We ‘made up our mind’ to celebrate literacy and Dr. Seuss’ birthday!

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Burgess-Peterson students were eager to sing Happy Birthday to Dr. Seuss.

I hugged a cuddly Lorax who wore slippers, not boots. Took selfies with Things that were tiny and cute. I grappled with friends over a fish, dog or yent. All in all, I can say, my day was well spent.

OK, OK, so I’m not Dr. Seuss or a writer anywhere near the genius that is Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss’s real name), but I did have a blast celebrating the National Education Association’s Read Across America Day today by reading Seuss’ newest book, What Pet Should I Get? to early learners at Burgess-Peterson Academy, Wesley International and KIPP Strive Primary! Read Across America Day is an annual, nationwide event that promotes literacy while celebrating Dr. Seuss’ birthday.

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A warm welcome from Wesley International students!

What Pet Should I Get? tells the story of a brother and sister (the same kids featured in the beloved One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish), who are having a tough time deciding on a new pet while visiting a pet store. The manuscript was only discovered in the last few years and published in 2015, 50 years after it was originally written (that is so cool).  True to form, there is a deeper message embedded in the story that goes beyond choosing a pet. The story reminds readers that choices are powerful, and when given the opportunity, they should make wise decisions. All of the kids agreed that their favorite line in the book was, “Make up your mind!”

A big Seussical shout-out to principal David White at Burgess; Lakeesha Ramdhanie, lower school dean at KIPP Strive Primary Academy; and teacher (and friend), Tracy Trammell at Wesley International, for giving me the opportunity to be spontaneous and silly with their students. Today was our day!

“You’re off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, so… get on your way!” –Dr. Seuss, Oh, The Places You’ll Go!

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KIPP Strive Primary students asked great questions today.

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My 100th blog post – Hooray for learning!

There are at least a hundred reasons to get excited about the great things happening in APS. What is the best way for me to celebrate my 100th blog posting? By celebrating our students of course!

Take a look at a few awesome highlights from around the district.

Two North Atlanta video broadcast students, Jada Jackson and Joy Longely spent today on the set of the daytime show, Atlanta & Co. with television hosts Rashan Ali and Christine Pullara. They were able to go behind the scenes and were encouraged to dream big, network and give back. These students were chosen to cover APS football games as a part of a mentorship program with Atlanta Football Insider.

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Photo from Thomasville Heights Twitter feed

 

It is important to keep our kids physically active on a daily basis. Check out this group of Thomasville Heights students exercising in Coach Rambo’s physical education class. Way to keep our kids moving!

Photo from Perkerson Elementary's Facebook page

Photo from Perkerson Elementary’s Facebook page

Perkerson scholars learn about conservation and protecting the environment as they work with Trees Atlanta to plant 50 trees, including the ceremonial tree at their school. Their efforts help to launch TOTO USA’s Urban Greenways project.  The initiative is to improve children’s well-being by planting 250 trees on the streets that lead to schools. Way to keep our communities beautiful!

Photo from Mr. Foster's Twitter feed

Photo from Mr. Foster’s Twitter feed

Technology department chair Terry Foster and students at Carver School of Technology work to refine their programming skills using EV3 Robots in the GAETT (Geniuses Achieving Excellence through Technology) after-school program. Mr. Foster along with Instructional Coach Christina Rogers were able to implement this program from the Google Rise Award they received earlier this year. Thank you Google for supporting our schools!

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Photo from Kipp Strive Primary Facebook page

The Kipp Strive Primary flag football team did an amazing job this year. They finished the season undefeated and took home the first place trophy. Their Facebook post says “ ‘Like’ this post for the hardest working scholar athletes in Atlanta.” Way to work hard KSP!

Photo from Inman Middle School Twitter feed

Photo from Inman Middle School Twitter feed

Seventh graders in Ms. Vaughn’s science class at Inman Middle School get creative with their project about the human body. The students were learning how the different parts of the body work together to keep the body at homeostasis. Look at that great work!

My day with the KiPPsters of KIPP Strive Primary

IMG_1107KIPP Strive Primary was my first stop during school visits this past Friday.  I visited the adjacent middle school, KIPP Strive Academy recently to give out AFAEE awards, but this was my first time on the primary side of the building.

From the moment you walk into their beautiful  Beltline adjacent facility, you are greeted with tons of natural light and an amazing mural
IMG_1089painted by a local artist.  I could hear the 2nd grade choir singing on the second floor and man, did they sound great.  Their choral director had them singing a variety of songs and they seemed to really enjoy themselves.  Founding principal Ms.Shaheed showed me her K-2nd grade classes.  The school will add on a grade each year until they reach fourth grade.

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In Ms. McCuane’s kinder class, students were learning about the parts of a book and reading Ezra Jack Keats’ “Snowy Day.”  Down the hall in Ms. Dec and Ms. Williams’ classes, they were learning about story sequence.

First graders, or the class of 2030 as they are known around the school, were studying subject verb agreement in Mr. Fairbanks’ class.

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I love that the staff visits every new scholar at his/her home prior to the start of the school year.  Principal Shaheed, says it gives her a great opportunity to access the student’s personality and academic abilities.  Approximately 80 to 85 percent of students who attend KIPP Strive attend a local pre-k.

Thanks for the warm welcome KIPPsters!

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