District School News

Posted: Wednesday, January 23, 2002

Aurora Borealis Charter School

The kindergartners are finishing a unit on Europe. They especially have enjoyed looking at the architecture, the Eiffel Tower in France, The Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy, The Parthenon in Greece and windmills in Holland. They also loved learning about castles.

Junior high students participated in the VFW essay contest. This year's theme was "Is Freedom Really Free?" Kyle McMillan placed first at Aurora Borealis and second overall in the district. Whitney Rysdyk placed second at the school, and Trevor Kauffman placed third. All three students' essays placed in the top seven in the district and will be forwarded for the state competition.

Kalifornsky Beach Elementary

Fourth-grade classes need your old broken machines in March. Their goal is to collect enough broken appliances to have at least one for every two students. The classes will take the machines apart and look for and identify simple machines. They will use parts for an art project on balance. Do not send the machines to school until March. The classes particularly want wind-up alarm clocks and VCRs.

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is America's leading childhood cancer research center. Raising funds for St. Jude's, Math-A-Thon is an education program that challenges students to work fun problems while providing a positive learning experience. It began Monday. Students have a week to complete the problems. Pledges are due Feb. 8.

Mrs. George's kindergarten class is studying M&M math by estimating, graphing and eating M&Ms. They wrote and illustrated a class big book based on "If you Give a Mouse a Cookie" and "If you Give a Moose a Muffin."

Mrs. Furlong's class visited Soldotna High School to participate in a writing workshop with Mr. Walton's junior writing class. They visited the writing computer lab, played games and ate lunch.

Mountain View Elementary

Congratulations to Damian Collum in Mrs. Gustkey's class. He is Mountain View Elementary's geography bee winner. Gabe Haunold was the runner-up. Other classroom winners include Brian Denesen, Thomas Hammelman, Kody Richmond, Maya Johnson, Sabra Winningham, Matt Tyrrell, Alexandra Shire and Michael Slone. All classroom champions should be commended for doing a great job.

The next PTA meeting will be 3:40 p.m. Friday.

Mrs. Heath's third-grade class is selling See's candy bars. They are raising money to spend the night at the Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward in May.

Don't forget to attend the combined Kenai Middle School-Mountain View Talent Show at Kenai Central High School at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Nikiski Elementary

Nikiski Elementary School is still collecting box tops for education. The deadline is fast approaching.

Safety Seal will visit with Mrs. Lodge's, Mr. Drury's, Mrs. Shield's and Mrs. Leichliter's classes Thursday to discuss safe wintry activities.

Laidlaw Transit will practice safe bus evacuations at the school Monday at 3:30 p.m.

Are your pants pockets and purses too heavy? If they are loaded down with pennies, Mrs. Durrant's fourth-grade class has a perfect solution. The students are saving pennies for their yearly field trip. They have a big water bottle in the office. Stop by and unload those pennies and help the students with their field trip expenses.

The school would like to thank the Nikiski Elementary PTA for sponsoring the Imaginarium's Star Lab. Be sure and ask your children what they learned and if they had fun during this four-day program.

North Star Elementary

North Star Elementary had 105 students participate in the recent Elks Hoop Shoot run by the North Peninsula Recreation Area. The following students placed in the tournament: Shanda Chenault, Hailey Driver, Tasha Thompson, Kaley Dukowitz, Whitney Doty, Elisha Chenault, Sam Taylor, Stefan Krogseng, Bob Seater, Barry Norwood, Adrian Currasco and Paul Delago.

The North Star Elementary Ski Club is looking for an adult to help sponsor this year's club. Those interested in skiing with students on Tuesdays, Thursdays or Fridays from 3:30 to 5 p.m. can contact Mrs. Liebner or Mr. Anderson. A small stipend will be paid for sponsoring the club.

Congratulations to Aislinn Fox, a sixth-grader. She is the 2002 North Star Elementary Geography Bee champion. Jennifer Lukassen took second place, and Hunter Gallien received third. Other classroom representatives at the bee included Bradi Anderson, Casey Coupchiack, Wiley Bennett, Charles Gernandt, Dalton Driver, Dakota Devolld and Cassie Kendall.

Redoubt Elementary

The library is looking for donations of artificial flowers. They also need library volunteers. Any time you can donate to shelve books and perform other tasks will be appreciated. For more information, call Miss Cox at 262-9006.

Report cards will be sent home Friday. Parent conferences will be Feb. 14 and 15. Conference information will go home soon.

Redoubt students and their families are invited to Bingo for Books Jan. 31 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Refreshments will be provided. If you have books for children, teens or adults to donate for this event, drop them off at the school.

Buy your school cookbook for $10. Yearbooks are for sale for $18 through Friday.

Fun Fest is coming in February. Complete information will be sent home soon.

Representatives from the district will be at Redoubt Thursday from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. to explain and answer questions about standards, benchmarks, the high school exit exam and other topics. Plan to attend this informative meeting. Refreshments and child care will be provided.

Sears Elementary

Everyone at Sears would like to wish nurse Bekkie a happy School Nurses Day.

The next Fun Fest will be Feb. 6 at from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Fun fests are a great way for your child to experience different activities and practice their money skills.

Mrs. Anderson's class has been studying snow. The children read the poem "How to Talk to Your Snowman" and made a snowman glyph and did a snowflake art project. They also are learning a math game called Make 10.

Mrs. Thomas's kindergartners have been working on their phonetic awareness. They have been studying snow, ice, temperature, nighttime and winter. They had a slumber party during school Thursday as part of their study of night. The children wore pajamas to school and brought sleeping bags and pillows. They also brought flashlights and an animal friend to share the slumber party with.

Mrs. Porter's class has been studying color. The students studied about the spectrum that can be seen when light is broken through a prism. They are waiting for a sunny day to take the prisms outside and see the rainbows. They also are publishing a story about a pencil.

Soldotna Elementary

Soldotna Elementary welcomes student teacher Ann Bower. She will complete her student teaching with third-grade teacher Gayle Buben.

Fun buck winners last week included Tony Wood, Bruce Hudson, Jonathon Pelletier, Joshua Smuin, Sarah Mohorcich, Dawson Shangin, Timothy Yamaoka and Erin Jones.

Congratulations to students who participated in the Soldotna Elementary Battle of the Books: Maggie Stewart, Brandon Phipps, Jamie Sinclair, Kalia McDermott, Elora Hammer, Alisha West, Christina Tachick, Angela Ramponi, Samantha Little, Amanda Dillon, Miranda Smith, Eddie Seguin, Kayla West, Heather Smallwood, Kyle Day, Liz Miller, Molly Nyland, Teslin Hughes, Emily Rich and Natasha Knight. As a result of the school competition Christina Tachick, Angela Ramponi, Amanda Dillon and Teslin Hughes will represent the school in the third-fourth-grade district battle and Brandon Phipps, Jamie Sinclair, Kalia McDermott and Elora Hammer will complete in the grades five-six district Battle of the Books.

Sterling Elementary

Today is National School Nurses Day and Sterling Elementary thanks nurse Amy for all her hard work and care.

Students made a fine showing at the Elks Hoop Shoot contest. Mara Mohler, Matt Grubb and April Heffner were the Falcons who placed.

The Sterling Community Club will hold the grand opening of its new ice rink Saturday from 5 to 10 p.m. All Sterling residents are invited to come and skate with their friends and neighbors. A bonfire and potluck barbecue also will be part of the evening activities. For more information, call Bob Oakes at 262-5409.

Congratulations to the following students who received Citizen of the Month awards at the January awards assembly: Mitchell Daugherty and Courtney Davisson from Mrs. Harrison's class; Haley Hough from Mr. Shapley's class; Kristina Barker from Mrs. Lawrence's class; Matt Fellman from Ms. Dierick's class; Chad Oakes from Ms. Wimmer's class; Natasha Mallett from Mr. Wheat's class; and Danika Neal and Laree Lang from Ms. Hoffman's class. The next awards assembly will be Feb. 1.

Tustumena Elementary

The Lynx Track activity has been changed to ice skating at the Soldotna Sports Center today and Thursday.

Second-quarter report cards are due out Friday.

Kindergarten preregistration is Monday through Jan. 31 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and 1 to 2:30 p.m. at the school.

The school Battle of the Books contest will be Jan. 30. Participants are working extra time.

Congratulations to Sasha Lily Davis, a fourth-grader in Mrs. Blossom's class who won the grand prize for the Tustumena 200 Sled Dog Race poster contest sponsored by Fred Meyer. She, along with other winners, will attend the race banquet Friday at the sports center in Soldotna. She will meet the musher she will ride with Saturday and help select his starting position. The contest winners will ride in the first five sleds to help break the trail and pack snow for those following. Her drawing appears on the official poster for this year's race and will be framed and presented to the winner of the race.

Shellie Worsfold's first- and second-grade class spent last week reading and writing about Martin Luther King Jr. since his birthday Jan. 15. Students played dramatic roles whereby they learned peaceful means to solving problems as did Dr. King.

Kenai Middle School

Congratulations to the Kenai Middle School geography bee winners: Les Krusen placed first for the third year in a row and Brad Denesen and Jeremy Blumenshine, both seventh-graders, placed second and third.

Several KMS students did well in essay contests recently. For the VFW contest, the subject was "Is Freedom Really Free?" Eighth-grader Brad Brown was first for the school; Toshua Wade, second; and Lindsay Keener, third.

Heather Grisham, a sixth-grader, won first in the Kenai Elks Lodge Americanism essay contest. The subject was "What the Flag of the United States Stands For."

Remember to save your General Mills box tops; each is worth 10 cents for the school. A drawing is held each week where one student receives a coupon for use at the school store.

The KMS-Mountain View Talent Show will be Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Be sure to check out the KMS Web page at: www.kpbsd.k12.ak.us/kms/. Beginning next month, the newsletter will be available on the Web page. It will be mailed only to those who have requested it. For more information, call the school.

Congratulations to the Students of the Month for January: Tony Bannock, Jaron Dambacher, Brandon Goggia, Delos Lonewolf, Lizzy Perkins, Travis Pierce, Kendra Remsen, Alee Rowley, Kurt Rosenquist, Amanda Sassi and Melissa Shaginoff. They will have lunch courtesy of Burger King.

Soldotna Middle School

Students in Mr. Burns' class have been studying forensic science, starting with finger prints. Fritz Miller joined the class to share his expertise in reading prints and making a positive identification. The class will move into hair analysis, fiber analysis and ink chromatography.

The SMS wrestling season has started. About 65 kids came out for the team so far. Defending borough champion Zac Aragon and runner-up Jeremy Goracke lead a strong group of eighth-graders. The seventh-grade class has big numbers and should help.

Reading classes are opening, The Reading Cafe, where students and visitors enjoy good books, hot drinks and snacks in a relaxing atmosphere. It will be open Fridays from 8:40 to 9:20 a.m., 10:20 to 11:00 a.m. and 1:20 to 2 p.m. To be a guest reader, contact Virginia Morgan at 262-4344 or by e-mail at Virginia_Morgan@kpbsd.k12.ak.us.

A shot clinic will be offered at SMS by the public health nurses Feb. 8 from 9 to 11:30 a.m. for all students needing the third hepatitis B and the second hepatitis A. Parents must fill out permission forms and give them to the school nurse for students to participate.

All seventh-grade students will take the Analytic Writing Assessment next week in language arts classes.


Second quarter reports are due Friday. The form is on the Connections Web site. Remember to follow all the steps. For more information, call an adviser.

Grades five, seven and nine students will take the Analytic Writing Assessment today through Friday. All these students must take the test. These tests will not be offered to students at the attendance area building. They must be scheduled through the Connections office. For more information, contact Bill at 262-6315.

January and February's book club order forms are in. They are available for pickup at Jane or Tanya's desk or the front office. Homer and Seward parents can call the school for the order forms. Orders are due by Feb. 1. Checks need to be made out to the book club. A separate check needs to be made out for each different order form, even if two orders are from the same club.

Interior Distance Education of Alaska

IDEA students can show case their reading skills during the districtwide Battle of the Book competitions. Top students will represent IDEA at the state Battle of the Books competition.

The first competition was Tuesday for third- and fourth-graders. The fifth-and sixth-grade competition will be Thursday; the high school competition will be Friday; and the seventh- and eighth-grade competition will be Feb. 6, all at 10 a.m.

Teachers will attend an in-service Monday through Jan. 31. The office will remain open so families can drop off progress reports and work samples, use the library and resource room and have access to tech support.

Shirley Johnsrud, teacher-counselor, will offer a workshop entitled "High School Planning and Beyond" at the Seward library Thursday from 2 to 4 p.m. She will talk about high school requirements, post high school options, financial planning and the application process and answer your questions.

Science fair packets are available at the IDEA office. Registration forms are due in the office by Feb. 1. The science fairs will be in Seward Feb. 7, in Homer Feb. 13 and Kenai-Soldotna Feb. 20.

Kenai Central High School

Today is School Nurse Day, and the school would like to thank nurse Richardson for all she does.

Mrs. DeVolld's senior English classes, in cooperation with the Kenai Rotary Club, held a business ethics seminar titled "Not For Sale." Guest Rotarians presented topics such as conflicts of interest, employee behavior, sexual harassment, theft and corporate giving.

The drama department proudly presents the cast and crew of "Mixed Nuts": Jason Young, Claire Mishou, Derek LaShot, Michelle Oberg, Kisti Boatwright, Bobby Merchant, Jesse Deardoff, Jessica Udovich, Megan Kohler and Melissa Vassile. This zany comedy about a cluster of actors, dancers and writers is directed by student Lauren Brewer, including Claire Mishou and Aaron Trickel as assistant directors. Mrs. DeVolld is the faculty sponsor. The performances will be in March.

The KCHS Band would like to recognize its seniors who have been a part of the Kenai Middle School-KCHS band program for seven years: Josie Carnegie, clarinet, first chair and section leader; Kelsie Remsen, flute, first chair, section leader and honor band member; Wendy Wiles, first chair tenor saxophone and honor band member; Courtney Wolf, flute and honor band member; and Marcie Woodard, first chair bass clarinet, honor band and all-state band member for two years.

Any parents of juniors interested in serving on the after-prom committee should call the office so a planning meeting can be arranged.

Nikiski Middle-Senior High School

National School Nurse Day is today. School staff would like to let nurse Kitty Thompson know how much they appreciate her for being such a big help around the school.

The musical, "An Evening Without Sinatra," will be Friday and Saturday in the auditorium at 7 p.m. Tickets are $7 in advance and $10 at the door. For more information, contact Joe Rizzo at 776-3456 or visit the musical's Web page at Nikiski.net.

There will be a blood drive Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the library. Anyone 18 or older is eligible to donate blood and encouraged to attend.

Second-quarter report cards will be mailed Friday. For more information, call the school.

The SATs will be given at the Kenai Peninsula College Saturday at 8 a.m. For more information, contact Mrs. Falk in the counseling office.

Mass choir will perform at Kenai Central High School Feb. 4 and 5 at 7 p.m.

Soldotna High School

The final Jazz Band Dessert Concert of the year will be Thursday 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium. Anyone wishing a ticket should see a band member or contact band director Vernel Schneider at 262-7411. Tickets are $7.50.

Today is the last day for students to add or drop a class for the third quarter. Students are reminded to see their counselor immediately if they need to make a change.

The swing choir has taken over the student store for the second semester. Choir members are raising money for their trip to southern California in April. Support the choir and check out the new products in the student store.

Student council members are busy planning SoHi's Spring Spirit Week, scheduled for March 11-15. Many surprises and fun activities are planned to help break up the winter doldrums and keep SoHi spirit high going into basketball regions.

Cook Inlet Academy

Heritage Place residents enjoy weekly visits from Cook Inlet Academy National Honor Society members. Led by Thomas Adams, the NHS visits at Heritage Saturdays as part of the pledge to community service while learning the value of people's differences, history and perspective.

Students of the Week are Albert White, Adam Agosti, Bethany Estes, Drew Fowler, Aaron Glaves, Abbie Carter and Kristen May. The school welcomes new students Danielle Rehm and Nikolas Smith.

During Missions Week, Feb. 4-8, the school will collect donations for elementary students in Peru and Mexico. The Peru team, led by Don and Jan Shields will deliver the gifts in June, while Gary and Jill Leiter take the Mexico team in April.

Band for grades five through eight started Monday. Besides skill, Mrs. Rehm will emphasize discipline, determination, confidence and fun.

Every year the preschool participates in the Soldotna High School home economics program. This begins in February. Drivers are needed.

Hallway Highlights is a popular project where kids create a family photo poster for display. January features Amber, Coel, Haley W. and Adam.

Miss Becky's restaurant etiquette project begins this week. Preschoolers will eat at Buckets, where they will practice eating in public.

Parents, the PTF will be Monday at 7 p.m.

Grace Lutheran School

This week in the daily Bible study, students are following the Israelites as they enter the Promise Land of Canaan.

Congratulations to Dailee Cooper and Ryan Cole, who passed their multiplication math facts; Alexis Norris for passing her addition facts; Allan Wentzlaff and Nick Pokryfki for passing their subtraction facts; and Luke Burow for memorizing all of the Old Testament books in the Bible.

Children in the lower-grade room are studying about the land of penguins: Antarctica. As they study the frozen land of this continent, it is only be natural to learn about snow and ice, also.

The seventh- and eighth-grade students finished their look at water by studying the hydrologic cycle. Water pollution, adiabatic cooling and salinity of water are just a few topics covered.

The fourth- through sixth-graders completed a study of matter and its properties. This week they are looking in depth at the atom. Topics on the docket include determining the atomic number, finding the atomic mass, isotopes, ions and compounds.

Congratulations to Jennifer Werth, who won the school geography bee. Everyone in fourth through eighth grade did a great job.

Wings Christian Academy

The boys varsity basketball team plays Anchorage Friday at 6 p.m.

The cleanest desk of the week awards go to Eben Spilman and Zachary Thompson.

Kenai Cooperative Preschool

Last week students began a month-long unit on Alaska. Preschoolers created Alaska blocks and flags. They panned for gold and purchased goods at the sourdough market. Alli Steinbeck was the store clerk.

The Friday class dedicated a whole day to moose. Mrs. Tracie read the book, "If You Give A Moose A Muffin."

This week students will create Eskimo masks and carve ivory soap animals. They also will learn about king salmon. Preschool students will make prints from a salmon and be able to practice fishing in the preschool pond.

Kenaitze Cuya Qyut'anen Head Start

Head Start staff and families would like to say "chiqinik" (thank you) to the Dena'ina Clinic for screening children's eyes and ears. A dental hygienist from the clinic will visit the school Feb. 9 to provide fluoride treatments.

Children decorated traditional rhythm sticks with beads and feathers last week. The Kenaitze Indian Tribe's Heyi program of Dena'ina songs and dance is scheduled for Feb. 4 in the new Head Start building next to the center. This program will be part of family night, including dinner and a dental health presentation.

David Charlie will demonstrate Native Youth Olympics to children this week. The children will have a chance to try some of the events.

All classes will begin swimming at the Nikiski pool this month.

The education staff will attend the Anchorage Association for the Education of Young Children conference and a staff development conference. School will be closed Thursday, Friday and Tuesday.

Peninsula Grace Preschool

This week's helpers are Savannah, Charis, Sloan and William. Jacob got a good student award for helping Zachary find a missing paper.

Miss Chris's students are receiving good choice stickers for the month of January for following directions, helping others and good behavior. The students enjoy seeing their charts fill with stickers.

Miss Chris's class will study shapes. The students will identify shapes. Given several shapes, they will make a picture and tell what the picture is. Students will make a shape book.

Miss Wilma's class will study the solar system. The children will learn about the planets. They will make rockets from film containers and use Alka Seltzer tablets and water to make the rockets blast off.

Students had fun Thursday in the gym, where class was held instead of in the regular classroom.

Soldotna Cooperative Preschool

Students at Soldotna Cooperative Preschool are learning all about dinosaurs this week. They dug dinosaur bones, made their own fossils and painted a few T-Rexes.

Parents and children will meet Mrs. Kent at the Central Emergency Services fire station in Soldotna at 10:30 a.m. today. After a tour of the fire station, everyone will go to McDonald's for lunch.

Parents and children will go swimming at the Nikiski pool from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Friday.

The semi-annual cleaning day is Saturday; all parents are encouraged to come and help out.

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