APS NewsReview


Randolph students planting seedsRandolph wrapped up its spring reading incentive, Reading Makes Us Bloom, with a planting activity on Fri, Jun 2. Students earned flower seeds based on the number of minutes they spent reading, and then had the chance to plant the flower seeds they had earned. Students at each grade paired with their cross-grade level reading buddies and worked together to beautify the school grounds. When the work was completed, the partners read together and enjoyed a special treat. Mother Nature shined on the Randolph community all are very excited to watch the seeds as they grow and remind us of the young readers who have blossomed this year.

Oakridge studentsWhile Oakridge second grade teacher Jennifer Burgin is busy exploring the Galapagos as a National Geographic Grosvenor Explorer through Lindblad Expeditions, her students are busy making their own connected discoveries. They are learning about the Galapagos, reconstructing dinosaurs by piecing together their bones, and learning about the mission, life, and tools of National Geographic emerging explorer Dr. Ryan Carney, a paleontologist and evolutionary biologist who combined his childhood passions of art animation and dinosaurs into a rewarding career. After researching this amazing scientist, these students will design an animated presentation of Carney’s life using Toontastic 3-D. They will submit their entry into the National Geographic Explorer Challenge. This unique project was facilitated by Mosaic Project Coodinator Dawn Amin-Arsala, Gifted Resource Teacher Audrey Nolan and ITC Kyle Taylor.

In 2016, the Wakefield community raised $6,000 for the newly created Money Ball Scholarship (MBS). The MBS was created for those students who are first generation college students, dreamers, undocumented and international students. The goal for 2017 stood at $7,500. There were two incredibly generous matching donations: $2,500 from the Wakefield faculty and $1,000 from a Wakefield parent as well as the many parents, teachers and faculty at Wakefield and in the community. The Wakefield community was able to raise $10,265. The Wakefield Counseling Department accepted 23 Money Ball Scholarship Applications and will announce the winners of the MBS on June 13 at Awards Night. John Clisham, organized the scholarship drive to benefit the Wakefield Class of 2017.

Ashlawn Flea MarketOn Thu, June 8, Ashlawn first graders participated in a Flea Market which provided hands-on learning about economics. They bought and sold products with their change. All of their change will be donated to Save the Rain Forest as part of the Global Citizenship Project.

Hoffman-Boston studentsThe Hoffman-Boston fourth and fifth grade chorus participated in a program called American Young Voices on Fri, June 2. The program consisted of over 2,000 students from around the D.C. region performing nine songs together in a big concert at EagleBank Arena at George Mason University. Students were able to work with conductor Francisco Nunez and a live band while they rehearsed and performed in a huge arena.

Taylor STEAMHow long does it take to build a bridge? What STEAM skills do you use in your job? SOLs are over and Taylor students were treated to the second annual STEAM Career Day on June 2. More than 35 volunteers spoke with small groups of students about their work in a variety of careers that encompass science, technology, engineering, art and math. Among the careers represented were radiologist, software engineer, structural engineer, geologist, helicopter pilot and investment banker. The program was organized by STEM and Beyond coordinator Paul DiBenedetto.

On Fri, June 2, fifth grade students from Nottingham got the opportunity to code and program their own robots. Nottingham Knights visited Qualcomm Lab, which sponsors STEAM learning and is possible because of the partnership between Virginia Tech and Qualcomm Corp.

Tuckahoe was well represented at this year’s SMASH (Sports, Math, and Scientific Hypotheses) contest with a total of 60 entries and five age group winners. The purpose of the contest was to encourage students to create pictures that illustrate any connection between the world of sports and the principles of math and science. The participation was initiated by STEM teacher Margaret Egan who introduced the contest to students in homerooms.

Barrett Smithsonian TripWhile attending the Smithsonian Teacher Night’s advanced screening of A Beautiful Planet, Barrett fourth grade teacher Jennifer Manley heard about a Google field trip grant for Title I schools that could take a grade level out to the Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum. Knowing how passionate that the Barrett teachers and community are about science instruction, she applied for and received the grant for students in grades 2-4 to visit the museum. The grant included transportation, lunch, an iMax showing of A Beautiful Planet, hands on workshops and a self-guided tour of the museum. The Udvar-Hazy staff was crucial in creating this wonderful experience. Not only did they work directly with Manley to plan specific activities, place lunch orders, and choose a iMax movie to show but they also delivered post-trip lesson plans, materials, and other goodies for students.

Glebe second graders are STEAMing into the future with success. Through the collaborative efforts of ITC Robin Gardner, STEM coordinator Missy Park, Resource Teacher for the Gifted Lori West and teacher Christine Williams, second graders learned science with a little extra steam. Students began the year imagining themselves as engineers and began building. As engineers, they built, redesigned, tested and perfected windmills, structures, tornado/earthquake resistant school buildings, and even a school building and home in Haiti! As scientists, they researched, explored, tested and sang their way through science Standards of Learning and beyond. As literary and visual artists, they wrote stories and painted their way through the year—at one point using Spheros that they programmed to paint in a pattern. Programming and technology instruction was intertwined with each lesson along with math from shapes to measurement.

Yorktown ninth grade SOAR service learning students raised over $700 and bagged oranges for families in need at AFAC. SOAR is coordinated by YHS Minority Achievement Coordinator Shari Benites, English teacher Tracy Maguire, Gifted Services teacher Eileen Wagner, and counselors Juanice Jenkins and Fatima Pindeda.