A group of 42 eighth grade WestGate students and four chaperones recently visited Washington, D.C. They visited the White House, and upon entering the East Wing, the newly appointed Secretary of the Treasury, Jacob Lew, was leaving the White House and returning to the adjacent Treasury Department. They visited the Jefferson, World War II, Grant and Martin Luther King, Jr., memorials. They visited the Kennedy famly gravesite at the Arlington National cemetery, and viewed the solemn ceremony of the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns. The students then visited Madame Tussauds Wax Museum and took pictures with many historical figures. A snow storm greeted the group on their second day of the trip, a first for many students, and they toured the Iwo Jima, Lincoln, Vietnam Wall and Korean Memorials in the snow. The group then went to the Capitol and visited with Congressman Patrick Murphy. While on a guided Capitol tour, in Statuary Hall, the Speaker of the House John Boehner walked by and chatted with the West Gate students for a few moments. The group visited the Smithsonian Museums, National Aeronautics and Space, both the American Museum of Natural History and the museum of American History, where the restored “Star Spangled Banner” is on display. Pictured are the students in the north portico of the White House.
The Fort Pierce Central High School JROTC recently hosted the 2013 Area III Drill Competition, and qualified in six categories for state competition. The five-county drill competition is the state qualifier for over 26 high school JROTC programs. The top three in each category win a trip to Lakeland for the Florida State Drill Competition. Each school is evaluated on their ability to demonstrate precision, originality, and overall showmanship within the routines. The Cobra cadets placed third overall, and first in Male/Mixed Armed Platoon Exhibition, Female Unarmed Regulation Squad, and Male/Mixed Color Guard. The cadets also earned second place in Female Armed Platoon Exhibition, third Place in Female Armed Squad Exhibition, and third Place in Male/Mixed Unarmed Regulation. This is the third year that Ft Pierce Central JROTC has hosted the Area III Drill Competition. Story Submitted by C/Cpt Gene Moore, Public Affairs Liasion.
Weatherbee Elementary students are spending Saturday mornings in a science enrichment camp fostering creative problem solving and teamwork – 21st century life skills imperative to success in our modern society. Each Saturday, students rotate through stations, each of which encourages working in diverse teams, engaging in investigations, experiments, and engineering challenges that combine science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) in enriching, hands-on activities. Students in teams have dissected owl pellets, built electrical circuits, created potato batteries, made organic polymer slime, measured the effect of varying forces on golf ball speed, as well as determining the effect of camouflage on predation to name a few activities. All activities are geared toward fifth grade benchmarks. The camps are the brainchild of Weatherbee Elementary Science Resource Teacher Mary Bishop.
Students in Veronica Patrick’s second grade class at St. Lucie Elementary was paid a special visit from Mr. Reverend James Sullivan, a former principal of St. Lucie County Schools. Reverend Sullivan took the time to educate her students on Black History and honorable individuals remembered for their braveness, such as Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Jr., Ralph Bunche, and many more. A special thank you Reverend Sullivan.
Both male and female teams of the Port S. Lucie High School Jaguar ROTC Battalion have qualified to go to the state drill meet by placing in first to third place in their events in the district drill meet hosted recently by Fort Pierce Central High School. The teams took first place in two of the events, and third in another event. Also in an individual knock-out drill, which is like a military “Simon Says,” two cadets won placed in the top 10. Overall, the Jaguar Battalion Drill Team performed very well and is anticipating the state meet. Pictured is the JROTC Jaguar Battalion Drill Team.
Curious George surprised St. Lucie Elementary’s VPK students with a special visit. Sherry Beland’s VPK class had the highest usage of the online curricula for the second quarter. Students in her class were ecstatic as Curious appeared from around the corner.
The students at Palm Pointe Educational Research School @ Tradition recently enjoyed shopping at the Spring Book Fair. Books from every genre and reading level were available for sale. Students could also sign up for a new service called Storia, which is for e-books. Those who signed up received five free e-books. Pictured, right, is third grader Nicholas Polanco as he takes advantage of this great program, with dad and younger brother Maddox.
Five Palm Pointe Educational Research School @ Tradition students participated recently in the St. Lucie All County Chorus. This is an annual event which takes place each Spring in honor of Music In Our Schools Month. Students from all elementary schools in St. Lucie County come together to videotape a concert that will be played on Channel 13 as well as
in all schools as children all over St. Lucie County learn and sing these songs. Pictured, back row, are Briena Hall and Biance’ Kirkpatrick. Middle row are Aaron Oliveira and Sarah Wouters, and front row is Cianna Hall.
St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office detectives spoke to parents at Floresta Elementary School recently about internet safety. Risky internet decisions while utilizing social media include socializing, downloading, posting photos, music, and games were discussed. Parents were made aware of the dangers of unknown friending, posting personal information, embarrassing or harassing people, sending provocative images, sharing passwords, or clicking on pop-ups. Attendees were shown a presentation and videos focusing on internet safety. Warning signs include receiving gifts, making calls to unknown numbers, turning away from friends and family, or exhibiting extreme emotional behavior when they have no access to the internet. A question and answer period followed. For more information, visit netsmartz.org.
Written by Sandy Pagliughi
Nearly 400 turned out for Southern Oaks Middle School’s second annual Family Science Night recently. Students and parents alike participated in many hands-on science activities prepared by the Southern Oaks faculty. One of the big crowd pleasers was the STEM l, where parents and students were able to see the hydroponic plants and the rockets that were built. Students from Fort Pierce Central High School’s culinary arts program provided some delicious cookies and performed a demostration, and students from Central’s automotive, biology, and HOSA programs also shared their experiences. Students from Fort Pierce Westwood High School shared information about the Marine Oceanographic program, and showcased all the exciting things going on in Marine Biology. Students and parents were able to enjoy all the great
science programs and learn a little about what is expected in high school and beyond. A special thanks to Ft.Pierce Central and Westwood high schools’ teachers, students and administrators.
Weatherbee Elementary held a successful fifth Annual Publix Math Night Event recently. More than 80 eager students and their parents experienced applying real life, age appropriate math skills to complete math word problems. A big thank you to Publix for providing goodie bags and cookies to all participants for returning their completed math worksheet. All students had a fun time and learned a lot as they earned a homework pass for a job well done. Pictured, back row from left, second grade teacher Christine Mathison, math coach Terry Longar, and assistant principal Jennifer Avellino. In front are Donnell Williams, second from left, with his mother and siblings.
Weatherbee Elementary students participated in a poster contest depicting the school’s S.A.I.L. (Self-Control, Acts Responsibly, Is Respectful, and Learn) Expectations. Students in pre-K through fifth grade had an opportunity to enter this unique contest and create posters depicting one or all of the school wide Positive Behavior Support expectations. Eight winners were selected and each received a Wal-Mart gift card. Winning posters were displayed in the cafeteria. In fact, all posters entered were displayed throughout the hallways for all to view. Wonderful job, Mariners! Pictured with Principal Michael Hitsman and Assistant Principal Jennifer Avellino are the poster contest winners Mitsu Pierre, Jacy Reeves, Jennifer Edmond, Summer Roach, Karina Aguilar, Gracie Morris, Judah Reeves, and Leonel Baltazar.
Northport K-8 Media Specialist Lynne Gruszka, with the collaboration of a network of Northport teachers, put together an authentic, student empowering program recently in honor of Women’s History Month. Students researched and paid tribute to women such as Condoleeza Rice, Susan B. Anthony, Mother Theresa, Joan of Arc, Rosie the Riveter, Margaret Thatcher and many more. Students sang a special selection of the National Anthem as a tribute to strong women in the military, a student rendition of Maya Angelou’s famous poem “Phenomenal Woman” with a dance routine, and a rousing rendition of “We Are Family” by Sister Sledge was sung by students in Juliette Thelusma’s fourth grade class. The finale of the program was the traditional singing of Helen Reddy’s “I Am Woman!” Pictured are sixth grade Starfish students Alyssa Reaver, Toni Ann Salerno, Mikyla Foucault, Mackenzie Hunsicker and Daphne Sheets who wrote and performed a skit in honor of their teachers. Students are standing in front of a hand painted depiction of Rosie The Riveter presented to Lynne Gruszka by volunteer Rosemary Lambert.
Fort Pierce Mayor Linda Hudson and Port St. Lucie Mayor JoAnn Faeilla have begun a recognition program to honor public schools in their communities that have shown continued excellence, improved student achievement, and innovation. Pictured is Mayor Faeilla, left, with Principal Ucola Barrett-Baxter at Parkway Elementary School in Port St. Lucie, and Mayor Hudson with Principal Juanita Wright at Frances K. Sweet Elementary in Fort Pierce.
The Port St. Lucie High School Jaguar Battalion took cadets for a tour of the Florida Institute of Technology campus recently. Master Sergeant David Beach, the ROTC instructor of the college, greeted the cadets with a tour of their ROTC facility and talked to the cadets about the opportunities ROTC has to offer the cadets. After the orientation, Mike Perry, the director of undergraduate admissions, guided and spoke to the cadets about the opportunities the college offers to the cadets after high school. Afterwards, the cadets were taken to ROTC’s off-campus COPE course where they successfully navigated the 30 foot high obstacle course. The cadets were thankful for the hospitality of the college and their ROTC instructors and cadets. Pictured are instructors and parent chaperones watching while a cadet navigated the course.
In celebration of Music in Our Schools Month, over 120 elementary students from st. Lucie County public schools descended on the WLX Education Channel tv studio to record the annual Elementary All County Chorus. This year’s theme was Agents of Change! Songs included Agents of Change, Live Well, I’ll Be There, Big Heart, Kindness, and Think on These Things. The concert will be up on the WLX Video on Demand site on the district web site at www.stlucieschools.org soon for all to view. Tune in and take a look – Celebrate Music in Our Schools Month with the 2013 All County Chorus.
Students in Michelle Mullins’ sixth-grade Language Arts class at Allapattah Flats K8 are learning how to utilize the writing process to write creatively, informatively and persuasively. As part of learning to write persuasively, students participated in a debate project in which they were grouped and asked to analyze a specific scenario and record the “pros” and “cons” of each. Some examples included consideration of a four-day school week or the positive and negative aspects of a school-enforced dress code. Students then split into sub groups and prepared a formal debate in which they had to argue in favor for, or against, a specific scenario. The debaters’ classmates then voted on whose argument was most convincing. The winning team was awarded with Gator Bucks. Pictured, from left to right, Deven Jones and Shan Askari counter-argue a point presented by Vincent Ancewicz and Justin Nolasco. Onlookers, Desiree Nolasco and Amber Kolbinskie, listen to the debate and consider which team deserves each of their votes.
Students in Susan Funari’s second grade class at Allapattah Flats K-8 School have been busy learning how to tell time on an analog and digital clock. They have learned that there are 60 seconds in a minute and 60 minutes in an hour. They’ve even made their own clocks to practice telling time to the hour and half-hour. Pictured is Mrs. Funari’s class proudly showing off thier home made clocks.
Port St Lucie High School’s Odyssey of the Mind team placed first in the recent regional academic competition, and will advance to state competition. Pictured, front row, are Kendall Spurr and Maeve Tucker. Back row, from left, are christian Vaccaro-gallo, Justin Rudisal, Zoe Tucker, Vincent Altvater and Adriana Garcia.
As part of their Science curriculum, third grade students at Allapattah Flats are beginning to study the sun and other stars in our solar system. The students are learning how to compare and contrast the brightness, sizes, shapes and colors of various stars. This week students attended a field trip to the Indian River State College Planetarium. The students enjoyed watching the night sky light up in front of their eyes and discussing burning questions they had with Planetarium Director Jon Bell. Pictured, from left, are Trinity Scott, Madison Garcia, Isabella Westling, Dylan Maloy and Zachary Estep.