Students across the Northport campus are working to do their part and conserve our earth. Fifth grade teacher, Melanie Polascak, spearheaded a campaign to bring recycling to the school. Students interested in the effort meet in Polascak’s classroom on Tuesday and Thursday mornings to organize and to work together to get twenty bins from Waste Pro. Every Tuesday morning before school, twelve interested students go across campus and bring the bins to the front of the school then they meet again on Thursday to bring the empty bins back to their designated spots. Northport is very proud of the efforts of these students and their teacher sponsor, Mrs. Polascak. Lessons like these are invaluable and service projects help instill citizenship in our students and help them learn to become good stewards of the earth and their own community.
Technology Education is alive and thriving at Northport! As part of the National Hour of Code celebrated worldwide each December, Kevin Fess and his technology classes are trying their hand at coding pictures, animations, and character movements. Students as young as first grade are engaging in coding enterprises at Northport this month. The National Hour of Code is an initiative by Code.org, which aims to get students of all ages interested in computer science.
Pictured is 6th grade student Riley Orr from the Northstar Team.
Great job Mr. Fess by sparking innovation within our student population.
Northport K-8 Media Services program held the student’s fifth monthly Leadership Summit recently in the school’s Media Center. The Leadership Summit is an opportunity for middle grades students to become aware of leadership skills, to learn about leadership style and to learn how to step forward and use the skills learned in their own lives. The Leadership Summit’s are progressively becoming more and more student- driven as children become more comfortable with the open format of learning and the ability to pose critical focus questions. The questions that students pose to community leaders are authentic and often times, hardball questions. Students have amassed a list of leadership qualities that each can aspire to including, loving the people that you lead, flexibility and organizational skills, respect the people that you are leading, capable of seeing the “big picture,” giving much positive feedback, the ability to delegate and not micromanage, humor, being a constant learner and most importantly, according to the students, integrity.
The community leader to guest the fifth Leadership Summit was Saint Lucie County School Board member, Debbie Hawley. Mrs. Hawley answered focus driven questions that students had prepared beforehand and then answered extemporaneous questions with equal attention. The students questioned Mrs. Hawley on a wide array of topics such as dress code, bus stop safety, school lunches, computer access and the use of cell phones in the classroom.. Examples of student driven, deeper level questions were, “Can you explain the new test that will replace the FCAT?”, “Why do students have so many tests, including Easy CBM, Classworks and all aspects of the FCAT?”, “Why did you choose to become a school board member?”, “Why can’t we talk about God in school?”, “Students need time to rest, Why can’t we have short recesses? After all, we are just kids,” Can you please explain what a Charter School is,” “What do you think are the most important qualities of a leader?”, “What is your best recollection about Northport?” and “As a school board member, what are you most proud of about our schools?”. Mrs. Hawley answered each question with patience, good information and a style that encouraged each student to get involved in the open conversation. Students opened up and really brought authentic and engaging questions to the format. Mrs. Hawley spoke about “integrity” and her definition of the word, “to act the same way when you are alone as when you do in public!” She challenged students to define the word and to bring integrity to their own lives. Mrs. Hawley gave forthright, well thought out answers to student questions and gave each student equal opportunity ask their burning question.
Previous community guests included, Florida State Representative, Gayle Harrell, City of Ft. Pierce Deputy Manager, Nick Mimms and a group of fourteen local veterans. The next Leadership Summit will be held in January.
Northport K-8 fifth grade students in Carla Caldwell’s class demonstrated critical information learned through intensive studies of Native American tribes from different geographic regions of North America. Students compared and contrasted the different interactions each had with their geographic region and how this affected their lifestyle and their dwellings. Students identified cliff dwellers and Pueblo people of the Desert Southwest, coastal tribes of the Pacific Northwest, nomadic nations of the Great Plains and Eastern Woodlands tribes found east of the Mississippi River. Students constructed replicas of dwellings and tribal regions for display in the media center. The construction supported the integral assistance offered for Special Education students as well as meeting the diverse needs of English language learners. All students engaged in the excellent hands-on opportunity for deeper instruction and learning. Students visiting the media center had their interests tweaked when viewing the projects and were encouraged to check out resources to assuage the intellectual opportunity for growth. Pictured are the fifth graders as well as instructor Carla Caldwell and assistant principal Brooke Wigginton, far back right.
Northport K-8 eighth grade students were able to connect the dots and put real life knowledge behind the stories and rifts they learned during their recent trip to Washington, D.C. The students and teachers, joined by several others from Manatee Academy, visited the International Spy Museum, the National Holocaust Museum, the United States Capital Building and the House of Representatives where they were able to witness an actual hearing. Students also were guests of the White House where instructor Mala Woessner caught sight of Bo, the White House dog. Students visited Embassy Row, Library of Congress, Martin Luther King Monument and the Museum of Natural History, where students viewed the Hope Diamond, actual mummies and hundreds of other real artifacts from history. Mrs. Woessner said, “When students are able to travel, they are able to connect to a world of educational opportunities!”
It is with much pride and pleasure that each morning at Northport VPK-8 School our students participate in our morning announcements by saying the Pledge of Allegiance and the Kids at Hope Pledge. Students from VPK-8 are taught to say “Good Morning,” to introduce themselves, to welcome classes and teachers to school, and to speak loudly and with well placed enthusiasm. Each then recites the two pledges.
Students sign up on a master calendar in the media center and then are responsible to get to the main office by 9:25 am on their assigned date. The students love to recite the pledges and welcome the day, so all slots are filled through the very last day of school. Our school community is thrilled that the students are learning the pledges and taking pride in reciting for the whole school.
Pictured are VPK instructor, Victoria Frazier and her VPK students Yarely Avalos-Agustin and Aliya Sneider. We are so proud of all of our students who want to step forward to show their American and Northport pride. Great experience!
Northport K-8 students in Tiffany Tredor’s kindergarten class and Megan Castiglia’s third grade class spent quality time in the school’s media center reading and enjoying special Christmas and holiday seasonal books recently. Some of the books that the students cherished were “Twas the Night Before Christmas,” “Drummer Boy,” “The Christmas Sweater,” “The Christmas Promise,” “The Miracle of Jonathon Toomey,” “Great Joy,” “The Year Without Santa Claus,” “Bear’s First Christmas,” “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” “Cranberry Christmas” and “”Dewey’s Christmas at the Library!” Student joy and pleasure was evident from the looks on their faces while looking at the beautiful decorations that adorn the Northport K-8 School Media Center for the children to enjoy and to enhance the library and reading experience. Student learning and facilitating the love of reading are the focal points of the Northport Media Center and the students are aware that the decorations and wonderful books are just for them to enjoy! Pictured are third grader Noora El-Azzami and kindergartener Jaymirah Sanon enjoying their books.
Northport K-8 School is very proud to commend ESE instructor, Evan Jones, ESE instructor, Alex Phillips and paraprofessionals, Reggie Williams, Isaac LeBrun and Donald Patterson. The teachers, paraprofessionals, and their students have been utilizing Think Through Math.
Think through Math is an online computer program that provides unprecedented differentiation for grades 3 through Algebra I. The program is thoroughly research based and is a winner of the 2014 CODiE in Best Math Instructional Solutions.
During the month of October, TTM is featuring a THINK 30 contest as one of the incentives for utilizing the program. Classrooms are eligible to compete if they complete at least ten math lessons for all active students in the current class of ten or more students. The first weeks featured THINK 30 classes are The Jones class at Northport K-8 School in Saint Lucie County, the Davis class at Uwharrie Middle School in Randolph County, South Carolina and the Kramer class at Cedarhurst Elementary School in Highline Public Schools, Washington.
We currently have six classes at Northport K-8 School who are utilizing the program to differentiate student instruction. There are currently 2,000,001 students using the program nationwide.
Congratulations to Evan Jones’ class for being selected as one of the top three classes in the nation for the first week’s THINK 30 Classroom winners. Mr. Jones’ received a $50 gift card for a class celebration! Way to go Mr. Jones and class.
Pictured from left on couch are, Andrew Paulmeno, John Daziani, Kevin Proske and Nick Lewis. Standing from left are, Reggie Williams, Matthew Tyson, Donald Patterson, Logan Stubbs, Mike Altieri, Elliot Ross, Cynthia Reynolds, John Ramsey, Evan Jones, Alex Phillips and Isaac LeBrun.
Northport K-8 middle grades students excelled at the 2013 SLC School District
History Fair. Three Northport students, Moriah Weir, Michael Gorbach
and Casey McCowan, were finalists in the second round of judging at the fair
held on March 2, 2013. Michael Gorbach’s exhibit, The Russian Revolution of
1917 was chosen as a finalist for the top three slots. Michael will be presented
with a second place award at the presentation ceremony on Wednesday, March 13 at
Fort Pierce Central. Northport History Fair coordinator is instructor Bob
Burdge. Pictured, from left, are Bob Burdge, students Moriah Weir, Michael
Gorbach, Casey McCowan and principal, Glenn Rustay.
Northport is pleased to present our 2015-2016 middle grades Science Fair in the school media center. The Science Fair, under the direction of Dr. Laura Woodworth and a cadre of science instructors, are offering students an opportunity to stimulate out of the box problem solving. Students are encouraged and guided through the use of STEaM processes.
Students moved about the media center reviewing projects and using check sheets to ensure that displays presented required data and followed correct procedures. Students asked and answered a variety of questions such as, “Is there a real world problem being addressed?” “Is the hypothesis testable?” “Did the procedures test the hypothesis?” “Are the graphs correctly made for the data type and does the graph reflect the hypothesis?” and “What improvements could be made to the experiments and to the boards?”
The Northport Science Fair is an outstanding representation of scientific detective work and an invaluable look at scientific work that seeks to solve problems and benefit nature and society.
Dr. Woodworth states, “Science Fair requires creativity of thought and critical thinking skills as students relate their science education and scientific processes to try and solve real world problems.”
Excellent work to all who participated. Stellar!
Northport K-8 students from all grade levels participated in a district wide initiative called “Movers For The Military” just in time for Thanksgiving! Students and their parents collected nine moving boxes filled with new items for the kitchen and bathroom, blankets, new pillows, new sheets, clothing, personal
care items and even a brand new prosthetic leg to fit a homeless veteran.
Northport K-8 School partnered with local moving company, Two Men and a Truck to
collect the items benefiting Big Hearts Homeless Shelter in Ft. Pierce. The
drive for the homeless veterans instilled in students the knowledge that they
have the power to help those in need that have served our country in a very real
and powerful way. The students were thrilled to be able to give back to the
community and to lift up our Veteran Partners In Education. Pictured, from left,
are Northport head custodian and Air Force veteran Dan Aaron, Northport
students, instructor Mala Woessner and two representatives from Two Men and a
Truck Moving Company.
Northport K-8 School students are enjoying the Fall Book Fair immensely this year! Students, as well as parents and grandparents, are offered the opportunity to shop and make selections together at the media center supported fair. The book fair was open in the evening recently to accommodate families during the third grade parent night and will also be open to community members to congregate and shop for a balanced literacy plan for their children during the Title 1 Family Science Night. The fair is always an exciting time for students because they realize that the book fair is especially for them and opportunities are made available to visit the fair. A trivia contest is being offered and prizes are collected daily. Pictured, from left, are community volunteer Audrey Slater, second grade student from Barbara Greenood’s class Shea Ellsworth, and media clerk Sarah Lewis. Shea took plenty of time to select two chapter books, “The Story Book of Legend” by Shannon Hale and “Ghoul Friends Just Want To Have Fun” by Gitty Daneshvari.
Northport students experienced a wonderful and festive time at the annual Port Saint Lucie Rotary Club Christmas party. Students were treated to lunch from the Olive Garden, met Santa Claus and received gifts. Thanks to Diane Crumpton and Tammy Boston for escorting our students.
Northport K-8 school’s entire fifth grade team as well as seventh and eighth
grade students from three teams attended the 12th annual Raid on Ft. Pierce at the Savannas Recreation Area. Northport students have attended the re-enactment for 11 of the past 12 years. Students, under the direction of classroom teachers and Social Studies chair Bob Burdge witnessed first-hand the life of a soldier in the 1860s. Students learned about weaponry, outdoor cooking, clothing making and blacksmithing as well as a number of other Civil War memorabilia. It was thrilling for the students to experience a re-enactment of a primary source of information. Over 245 Northport students attended the re-enactment. Mr. Burdge is a first lieutenance and commander of the 8th Florida Company C. Pictured are fifth grade students from Tracey Healy’s class posing with a confederate cannon.
Northport K-8 eighth grade students in Sandra Tyndale’s reading classes are enjoying a special section of books that are particularly chosen for seventh and eighth graders at the school. Students can select from Young Adult Choices (YAC) books to tweak their reading enjoyment. The YAC books are being promoted in four schools in the district: Manatee Academy, Treasure Coast High School, Dan McCarty School and Northport K-8 School. The chosen books are shelved and marked separately to encourage young adults to read. The books, all very new and up to date, provide middle and high school students with an opportunity to voice their opinion about books being written for them. Each book comes with a ballot and students determine if the book is enjoyable by filling out the ballotand dropping it into a ballot box. The book votes are then tallied by Media Specialist Debbie Remington at Manatee Academy and the coordinator for the YAC
program. The importance of offering teens and young adults choices and voices in reading material is crucial for a successful literacy program in schools. Over the next three years, 5,000 new books will be distributed in this terrific program opportunity. Pictured, from left , are Avi Holman, Okyia Mclean and Shadia Stone.
Northport K-8 students spent an hour in the media center learning hands on lessons about our American flag and what the many folds symbolize. Students in Mala Woessner and Mary Ellsworth’s eighth grade classes as well as Amanda Sartain’s sixth grade classes participated in flag folding lessons instructed by the honor guard of the Port St. Lucie High School JROTC Jaguar Batallion. Also present was Rita Woodburn, representative of the Women’s Auxillary of the local American Legion Post 318. Students participated in an essay writing lesson
titled, “What Freedom Do I Enjoy the Most?” Every students was engaged in the lesson and each walked away shaking the hands of the Jaguar cadets. The cadets answered questions about the JROTC program and instructed the Northport students on the core value of the program which is to motivate to become better citizens. All students were effectively engaged and positive interactions were promoted by Media Specialist Lynne Gruszka and Senior Army instructor for the batallion, Maj. U.S. Army (Ret.) Richard Thompson.
Third grade Rising Star instructor, Lorena Wilson, and her students had a wonderful time celebrating Amelia Bedelia and Her Idioms Day recently. Students and teacher used the lesson as an extension of a study on figurative language. Mrs. Wilson dressed as Amelia Bedelia and students dressed as the literal meaning of idioms that they learned about in class. Students then invited other classes to come into the room and play “Guess the Idiom” game. Students decorated themselves as “like the cookie crumbles,” “it’s raining cats and dogs,” “the icing on the cake,” and “fresh as a daisy.” Every student in the class had their own idiom to show and tell.
Great lesson! Great kids and SUPER GREAT teacher!
Thanks to community partners The American Security Council Foundation and Step Up America, Northport has posters all over the school with the direct line to the Saint Lucie County Sheriff’s office to report any suspicious activity. Our job is to provide a safe environment for learning. We believe that student empowerment and voice are imperative to support a culture of safety and ❤. We support Step Up America, A Call To Good Citizenship.
Northport K-8 middle grades students were electrified, enthused and inspired to learn more about the Korean War recently. Northport students paid tribute to the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Korean War Armistice by an integration of interactive learning, an informative and moving PowerPoint presentatioin, guest speaker Peter Popolizio, current Commander of local chapter 106 of the Korean War Veterans Association as a primary source, and were also treated to renditions of music of the time period by Northport choral students under the direction of James Kirk. Student Brandt Wrench sang a sweet version of Bobby Vinton’s “Blue Velvet” and the girl’s choral ensemble, the Velvet Bluebirds, dedicated the song, “Why Do Fools Fall In Love” by Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers to the St. Lucie County School District Senior Volunteer of the Year, Commander Popolizio. Students learned who the power players were during the war, the time period of the war and all about the draft. Students entered the media center that was divided into North and South Korea. Students made flags marking each country, and the Demilitarized Zone was marked for non- admittance. Students each received envelopes upon entering the center, some containing official draft notices, which were opened at the end of the program. Students learned five key vocabulary words: armistice, demilitarized zone, Communism, capitalism and draft. Student surveys and exit slips were utilized to collect learning data. Student comments received after the presentation were very telling. Sixth grader Gianna Ritacco wrote, “I will never,ever forget this program because you guys inspired me to want to learn more!” and sixth grade Jordan Miller wrote, “Thank you so much for teaching us about the Korean War. I have never heard about this before, let alone a war!” and Melanie Giachetti wrote, “You guys put on a spectacular presentation! Those five words are now imbedded in my brain!” Pictured are Media Specialist Lynne Gruszka and students presenting the new vocabulary words.
Northport K-8 Students in Tracey Healy’s fifth grade class were so excited to participate in a Mystery Literature Unit as an end of the school year promotion of an intriguing lesson. Students read the mystery book, The Power of the Scarab, the story of an Egyptologist and his daughter who uncover a mystery while working an Archeological dig. During the unit, students read a case summary, used an evidence organizer and built background knowledge of ancient Egypt to make those all important connections to the mystery. Students researched ancient Egyptian deities, used math to uncover information about the building of the Great Pyramid at Giza, designed a personal cartouche with their names written in hieroglyphics, investigated the science of mummification, taste tested the foods of the region and made their own decorative collars using geometric shapes. Student Sebastian Palomino when asked if he enjoyed the lesson stated, ” It was awesome! It was like we really went back in time for a few weeks!” Student engagement, community building and investment in the lesson are keys to opening up students willingness to extend into deeper learning! Pictured are students from Tracey Healy’s class sporting their handmade Egyptian collars.