Thanks to 23 visitors on Friday, November 13, Newtown Middle School eighth graders learned about different careers. The annual day allows eighth grade students to rotate between classrooms to hear from multiple professionals from the community. The presenters spoke with students, shared experiences, and discussed their careers with students during three half-hour sessions. The event was organized this year by Sue Connelly and Leslie Allen.
The Newtown International Center for Education (NICE) celebrated International Education Week, recognized nationally November 16-20, with different lessons, exercises, and events at a number of district schools. Newtown High School, Newtown Middle School,Reed Intermediate School, Head O’ Meadow Elementary School, Middle Gate Elementary School, and Hawley Elementary School are all marking International Education Week, according to NICE. As NICE Parent Community Organization (NICE PCO) President Cathy Filiato said last week, NICE has marked International Education Week in the past, but this year it “really expanded.”
The Board of Education heard a report on the district’s Foreign Language in Elementary Schools (FLES) kindergarten Spanish program at its meeting on Tuesday, November 24.
The pilot kindergarten world language course was approved in the Board of Education’s budget for the 2015-16 fiscal year, with the understanding the board would look into expanding the program year by year to the higher grade levels.
Head O’ Meadow Elementary School Principal Barbara Gasparine, who coordinates the FLES program schedule, explained teacher Marianne Grenier visits kindergarten classrooms across the district once a week for 30 minutes in each class.
A new ASAP-Pilobolus program, this time inviting current RIS students to meet and learn with fifth and sixth graders from Regional District 15 (Southbury and Middlebury), and sponsored by Washington (Conn.)-based After School Arts Program (ASAP) begins December 2. Members of the world renowned dance company Pilobolus will join local students in grades 5-6 for the project. Classes will meet most Wednesdays until February 17, and will alternate between Newtown and Southbury. A pair of public performances are planned for February 19-20 in Southbury.
The Newtown High School’s annual induction ceremony for its National Honor Society was conducted November 10 at Edmond Town Hall.
The annual ceremony includes lighting candles to represent and highlight the four pillars of the National Honor Society— scholarship, service, leadership, and character, which are all character attributes the students are expected to have and continue to represent.
Superintendent of Schools Joseph V. Erardi, Jr, welcomed all in attendance and NHS Principal Lorrie Rodrigue shared opening remarks before the school’s National Honor Society President Marissa Thill spoke.
Newtown resident Monica Sava Bruenn, PhD, learned recently that she is a recipient of a Presidential Award from the University of Maryland, where she teaches online. Dr Bruenn is the program chair for the master of science in management with specialization in health care administration, Department of Health Care for the University of Maryland University College. According to the university, the school's presidential awards are given annually to faculty and staff members in recognition of "extraordinary accomplishments and performance."
Jonathan Frederick presented a high-energy game show to kindergartners through second graders at Head O’Meadow Elementary School, Friday, October 30, followed by a second presentation for the upper grades, later in the morning. “The Brain Show” is based on the children’s grade level curriculums, Mr Frederick explained, prior to the start of the 9:30 am program. “I describe it as a cross between Jeopardy and Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?” he said.
Each program consisted of three rounds of 15 students each, broken into three teams of five.
In a crowded multistate field of 14 Class V marching bands, and with a mere fraction of one point separating the top three winners, the Newtown High School Marching Band & Guard took top Connecticut honors, brought home the division’s coveted Best Music Award, placing third Saturday, November 7, at the USBands National Championships at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
The Marching Band & Guard’s performance marks the first time Newtown has placed in the top three at the National Championships.
A book drive by The Junior Newtown Action Alliance Club is underway to support the Newtown/Savoy Elementary School partnership. Savoy Elementary School is an underprivileged school in Washington, D.C. Books appropriate for elementary age school children are requested, and can be dropped off in the main office of Newtown High School until November 30.
The Newtown Middle School held its Student Council elections on Friday, October 30, and by the end of the day the school's council president, vice president, treasurer, and spokesperson were announced.
Candidates for president were John Godino, Adam Guerin, Rylee Harrell, and Pam Lalli. Vice president candidates were Sawyer Findley, Jordan Gomes, Rushil Jerfy, Anna Romano, and Nate Wheeler. Treasurer candidates were Richie Gairing, Catie Gregory, Remi Pimentel, and Evan Wologodzew. Spokesperson candidates were Tyler DiMartino, Ava Schwartz, Mikey Sereday, and Lauren Yoder.