Archive for February, 2011


Fox Road Celebrates Read Across America Day March 2

Fox Road Elementary students have been challenged to read 2011 books in the days leading up to Dr. Seuss’ birthday, which is celebrated as Read Across America Day on March 2.

On Read Across America Day, the Cat in the Hat will be at Fox Road Elementary to help the school celebrate its reading challenge and the other events planned for the students that day.

The celebration will continue on March 8 at 11:30 a.m. when State Superintendent Dr. June Atkinson visits the school to read Dr. Seuss books to some of the school’s most motivated students.

“One Book One School” Becomes “Three Books One Community” at Powell Elementary

In past years, “One Book One School” has been a favorite collaborative project at Powell GT Magnet Elementary School. For this project, one book is selected for the entire student body to read and study. Because the book must serve kindergarteners and fifth-graders equally, a picture book has been selected whose subject can be researched and studied in-depth.

However, this year, the school is excited to be doing “Three Books One Community.”  The school has chosen to study Greg Mortenson’s heroic story of building schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan, promoting freedom and bringing education to remote mountain villages. This story is told at three different levels in three different books. Listen to the Wind, a wonderfully illustrated picture book, will be studied by all of the students. In addition, third-, fourth-, and fifth-grade students will study the novel, Three Cups of Tea, The Young Reader’s Edition, and for  the first time ever, an adult book club consisting of parents and teachers will be included in this project and will read Three Cups of Tea.

Each classroom teacher will teach the books in alignment with their curricular goals and objectives. This year students will make tea cups with the help of  the school’s arts specialist, Shari Burgdorf, drink tea, and enjoy Middle Eastern food, provided by Tin Roof Teas and Neomonde Cafe’ and Market.

From Feb. 28-March 4, Songwriter in Residence Shana Tucker will be working with the school’s second-graders and the advanced orchestra on a songwriting residency. She will teach them storytelling through song using Listen to the Wind as the text. She and the students will create a Powell Listen to the Wind song for our Three Books One Community student performance. The kids, with Tucker’s help, will teach this song to the rest of the school on March 4 in a whole school performance. Reporters are invited to visit the school throughout the week to talk with the second-grade students and the Songwriter in Residence.

An important aspect of the Three Books One Community project is that every family at Powell receives a book to take home to include in their home library. By the end of the project, the books will have taken on real meaning for the students, and the children will read them over and over again. Often, it is one important book that transforms a child from a non-reader into a life-long reader.

The arts specialists work together to structure a culminating multi-media, multi-arts experience that is created and performed by many students. The school community attends this performance, led by the school’s drama specialist, Marta King, and the media specialist, Paula Barnes-Cardinale. The performance is scheduled for Thursday March 17 at 7:00 p.m. and Friday afternoon March 18 at 2:15. The public and press are welcome to attend.

Board Finishes Retreat Agenda, Cancels Saturday Session

The Wake County Board of Education finished its retreat agenda today, and cancelled the session scheduled for Sat., Feb. 26.  The agenda items scheduled for the Feb. 26 session have been added to the posted agenda for today’s session.

Brentwood Elementary Students Celebrate National Engineering Week

Students at Brentwood Magnet Elementary School of Engineering have been working with engineers on grade level design and engineering projects in celebration of National Engineering Week.

In the three days of work they have been using their engineering process of imaging, planning, creating, testing and using the data they collect to return to the process and further improve their design.

Each grade level has worked on a different project where students have working on designs for Goldilock’s chair, tall towers, catapults and an egg drop competition.

Fourth graders have been learning about magnetism by working on the Maglev Train project.  

Click to listen to Brentwood Elementary Students Celebrate National Engineering Week

This is a 4 minute mp3 file.

WCPSS Magnet Schools Honored; Time to Apply

Wake County families can now apply for the Wake County Public School System calendar and magnet schools for 2011-12.

As the application window opened, the Magnet Schools of America announced honors for the nation’s top magnet schools. Fifteen WCPSS schools were named.

Millbrook Magnet Elementary was one of the schools named by MSA as a School of Excellence in the running for the Simpson Award, the award presented to the top magnet school in the nation.

WCPSS Magnet Director David Ansbacher and Millbrook Magnet Elementary Principal Paula Trantham discuss the magnet application period and the honors schools earned.

Click to listen to WCPSS Magnet Schools Honored; Time to Apply

14:30 minute mp3 file

You can read more about the Magnet School of America honors here and find more about applying for calendar and magnet schools here.

NC Museum of Natural Sciences Recruits Teens

 The NC Museum of Natural Sciences will open in early 2012, a new wing, the Nature Research Center. This state-of-the-art, green facility will involve the public in science research that affects their daily lives.

The museum is recruiting ninth- and tenth-grade students with an interest in science, technology, and leadership for a new opportunity beginning in Fall 2011 serving as the Nature Research Center’s Teen Advisory Board.

The panel will experience the best of what the NRC has to offer:  a first look at developing programs and exhibits, personal interactions with research mentors from area universities and industry, opportunities to perform research themselves, and a chance to share their experiences with peers and the public.  This is a unique opportunity for students to experience scientific research firsthand, while contributing their voice as the museum explores new ways to connect teens with science learning and research. 

Applications are available on the Museum’s website at  The application is due May 18. 

Thanks to NC Museum of Natural Sciences Curator of Youth Programs Lynn Cross for sharing this information. You can find more information about the museum at

Cyber Smarts Event at The Cary High School

Katie Koestner, a national expert and renowned speaker on teen relationships and current risk issues for students, will speak at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 1 in Cary High School Auditorium, 638 Walnut Street, Cary, NC 27511. Koestner will be presenting a crash course about everything a parent needs to know about the troublesome world of the Internet. Her presentation is geared towards empowering parents, helping them understand and navigate the Internet and the popular technologies that have revolutionized youth social scenes but also have presented a veritable plethora of dangers in the utilization of these new tools.

Thanks to Angela Jankowsky for sharing this story with GotNews.

Enloe students inducted into National Technical Honor Society

28 Enloe Magnet High School students were inducted into the National Technical Honor Society last month.  The students are the first to be inducted into the school’s recently established chapter. They passed 3 levels of technical education, maintained a 3.0 GPA, and received recommendations from two teachers. Teacher Antoinette Perry-Pittman is the NTHS advisor. 

Founded in 1984, NTSH is a non-profit organization established to recognize excellence in workforce education and award scholarships to its members.  NTHS membership is now considered America’s highest award for excellence in career and technical education.

Hilburn Drive Elementary Holds Soul Food Night

Hilburn Drive Elementary School is holding an exciting Black History Month school-community event at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 24.  Parents and their children will enjoy a Soul Food night as the final activity in the school’s celebration of Black History Month. 

The Soul Food Night is a chance for each family to bring a basket of food to share with others. Organizers have encouraged families to bring dishes from the “Soul” of the family to share in a time of fellowship and to celebrate a wonderful part of the community’s history.

As part of the Black History Month activities at the school, students have been challenged in trivia quizzes, encouraged to wear African attire on Fridays, decorate classroom doors and take part in a school assembly where 4th and 5th graders sang, a Staff Choir sang Spirituals, a dance company performed and there was a reading of student poems written in honor of Langston Hughes.

For more information, contact Marilyn Bernold or Kim Francis at 571-6800.

Brooks Fifth-Graders to Perform Opera

Every year, the fifth-grade at Brooks Magnet Elementary School creates and performs an original opera. The students research and choose the topic, write the script, compose the music, build the lights, create the sets and advertise the production.

Students begin working on the opera in January. This year’s performance is “Secrets Revealed.” The students will perform the opera for the public on Thursday, Feb. 24 from 7 to 8 p.m. at the NC Museum of History in downtown Raleigh. Admission is one canned food item for the North Raleigh Ministries.