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Posted Tuesday, May 24, 2016 11:15:25 AM
On May 19, SDMS students Skyped with author Kwame Alexander after school in the SDMS Library Media Center. Students had an opportunity to ask Kwame questions about his book The Crossover, his latest release Booked, his writing process, and his work with LEAP for Ghana, an organization that he founded that has "provided literacy training for teachers, facilitated girls' empowerment workshops" and established a library that went from to 1 to 5,000 books! He also told students about his most influential college professor, poet Nikki Giovanni, dropped some hints about the prequel he's writing to The Crossover, and described the excitement and glamour of attending the Newbery Medal Award ceremony--the "Oscars" for writers! Please click the title for more.

SDMS Skypes with Award-Winning Author Kwame Alexander

On May 19, SDMS students Skyped with author Kwame Alexander after school in the SDMS Library Media Center. Students had an opportunity to ask Kwame questions about his book The Crossover, his latest release Booked, his writing process, and his work with LEAP for Ghana, an organization that he founded that has "provided literacy training for teachers, facilitated girls' empowerment workshops" and established a library that went from to 1 to 5,000 books! He also told students about his most influential college professor, poet Nikki Giovanni, dropped some hints about the prequel he's writing to The Crossover, and described the excitement and glamour of attending the Newbery Medal Award ceremony--the "Oscars" for writers! 

The after-school author Skypes were coordinated by the SDMS Library Staff and funded through the generosity of  SDMS PAC.


Posted Thursday, May 19, 2016 11:07:00 AM
Twenty students gathered in the SDMS Library after school on Wednesday, May 18 to talk with and ask questions of former Atlanta Falcon football player turned sports writer Tim Green. Tim spoke about his educational journey as an English major at Syracuse University, his life in the NFL, the importance of education, and his career as a writer. He also fielded questions from aspiring SDMS authors about the process of getting published, finding an agent, and the book he's most proud of--Unstoppable. On May 19, students will have the opportunity to Skype with author Kwame Alexander, award-winning poet and novelist. The author Skypes were funded through the generosity of SDMS PAC.

SDMS Skypes with Author Tim Green

Twenty students gathered in the SDMS Library after school on Wednesday, May 18 to talk with and ask questions of former Atlanta Falcon football player turned sports writer Tim Green. Tim spoke about his educational journey as an English major at Syracuse University, his life in the NFL, the importance of education, and his career as a writer. He also fielded questions from aspiring SDMS authors about the process of getting published, finding an agent, and the book he's most proud of--Unstoppable

On May 19,  students will have the opportunity to Skype with author Kwame Alexander, award-winning poet and novelist. The author Skypes were funded through the generosity of SDMS PAC.

Posted Tuesday, May 17, 2016 10:41:40 AM
The Safe Routes Program, is a National program that is focused on improving children's safety while walking and bicycling to and from school with program benefits that stretch beyond the school day. Participating in a SRTS program can improve the health of our children & community. The common goal of a safe trip to school brings families, neighbors, school officials & community leaders together. Every child - and community - deserves a safe route to school. Please click the title for more.

The Safe Routes Program, is a National program that is focused on improving children’s safety while walking and bicycling to and from school with program benefits that stretch beyond the school day.  Participating in a SRTS program can improve the health of our children & community. The common goal of a safe trip to school brings families, neighbors, school officials & community leaders together. Every child - and community - deserves a safe route to school.

At the beginning of the school year, the Wethersfield School Parent Council (WSPC) got together and began discussing topics that we felt were important to the students and families of Wethersfield and what we would like to focus our efforts on.  Safe Routes to School was right on the top of the list.

We started a few years ago with our first Walk to School Day.  Then we added in Bike to School Day.  These events have been very successful one day events with hundreds of students walking and biking to school on those days.  This year though, we wanted to see some real data on the number of walkers at each Elementary school. We conducted a survey at each Elementary School on the day before Walk to School Day, Walk to School Day and the day after Walk to school day.  Students were asked on those 3 days how they arrived to school and how they were getting home.  What we found out was that about 51% of the Elementary students in Wethersfield walked or biked to school on Walk to School Day.  On a “normal” day the percentage varies from 8% to 31% depending on the school.   This was really interesting data.  Of the 51% of students who walked or biked on the one day are students who are actually classified as "bussers" but want to be part of the fun on Bike and Walk to School Days so that percentage is a bit high.  Even though that number is skewed we were able to see is that there were potentially more students that could walk to school but weren’t.  Our next step was to find out why.

To do that, we conducted on-line surveys to ask families how their students were getting to and from school.  We asked what issues affected their decision to allow or not to allow their student to walk or bike to/from school, what would increase the likelihood that their student would walk or bike to school, and additional comments they may have.

Some of the data showed that parents are not having their children walk because of work situations, before or after school daycare, personal feelings on the safety of walking and biking and lack of education for students on the right way to walk and bike to school.  

From the survey data we determined providing education for students and parents was needed.  Giving students Biking and Pedestrian Safety could help to ease the minds of parents who think their students don’t know the “rules of the road” when it comes to biking and walking to school.  Education for parents about the benefits of walking and bike to school, information on starting a “Walking School Bus” and information on our crossing guards could help to ease the fears of parents who are concerned about their young child getting to school on their own as well as the many benefits to the students that walking and biking give them.

We are pleased to let you know that students at the 5 Elementary schools have had in school Biking and Pedestrian Safety Education by Safe Routes to School.  They reviewed things like the proper way to cross the street, identifying different DOT signs and the importance of understanding and obeying those signs, identifying other areas to be aware of like dart-outs from driveways and intersections, biking safety such as the importance of seeing, being seen, and remaining in control, at all times when riding a bike.

To address the education of parents and other adults in our community about walking and biking to school, we have created a series of 3 posters.  This education campaign was created to inform the public about Benefits of Walking and Biking to School, How to Start a Walking School Bus, and to convey information about our Crossing Guards. These posters will be distributed to the schools and other town organizations.  They will also be given in electronic form to be put on town, school, PTO and many other organization’s websites and social media.  

We have also begun to address any physical issues with our walking routes.  Last year we had audits conducted by engineers that work with the Department of Transportation.  These Engineering Site Assessment Audits looked at safety concerns like:

- Poor or missing sidewalks, crosswalks, or handicap ramps on identified routes or in immediate school vicinity.

- Conflicting or insufficient signage and/or pavement markings in immediate school vicinity.

- Cars, trees, shrubs or other elements that obstruct views.

- Hazardous traffic concerns (high speeds, multi-lane crossings, lack of appropriate controls at intersections, etc.)

- Pedestrian hazards such as insufficient drainage, unshoveled sidewalks, or debris on walking routes.

- Unsafe conditions during drop-off and pick-up times.

- Improperly designated school zone.

- Scary people, dogs, or high crime areas.

The audits were written and then went to the Department of Transportation for review and recommendations or edits.  We are just starting to get the audits back and will be meeting next week to discuss the recommendations with each schools Safe Routes representatives and town personnel.  The good news is that the Engineer’s initial feeling at the time the audits were done was that Wethersfield is a model town for walking and biking to school.

The students really love coming to school with friends and family from their neighborhoods!   We are also letting the students and their families know that the Central Connecticut Health District office at the Town Hall has brand new helmets for sale for just $10.00! 

Click on the photos below to enlarge

Posted Wednesday, Apr 27, 2016 9:32:28 AM
Wethersfield Public Schools is hosting our 2016 Art Show at the Keeney Memorial Cultural Center from April 28th to May 18th, 2016. Please Click for more.

Wethersfield Public Schools is hosting our 2016 Art Show at the Keeney Memorial Cultural Center from April 28th to May 18th, 2016.

Details:

Keeney Memorial Cultural Center
200 Main Street, Wethersfield, CT

Opening Reception: April 27, 2016 -- 6:00PM to 7:30PM

Art Show Hours: April 28th to May 18th, 2016

Tuesday - Saturday: 10:00AM to 4:00PM

Sunday: 1:00PM to 4:00PM 

Posted Friday, Mar 4, 2016 11:57:14 AM
Award-winning author Lynda Mullaly Hunt visited Silas Deane Middle School yesterday, Wednesday, March 2, as part of the school's Read Across America Day celebration. The visit was organized by the SDMS Library Media Staff, Ms. Leslie Poulos and Ms. Emily Ziemba, and paid for through the generosity of SDMS PAC. Please click the title for more.

Award-winning author Lynda Mullaly Hunt visited Silas Deane Middle School yesterday, Wednesday, March 2, as part of the school's Read Across America Day celebration. The visit was organized by the SDMS Library Media Staff, Ms. Leslie Poulos and Ms. Emily Ziemba, and paid for through the generosity of SDMS PAC.

The day before Lynda visited, the Library Media Center held two book club discussions of Fish in a Tree, Lynda's book which deals with the frustration and determination of a teen named Ally who struggles to read due to dyslexia.

On the day of Lynda's visit, twenty five seventh and eighth graders interested in learning more about writing participated in an hour long writing workshop with Lynda where she emphasized the importance of developing interesting characters. Students also had the opportunity to ask questions about the writing and publishing process.

Lynda was presented with a stuffed animal giraffe from one of the students in Mrs. Moore’s Family and Consumer Science classes. Students in FCS classes have been encouraged to donate one of the stuffed animals they make when learning to sew to local shelters or foster children as part of Lynda Hunt’s “Be Someone’s Hero: No Cape Required” campaign. To date, SDMS students have donated a total of 275 stuffed animals to Wheeler House, the Wethersfield Police Department, or My Sister's Place. The next batch of stuffed animals will be donated to Interval House.

Lynda also presented at two assemblies, one for seventh graders and one for eighth graders. In the assemblies, Lynda discussed her childhood, her own difficulty learning to read and write, and how her life as well as her work as a teacher influenced the themes and characters she writes about. She began by introducing this quote to students, "It's not who you think you are that holds you back; it's who you think you're not" and explained how grit and determination are key to overcoming adversity in life. This theme is explored in both of her books, One for the Murphys and Fish in a Tree.

Posted Tuesday, Mar 1, 2016 2:25:00 PM
WORKING - A NEW MUSICAL, March 11, 12, 18 & 19 at 7:30pm, March 13 at 3:30pm. Please click the title for more.

WORKING

A NEW MUSICAL

March 11, 12, 18 & 19 at 7:30pm

March 13 at 3:30pm

Webb Auditorium

51 Willow Street, Wethersfield

Tickets online @ showtix4u.com

$14/$10 seniors & students

Tickets at the door $16/$12

Call (860) 721-9075

This play contains mature topics and language, and is not suitable for children under 13.

 


Wethersfield Public Schools

127 Hartford Avenue
Wethersfield, CT 06109
Phone: 860-571-8100

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