The Floresta Elementary choral performance held recently was a glorious night of engaged students, parents, families and staff enjoying the annual “Winter Concert!” The event was kicked off by the 4th and 5th grade students singing a stirring rendition of “A Hard Knock Life” from Annie. The students, led by Music Director Ms. Kraus, then performed a variety of mixed arrangements, traditional Holiday carols and ended with a beautiful rendition of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” sang by all faculty and students.
Floresta Elementary School participated in the annual Martin Luther King Parade. Thanks go to committee chairman Danielle Eugene, advisor Cemera Clancy, members Raina Ingrum, Sandy Pagliughi, Sharon Koen, and volunteer Jinny Holler, for their contributions in designing the float. Huge thanks also go to Betty Carling, Sylvia Johnson, Sandy Pagliughi, Elish Mancuso and Linda Menikheim for their support of this event by marching alongside the float, to Doug Abbuhl, Celeste Hartsfield and Grace Duvelsdorf for support and guidance in the preparation of this event, and all the teachers and students who made or provided posters for our float. Parent volunteer Carlos Fundora not only offered his trailer, but pulled it in the parade. Everyone’s generosity is greatly appreciated.
On the last day of school prior to winter break, Floresta Elementary School students participated in the Positive Behavior Support Chance Opportunities to Win. Students used their Dolphin Dollars to purchase opportunities to win a variety of great prizes to reinforce and reward students for making good choices. Floresta t-shirts, class pizza parties, lunch with a friend on stage, and tickets to Lion Country Safari, Chuck E. Cheese, and Super-Play, were just a sampling of the items that were donated and awarded to the following student winners: Mallory Sweitzer, Alon Batista, Ella Nunnaly, Tyler Parchment, Austin Fowler, Dylan Shaver, Anthony Martins, Keeshawn Robinson, Lena Shingeldecker, Abigail Coker, Jonathan Nunez, Celine Leger, Angie Denvall, Xavier Long, Taylor Lovejoy, Shellby Garron, Yaisa Valencia-Argueta, Bella Gadio, and Javon Perkins. From our Floresta family to yours, “Have a wonderful, safe, and restful Holiday Season!”
Floresta Elementary School teachers kicked off the New Year by participating in a full day of Professional Development. Teachers worked together in grade group teams to develop and map out engaging and focused plans designed to further support student achievement on upcoming assessments. Fourth grade teachers created a specific plan to individualize their writing instruction, targeting specific student needs with creative activities and real world writing opportunities. All grade levels, K-5, worked together in the core subject areas of reading, writing, math, and science. As we enter the second half of the school year with renewed enthusiasm and collaborative spirit, we are turning up the heat at Floresta. As steam rises, so does student achievement. Picture are fifth grade teachers Fred Lehman, left, and Jessica Serra. Written by Suzanne Diaz.
Luke Sutherland was recently called to the office at Floresta Elementary School to receive a very special birthday surprise. Luke’s mother, Megan Sutherland currently serves in the military, and is stationed in Afghanistan. In spite of the miles, and numerous procedural and technological barriers, she managed to telephone the school to personally wish her son a very special “Happy Birthday!” After the initial shock and excitement, Luke assured her that he was getting over his recent cold, and that she need not worry. It was a heart-warming moment for everyone.
Floresta Elementary School second grade student Jaime Rosenberg took to heart the spirit of giving this holiday season. As she wrote her yearly letter to Santa, she included some of her own money with a request for it to be sent to the victims of Hurricane Sandy. But her efforts didn’t stop there. With the help of her mom, she created a website to invite her family and friends to contribute to the American Red Cross directly. Her website has reached over $500 in online donations to date! In an effort to assist her with her idea, Floresta Elementary students and staff collected donations at school as well. As a result of this collection, a donation of $102.85 was submitted to the American Red Cross on behalf of Jaime Rosenberg and Floresta Elementary.
Congratulations to Floresta Elementary fourth grade student Dominic Kelly in Suzanne Diaz’s class, who was selected as the state of Florida winner in Bonnie’s Plants’ cabbage growing contest program. In a surprise assembly to recognize Dominic for his mammoth 38 lb cabbage, Erica Der, the Education Liaison from the Department of Agriculture presented Dominic with a certificate from the State of Florida. Jonathan Shepherd, representative for Bonnie’s Plants, presented Dominic with a $1,000 savings bond, which could double by maturity to be worth nearly $2,000. Bonnie’s Plants has sponsored the contest for the last 15 years for any third grade teacher who wishes to participate. The program began in Alabama and has grown to include 48 states. Dominic planted the cabbage at his grandmother’s house so he could water it each day when he visits. He claims he didn’t use any special fertilizer or soil, and didn’t do any thing other than plant it in the ground and water it at least once daily. The family is still discussing what they will do with the colossal cabbage. Pictured are Shepherd, Dominic, and Der.
Nine Floresta Elementary School students recently participated in the Rotary Club Children’s Christmas Party. This is the Port St Lucie Rotary Club’s most important annual charitable event. Contributors to this worthwhile event include Big Apple Pizza, Wal-Mart, PSL Police Department, PSL Athletic League, PSL Parks and Recreation Department, and the Blue Angels. Students enjoyed a delicious lunch of baked ziti, salad, and breadsticks, provided by Olive Garden. Desserts and beverages were provided by Publix. After the meal, each student received a lovely gift provided by public donations, as well as from the above supporters. Each toy was individually wrapped by student members of the Treasure Coast High School Interact Club. Children look forward to this worthwhile event each year, and this year was no different. For the last 21 years, the Rotary Club has played an important and supportive role in providing for children in need in our area. Toys that were left over from this event were donated to CASTLE, another organization which advocates for children. While the needs are most obvious at this time of year, many families struggle throughout the year. Anyone wishing to learn more about the Rotary Club or how you can help can contact Gary Robinson, Past President, or Dr. Jeanne Evans, Past President and Coordinator of the Children’s Christmas Party at P.O. Box 7474, Port St Lucie, FL 34985.
Fourth grade students at Floresta Elementary recently celebrated their FCAT writing success with a dance. Students were served popcorn and popsicles and danced their feet off to music provided by Traxx Entertainment. Pictured, from left, are Daniela Camac, Alexis Weachter, and Ilse Moreno Gutierrez.
In order to teach the students how to write in a variety of informational forms related to real world situations, the fourth grade students at Floresta Elementary created “How-to” manuals and recipe books. The recipe books included student made recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. As a culminating project, several classes used the recipes to make different items including French toast, pizza, and vanilla Oreo parfaits! Pictured, from left, are Kendra Basiliere, Hailey Shad, Cindy Reynolds (pouring the milk), Valerie Chaparro, Hannah Amaral, and Katelyn Thompson.
Kindergarten through fifth grade students at Floresta Elementary School supported one another with a school-wide “Tunnel of Encouragement” Rally the Friday before FCAT testing began. Kindergarten through second grade students and teachers lined the hallways armed with posters and pompoms, chanting heartfelt words of encouragement as third through fifth grade students made their way to the cafeteria for some motivational activities and words of wisdom. Each third through fifth grade student was provided a t-shirt with the slogan “Floresta Dolphins Destroy the FCAT” across the front. Thank you to Mary McCartney, Gerri Wills, Elish Mancuso, Ken York, Kathy Capas, Sharon Price, Melvonia Wheeler, Norma Greene, Miriam Negron, and Lynette Marraffa, all students and teachers for making this such a special event.
Floresta Elementary students participated in a Math Literacy Night at Publix Supermarket. The students completed a scavenger hunt using real world money problems. The students had a great time going “shopping” and learned a lot about real money problems.
Floresta Elementary School students, from left, Olivia Saurel, Victoria Nunez, and Joshua Perez share their kindergarten writing in the front of Floresta Elementary School. Victoria and Joshua, from Syliva Johnson’s class, wrote about what they want to be when they grow up, and Olivia, from Mary Moore’s class, wrote about why she likes school. The students are making great progress in their writing.
Floresta Elementary School second grade students were visited by Captain Citrus, the mascot from the OJ4NRG tour, a program put together by the Florida Department of Citrus to enlighten students about the many benefits of Florida citrus. Students learned that oranges, tangerines, and grapefruits are special kinds of berries, and that most of the world’s citrus comes from our own state of Florida. Orange juice provides vitamin C, potassium, folate, calcium, and vitamin D, and is free of fat and contains no sodium or cholesterol. Students learned that the citrus industry employees nearly 76,000 workers and positively impacts the economy of our state to the tune of about $9 billion dollars per year. That’s a lot of oranges! According to Ariel Ball from Julie Gray’s class, the very best part of the program was the tasting of the citrus. She said oranges and tangerines are really sweet, but grapefruit are sour. Students and teachers enjoyed the program and learned a great deal about the nutritional value of citrus, as well as how it is grown and processed. Pictured are students in Holly Patterson’s class.
The entire school at Floresta Elementary took part in the first monthly STEAM activity. K-2 discovered how to blow a piece of popcorn into a bottle. 3-5 designed and built a container that would hold 293 pieces of popcorn using 10 pieces to estimate by. Fun was had by all!
Students at Floresta Elementary School recently participated in a 45 minute character education assembly. The NED show, a motivational program, promotes building a positive attitude and encourages students to support others and to never give up as they strive to always do their best. The show was presented in an engaging storytelling format where the guest speaker used a variety of skills and tricks with the yo-yo as a storytelling prop. Students and teachers enjoyed the presentation and students were able to purchase their own yo-yo from a variety of yo-yos for sale after the show. Pictured, left, is student Yerel Alejo participating in the program with the NED presenter.
Students at Floresta Elementary participated in a mock election in their technology class. They voted on President and Senator. They were very pleased with themselves and were proud to display their “I Voted” stickers!
As a motivational kick-off to this year’s FCAT testing, students at Floresta Elementary School participated in the second annual “Tunnel of Encouragement.” Kindergarten through second grade students lined the main hallway, holding up colorful pom poms and creative signs and posters, while heartily chanting “Do your best on the test!” Students in third through fifth grade filed past this positive and energizing tribute from the younger students, to the cafetorium where they were provided inspiring words of encouragement from Principal Iseman, Assistant Principal Menikheim, and a very special video guest from the Miami Heat. It was an exciting event especially for third graders who are facing the FCAT for the first time. Music and entertainment for this very special and important occasion was provided by Mr. Marraffa of TRAXX Entertainment. As an added treat, Mrs. Rolle and her after school drama club performed a student written play called “Schoolarella,” which stressed all the positive things students can do before the FCAT tests. It was exceptionally well done and was thoroughly enjoyed by students and teachers. At the end of the rally, each student in third through fifth grade received their very own FCAT T-shirt that they can wear each day of testing. Written by Suzanne Diaz, Submitted by Viviana Gross.
The holiday season is usually thought of as a magical time, full of opportunities to spend quality time with family and friends, and a time for giving to others. In keeping with that theme, Floresta Elementary School students participated in the fifth annual 2011 American Red Cross Holiday Mail for Heroes program. Students from K-5 wrote letters and made cards expressing their heartfelt appreciation to the service men and women of the U.S. Military, many of whom will likely spend the holiday season in isolation, separated from families and loved ones. This program allows students to reach out to these individuals, recognizing their many sacrifices, and letting them know that even though they are far away, they are not alone. Pictured, from left, are Danielle Theroux, Aliyah Woods, and Mary Dolas from Amy Thomas’s third grade class.
Thanks to a generous grant from FPL in conjunction with N.E.E.D., students in Mary McCartney’s music class have been learning about recycling, conservation, and renewable energy sources through the fine arts of music and dance. To deepen and extend their own learning, and to enlighten others about this topic, students shared their knowledge through a musical performance at Floresta Elementary’s Spring Concert.