Third grade students sang of peace, good health, and the circle of life in their recent African-themed winter musical production. Maple Hills Elementary music teacher, Kari Wilkinson, shared, “We spent two months preparing and rehearsed many songs in different African languages: Swahili, Yoruba, and Ashanti.” Along with singing, students learned how to count to 10 in Swahili as well as dance an African – Caribbean folk dance. Students sang and played xylophones, African drums, and small percussion instruments. Some students also performed an African mask dance. “They completely blew me away with their sound at the concert! It was a very fun concert for me, the audience, and especially the kids!” noted Kari.
Mystery Readers visited Creekside Elementary kindergartners on Wednesday, December 10 to help them use and develop questioning strategies and reasoning skills. Kindergarten teacher Kate Hubner explained, “We invite Mystery Readers into the classroom and our students have to think of questions that will help the class figure out who they are. The questioning strategies and reasoning skills help them learn to make sense of the information they're given and be able to formulate further questions to solve the mystery.” During their most recent Mystery Reader visit, parents of a student read Police Dog Hero, a book that taught the class about police dogs. This was then followed up by a special visit from a police officer and his K9.
The Sunny Hills Elementary Fifth Grade Student Council organized a letter writing campaign to send notes to soldiers overseas as part of Operation Gratitude. The council planned, advertised, and oversaw the letter writing that took place during school recesses on Tuesday, Nov. 18. Students of all ages came out and wrote letters of kindness and good wishes to soldiers and veterans. Through the efforts of the Fifth Grade Student Council and their fellow classmates, Sunny Hills Elementary was able to provide more than 200 letters to Operation Gratitude.
The Beaver Lake Middle School Choir performed for the third time with the Sammamish Symphony on Sunday, December 7, as part of the Sammamish Symphony holiday event. All chorus members were very excited to be part of such a special holiday performance and enjoyed sharing the gift of music. The choir is a combined choir of seventh and eighth grade girls and sixth, seventh, and eighth grade boys led by Tina Worthington.
During lunches on December 8 and 9, Pine Lake Middle School students had the opportunity to try computer coding during the PLMS Hour of Code event. Students from all grades gathered in the computer lab and tried self-guided coding tutorials on the code.org website.
Sixth grader Aparna Krishnan decided to try coding during her lunch because, “My dad told me programming is interesting and he’s usually right about that stuff.” Fellow sixth grader Isabelle Toader shared, “Coding is really fun. You can make games and put your creative side to it. It’s such a fun way to learn.”
On the code.org website, students followed the Anna and Elsa coding tutorial and explored the beauty of ice. Students used visual code blocks to create snowflakes and patterns. These coding basics are the concept that computer programmers use every day and are the foundation to computer science.
The PLMS eNews noted, “The world today is surrounded by technology and no matter what field students choose to study, their ability to succeed will increasingly hinge on understanding how technology works.” Aparna also shared why she sees the value in learning computer science, “High paying jobs involve computer programming. I want to make a lot of money when I grow up. This is a great opportunity to start learning how.”
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