News release from Arlington Public Schools.
Gunston Hosts West African Dance Group
In honor of Black History Month, Gunston invited the Kankouran West African Dance Group to perform for eighth grade students. Several students shared stories of African kings and queens, performed as the Negro Mother, and one student performed a dance routine. The Gunston Singers performed a wonderful medley of old negro spirituals. The event included a video created by Gunston’s Network 21 based on the Civil Rights Movement, and was closed with a students’ reading of President Obama’s, “This Is Our Moment Speech.”
The McKinley Kindness Challenge
The McKinley Cardinal community has spent the last two weeks participating in the second annual kindness challenge. The challenge was to line the main hallway up and back with paper hearts. Students, teachers and parents earned hearts by completing acts of kindness boards, much like BINGO. Classrooms also surprised each other with random acts of kindness, such as homemade bookmarks and kind notes. The challenge has created an incredible spirit of positivity!
Stratford Celebrate’s Valentines Day
It was time for sweethearts and friends during Stratford‘s Valentines Day celebration. Stratford students and staff had an excellent time making cards in art class, chocolate cookies in family and consumer science, danced in music, and played friendship games in PE class.
Dress for Success
Supporting CTE month’s Dress for Success effort, all the programs at the Career Center encouraged their students to wear clothing suitable for an interview or the professional work environment. Some successful highlighted activities included mock interviews and elevator speeches. Additionally, the PEP Program hosted a fashion show where the students dressed for their chosen future occupation. The show was enjoyed by the entire school and PEP leaders gave special thanks to the ACC’s Cosmetology class for helping prepare their students for the event.
Dr. Alfred Taylor Speaks to Long Branch Parents
Dr. Alfred O. Taylor, Jr. was the guest speaker at the Long Branch February PTA meeting. Parents, students and staff had the honor of listening to his presentation about the history of Nauck/Green Valley. He shared many stories about African American families and landmarks in Arlington that helped shape the Black History of our county. His book, Bridge Builders of Nauck/Green Valley, contains even more stories and details. Everyone at the presentation walked away learning something new about Black History in Arlington County.
Jefferson 8th Graders Wrap Up Civics Lesson with School and County Board Forum
Seventh grade students at Jefferson culminated their ELA/Civics interdisciplinary unit on Activism by participating in a civic panel discussion with several members of the school board and the Arlington County board on February 49. IB Coordinator Kip Malinosky facilitated the conversation between the students and the panel which consisted of School Board members Vice Chair Tannia Talento (school board liaison to Jefferson) and Monique O’Grady and Arlington County Board Erik Gutshall and Chair Christian Dorsey. Students were invited to ask the board members questions and share their concerns about both community and school issues ranging from budget allocations to crime prevention, and from our intervention period to the nutritional value of school lunches. The board members welcomed students-concerns and feedback and shared that their decision making process involves working with many different members of the community and can sometimes take years. They emphasized the importance of determination and not giving up when change doesn’t happen immediately. They also explained that they have to balance many different aspects of an issue when pursuing the best option. After an hour of questions, School and County Board members reminded the students of their open office hours on Monday evenings and invited them to continuing sharing their concerns and ideas in person or via email.
Jamestown Students Read the Day Away
On Wednesday February 13, 2019, students at Jamestown celebrated Read the Day away by participating in various reading activities throughout the day. Students and staff enjoyed wearing their pajamas and bringing in their favorite stuffed animal.
Stratford Students Learn About the Year of the Pig
The Stratford community rang in The Year of the Pig with style. Teachers and school social workers developed a unit on the Chinese New Year which focused on the lunar calendar and Chinese culture. The culminating activity ended with a school-wide parade and festival. Students created dragon masks and lanterns which they carried as they paraded throughout the school. The parade lead them to the gym where they enjoyed a community musical experience with festive choreography, recited poetry, gong ringing and rhythmic pattern playing to traditional Chinese New Year music. Peer buddies from Swanson Middle School joined in the festivities which ended with Asian culinary delights: dumplings, mandarins and cookies.
Drew’s African American Read-in
Drew began its Black History Month celebration with its annual African American Read-In. Librarian Dora Sue Black invited various community members to read biographies or stories featuring African-Americans. Arlington Public School leaders including Superintendent Dr. Pat Murphy, members from Delta Sigma Theta Sorority of Northern Virginia, and a representative from Arlington Credit Union, which host a weekly credit union at Drew, volunteered their time.
Hoffman-Boston VPI/ Second Grade Reading Buddies
VPI has teamed up with the Hoffman-Boston second graders for a reading buddies program. Integrating both curriculums, students began by introducing themselves and making some name books. Now, they are working together to be the author and illustrator of their own nonfiction book about animals. They based their book off MOVE! by Steve Jenkins and Robin Page. The focus is on building relationships, mentoring, teamwork, and making literacy fun. Book buddies is not just about reading books-students create their own books, act out stories and learn about the parts of a book. Mentors meet once a week throughout the school year.