Sunday, December 2, 2012

November 30th

Polar Express

Calling all elves!  If you signed up to become an elf for the Polar Express event this Saturday, please refer to this information sheet for further details about our job, where to park, what to wear and more.  We are scheduled to be there from 3:45-7:45.  Please do your best to stay for our full scheduled time so that the last trains of the evening don't run short on elves.

Rube Goldberg Unit

On Monday we will begin our next life studies unit: The Rube Goldberg Unit.  For the month of December students will study physics concepts such as speed, velocity, acceleration, gravity, forces, Newton's Laws and metric measurements.  Throughout this time they will also be planning and creating a Rube Goldberg machine, a machine which by definition takes extraneous steps to complete a simple task.  In our case, the simple task will be to pop a balloon.

Please help by saving any interesting recycling you may have at home (paper towel tubes, strong cardboard, interesting boxes, you name it!).  You can send materials in anytime this month.  Your son or daughter may keep it for their group to work with or you can send it to the core teach to distribute.  We will be videotaping and sharing this at the end of the month.

For a fantastic and musical example of one such machine, look here.

Portfolios

Students have been busy assembling their first trimester portfolios the past few weeks.  They started by brainstorming evidences to support their personal plan goals and organizing their portfolios to make space for goals and reports.  Now students have placed evidence into their portfolios and are making sure they have self-evaluated all of their classes on Nexus.

Nexus is a locally designed educational management system which allows students and facilitators to evaluate specific goals for each student in each class.  Unlike other standards-based report systems, Nexus allows for student comments as well.  When students bring their portfolios home on Friday, December 7th, they will have reports from each class to share with both their comments and facilitator comments, as well as the evidences mentioned above.

This is a busy time of the year for students and facilitators alike.  In appreciation of the time your son or daughter has put into this portfolio, please plan a time to sit down together so they can share their work with you.  When you come for portfolio conference, please bring this portfolio, along with your child of course!  With that in mind, if you have not already signed up for a conference, please do so using the link on the right.

Social Studies Update

Here is the first in a series of game pictures from our study of the three branches of government specifically the duties of each and the checks and balances system. Students were assigned a task in which they transferred the knowledge they had learned and apply it to either a game, quiz, poster, Google presentation, etc. Robert S. and Storm R. designed this game of "Governopoly"!


Holiday Fun Night at WCS – Friday Dec. 7th 
Swift House is sponsoring a Holiday Fun Night at WCS on Friday, Dec. 7th to raise money for the end of year field trip to DC. Over 70 students and 40 chaperones will be attending this trip! This fundraiser has the potential to raise $2,000 in just a few hours but we need a lot of help to pull it off. You can use this LINK to sign up to help in the following ways (please scroll down to the Fun Night section):

Adult Supervision: Fun Night is an evening of controlled chaos for children in grades k-5. The more adult supervision we have the better! Right now we are halfway to our minimum need for 20 adults. If you can help out for 3 hours next Friday please sign up using the link above.

Student Help: Ideally, each station is run by one of our students. If your student is not going to the dance on the same night please have them consider helping out with a friend for a few hours at the Fun Night. Please follow link above to sign up.

Concession Donations: There are plenty of spots left to donate a food or drink for concessions. Please click on the link above to donate.

Small Prize Donations: This is a perfect opportunity to clean out your closets, drawers and toy bins of all those small, pesky, kid friendly toys that have accumulated over the years. Think old party favors, small stuffed animals, books, bags etc. You can drop these off in Swift on Thursday or Friday or bring them to Fun Night on Friday evening. If you have any questions please contact Liz Neeld at lneeld711@gmail.com.

FAP Bookfair

Swift House students will be attending the FAP book fair on December 4th at 9:30 (Ms. Skapof and Ms. Laberge) and on December 7th at 9:30 am (Ms. Donnelly and Ms. Longchamp).  The book fair is open until 8 pm Monday-Thursday of that week as well.  Students will all get to visit the book fair with no pressure to purchase anything.  You may send them in with money to get a book if you choose.



FAPAC November Meeting Highlights

To:  Swift House Parents
From:  Liz Neeld, FAPAC Representative

The FAP Advisory Council met on November 8th.  Check out the full minutes in a PDF format by clicking HERE.  Below are a few highlights:

Williston Wins:  The Williston Wins campaign is officially over but donations can still be made by check or cash at any time.  We are only halfway to our goal and will be reviewing the future of Williston Wins at the end of the year. Please consider making a tax deductible donation before the end of the year. Checks should be made out to Williston FAP.

Parking Misuse: There was a concern about the inappropriate use of the handicap accessible parking and how it effects those who really need to use it.  Ideas were discussed on how to raise the awareness of this issue.

Scholastic Book Fair Begins on December 3rd: The Scholastic Book Fair runs the week of December 3rd in the Dining Room at Williston Central School.  Check the School Bell for specific times!!! This is a great school event and an opportunity to complete some holiday shopping, as well as help teachers add to their classroom libraries.  If you have a few hours to spare during the week, we need volunteers to help run this important fundraiser.  There is a spot for 7th and 8th graders to sign up as well as after school and in the evenings.  Here is a link to the sign up sheet:  BOOK FAIR LINK

School Budget Input:  The December FAPAC meeting will include review of budget decision packets.  If anyone wants a say in what they think is an important addition to next year’s budget they should attend meeting.  Everyone there will have an opportunity to prioritize the decision packets that will go before the school board.

Our next FAPAC meeting is on Thursday, December 13th at 8:15 am.  All are welcome!!!  Please contact me at lneeld711@gmail.com if you have feedback or questions on FAP.  Thanks.
 

Saying Goodbye

This week students from Ms. Laberge's core presented Mr. Belisle with a Swift pin.  Our tradition when students graduate 8th grade and interns and faculty move on is to present these Swifties with the Swift pin to remind them to "flyforever." Mr. Belisle was an intern with Ms. Laberge this fall and will be greatly missed!

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