There was the most wonderful visit to the Northport Media Center with Mrs. Kemp and Ms. Lusardi’s 3rd graders recently. The students buddy read holiday books from the huge basket of book collections in the Northport Media Center, read holiday and Christmas stories by themselves and then listened to “Twas the Night Before Christmas” read by Mrs. Gruszka, Northport Media Specialist. and teachers sang “Jingle Bells,” “Silver Bells,” and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.” Then the students sang “Hot, Hot Chocolate,” a song that they sang together at the Holiday Christmas Concert held at Northport as a gift to Mrs. Gruszka! The children and their smiling faces were the best gift! They were so happy! The Christmas trees and lights were ablaze, the stuffed Christmas and holiday teddy bears were hugged, and the fireplace was glowing. Beautiful season at Northport!
Northport K-8 third grade teacher Melanie Polascak organized a Space Walk for her third grade team as a culminating activity on a space/solar system unit of study. Students and teachers used flags to mark the sun and then made a live scale model of the solar system. Each step between flags represented 30 million miles in the real solar system. Students marked 36 million miles as the first step in the solar system. Students took six steps to Mercury from the sun. Students and teachers then counted footsteps using the scale model to reach all planets. The final planet, Neptune, is 3.7 billion miles from the sun. Students were able to learn knowledge from the scale model and were able to connect this knowledge to their unit of study and their trip to the planetarium. The live scale model presented vital information in a new and intriguing lesson format for third graders.
Northport K-8 School third grade students in Melanie Polascak’s and Glenda
Taylor’s classes have been working on a combined unit of study to determine
learning data and to evaluate the effectiveness of class rotations on the study
of Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. Students and instructors used a variety of
resources to bring the unit of study full circle. Culminating activities to
bring resolution to the unit occured recently in the teachers’ classrooms such as
making pinatas from Mexico, making moose antlers from Canada and learning to
play dominos and how to do the limbo from the Caribbean. Students also enjoyed
a variety of food and drink samples from each country. Pictured are third grade
students from both classes enjoying the lesson!
Northport K-8 third graders in Linda Beidler, John Fallon, Janine Wiecks, Diana Lankow, Melanie Polascak, Glenda Taylor and Tiffany Tredor’s classes took the stress out of their first FCAT test by taking whacks at a homeade pinata on Friday in the school’s courtyard. As each student took a whack and showed who was boss, they were urged to shout out a learned test taking strategy. Stategies called out were read the entire passage before attempting to answer, consider key words, underline the key words, cross out distractors, read the questions first, answer from the last question to the first, substitute words for vocabulary questions and the biggest strategy was “think before you answer!” Students have worked on basic test taking strategies all year but were given an intense course in strategies by literacy coach, Deb
Mock using a program called Get Smart. Pictured is third grader Christopher Cabrera from Janine Weicks class taking a swing at the pinata.
Northport third graders in Melanie Polascak’s class contructed a quilt for hope to learn about the history of September 11, 2001. Ms. Polascak used a PowerPoint slide show to tell the students all about the Survivor Tree at Ground Zero, the story of one small pear tree that survived the devastion of that day. The instructor encouraged the students to have hope for the future and like the pear tree, America will survive tough times. The third graders were extremely proud of their quilt, and Ms. Polascak’s lesson allowed students to digest elaborate
information in a concrete yet simple manner!
Northport VPK-8 School third grade students in Susan Poveromo’s class learned all about the life of Helen Keller recently in a heartfelt lesson in commemoration of Disability Awareness Month. Students read all about Helen Keller who lived her life in virtual darkness. They learned that Helen was born in 1880 in Tuscumbia, Alabama and that Helen was born a bright and lively baby but at nineteen months old contracted scarlet fever which left her blind, deaf, and unable to speak. Students learned about the special touch of Helen’s teacher, Annie Sullivan, and they also learned that “kindness is the language that the blind can see and the deaf can hear.” Student discussions included talks about personal strengths, limitations, and ways of communication. Students viewed clips from the movie version of The Life of Helen Keller and related what they read to what they visualized. The third graders learned introductory sign language and wrote five W’s summaries about lessons learned from the story of Helen Keller. Students were thrilled with the first-rate lesson and were so excited to discuss their newly discovered appreciation for people with disabilities. Great job, Mrs. Poveromo!
Each year, every Northport student participates in the Young Author’s program. The program is a wonderful opportunity for students to demonstrate that each can use the complete writing process effectively. Writing and editing the books and then publishing the final, revised book is a commitment to engaged learning. The Young Author’s writing process focuses directly on student curriculum for all grade levels in English/Language Arts and reading. Standards are applied to student organization, draft, reflection, revision, correction and then finally, publication and presentation. Working on the Young Author’s is common ground for all grade levels and a terrific platform for common language among students, teachers, and parents.
Every year at Northport, we set up our books by class or by team in the media center for optimal display. Parents, grandparents, administration, community members, and classes are invited to the media center to tour and peruse the books and observe student achievement first hand. Each year a different theme is used to showcase the books. This year the theme is “Big Heroes!” The entire library will be decorated in a Hero theme. Teachers and students will decorate their assigned display tables using a superhero, veteran, police officer, deputy sheriff, first responder, or an every day hero. The key words are “integrity,” ” service,” “empathy,” “sacrifice,” ” honor,” “commitment,” and “family.”
Students follow a common rubric and use handmade decorations and illustrations. Writing can be fiction, non fiction, poetry, or research. Any genre is acceptable. Northport may select seven students who promote the best overall achievement expected from Northport students. The District Young Author’s event will be held at Oak Hammock on May 21, 2016 at 10:00 am.
Pictured are Northport third grade teachers Jennifer Lusardi, Deb Day, Janine Wiecks, Michelle Kemp, Lorena Wilson, Sharon Nelson and Megan Castiglia. Teachers are wearing matching “Teacher Superhero” tee shirts! We can’t wait to see the fruition of our Northport Young Author’s program.
Many thanks to our partners in education, First United Methodist Church of Port Saint Lucie. They brought 400 Christmas cookies for Northport teachers and staff. They support our children and staff in so many ways. The congregation, along with Rad and Pat Orlandi, are true blessings to us all.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone ❤ 🎄,
Pictured is Rad Orlandi with his grandson, Adrian, and Northport PTO member, Erica Richardson.
Many, many thanks to First United Methodist Church of Port St. Lucie on Prima Vista Blvd. from the entire Northport community.
The children are in awe of all the 1,005 books, the many choices of books, and the idea of starting their summer reading. You have done a magical and wonderful thing for all the children. You REALLY made a difference! You all really have walked the walk!!!!!!!
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from Northport to all our active duty military personnel and veterans! One percent of the strongest, bravest and most fierce protect the other 99% from harm so we can sleep safely. We especially want to thank our Northport alumni who are serving, our parents, brothers and sisters who are serving, and our Veteran Partners in Education.
You are thought of this Christmas season!
“People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing.”
This is a quote by Dale Carnegie. Greatness in teaching is rare. To be a great teacher, a combustion of assorted qualities both inborn and learned have to occur. A teacher has to be willing to put in time. That is time over and beyond the call of duty. Great teachers must love the age group and the subject that they are teaching and have an effective management style. Great teachers also are willing to learn new techniques, take advice, be flexible and have a huge capacity for growth. Another important quality of a teacher of excellence is to be consistently excellent. Our children depend on us to be excellent, caring, concerned and on point every single day. It’s a difficult and complex act.
Teaching is just not for everyone. There is no greater feeling than being a great teacher at the top of his or her game. It’s amazing and it’s rare. In this day and age, many times, teachers get a bad rap. Teachers are sometimes called “too liberal” or “not of good character.” Northport teachers are taking a stand! The teaching staff is qualified, supportive, funny, caring, and good communicators. We are people of character and we find the humor in the daily “tour of duty.” We are colleagues, but more importantly, we are friends.
Northport teachers are amazing! The seventh grade Stingrays team include Tracey Lejeune, Kat Black, Tony Mancini, Jeffrey Bennett, Angela Elliott and Heath Degiovine. Tiffany Tredor, 5th grade Rising Stars teacher, Lorri Lamm, second grade teacher along with NP Media Specialist, Lynne Gruszka are enjoying a priceless friendship and an admiration for colleagues that is not often replicated. Northport is noted for high quality, reputable and fun-loving teachers who bring out the best in their students. Northport is a great place to “make the magic happen!”
Northport K-8 teachers are celebrated by administration, staff and students for the month of May during Teachers Appreciation Week! Teachers will be treated to a special luncheon provided by the PTO and a special board was made by parent volunteer Jackie Weir to honor teachers. Students wrote notes to teachers to be put into a mosaic of appreciation for all to see and enjoy. Some of the notes read, “Mrs. Polascak, you are so nice, funny and pretty!” “Mr. Fallon, you are helpful to every student!” “Mrs. Caren Boyd, you are an amazing and caring teacher!” “Mrs. Lankow is always keeping track of everything we do!” and “Mrs. Thelusma, you are wonderful, inspiring and competitive!” The special board is filled with student commentary on how much the teachers are cared for and respected! Pictured are Northport seventh grade
students promoting the Teacher Appreciation board.
Northport teachers are participating in an intensive book study led by Assistant Principal Meghan Drost using Engaging Students with Poverty in Mind. Teachers are learning and putting into action steps for making the teaching and learning experiences more real and authentic for our Title 1 school and for our students.
“When teaching in a Title 1 school, every single weakness that a teacher has is exposed. If we don’t learn to adapt, build relationships, and bring our A-game every single day, our classes will suffer.” The book integrates all the positive attributes of Northport and all the goals that we want to accomplish with our students. We want to raise that bar, teach childen and teachers correct responses and learn to enhance our culture that “We Are Family!”
Excellent book that promotes our school motto’s of “Every student in school would rather be engaged by an energetic, caring teacher than be bored by someone going through the motions. Kids deserve a great day everyday. They need role models. They need caring adults. They need savvy risk takers who aren’t afraid to fail!” That’s US! That’s NORTHPORT!
Northport Media Specialist Lynne Gruszka and Austistic Spectrum Disorder or ASD instructor Lisa Richetti-Reynolds selected two girls: 8th grader, Kristina Bartley from the 7/8 Stingrays team and Briana Antoinetti, from Mrs. Richetti’s class and took them out to a Women’s Learning Lunch at McDonalds recently. The girls found out that they have so much in common and talked about school, their lives, future plans, goals and dreams. It was a wonderful experience and we hope to keep promoting positive interactions and building mentorships for students who can really assist one another. GREAT EXPERIENCE!
Northport K-8 teachers, staff and students went head to head recently in a playoff basketball game in the school gymnasium. Students participated in an FCAT pep rally and wrapped the afternoon up with a basketball game that thrilled not only the middle school students but the staff and teachers as well. The students drove hard but could not beat the teachers. A rematch will be held after the final FCAT test is wrapped up and shipped. The school has worked extremely hard to instruct, teach and encourage the use of test taking strategies and to motivate their students to do well on the test as well as to have their “head in the game” all year long. Pictured is Northport principal, Glenn Rustay being guarded by eighth grader Evan Laplant during the hard fought game!
Every day is a wonderful day @ Northport.
Third graders dressed up as idioms…like, “it’s raining cats and dogs,” “butterflies in my stomach,” and “two heads are better than one.” The students and teachers were filled with 🎃 JOY ❤ The teachers were all SMARTIE PANTS!!!!!!
Please help us congratulate Northport School Related Employee of the Year, Parris Lee. Congratulate our First Year Teacher of the Year, Michael Spivey, and our Distinguished Minority Educator of the Year, Zachary Francis. To top off a stellar list, please congratulate Lorrell Ceville as Northport Teacher of the Year for the 2018-2019 school year! Nice work teachers!
As part of their Flight and Space curriculum, 8th grade Northstars students in Mr. Fess’ STEM class designed a flight obstacle course. Throughout the day, other students had the opportunity to fly through the course and try for the fastest time.
Taking flight! 8th grade students in Mr. Fess’ Northstars STEM class have been working hard designing their own airplanes online and constructing them out of balsa wood. Students competed against one another both in an on-line simulator and in real life!