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The Positivity Project Video The Positivity Project Video: The Positivity Project Video Mrs. Colaluca's 3rd and 4th grade choirs collaborated with students in Mr. Riley's high school music theory class to write an original song inspired by the Positivity Project. The 4th graders wrote the lyrics, the 3rd graders recorded the vocals and the music theory students composed and produced the music. The video highlights the process and the work of the students involved.  
Walking and Running Club Walking and Running Club:   Friday mornings before school during the month of May, the Site-Based Team at Walberta Park held a Walking and Running Club for students. Over 45 children participated in the group and collectively walked or ran close to 200 miles during the four-week group. What a fun and healthy way to start the day!
Getting in Touch with Nature Getting in Touch with Nature:   Third grade students spent the day exploring stream and pond habitats at Baltimore Woods Nature Center. The Nature Educators from Baltimore Woods provided students with hands-on learning opportunities and their lessons about stream and pond ecology and animal adaptation tied in perfectly with what third graders have been reading about and researching in class. Students enjoyed a hike through the woods, wading in the shallow stream to search for invertebrates and other animals and then used dipping nets to do the same in the pond!
Career Clusters Gallery Walk Career Clusters Gallery Walk:   This quarter, Ms.Gullotto’s 8th grade Home and Careers students participated in their first ever gallery walk. Students surveyed and learned about their top career cluster interests, and after much study, reflected on those recommendations. They then researched, analyzed and created a poster demonstrating their knowledge about career industries including the trends, challenges and outlook of each job sector. Students used the library to present their findings and observe the different occupations that their peers considered. A big thank you to Ms. Feeney for her helpful collaboration and a job well-done to 8th grade Home and Careers students!
Future Teachers Club Future Teachers Club:   With a major teacher shortage on the horizon, the Future Teachers Club was restarted in 2017. The goal was to spark some interest among the student body to enter the field of education.  It is one of the fastest growing clubs on the Westhill High School campus with 30 members. Participants of the club are exposed to possible careers in teaching by shadowing a Westhill Faculty member for an entire day. The hands on experience in the classroom provided students a window into the behind the scenes work required to be an effective teacher. The club would like to thank the following teachers for opening their classrooms to the club members: Mrs. Feeney, Mrs. Byrne, Mrs. Merritt, Mrs. Prior, Mr. Wells, Mr. Noyes, Mrs. Snyder, Mrs. Milligan, Ms. Hall, Mr. Ashlaw, Mrs. ...
Kate Thornton Visits WPS Kate Thornton Visits WPS:   Kindergartners have been studying weather and hoped to share their knowledge with an expert in the field. News channel 9 meteorologist, Kate Thornton, came in to give them the opportunity to share what they know. She also shared weather safety tips and taught the students how to read weather maps for clues of wind speeds, precipitation and temperature.
Cheering the Success of Others Cheering the Success of Others:   Mrs. Looten’s class had a video conference with a first grade class in Loredo, Texas. This was a wonderful example of our Positivity Project focus on Cheering the Success of Others (part of the Other People Matter mindset). The class successfully cheered for the other class as well as themselves. It was a successful connection and they did an amazing job reading to the students in Texas.
OHMS Math Team OHMS Math Team:   Congratulations to the OHMS Math Team who competed in their final meet at Tully Jr/Sr High on March 5th. The team ranked 5th out of 18 schools. A special congratulations goes to 7th grader, Cade Caloia, who took 3rd place in the individual competition. Good job team!  Pictured are Sean Stephenson, Nicoletta Scrimale, Cade Caloia, Sydney Bistrovitch and Charlotte Roth. 
Diversity Day Diversity Day:   On March 21, Westhill High School held its second annual “Diversity Day.” In an effort to support an inclusive community, our students and staff participated in a variety of workshops to learn about other cultures, discuss gender and mental health issues, learn about the differently abled, make sandwiches for the homeless and listened to stories shared by our local refugees!  The day kicked off with keynote speaker, Tim Conners, who shared his inspiring story about perseverance as a survivor of leukemia. Although Tim’s cancer caused blindness, he still managed to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. His unique perspective motivated students to think about the importance of overcoming barriers, taking control of their lives and building community. It was ...
World AIDS Day Poster Contest World AIDS Day Poster Contest:   Students in Mrs. D’Angelo’s Health classes made posters for World AIDS Day to help raise awareness of the on-going problem with HIV and AIDS among teens. Although the number of people dying from AIDS has declined over the last 20 years, more than one in five people infected today are 13-24 years of age. Spreading a message of prevention is extremely important in protecting our youth. Students hung their posters in the school halls and bathrooms to help spread the message. This year, the Central New York HIV Care Network also had a World AIDS Day poster contest. Four students entered the contest and won gift cards for their poster entries. John Wikiera, Chairperson for the HIV Care Network, came to school to talk to the students about their posters and present ...
We Rise Above the Streets We Rise Above the Streets:   What are human rights and how do real people and fictional characters respond when those rights are threatened? Students in Mrs. Bove’s 5 th grade class investigated this question in the first module of the newly adopted English-Arts Curriculum (EL 2017). Mrs. Bove’s students developed their ability to read and understand complex text as they considered this question. Woven into this study are habits of character that correlate with the Positivity Project - how can students work to contribute to a better world? To answer this question and as part of a project based learning experience, Mrs. Bove’s students welcomed Alamin Muhammad from We Rise Above the Streets Recovery Outreach into their classroom. Mr. Muhammad shared information about his organization, ...
Wildlife Corridors Wildlife Corridors:   Third graders at Cherry Road School have been learning about what happens to animals when their habitat changes. For several weeks, the students have been scientists gathering information in various ways (games, camera traps, fossils, reading). As a final project, the students had to use the Engineering Design Process and collaborate in groups to plan a way to help salamanders get safely to a pool of water to lay their eggs. A busy road stood in the way. Groups had to work within a budget, follow certain criteria and use only available materials. Each group of children created a model of a wildlife corridor, in this case a tunnel under the road, which they felt would allow the salamanders to get to the pool safely. Pictured are Max, Charlie and Rider proudly displaying their ...
STEAM Activities STEAM Activities:   In December, WPS library hosted Onondaga Free Library children’s librarian, Maggie Gall-Maynard. Known as Mrs. Maggie by students and patrons of OFL, the vibrant librarian shared several science, art and technology related activities during the student’s computer classes. Excited students worked in groups to build and solve mazes, code miniature bots and draw using a computer. Mrs. Maggie also shared that there would be several fun upcoming events at OFL. Check out their schedule of events at: https://oflibrary.org.
New York State Champions New York State Champions:   What every high school athlete dreams about became a reality for two Westhill teams this fall. The girls’ volleyball team and the boys’ soccer team both reached their goal of becoming New York State Champions.  The girls’ volleyball team goes down in history this fall as the first volleyball team to earn Westhill a State title. On November 18, the girls’ finished their undefeated season with a win over reigning State Champion, Owego High School. The Westhill volleyball team also earned the Sportsmanship Award for the State tournament. Rounding out their volleyball careers and leading the Warriors were seniors Montanna Gedney, Mackenize Martin, Brigid Heinrich, Emma Shampine and Aubrey Thomson. Westhill was also led by freshman, Kate Heinrich ...
Canned Food Drive Canned Food Drive: From November 13-16, OHMS held it’s annual Canned Food Drive to benefit the Rescue Mission. Students and families were once again so generous with their donations. Our drive turned into a friendly competition with homerooms trying to bring in the largest number of items each day. This year, Mrs. Ruetsch’s homeroom brought in a total of 782 items. They enjoyed pizza and a holiday movie before Thanksgiving break to reward their effort and generosity. Overall, students brought in over 2,400 food items.
Kindness Kindness: The fourth grade students in Mrs. D’Amico’s class showed the character strength of kindness when they invited students from Ms. Appel’s class to demonstrate how to weave wampum belts. They were excellent teachers!
Waterplay Waterplay: Kindergarten learned about water in their first science unit, Waterplay. Through activities and play, the students learned about the properties of water, water having weight and the shape of water. They experimented with objects that sink and float in water, soapy water and bubbles and materials that absorb and repel water. The students enjoyed learning about water in their own classrooms as well as visiting each of the kindergarten classrooms for additional learning opportunities.
Building Teamwork Building Teamwork:   The students at Walberta Park take part in the Positivity Project movement. Each week, the students learn about different character strengths to help them build positive relationships. The students in Ms. Balla’s first grade class were working on teamwork, and students had to work together to create a letter from the alphabet. Can you guess what letter these students made?
Cultural Comparisons Cultural Comparisons:   Third graders recently worked on an inquiry-based social studies unit that allowed them to compare and contrast the culture in the United States to the culture of a country of their choice. Students were immersed in online research via Chromebooks as well as researching cultural elements through text. They enjoyed learning about “what makes culture” through reading about what children from other countries enjoy and take part in (sports, foods, languages and daily life). Students worked in partnerships or small groups to research and then complete an essay independently highlighting what they learned through their research. Pictured here are students hard at work from Mrs. Jackson’s class.
6th Grade Science in Action 6th Grade Science in Action:   The 6th grade is learning about Energy, Forces and Motion using the new Smithsonian Units, an inquiry-based science curriculum. Within the investigation, students are gently pushing a tennis ball and timing how long it takes for the ball to pass certain distances. By doing that, students are learning about gravity, friction, acceleration and speed through hands-on activities. Students are really enjoying learning these concepts firsthand! 



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