This year's goal was 25,000 AR points. We came very close but missed our mark by 184 so instead of making Mr. Merritt into a cake we voted on an alternate activity. As a result of that vote we duct taped him to the stage wall instead. All the students who earned over 200 or more points were invited on stage to help.
Jillian Stineman, a sixth grader, was the big reader. She scored over 900 AR points and a was rewarded with a $100 gift card to Barnes and Noble! She is an amazing reader!!!
Other amazing readers who received Barnes and Noble gift cards for high AR points were 8th graders Josie Gordon, Luciano Cortese, and Dexter Gordon; 7th graders Carlo Jacobson, Naomi Buchmiller, and Emily Calkins; 6th graders Orion Musselman, Gerardo Rodriguez, and Seva Weedn. Also in the over 200 club were Thomas Porter, Idrees Ismali, Chase Daggett, Claire Bengry, Carter Harris, Kameron Dayka, and Nathan Endow. They all received a pen and USB gift set for their efforts.
All in all it was a great year.
I was fortunate enough to receive a grant of $300 from the Tri-County GATE council this year for the purchase of new library books with the help of some of our GATE students. Then I was fortunate enough to work with a great group of students who responded to my invitation to join the advisory committee. These students gave up their lunch times for a month and a half to help select what we hoped would be in demand book choices.
After creating and conducting an online interest survey and conducting personal interviews we came up with a list of topics to look for. We then went over catalogs and read on-line reviews to create a list of titles that fit our needs. We then culled the list down to 20 books (which is all $300 would buy).
We were so excited and pleased to receive our books and couldn't wait to open the box!! Then it was time for our students to prepare them for check-out. Cataloging came first, then the books were stamped, taped, inserted and prepared for check-out by our group. As a reward for all their hard work they got to borrow our new offerings before any of the other students could.
Some of the books they selected are listed to the right. "CHECK THEM OUT"!
There was a poetry slam on the stage, chalking of poems on the 3 square, a scavenger hunt in the library and outside for the "golden poem" and of course, poems in our pockets to share! Lots of enjoyment was had by all who participated and through their participation they discovered that poetry could be fun after all!
National Poetry Month is about sharing and celebrating the wonder of poetry. Thursday is Poem in Your Pocket Day across the U.S.!
CMS activities to celebrate poetry are:
For every star that falls to earth a new one glows.
For every dream that fades away a new one grows.
When things are not what they would seem
You must keep following your dream
Rod McKeun from his book of poetry "Listen to the Warm"
Poetry abounds at CMS!
So I hung this year’s poster (designed by New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast) and created a bit of a stir and quite a few comments about how the art was used to illustrate the poem. It features a line of poetry from Mark Strand’s "Eating Poetry.” Thus began the poetry dialogue at CMS.
All our language arts classes created pocket poems which were displayed in the hallways. Some students wrote an original poem or haiku, while others used a published poem or song lyric that resonated with them for their finished piece.
When I was younger Rod McKeun was my poet of choice. When things were rough at home I would escape to my local public library and read for hours. Nancy Drew and Rod McKuen kept me company and so did Harry Chapin. albums (those are large vinyl discs that played music on a record player back in the day).
I will be posting some of the pockets created by our students soon.
CMS students are participating in a nationwide event that asks students to join in a collective effort to take AR tests. The goal is to top last year's record of 4,409,622 Accelerated Reader Quizzes taken in one day. On February 28, every quiz passed becomes a score for the nation. Renaissance Learning will track and share progress in real time on a live ticker. Check it out! www.renaissance.com/read-the-most.
After going through over 250 bookmarks and with much consideration Mrs. Tito and Mrs, Guarnero managed to select the top 25 contenders. Then from those 25, the top 10 were chosen by Mr. Merritt, Mr. Rodriguez and the administrative staff who then selected the 5 winners. However, each and every bookmark was a work of art which will be enjoyed by the children who receive them.
For the last few weeks Redhawks have joined other students around the world in creating bookmarks for a Literacy challenge. The top 5 bookmarks will be chosen by our Administration and 5 others will receive an honorable mention.
Check back next week to see who the winners are!
For every bookmark mailed before February 14th, the Bezo's Family Foundation will donate $2 (up to $300,000) to Save the Children's Literacy Boost program in Asia (Nepal), Latin America (Peru), and Africa (Mali). Bookmarks sent in up until March 31st will earn $1 towards the fund.