Interschool PTA awards mini-grants

The Valley Stream UFSD Thirteen Interschool PTA has awarded several mini-grants to teachers throughout the district. The following grants were awarded:

Wheeler:  Mr. Jacob: Long Island Native Flowering Plant Garden
Willow:     Mrs. Dorry and Mrs. Cassidy: Poetry Club
Dever:      Ms. Taveira: News Team Project
Howell:     Mr. Rosenfeld: The STEM Program

The board of education and administration are grateful to the Interschool PTA for their hard work and for enriching the lives of our students.

A Tribute to Our Board of Education


A Concert to Remember: Wheeler Avenue School Choir Featured at NYSSBA Event


The Children’s Choir of Wheeler Avenue School performed at this year’s New York State School Boards Association (NYSSBA) conference on Oct. 28 in Manhattan.

The group of talented singers was one of only four performing groups chosen out of 27 that auditioned for this unique performance opportunity.
The students, under the direction of music teacher Greg Hart, recorded an audition CD that was submitted to the NYSSBA convention selection committee for consideration. The choir was featured in the conference’s "Super Session" at the New York Sheraton hotel and convention center in Time Square, where they performed before approximately 800 people.

Hart and members of the choir spent many hours together rehearing for their big musical debut. Among the compositions they sang were “Alleluia” from “Exsultate Jubilate” by Mozart, “If You Could Hear My Voice” by Jim Papoulis, “I Am His Child” by Moses Hogan, “Hakuna Mungu Kama Wewe,” an East African Worship Song and “September” by Earth, Wind and Fire.

“I was filled with such a sense of pride as I watched our children perform with grace and talent,” stated Superintendent of Schools Dr. Adrienne Robb-Fund. “They certainly put our school district in the spotlight and we are all very proud of their outstanding performance.”

Their performance demonstrated the range of their musical talents and the audience, including New York State Commissioner of Education Dr. John B. King, Jr., Chancellor of the New York State Board of Regents Merryl Tisch, board of education members and school superintendents from across the state and from Valley Stream UFSD Thirteen, responded with enthusiastic applause. It was certainly a moment of great pride for the choir, their families, the school district and community.  


Important Halloween Safety Tips from the Police


Howell Road Walks for Hope

Howell Road School parents and staff decided to make a difference by walking and raising funds during the American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Long Island event.

The team, who walked under the name Howell Walks for Hope, participated in the event on Sunday, Oct. 19 at Jones Beach State Park. So far, the team has raised $3,000.00 for breast cancer awareness.

Books Come Alive at Willow Road

Much to the delight of students, singer/songwriter Lee Knight presented Willow Road's first "Book's Alive" assembly sponsored by the PTA as a kick-off to PARP. Ms. Knight has written more than 120 songs for school age children. She creates music for popular children's literature and engages the children in the audience by bringing them onstage to perform with her. With the use of simple costumes and props and the assistance of Ms. Laura Williams, the books are brought to life.

Willow Road's music teacher, Ms. Lotito was given the music Ms. Knight was to perform a few weeks before the assembly. The music was shared with the students in advance so that they knew the words to the songs for the assembly and were singing and dancing in their seats.
 Among the books highlighted by Ms. Knight were “Diary of A Wimpy Kid,” “Strega Nona,” “The True Story of the Three Little Pigs,” “The Lorax” and “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.”

A Visit from Our Town Clerk

First grade students at Willow Road School had the unique and exciting opportunity to learn the responsibilities of our Town Clerk first-hand.

Ms. Nasrin Ahmad, Clerk of the Town of Hempstead, came to meet with the students in Miss Anderson and Mrs. Salvatore classes.

Everyone listened attentively as she read the book “Frog and Toad Together.” Following the reading, the children had the chance to answer Ms. Ahmad's questions and to ask a few questions of their own. What a wonderful opportunity for our students! Thank you Ms. Ahmad.

Spooky Rooms Inspire Creativity

Students in Mrs. Rogers, Mrs. Goldberg and Ms. Ginny's 4th grade classes created spooky rooms, which served as an inspiration to write a descriptive writing piece. The students used a 4 square writing organizer and created a descriptive essay describing their spooky room. The rooms are displayed in front of the school’s front office. Go check them out. If you dare...

Annual Pick A Pumpkin Festivities

Each year students at Willow Road School look forward to the annual Pumpkin Patch event, which is sponsored by the PTA. This year was no exception. Students enthusiastically entered the school’s baseball field, which had been transformed by the PTA into their very own pumpkin patch filled with pumpkins of all sizes to choose from.

Laughter could be heard as the children closely examined the pumpkins before making their final selection. The students were able to bring their pumpkins home to share and decorate with their families.

Senior Friends Share Love of Reading

Students in Mrs. Robbins-Jean's first grade class were thrilled to welcome their senior friends from the Atria Assisted Living Home for the first of their monthly visitations. There was no better way to get acquainted and make new friends than to enjoy their common love of reading. The students were eager to share their books and demonstrate their reading skills. The classroom was filled with laughter and conversation as everyone enjoyed their time together. The students are already excited about seeing their new senior friends again next month.

The Gift of Reading

The Willow Road School PTA generously donated books to students as part of the PTA’s Scholastic Literacy Partnership Program; B.E.A.R. (Be Excited About Reading). Each student had the opportunity to select a book, which they were then able to take home. Thanks to Melissa Clayton (B.E.A.R. Chairperson), Maria Crimi and Kristie Rivera for all their hard work.

A Reading Role Model

First grade students at Wheeler Avenue Elementary School were treated to a visit from Incorporated Village of Valley Stream Mayor Edwin Fare. The mayor read a book to the children and went beyond the content of each page by discussing the meaning of the story being told.

Mayor Fare read to first-grade classes during two different sessions. Both times he introduced himself to his young audience and explained that prior to his role he was a teacher, and has actually taught every grade from K-12. His educational background showed as he asked questions and prompted students to think about the book, “How to Heal a Broken Wing,” by Bob Graham. The storyline involves a boy who finds an injured pigeon in a large city and takes the bird in to care for it and help it heal. Eventually the pigeon is set free and able to fly again.

The mayor brought the students into the book and helped them relate to the characters’ experiences -- he asked if they have ever been to the city, if anyone had ever broken a bone and how that felt, and what they thought would happen next. At the end, he discussed the moral of the story and emphasized the point that there was an important message to take from it. “We learned that we need to help others who need it,” he stated. “With our help, maybe they can heal.”

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Adrienne Robb-Fund, who attended both reading presentations, also addressed the students on the importance of helping others. “The Mayor helps us here at Wheeler,” she explained. “He gave us a tree that makes our school more beautiful while helping the environment.” Dr. Robb-Fund also noted that the mayor provided a new traffic sign in front of the school to promote safety during arrival and dismissal times. “The Mayor does a lot of nice things, and we should thank him,” she stated. The children, who were all given water bottle gifts from their guest, said a happy and hearty “thank you” before the mayor left.  

Virtual backpack simplifies communication

The district has added another communication feature to its website in an effort to enhance communication with students, parents and the community, while at the same time being more cost efficient and aware of preserving the environment.

The Virtual Backpack is filled with important information about the school district and also contains important individual school building notices, fliers, forms, principals’ newsletters and other materials that are sent home with your child from the school's main office.

With the just the click of your mouse, you can be kept up-to-date on school activities and important announcements. The Virtual Backpack will also have information for the Valley Stream UFSD Thirteen community and the entire school district as well.

To use the Virtual Backpack, visit the district’s website at Scroll down to the bottom of the homepage and click on Virtual Backpack. Be sure to visit the website often for the latest news and information.
Saturday, November 01, 2014