Six Cougar Ridge Student Council members delivered 100 books to the pediatric ward at Swedish Hospital in Issaquah. Books were gathered during the school-wide book drive in November. During their visit, students met with the Swedish Hospital Family Life Specialist and pediatric nurses to discuss what a visit to Swedish would be like for children. Sharon Roy, Cougar Ridge Dean of Students shared, “One of the nurses put on her protective clothing (long gowns, masks, eye protections, shoe covers, etc.) to show students what they need to wear so they don’t pass germs. The Swedish staff also showed the students a hospital room, the special aspects of a hospital bed, and how they weigh children that can’t stand up, etc. After the visit, we discussed with the students how we wanted to take away the mystery of visiting hospitals, and how they can share this information with their friends.” While delivering books, they also met a service dog that visits the ward every week.
More than 250 students from the Issaquah, Lake Washington, Redmond, and Bellevue School Districts, along with several private and home schools in the East Puget Sound area, participated in the Regional History Day Competition hosted on March 14 at Liberty High School. This is the third year Liberty students have competed in this national competition for middle and high school students.
Projects included historical papers, exhibit websites, and documentaries and performances. JoAnn Olsson, Liberty High School Librarian shared, “We have a History Club at Liberty. Students who compete begin researching over the summer. Around January, students formulate their projects, so it is a tremendous amount of work! Several teachers did in class projects during the first semester using Leadership and Legacy as the theme. Several students used those projects as a springboard to enter the contest this year.”
Liberty student Kiran Singh took first place for his paper Ashoka Maurya and Sabrina Suen took second place for her paper Emperor Kangzxi. The group of Lorrin Johnson, Issabelle Hayden and Vincy Fok took first place for their exhibit Edward R. Murrow, Andre Dennis and Siri Bhatt took second place for their group exhibit Ghenis Kahn, and Jyotsna Kuramkote took third place for his exhibit Dag Hammerskjold. Carlyn Schidgall, Lauren Hepp, and Sally Rim took second place for their group website Cuban Missile Crisis: 13 Days that Galvanized the Leadership of John F. Kennedy, and Clara Bardot, Paige Hopkins, and Tyra Christopherson took fourth place for their group website Deeds Not Words: Emmeline Pankhurst’s Leadership in the Suffrage Movement. Dhamanpreet Kaur took second place for his individual website The Leadership of Margaret Sanger and Andrew Cooper took third place for his website George Washington Goethals: Leader of the Greatest Human Achievement of All.
As the sun began to set, more than 300 parents arrived at Discovery Elementary School ready to learn about literacy. Discovery teachers greeted families and hosted classes for primary, intermediate, and combination levels of reading and writing. The primary sessions focused on sequencing and alliteration while the intermediate sessions focused on inferring and elaboration. The combination sessions offered a mixture of the primary and intermediate lessons and focused on alliteration and elaboration. Throughout the night families worked with teachers as they learned strategies and techniques to help their students become better readers and writers.
One hundred and seventy one students from grades K-5 set up their presentations in the gymnasium during the Sunny Hills Elementary School PTSA Science Fair. The Science Fair is a long standing tradition for students at Sunny Hills and this year was no exception, with projects ranging from germs to air pressure. Before students brainstormed science projects and crafted hypothesis, Sunny Hills hosted an interactive assembly with presentations by the Seattle Science Center to inspire students to get excited about science and think about possible science projects.
Symetra and the Seattle Seahawks honored the 16 Puget Sound-area teachers who were recognized as Symetra Heroes in the Classroom® during the 2014 NFL season, at a special celebration at CenturyLink Field on March 20. Among the 2014 honorees were two Issaquah School District teachers— Maywood Middle School’s Melissa Norman and Challenger Elementary School’s Ellen Ferrin. Melissa and Ellen were joined by their principals, Jason Morse and Sara Jo Pietraszewski.
Jim Pirak, Symetra SVP, Marketing, and Mike Flood, Seattle Seahawks VP, Community Relations & Special Projects, hosted a luncheon in the Coach’s Loft, welcoming the teachers, their school principals and district superintendents.Following lunch, the teachers received an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the stadium, which included taking in a view of the field from the press box. The festivities wrapped up in the Seahawks locker room, where each teacher was surprised with a “customized” locker complete with nameplate. Each teacher’s locker’s contents included a plaque commemorating his or her “Heroes” award and a copy of the March 20 edition of the Seattle Times, which featured a ¼-page ad saluting all 16 Symetra Heroes in the Classroom recipients.
Seahawks Linebacker Brock Coyle was a special guest, joining the teachers, principals and guests in the players’ locker room. “You’re here for these kids and you teach these kids. But truly know and understand the impact you can have on young kids’ lives because truly with me, it’s the case,” said Coyle, who made the team last year as a rookie free agent from the University of Montana. “You guys are a huge influence in young people’s lives and, honestly, I look up to people like you because you guys are really the people who make the difference in the community and in life.” [Read more about the 2014 Symetra Heroes in the Classroom teachers’ visit with Coyle on the Seattle Seahawks website: Brock Coyle on Symetra Heroes: ‘They’re the important ones’]
Profiles—Issaquah School District’s 2014 Symetra Heroes in the Classroom honorees: Teacher: Melissa Norman (Special Education) School: Maywood Middle School, Issaquah Principal: Jason Morse Nominator: Co-worker Game: Denver Broncos (Sept. 21)
“Melissa Norman makes a difference in every one of her students’ lives. She combines a calm, organized classroom structure with creative, individualized instruction tailored to meet each student’s academic and social needs. Her great sense of humor and inclusiveness create a climate of welcome for all in her classroom, which makes learning fun and meaningful,” said Betty Teel, a co-worker at Maywood Middle School. “What truly sets Melissa apart as a teacher is the relationship she establishes with her students’ families. She goes above and beyond to coordinate and communicate on a daily basis with each family, and this teamwork helps create continual improvements for students.”
Teacher: Ellen Ferrin (2nd Grade) School: Challenger Elementary School, Issaquah Principal: Sara Jo Pietraszewski Nominator: Parent of former students Game: New York Giants (Nov. 9)
“Ellen Ferrin is a most vibrant, gifted and animated teacher — able to give her full attention with equanimity and patience to both the fast and slower learners in her classroom. Each child is made to feel important and successful as she cultivates a love of learning by inspiring her students to ask questions and become free thinkers,” said Janet Millian, a parent of former students at Challenger Elementary School. “I love that Mrs. Ferrin stays positive but firm and maintains a great sense of humor. She goes above and beyond normal classroom hours, taking her class on Saturday field trips and searching out great books to hook her students into reading. Her enthusiasm encourages her students to become life-long learners. Mrs. Ferrin’s students are made to feel special and taught that anything is possible if you put forth your best efforts.My daughter and son thrived in her classroom as kindergartners. They have both graduated from college and throughout all those years, they have remained in touch with Mrs. Ferrin.”
About Symetra Heroes in the Classroom® Since 2006, 200 Puget Sound-area teachers have been honored as Symetra Heroes in the Classroom. Teachers are recognized in front of their students and peers at surprise in-school presentations. They receive tickets to a Seahawks home game, where they are acknowledged during on-field presentations at CenturyLink Field. In addition, Symetra makes a $1,000 donation to each teacher Hero’s school for classroom books and supplies. Teachers may be nominated by their principal, district staff, student or student’s parent. The winners are selected based on their ability to make a real difference in students' lives; to go above and beyond in their day-to-day responsibilities; and to help students build life skills. For more information about the Symetra Heroes in the Classroom program, visit www.SymetraHeroes.com/Seahawks.
Photo Credit: Corky Trewin, Seattle Seahawks
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