School Notes April 11-18

School Notes April 11-18

To have school information listed in The Arlington Connection, mail to 7913 Westpark Drive, McLean, VA 22102 or write an e-mail to or fax to 703-917-0991. Deadline is 2 p.m. the Thursday before publication. Call Rebecca Halik at 703-917-6407.

Yorktown High School was selected by the Siemens Foundation and the College Board to receive the 2006-07 Siemens Award for Advanced Placement. YHS is one of 50 high schools nationally to win the award. The school will also receive a $1,000 grant to support science and math education.

On March 6, Jefferson Middle School was informed that it had been selected to be an International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) effective immediately. To celebrate its IB status, Jefferson will host a community barbeque on April 13 from 5 -7 p.m. The barbeque is sponsored by the PTA and Jefferson. Jefferson will join Randolph Elementary School and Washington-Lee High School as Arlington Public Schools designated IB programme.

On Saturday, March 10, the Yorktown High School Winterguard was awarded second place honors in competition sponsored by the Atlantic Indoor Association (AIA). The group competed against 15 other guard units in the Scholastic Region A division. The Yorktown Winterguard is scheduled to participate in the 2007 AIA Championships on March 31 - April 1 in Raleigh, N.C. Gina McGregor serves as Guard Instructor with assistance from Guard Captains Sophie Papavizas and Courtney Clark.

The Williamsburg Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Mr. Randy Glasner, received a Superior Rating at the District XII Middle School Band Festival on March 2. The Wind Ensemble performed three pieces for their concert program and were tested on their sight reading ability. The Wind Ensemble is now preparing a new concert program for their "Music in the Parks" festival in Hershey, Pa. on May 4.

In February, the Williamsburg Diplomats helped raise $141.50 to benefit the Arlington Pediatric Center. This donation contributes to the medical needs of uninsured children living in poverty in Arlington.

On Feb. 28, 20 Long Branch fifth graders, all of whom are members of the Long Branch Leadership Club, went to the Cherrydale Rehabilitation Center to participate in a cooking activity with residents. Jane Scruggs, Brenda Kahan, and Maryluz Molina organized the students’ trip as part of their monthly community service project.

Meli Cox and Wendy Woodson, mentors of the Y.E.S. Club at Oakridge, recently led a fund drive to raise money to send kids in Haiti to school. It costs $60 to send one Haitian child to school for a year. Everyone at Oakridge was asked to bring in a quarter for the YeleHaiti Charity. Students raised $600 so ten Haitian students will be able to attend school with all the needed supplies for one year.

McKinley physical education teachers Mark Turner and Lacey Purkat recently coordinated a round-robin volleyball tournament for the entire fifth grade. The activity finalized a unit of study and gave both the teachers and students a chance to assess their improved skills and knowledge of the game. The winning team will go on to play the McKinley staff team at the end of the year.

Four hundred APS Title I third grade students participated in the National Symphony Young Peoples Concert at the Kennedy Center on Feb. 27. This year’s theme, "Musical Reflections," focused on point of view. Students had the opportunity to hear the selections before they went to the concert. Students listened to a CD of the nine musical selections from the concert and wrote reflections about the selections prior to going to the Kennedy Center. The event was organized by the Title I Office.

On March 10, the Gunston Elementary School community and Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment spent the morning cleaning up Four Mile Run. Thirty bags of trash were collected by 53 Gunston students, parents and teachers. The volunteer project was a part of Gunston’s Do Something program of continuing commitment to community service.

AETV producers John Stuhldreher, Darrell Johnson and Jeremy Koller produced, filmed and edited a video showing the Arlington County Police Department at work during a crisis. Career Center special projects coordinator David Welsh arranged for the collaboration between ACPD, AETV and the Career Center. The video highlights the role of the police department in the community with scenes of aerial photography, car pursuits, detailed forensics work, and active community involvement. The goal is to interest members of the community in supporting and joining the ACPD. The AETV team was assisted by students from ACC TV/Multimedia production teacher Tom O’Day’s class.

After school on Feb. 28 the Teen Parenting Program hosted a demonstration by celebrity chef Jon Ashton from England. Chef Ashton prepared healthy breakfast recipes as part of the "Calcium is Cool" cooking demonstration and nutrition activity, sponsored by Cabot Creamery of Vermont. Students learned about good sources of calcium, and the importance of healthy eating and exercise. They received measuring cups, notepads, and pencils, along with discount coupons for Cabot cheese to encourage them to make the recipes at home.

McKinley first grade teachers Marne Manoukian, Whitney Bachyrycz and Julia Seymour recently helped their students celebrate famous Americans. Each student chose one famous American to research. After compiling their research, students dressed up and shared the lives with other students. A wide variety of famous Americans were portrayed, including Albert Einstein, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Thomas Jefferson, and Helen Keller.

"The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer" visited Jamestown to film the presentation of poet Jack Prelutsky and illustrator Chris Raschka. At an all-school assembly, Prelutsky and Raschka introduced the students to their new book Good Sports, recited their favorite poetry, demonstrated how illustrators work to enhance poetry, and shared stories about being a poet and illustrator. Suzanne Bishop, librarian, and Stacey Tucker, library assistant, arranged for Prelutsky and Raschka to visit Jamestown on their cross county tour.

Langston’s English teacher Dr. Nancy Walton and media center specialist Kate Lawrence received a Reading Revelry grant from APS and took several students to Borders book store. In an effort to close the achievement gap for students of various ethnicities, the field trip provided students an opportunity to handpick materials relevant to each student that can improve reading comprehension. All books bought during this field trip will be available in the English classroom or the library so that all students can have access to them.

Anne Vor der Bruegge of Carlin Springs received grant funding to hire local artist Cecily Corcoran to work with third graders after school on a mural depicting a Mali marketplace. Third graders are expected to learn about the heritage and contributions of the West African empire of Mali for the social studies SOLs. Students discussed and sketched scenes showing the storytelling tradition, architecture, clothing and goods traded in Mali.