
Several key administrators at East Meadow welcomed the students, their families and the event’s volunteers, offering words of encouragement and gratitude.
“I want to congratulate the students who are participating in the challenge this morning and encourage them to give it their all,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kenneth A. Card Jr.
Clarke High School Principal Timothy Voels acknowledged the commitment and generosity of parents and volunteers, noting, “Clarke High School has been a host of the Braille Challenge for 11 years, and it’s a thrill every year to see students come in eager to participate.” He also thanked the parents and volunteers for their ongoing and selfless support.
Patrice Dobies, the district’s director of special education and pupil personnel services, expressed her gratitude to all who helped coordinate the annual event, including Braille Challenge Coordinator Petra Tarrant, and commended the participants for their determination. “It takes very special people to get up on a Saturday morning to challenge themselves,” she said. “I hope that you always continue to challenge yourselves and are never afraid to do so.”
The ceremony led into three interactive workshops for participants. In the first, they demonstrated their proficiency in reading, writing and comprehending Braille. Participants also played dominoes and created valentines using cookie cutters, metallic paper and stickers. In the second workshop, they played Goalball with representatives from Camp Abilities Long Island, who taught them techniques for diving to block the ball and how to roll the ball properly to score. Participants also received a hockey demonstration from New York Metro Blind Hockey. During the third activity, students met and played with members of the Long Island Bombers beep baseball team. These players demonstrated their version of the sport that uses beeping baseballs and bases. The young students ran the bases and located the baseball from the sound of its buzzing.
Along with these workshops, parents and students were able to visit tables with representatives from Camp Abilities, New York Metro Blind Hockey, the New York State Commission for the Blind, and Helen Keller Services for the Blind to learn more about services and opportunities for the visually impaired.
At the closing ceremony, the participants received Braille Institute medallions, certificates of recognition and goody bags. They also attended a lunch with their families, provided courtesy of the East Meadow Special Education PTA.
Among the challenge participants were Bowling Green Elementary School third-grader Kayla Ochtera and fourth-grader Matthew Palmeri, and Woodland Middle School eighth-grader Robbie Stahl.
The regional event is the first step toward the national competition, which will be held in June at the Braille Institute’s headquarters in Los Angeles, California. Students from across the nation are in the process of completing preliminary testing in the hopes of qualifying among the top-scoring 60 contestants. Those top scorers will advance to nationals to represent their state as they compete against the best Braille students from across the United States and Canada.
Members of the W.T. Clarke High School National Art Honor Society (NAHS) illustrated coloring books for patients in the Nassau University Medical Center (NUMC) Pediatric Unit.
NAHS members collaborated after school to draw, organize and assemble images for 200 coloring books. This year’s theme for the project, which is undertaken annually by the NAHS, was seasons and nature, inspiring contour-lined drawings of landscapes, marine life and other animals.
Each coloring book will be accompanied by a new box of crayons, donated through the NAHS’s crayon drive that is running in February. After the drive is complete, NAHS members will visit NUMC in March to distribute the coloring books and crayons to pediatric patients and their young family members.
“Our members were very excited to create the drawings for this year’s coloring book,” explained art teacher and NAHS advisor Jane Pawlowski. “We hope our coloring books will ease the hospital experience for the children in the hospital.”
Students at Bowling Green Elementary School had a chance to show off their brainpower by answering questions during “The Brain Show.”
According to its website, the Brain Show is an educational trivia contest with the authentic look and feel of a live television game show equipped with podiums, buzzers and microphones.
Divided into three teams, students in grades 2-5 went head-to-head answering questions related to classroom curriculum such as math, biology, geography and more. After three questions, new teams were created to allow as many students as possible to participate in the fun.
Encouraged by a cheering audience, teams also racked up points between rounds by successfully completing dance challenges they had learned prior to the start of each new game.
Bowling Green extends a special thank-you to its PTA for organizing this interactive program.
Members of the girls volleyball and boys basketball teams at Woodland Middle School put their love for sports into practice as they raised $325 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
The seventh- and eighth-grade student-athletes participated in a round-robin volleyball tournament on Jan. 11, where teams played each other for five minutes in elimination rounds until two final teams were set to play.
A special thank-you to girls volleyball coaches Patty Burnside and Alexa Borresen and boys basketball coach Michael Magee for organizing this charitable effort.
Fourth-graders at Parkway Elementary School became immersed in a mystery story experience lead by Submerge Storytelling.
According to its website, Submerge Storytelling is an educational program that transforms a classroom into the setting of a story, motivating students to draw conclusions about the characters, plot and themes.
Using a twin-sized bed, desks, Legos, wall decorations and sports memorabilia, Parkway’s Literacy Center was transformed into the bedroom of 12-year-old named Trevor Cool, who breaks codes for the CIA. The students examined evidence and applied their literacy and critical thinking skills to become detectives in search of Trevor, who is being chased by the notorious CIA double agent, Cobra.
Over the course of a week, the fourth-graders learned how to make connections and avoid jumping to conclusions. They also discussed the importance of detailed evidence, took part in an activity that focused on the sequence of events, created a timeline out of the story’s illustrations, and worked together to figure out the correct plot line.
Parkway extends a special thank you to its PTA for providing its students with this amazing opportunity in which students developed their problem-solving, critical thinking and teamwork abilities.
Students in grades 10-12 at W.T. Clarke High School recently explored a vast range of careers during the school’s first Career Day.
The event, coordinated in part by Beth Bucheister, executive director of Career Day Inc., provided students with a venue to meet and learn from 58 professionals representing a variety of fields, including carpentry, real estate, medicine, fashion, marketing, computer science and engineering. Among the professionals were Clarke High School alumni, who explained how their high school experiences had impacted their future.
“Career Day connects students with business leaders to give them an inside look at major industries and better understand what it takes to get to where these professionals are,” said Clarke business teacher Joe Pavia. “It’s an excellent opportunity for students to explore different career pathways.”
Kicking off the day, students attended the “Empowering 21st Century Students: Where Am I Going?” assembly led by Randy Shain, founder of One on One Mentors; Michelle Kyriakides, executive director of the Hofstra University Career Center; and Bucheister, who inspired students to identify their “VIPS” – values, interests, personality and skills – when determining which career path to take.
Following the assembly, students attended two breakout sessions with presenters based on their career interests. During these sessions, industry leaders discussed their everyday tasks and experiences, shared their educational backgrounds and answered students’ questions.
“What I would like students to gain from this experience is an understanding of how much opportunity there is to find and work toward a career that is meaningful to them,” said Bucheister.
W.T. Clarke High School would like to thank the Board of Education, central administration, the school’s Career Day Committee, the PTSA, the East Meadow Chamber of Commerce and the participating local businesses for making its first Career Day a huge success.
Students in the district gave riveting performances for the Board of Education and community members during the Board’s communication meeting, on Dec. 21, at East Meadow High School.
As a tradition, the Board’s December communication meeting is devoted to featuring holiday-inspired musical performances by the district’s exceptionally talented student-musicians. The evening included performances by members of the Bowling Green and Barnum Woods elementary schools holiday ensemble; the McVey Elementary School chamber winds; the district’s REACH musical ensemble; the Woodland Middle School vocal jazz ensemble; the East Meadow High School jazz ensemble, handbell choir and chamber choir; the W.T. Clarke High School percussion ensemble, vocal jazz ensemble and full orchestra; and both high schools’ 2017 Tuba Christmas ensemble.
The district commends these students for their outstanding performances.