Around the District

Posted: Wednesday, November 23, 2005

No school Thursday, Friday

Public schools in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District will be closed Thursday and Friday for the Thanksgiving holiday. Most private schools also will be closed. To verify closure dates, call your child’s school.

Aurora Borealis Charter School

On Nov. 17, the school held a spelling bee. The participants include: Third-grader Ian Haralson, Allison Ostrander and Kiana Harding; fourth-graders, Kara Kauffman, Nate Narlock and Justice English; fifth-graders, Lee Kempf, Lydia Chadwick and Haylee Swanson; sixth-graders, Colton Anderson, Lizzie McDermid and Haley Coffman; seventh-graders, Abby Chadwick, Hannah Coffman and Delissa Severson; andeighth-graders, Will McDermid, Alex Kauffman and Mariah Darrow.

The spelling bee winners were Will McDermid, Colton Anderson and Kara Kauffman, who placed first, second and third respectively.

On Friday, Mr. Severson’s class experienced a medieval festival. Students chose a king, queen, prince and princess. The remaining students dressed as knights, ladies, lords, serfs, shepherds and monks. There was royal feast with medieval foods prepared by parents, activities and entertainment in the royal court, Lee Moore practiced medieval magic tricks, Mrs. Chay lead a group dance and Mr. Severson directed activities such as bocci ball, student ballads, chess and songs from the middle ages.

On Tuesday, the junior high girls and boys basketball teams will play Soldotna Middle School B team at SMS at 4:30 p.m.

Connections Home School Program

There will be a basic computer class for central peninsula parents of students with a Connections computer Monday and Tuesday. There will be two sessions each day from 9 to 11 a.m. and from 2 to 4 p.m. Call 714-8880 to sign up.

Book club flyers are available online or in the office. December flyers are available through Dec. 8 so that orders arrive before the holiday break. Call Tanya at the office for more information.

McDonald’s peelers are available in the Soldotna office.

For information, upcoming events, or to check out the online forum, visit

Cook Inlet Academy

The fall banquet Monday celebrated the school’s past, present and future. Tom Dwinnell, founder, spoke on the school’s past accomplishments; student Jake Zufelt talked about the present with an emphasis on growing enrollment and lack of space; and parent Jody Fenton spoke of the future and the positive role of the school in the lives of her children.

Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor John Williams and school board member Mark Cialek encouraged parents to join together to build for the future both at the school and in the community. The school would like to thank those who helped with the fall banquet.

The preschoolers are in need of old magazines to be used for various projects. Ms. Becky suggests kid magazines, animal journals or wildlife magazines.

TB tests will be Monday morning for staff, kindergartners, seventh-graders and new students.

Varsity basketball tryouts are Monday.

The junior high basketball teams have a home game with Soldotna Middle School Tuesday at 3:30 p.m.

Volunteers are needed for the Borealis Conference Volleyball Tournament Dec. 1 through 3.

Students of the Week are Janice Scritchfield, Keely Powers, Rachel Spence, Meghan Powers, Hallie Symington, Reid Schmelzenbach, Bodie Bergonzini, Kearstin Yarnes, Shannon Evans, Justin Wisnewski and Drew Fowler.

Grace Lutheran School

The fifth- and sixth-grade boys are learning the fundamentals of basketball by participating in the Boys and Girls Club basketball program. The school would like to thank Mr. Leckwee, Miss Hering and Mr. Peterson for volunteering to coach the group.

In music class, Miss Hering’s first- through fourth-graders are learning correct singing posture, how to match pitches and how to sing acappella. The singers are focusing on a Thanksgiving number that they will sing tonight.

The kindergartners have been learning about Pilgrims, Indians and the first Thanksgiving. The students read several books about the pilgrims, wrote and illustrated their own “First Thanksgiving” book and made several craft projects involving cornucopias and turkeys. The group accompanied their Thanksgiving songs with the rhythm instruments.

The school is participating in the Great Aluminum Can Round-up. Bagged aluminum cans can be dropped off at the school anytime.

This week concludes the Bible study of the lives of Jacob and Joseph.

In Shurley grammar, second-graders are studying prepositional phrases and third-graders are learning about helping verbs.

The school offers a preschool program for children ages 3 through 5. For more information, call Joanne Love at 283-9551.


The office will be closed for the Thanksgiving holiday Thursday and Friday.

The school would like to congratulate its Math Olympiad students. Students are learning problem solving and have stumped adults with their insights. Math Olympiads will be Dec. 7 and 14.

During the in-service on geography, students learned about latitude and longitude, played Alaska Jeopardy, built New York City and learned states and capitals. Parents had a workshop on tying literature to geography.

Parents are encouraged to come to the office today for the last day of the Scholastic Book Fair to see what books and software are available.

Kalifornsky Beach Elementary

The school would like to thank parents, friends, neighbors, relatives and the community, which contributed to the auction and chili feed.

The first-graders are continuing their study on community workers. Last week, students interviewed the principal, nurse and secretary to find out about their jobs.

Mr. Daniels’ class is working on ceramic coil pots. Mr. McBee came to the class to show how to make them. Students were able to design their own coil pots and will fire the pots this week.

Kenai Central High

There are only three more full weeks of school once we return from Thanksgiving break until Christmas break.

On Monday, the first day of boys and girls basketball practice begins. Players planning on trying out must have a current physical and paperwork on file with Mr. Delaney before they can practice. The girl’s tryouts will be from 3 to 5 p.m. and the boys will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Call Tim Delaney at 283-7524 for more information.

The student council is sponsoring an Arctic Winter Games volunteer rally for students. Any student or parent interested in helping can call Jim Beeson or Siri Larson at the school.

Activity for the week:

· Junior varsity hockey teams will play Nikiski at the Kenai Rink. Call the school for date and time.

Kenai Middle

Congratulations to the following students for being selected as student council representatives: Maya Johnson, president; Alysha Shaginoff, vice president; Christy Loomis, secretary; Bryson Lowe, treasurer; and Adam Creighton, student representative.

Congratulations to Vanessa Anderson and Markayla Shipps for winning the Character Counts! drawing. These students received a pizza for lunch.

Zack Weisz won the boxtop drawing. He received a $1 coupon to the school store.

The newsletter is provided on the Edline Web site at If you’d like to continue receiving it through the mail, call the school at 283-4896.

Congratulations to the following students for winning the hoop shoot contest:

· 10- to 11-year-olds — First place, Morgan Wensley with five shots; second place, Vanessa Anderson with three shots; and third place, Jordanne Wilson with two shots; and

· 12- to 13-year olds — First place, Krystina Taylor with six shots; second place, tie — Bailey Beeson and Shelby Toombs with five shots each.

Kenai Montessori School

Students are studying the continent of Africa. They are using the puzzle maps to learn about the different countries and the geography. The students are working on a cultural exchange box for their sister schools in Africa.

The staff was able to meet the head master of a Montessori school in Ghana, Africa while at the International Montessori Conference earlier this month. This school is now the ninth overseas sister school with wich the students correspond.

Parents are encouraged to tour the classrooms to see the new materials that were purchased at the conference.

A planning meeting will be held Dec. 3 at 10 a.m. for parents who want to help with the Winter Performance and Family Night. Parents interested in serving on the Hands Around the World board of trustees are asked to call Bob.

Savaya Wright shared souvenirs and photos from her trip to see the president of the United States, and Emily Pugh shared photos from her trip to Florida. Faith Glassmaker brought macadamia nuts from her trip to Hawaii.

On Nov. 30 parents are invited to have breakfast with the students from 8 to 8:30 a.m. in the school’s kitchen. For more information, visit

Montessori Toddler House

This month students are focusing on life skills such as potty training and learning about self-control. They also are learning about conflict resolution, sharing and patience.

Mike Morgan will visit students every Friday morning for music appreciation.

There will be a parent forum on the second Monday evening of every month.

Nikiski North Star Elementary

The site council meets the first Tuesday of the month. The PTA meets the first Thursday of the month.

Pictures with Santa fund-raiser will be from 11 a.,m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 3, 10 and 17 at Kenai McDonald’s. The cost is $3 for one picture or $5 for two pictures. Proceeds will benefit Mrs. Zimmerman’s fourth-grade class spring field trip.

Nikiski Middle-High

The following students were inducted into the National Honor Society on Nov. 16: Julia Baker, Clare Bennett, Jessica Bowlin, Nick Kellie, Juanita Millyard, Tyler Payment, Sherra Pritchard, Joel Ribbens, Hannah Thompson and Robert Zinck. They join Tatiana Butler, president; Jackie Palm, vice president; Laura Rooper, secretary; Kara Bethune, treasurer; Georgeanna Heaverley; Kaysie Denison; JR Cox; Sarah Herrin; Erica Thye; Karina Lorenzo; James Barrett; and Joshua Ball. Members were evaluated and selected by a faculty council for meeting high standards of leadership, service and character. Members are expected to continue their contributions to the school and community. Inductees must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher. Leadership and service is based on the student community and school activities or projects. Character is measured in terms of integrity, behavior, ethics and cooperation with students and faculty.

Dates to remember:

· Today — Middle school basketball against Aurora Borealis at 3:45 p.m.; and

· Monday — High school basketball practice begins.


Students will sponsor a Christmas angel. Students will perform odd jobs to earn money for Christmas gifts for a less fortunate child in the community. Last year enough money was collected to provide Christmas gifts for two children. Monetary donations must be in the office by Dec. 12.

Learning centers for kindergarten, first- and second-graders will run Dec. 5. through 15.

Students of the Week are: kindergartner, Olivia Brewer; first-grader, Adaya Pollock; and second-grader Jacey Ross. These students have shown academic improvement and positive attitudes. Prekindergartners Michael Metz and Elisabeth Peterkin are being recognized for their enthusiasm and leadership in practicing for the Christmas performance.

Redoubt Elementary

The school is asking parents to complete the student programs and free and reduced lunch application. Completion of this form helps the school receive Title I funding.

The school’s holiday food drive continues through Nov. 30. Food collected will be given to the schools families and The Kenai Peninsula Food Bank. The schools goal is to collect 500 food items.

Families who need help for the holiday season are asked to send a note to the school office as soon as possible. Requests should be marked confidential. The school needs donations and volunteers to help with the Holiday Kindness program. Call Mrs. Horton at 262-9006 or Amy Larson at 260-9252.

The first- through third-grades will perform “This is Christmas” at 6 p.m. Dec. 13 at Soldotna High School Auditorium.

The school will host the fifth- and sixth-grade band concert at 6 p.m. Dec. 8 in the gym.

Sears Elementary

Kindergartners are working on nutrition. Students and their families are decorating paper turkeys and bringing them to school to hang up in the hall. Families are welcome to come to school today to see the turkeys on parade.

First-graders are learning about bones and skulls in science. The students also have been observing chemical changes while cooking pumpkin muffins, pumpkin shakes and pumpkin soup.

Ms. Ralston’s students will have a Thanksgiving celebration and play today at 2 p.m.

Christmas drive letters will go home with students. Those in need are encouraged to return the letters by Dec. 2. Needed donation items include new toys, food for a holiday dinner, clothes, cash donations and winter clothing. Community members wishing to make a donation will need to fill out a form and return it to the school by Dec. 2 or call Kim at 283-4826.

Fun Fest will be Dec. 1 from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Activities will be held in every classroom. The cost is $3 per student. Parent pick-up time is 5 p.m.

The annual holiday concert will be Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. at Renee C. Henderson Auditorium. First- and second-graders will perform “An Alaskan Christmas.”

Soldotna Elementary

Students have been working on their band and tone chimes holiday concert. It will be held at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 1. It is open to the public.

Dawson Herrick was honored this week for assisting other students who have challenges. Dawson received a T- shirt and a movie pass.

The PTA would like to thank parents and staff for their work on the Fun Fest held Friday. Students made craft items, worked in the computer lab or played games during the after school activity. Proceeds from Fun Fest will go towards playground equipment for the intermediate playground.

Soldotna High

The drama department will present two, one-act plays “The Lottery” and “Final Dress Rehearsal” on Dec. 1, 2 and 3. The plays are staged in-the-round and begin each evening at 7:30.

Financial Aid Night for SoHi and Skyview High School seniors and their parents will be held Dec. 5 at 6:30 p.m. in the Skyview library. Carrie Burford, financial aid director at Kenai Peninsula College, and Christina Campbell from the Alaska Commission on Post-Secondary Education, will be the guest speakers. For more information, call Abby Smola at either the SoHi or Skyview counseling offices.

Yearbooks can be ordered for $55 by mail or in Room 76. Senior ad space is available. For a discount, pictures and payment must be received by Dec. 30.

Soldotna Middle

The school will hold its annual Turkey Trots today. The Turkey Trots is a competition between seventh- and eighth-graders. It is a long-standing tradition at the school — possibly as long as 25 years.

The competition is made up of a series of relays including scooter board relays, mat carrying relays, frisbee toss and 11 others. Also, each grade has an academic team that is asked questions related to the curriculum in core and elective classes. This year’s Turkey Trots will be held from 12:35 to 2:15 p.m.

The staff would like to thank PTSA parents for their help with the QSP magazine drive.

Soldotna Montessori Charter School

The school would like to apologize for an omission it made last week in the “Planting the Seeds of Peace” story (Peninsula Clarion Nov. 16). Due to incomplete information provided to the Clarion, Phoebe Napolitano’s name was left off the caption for the photo. The school offers its sincerest apologies go to Phoebe, her family and friends for the mistake.

As part of the schools commitment to serving the community, the third annual canned food drive ends today. Students collected canned and boxed goods over the past two weeks. Donations will be delivered to The Kenai Peninsula Food Bank today.

The next Academic Policy committee meeting will be Tuesday at 6 p.m. in Mr. Devolld’s room. The agenda will be posted in the hallway and office. Parents are welcome.

The third- through sixth-graders from Mr. Devolld and Mrs. Romatz’s class went to the Anchorage Museum of History and Art on Nov. 8. The group toured the Native History section, the Alaskan Art section, and the special children’s art exhibit called “Spot the Dog.” The students were treated to a special session. The fifth- and sixth-graders were given a sketch pad to keep and a lesson about horizon lines and shapes in art. The third- and fourth-graders made dog puppets using many kinds of textures. The school would like to thank the volunteers who helped make this day successful.

Mrs. Larned’s first-, second- and third-graders completed their tour of Central Peninsula General Hospital. After walking to the hospital, the students were led on a tour of the facility and learned about the community’s resources and staying healthy. To illustrate proper hand washing practices, students applied a lotion with “germs” then washed their hands. Under a special light, students checked how many “germs” remained.

Tebughna School

Fifteen of the junior and senior high students went to see the new Harry Potter movie Tuesday in Kenai. The school would like to thank the Village Tribal Council. The students earned the right to go by having their school work done, homework turned in and no behavior or discipline problems.

The students celebrated Veterans Day by discussing the origin of the holiday and sharing about family members who had served in the Armed forces. Students wanted to do something special for a veteran so they put together a ceremony for Mr. O’Neil, the high school math teacher. Students made cards and signed them. School secretary, Ange Sandstol paged Mr. O’Neil to the office where the students surprised him by giving him the cards they had made and thanked him for his military service.

Art specialist Debbie Harris will be at the school Monday.

The basketball team has been meeting after school. Check with coach Joachim for more information about times.

Tustumena Elementary

Mr. Audette is preparing his fourth- through sixth-grade music classes for a Christmas program scheduled for 2 p.m. Dec. 12. It is open to the public.

Mr. Chase is teaching basketball skills in physical education classes. A portion of the class time prepares children ages 9 and older to compete for entry into the annual Elks Hoop Shoot. The hoop shoot will be held at Soldotna Middle School on Dec. 17. Students qualifying for this event will be announced next month.

Kasilof families with preschool children ages 3 to 5 are being surveyed to determine their needs and wants regarding a preschool program at the school. The survey was sent home with students in the last school newsletter or may be acquired directly from the school. The survey form should be returned to the principal in a sealed envelope by Monday.

The school will gather food items for The Salvation Army through Dec. 15. Packaged food items with a long shelf life are sought. Donated items may be sent with students or can be delivered by parents at their convenience.

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