Dia de los Muertos

As part of the Spanish curriculum, K-6th grade had the opportunity to be part of one of the most important traditions in Mexico and South America. They learned that Dia de los Muertos is a happy day, a day to remember those who left us, a day to remember their lives.
We had an ofrenda in which we put flowers and candles, similar to the actual ones, so the students could get a proper idea of what the holiday represents and how does it looks. We also had a traditional treat for this day: Pan de muerto, a sweet bread. The students made their own papel picado (paper cut) to decorate their classes.
Sra. Pallete

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Exercising is Fun!

At the elementary level, my main goal in Physical Education class is to make exercising fun.  If students learn at a young age that exercising can be fun, they are more likely to have a positive association with it and carry that habit into adulthood.  Just like any subject in school, PE has state standards for each grade level that need to be met. Students also learn how to create goals for themselves, learn about the different muscles they are strengthening, and the importance of taking care of their heart. 

There are tests in PE as well! However, mixed throughout all of this is a fun and energized environment. We make sure we have fun while learning. Every holiday season I implement activities that cover the standards yet involve that particular season. For example, during the week of Halloween we did a “Pumpkin Patch” relay races and “Pumpkin Patch” fitness.  The students really seemed to enjoy both activities. For our “Pumpkin Patch” relay, each team had one pumpkin, they had to push it on a scooter all the way down to the opposite side of the gym and back. This activity really worked on their core and quadriceps. They also had to carry the pumpkin down and back without dropping it. This worked on their upper body strength.  Next PE class, students asked if they could do the relay races again! Next up: Thanksgiving. Look for pictures on our sjls Instagram pages involving our Thanksgiving activity: “What’s on my Plate?”  

It brings me great joy watching the students exercise with a smile on their face.  Learning that exercise is important at such a young age is fantastic and I am thankful that God allows me to be a part of that everyday.   

Mrs. Miller, PE

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12th Annual Junior Martin Luther Competition

October 31st, 2019 at 8:30AM in the St. John’s Historic Sanctuary

As a Lutheran church and school, we are proud of our Christian heritage and the Junior Martin Luther Competition was designed as a way for us to celebrate the life and teachings of Dr. Martin Luther.  It was his courage that laid the foundations of our faith today.  Every 6th grade student that has attended St. John’s since 2008 has spent the month of October participating in a variety of classroom learning activities that have exposed them to a deeper understanding of Martin Luther’s life, his relationship with God, the condition of the early church during his lifetime, and the good news of our Salvation that is found in the New Testament.

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This year’s finalists included Jack Schirrmacher, Lexi Krumes, Amanda McArthur, Trinity Laurenson – Aumua, Joshua Grack, Calista Somerville, Faith Novak, Miah Lovett and Kylie Snyder.  The Alternates for the competition consisted of Emily Paul, Ella Clapper and Olivia O’Day.  Their participation in class, quality responses to weekly reflection questions, results from the Reformation in Disguise scavenger hunt, knowledge and understanding of Luther’s Table Talk memoirs, memory test scores, and Luther’s Dates quiz results were just a portion of the criteria that earned them a spot in this year’s competition.  This competition consisted of several rounds of questions that pertain to the important dates in Martin Luther’s life, his favorite passages from Scripture, his Table Talks memoirs, his small catechism, and much more.

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This was a single elimination event.  One incorrect answer removed a finalist from the competition.  All correct answers were confirmed with the statement, “this is most certainly true.”  After 35 minutes of intense competition, Trinity Laurenson–Aumua,   from Mrs. Van Blarcom’s homeroom, won the competition!  After winning the competition, Trinity proceeded to nail the 95 theses on the Castle Church door.  Last year’s winner, Chanel Kruse, presented her with a Martin Luther bobble head doll along with the Luther Cup Trophy that will be displayed in her homeroom for the remainder of the 2019 -2020 school year.  Her picture from this event will also be displayed in the Middle School hallway on the Junior Martin Luther Legends wall of fame.  Congratulations Trinity!

Nathan Mercier, 6th grade

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COUNSELOR’S CORNER – October 2019 Edition: A Message From Miss Doyle

Media Use by Tweens and Teens

Youtube, Tik Tok, and Fortnite – Oh my! Entertainment nowadays for tweens and teens is media focused and keeping up to date with the latest and greatest can be daunting. Common Sense Media is a great resource for helping parents, educators, and others remain informed of the day to day changes that technology brings. 

Below you will find a few articles and video clips that touch base on a variety of media your student may be utilizing. Both parents and students provide reviews on these medias and more. 

Parents’ Ultimate Guide to Fortnite

https://www.commonsensemedia.org/blog/parents-ultimate-guide-to-fortnite

Parents’ Ultimate Guide to TikTok

https://www.commonsensemedia.org/blog/parents-ultimate-guide-to-tiktok

Houseparty – Group Video Chat – What kids and parents are saying

https://www.commonsensemedia.org/app-reviews/houseparty-group-video-chat

Help! My Kid Wants to Use Social Media

https://www.commonsensemedia.org/blog/help-my-kid-wants-to-use-social-media

Tweens, Teens, and Phones: What Our 2019 Research Reveals  

https://www.commonsensemedia.org/blog/tweens-teens-and-phones-what-our-2019-research-reveals

Pumpkin Science!

Did you know that learning the Scientific Method can be as easy as carving pumpkins and counting seeds?

2nd graders have been learning the vocabulary words and steps for the scientific method this past week using pumpkins.  After researching a little bit about pumpkins and how they are classified by scientists, each 2nd grader shared their hypothesis about how the size of a pumpkin might determine the number of seeds inside it.  Do larger pumpkins have more seeds or do smaller pumpkins have more seeds?

Next, it was time to begin our investigation and gather data.  Pumpkins were weighed, and seeds were counted.  It was a fun and mushy experience at times, plus a counting challenge, as the number of seeds we counted ranged from 305 to 583 per pumpkin.  Although our class reached their own conclusion, we did also agree that true scientists would count the seeds in hundreds of pumpkins before reaching or publishing their conclusions.

So which one is it?   Do larger pumpkins have more seeds?  Or, do smaller pumpkins have more seeds?   Grab a few pumpkins and let us know what you find out.  We’ll add your results to our collection of data.

Mrs. Katie Todd, 2nd grade

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Communication Binds Us Together

St. John’s students actively participate in learning the skills of critical thinking, collaborating, creating and communicating throughout all classes.  However, in the elective class public speaking, middle school students engage in a semester of learning and fine tuning their communication skills.  The class begins with learning that communication is all about sending and receiving information and that it is an art to making sure what a sender wants communicated is received the way it is intended.  Then, students proceed to focus on basic communication skills such as, listening, nonverbal communication and paralanguages (how we verbally relay information).  After the basic skills have been learned and practiced, students choose which types of formal public speaking they would like to master.

The pictures and video show students practicing their paralanguages by presenting a story to the class.  Communication is a significant life skill for all students to learn, practice and master.  Middle school students participating in public speaking class refine this basic skill that connects creativity, critical thinking and collaboration together.  Next up–debate!

Laura Kruse, Middle School Teacher

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HEROs in Training!

Last week our 2nd graders participated in our school’s annual H.E.R.O. training program where they learn about survival, empowerment, and safe-thinking strategies.  While the subject is certainly sobering, this program does a wonderful job of focusing on empowering our students in an emergency to use their brains and have strategies in mind when dangerous situations arise.  All of our students eagerly embrace the Hide, Escape, Run, and Overcome challenges as they learn that Superheroes are those who know how to save themselves and help others.

This week we are celebrating Red Ribbon Week and learning how to make healthy choices in all aspects of our lives as we give thanks to God for the strong healthy bodies with which He’s blessed us.  If you are on campus this week, be sure to check out all of the fun classroom doors decorated for the competition!

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