Weekly Update: June 7

The School District of Black River Falls is committed to creating a learner-responsive environment that ensures educational excellence and life-long learning.

Third Street News from Shelly Severson

Second grade students from Lisa Moretti’s and Betsy Mashak’s room visited Pine View for the last time this school year.  The students mingled and chatted with the residents, played Bingo, sang songs, and had cookies and juice. Everyone had a great time!

Students in Jen Bolger’s class set goals and made pledges on the number of minutes they will read each day this summer.  Just reading 20 minutes each day this summer would result in reading 450,000 more words before entering 4th grade.  They brainstormed places to read along with places to find books.  Their list ranged from reading in the camper to looking for books at garage sales.  Finally, after numerous book recommendations from peers and teachers they compiled a list of books they are excited about reading this summer!

This week the students from Brian Stemper’s class came to the third grade classrooms to share their work with us!

The state of Eppland now has capital punishment for first degree offenders, and you must be 21 years of age to purchase tobacco products.  These are a few of the bills that the students in Tom Epps’s class have passed as they learn about the legislative process in their social studies class.

Gebhardt News from Shelly Severson

On Wednesday, May 29, the 5th grade students from Gebhardt participated in the 6th annual 5th Grade Track and Field Day. Shawn Moretti and Jordan Young were impressed with the extra effort and great sportsmanship that the 5th grade students displayed throughout the morning. The students were involved with various jumping events, softball throw, and various running events on the track. It was a fun morning! Special thanks to everybody who helped make the morning run smoothly, especially the 5th grade classroom teachers, Stephanie Anderson, a few high school alumnus and current students, and several middle school students. Also, thanks to Tom Chambers and Dave Roou for allowing students to help out. Without them, it would not be possible!

The fourth grade visited the Chippewa Valley Museum and the Paul Bunyan Logging Camp in Eau Claire this week. This is a great tie in to their Wisconsin History studies throughout the year!

Third Street and Gebhardt News from Shelly Severson

This was the week of transitions at the elementary level!  The first grade students walked to Third Street to visit with second grade and learn the ropes for next fall.  The third graders were bused to Gebhardt to check out the building and meet with the fourth grade tour guides.  It is fun to see such enthusiasm and listen to the “veteran” students talk about their favorite parts of their school!

Middle School News from Dave Roou

The middle school book room is now under construction and progress is being made!  Andrea Rockney, middle school LC Coach, has coordinated the arrival of our first batch of books:  141 different titles of books (5 copies of each).  This collection includes Interactive Read Alouds, independent reading books, and poetry, to name a few.   As this collection grows, books will be cataloged and shelved in the bookroom for quick and easy teacher access.  Great job, Andrea!

Sixth graders spent the day on Friday, May 31 at the Lunda Park participating in a rotation for our annual Outdoor Education Day.  Quinn Robinson, and the BRAGS students, joined them and led groups in an art activity, leaf/tree identification, and a reptile station.  The local DNR came out and instructed students on canoe safety.  Randi Arneson led a first aid station that focused on outdoor safety.  Other sixth grade teachers covered a scavenger hunt, an archery station, and an owl pellet dissection station. Allison Boerger did a great job keeping the middle school office informed by using her radio.

We, as a middle school staff, would like to recognize our most outstanding substitute teacher, Kathy Tomter.  Kathy has subbed in our building so many times over the years that we feel she is truly a part of our staff.  And this year in particular, as she subbed for so many weeks for Andrea Rockney going through LC Coach Training, Kathy seemed to become even more a part of us.  Kathy is a true professional who is typically the first one here on the mornings she subs.  She does this in order to go over lesson plans so she can actually teach the students rather than just supervise for the day.  She is an invaluable asset to us all and we greatly appreciate her professionalism and presence in our building – thanks, Kathy!

I received the following email from a parent of an 8th grader:

I just wanted to say “THANK YOU!”  [for a great 3 years for my middle schooler] The Middle School is definitely its own little world and I can only imagine all the craziness that goes on daily.

Your Middle School staff members are all professionals and are all valued in my book!  I appreciated each and every teacher I have had the opportunity to chat with over the past three years.  [My student] and I have both learned a lot while he has been a middle school student.

[My student] has grown so much over the past three years and I truly believe that much of his success is due to the Middle School teachers, staff, and all those lessons he learned by falling down and being encouraged to get back up and try again.  Thank you for being part of his Middle School experience.

High School News from Tom Chambers

As things wind down on this academic year, things at the high school are already gearing up for next year. We are excited about our move next year to a 1:1 laptop environment. Every high school student will receive a shiny new laptop to use during the year next year.

Twenty-nine students in the Careers course offered in the Family and Consumer Sciences Department completed mock interviews this past Wednesday.  A special thank you to the following volunteers who joined me in assisting with interviewing our candidates and preparing them for the real world: Ms. Lechner (Jackson County Bank), Ms. Senn (Courtesy Corporation), Jason Janke (HS), Sue Leadholm (HS), Maureen Ruka (DO), Ms. Boisen (Ho-Chunk Nation), Mrs. Hoffman (Hoffman Construction), Amy Hoffman (Representing the School Board), and Ms. Iverson (Black River Country Bank). The interview process is an excellent learning opportunity that puts students into situations they will encounter down the road as they pursue their careers.

The Tiger Investment Club held its 17th Annual Report Luncheon at the Skyline Golf Course last week.  Community business leaders, parents, and school officials were invited to attend this report on the activities of the club.  Some of the highlights included:

  • Rhea Hogden – Co-op Credit Union who spoke on Money Rules
  • A knowledge challenge on the largest capitalization companies in the stock exchange
  • A report on the portfolio (each individual stock) held by the investment club
  • Door prizes at the end of the meeting

The investment club ended the year with over an $8,000.00 gain due to the efforts of the very dedicated members that meet on a weekly basis. Various high school organizations, clubs, and classes will reap the benefits of the money that go to provide educational tools and program supports to students.

Congratulations to Julie Tiedens and those students who have been involved with the GMT project this year (“Good Morning Tigers”).  The addition of the video announcements has been great.  Starting in the fall of 2013, morning announcements will be handled through the video format entirely, except for Tuesdays which are reserved for my weekly message to the student body.  The transition to the new format is taking place this week!

Friday, May 31, 2013 was “Breeze” day at the high school.  Students received their annuals for this year.  Thanks to Julie Tiedens and all the Writing 1 students who work on that throughout the year!