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A Lesson with Electromagnet Man

A Lesson with Electromagnet Man photo
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Electricity and magnetism were the subject of a dynamic lesson with science consultant Brian Wallrapp. Winthrop Avenue fourth-graders learned that when electricity and magnets connect, the result is a powerful effect.

“In terms of static electricity,” Mr. Wallrapp said, “a dangerous level of unbalanced electrons causes lightening in the atmosphere. And the effect can be very dynamic.” 

The students learned that electricity and magnetism are made up of atoms and that one gram of salt possesses three quintillion atoms. In addition, they performed several experiments with balloons, a plasma ball, a globe and paperclips that demonstrated how electromagnetism worked. The students most enjoyed learning how humans can conduct electricity by forming a human circuit.

Becoming Fluent in KidOYO

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Shore Road School sixth-grade students are taking their programming skills to the next level by learning the popular coding program KidOYO. Under the direction of library media specialist Mary Willis, the students have been participating in drawing challenges by Hatch.

The students first learned to code a picture of a square and other basic geometric shapes, which taught sequential movement skills and code direction. As they progressed to the coding of a hexagon and octagon, the students learned looping, which is a repeated block that isolates commands to make a shape. More advanced skills include the ability of the students to clone a sprite, which is a two-dimensional image independently manipulated within a larger image environment, such as leaves falling off of a tree.  

Ms. Willis said that though some of the students find coding challenging, the students are significantly advancing in their computer coding skills through this fun-filled program.

It’s Showtime at Shore Road

It’s Showtime at Shore Road

Shore Road School sixth-grade students took to the stage to the delight of parents and peers during the annual talent show held on Dec. 11. Masters of Ceremony Hudson DiTuri, Athina Malafis, Nicoletta Russo and Giovanni Scimeca introduced each of the acts and the eight-member stage crew was responsible for keeping the program running smoothly.

Under the direction of music teacher Laura Laude, the night’s diverse entertainment included 16 acts with vocalists who performed popular numbers from “A Bronx Tale,” “Les Miserables” and “Dear Evan Hansen.” There were also choreographed dance numbers, instrumental performances to popular and classic music and a karate number. 

During the dress rehearsal, students cheered for their peers as they practiced their routines. Practice paid off on opening night as parents applauded their children’s hard work and talent.

Holiday Leadership in Music


Bellmore students at the Charles A. Reinhard, Winthrop Avenue and Shore Road schools demonstrated their leadership skills throughout the holiday season through music.

First-graders at C.A. Reinhard performed on the stage for the first time for parents, faculty and peers during the annual Holiday Show. In preparation for the concert, the students honed various stage elements, learned about articulation and stage presence and displayed focus and determination while learning the words to popular holiday songs. 

Winthrop Avenue third-graders also entertained faculty, family and peers during a holiday choral performance. Under the direction of music teacher Maria Martucci, the students  celebrated Hanukkah, Christmas and New Year’s with an array of festive songs, which added to the holiday spirit. Students Leah Irizarry and Gianna Massari showcased their talents on piano prior to the concert, with separate performances of “Jingle Bells” by orchestra students and the “Dreidel Song” by recorder players. The concert commenced with everyone singing the “Winthrop Winning Stars” song. 

Shore Road student-musicians also shared their musical talents with members of the community. Under the direction of orchestra teacher Kelly Brandstadter, students performed holiday tunes for patients and staff at the Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow. Their gift of music spread holiday cheer to otherwise busy workers and to those who are hospitalized. 

Cold Hands, Warm Hearts

Cold Hands, Warm Hearts
Reinhard first-graders in Cathy Schriver’s class became motivated to host a mitten tree collection after reading Candice Christiansen’s “The Mitten Tree.” The class collaborated with first- and second-grade classrooms to collect 60 mittens, which were donated to the Family Service League’s scarf, hat, mitten, glove and sock collection. 

Not only did the students learn about the importance of giving to those less fortunate in the community, the activity reinforced math and writing skills. Students charted the number of mittens collected by each classroom and determined the total number collected. They also discussed how leaders help others in the community and wrote an opinion piece on whether wearing gloves or mittens was preferred.

Learning About Electricity

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During Library Club, Reinhard students learned about electricity by using a human circuit stick. They learned to describe the flow of electricity and how the two sides of a battery are different. The student-electricians also used Snap Circuit kits to design their own circuits using switches, LED lights and conductors. 

Bellmore Spelling Leaders are A-Buzz with Talent

Bellmore Spelling Leaders are A-Buzz with Talent photo
Dillon Hopp was the winner of Winthrop Avenue School’s annual fourth-grade spelling bee, with Jake Greco placing second in the competition. 

Fourteen of the school’s spelling leaders battled it out to claim the title of top speller, with teachers Carolyn Buckley, Gina Foppiano and Deirdre Golden as the judges and Marjorie Falabella as the moderator. The competitors completed 10 rounds before Dillon and Jake misspelled the words “suffocate” and “violence,” with Dillon taking the title with the correct spelling of the word “decoration.” Both Dillon and Jake received an award of a gift card.
Principal Sally Curto congratulated all of the competitors on their performance. “Just being up on stage today is a great accomplishment, and you should all be very proud of yourselves,” she said.

Prior to the spelling bee, contests were held in individual classes, and the two top spellers from each classroom were invited to participate in the Dec. 6 competition. The Bellmore School District also congratulates: Violet Benno, Emme Frimmer, Lila Goldman, Emily Greco, Sasha Karafin, Emily McDermott, Luke Padula, Lisa Rosen, Ryan Settanni, Connor Sharp, Matthew Torre and Presley Trapani.

Dance Party coding

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Fifth-graders utilized their coding skills to program individual dance parties on their Chromebooks in Jenn Desmond’s class at Shore Road.

Sam Stern, senior director of technical applications at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan, introduced the tech savvy coders to a new program, Dance Party, during the world’s annual Hour of Code. He explained to students that as they grow older, technology will become of greater importance. “If you want to create something, you will use technology in some way,” he said. “It is important to start the foundations of coding today,” he told the class. 

The annual Hour of Code takes place each year during Computer Science Education week to broaden the field of computer science. This year, Computer Science Education Week is being held Dec. 3-9, and students in Bellmore are joining thousands of students across the world in strengthening their coding skills. 

Bellmore students make connections to pilgrim life

Bellmore students make connections to pilgrim life photo
Bellmore first-grade students in Natalie Sicoli’s class at the Charles A. Reinhard Early Childhood Center made valuable connections to Native American and Pilgrim life in Plymouth, Massachusettes during a unit on the first Thanksgiving, comparing this historical celebration to modern day. 

The students first read B.G. Hennessy’s “One Little, Two Little, Three Little Pilgrims” and discussed how the characters prepared for the first Thanksgiving and the long winter ahead with their Wampanoag neighbors by planting crops, hunting  and fishing. With the assistance of parent volunteers, the students also tye-dyed t-shirts using dye made from cranberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries and turmeric. They also wrote about how they made their t-shirts during an interactive writing exercise. The unit helped the students gain a better understanding of the importance of this national holiday. 

Student-Artists Create Legacy Project

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Using clay and the soles of their shoes, Reinhard students in grades K-2 have embarked on a collaborative artistic representation of their connection to the school community. Called the “Sole” Mates Legacy Project, the students are working under the direction of visiting artist Catherine Russell to create a lighthouse-themed mosaic, that will eventually be installed on the school’s cafeteria wall later this school year. 

Ms. Russell explained to the students that lighthouses possess their own designs, much like a street sign for sailors and specific to a certain region. She also noted that the Reinhard lighthouse will have its own pattern.  

The lighthouse is symbolic of Bellmore School District’s recent designation as a Lighthouse District by FranklinCovey’s Leader in Me – the first school district in Nassau County, on Long Island and in New York State to receive this districtwide honor.  

During the first of a two-part ceramic workshop encompassing ceramic procedures and techniques, the students first rolled out the clay and then imprinted each clay square with the soles of their shoes to add a design element to the end product. Using a cookie cutter, they cut out shapes to create a lighthouse, sun and clouds, which were collected and then placed in a kiln for 10-12 hours at 1,200 degrees. The students will then paint and glaze the shapes, which will be designed and constructed into a mosaic in the shape of a lighthouse. 

Giving Thanks Through Music

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During the first concert of the year, fourth-graders gave thanks through the gift of music during a holiday performance, held in the newly-renovated Winthrop Avenue auditorium on Nov. 16.

Under the direction of music teacher Maria Martucci and Mallory Aronoff, who directed the choreography, the students performed a variety of patriotic and holiday-themed songs to thank veterans for their service and to show their gratitude for school, family and community. The theme of the concert was “being thankful,” and in addition to choral selections, students performed on their recorders. Ellen Angelico, Sofia DeLuna, Emme Frimmer, Alexis Malerba, Nicholas Papazis, Francesca Stein also performed classical pieces on piano.  

Principal Sally Curto told the parents, “ Your children have shown great dedication to make this a wonderful concert.” 

Helping Families in Need

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A table situated in the front lobby of Winthrop Avenue was overflowing with food donations as the student advisory council wrapped up its annual Thanksgiving food drive. Prior to the holiday break, SAC members sorted the items for a Thanksgiving meal into individual boxes, which will be donated to families in the Bellmore School District community this holiday season.

Adopting an Attitude of Gratitude for the Holiday Season

Adopting an Attitude of Gratitude for the Holiday Season photo
For the month of November, fourth-grade students in Alexandra Grodin’s class at Winthrop Avenue have adopted an attitude of gratitude. 

Each day, the students reflect on what they are grateful for and why and write it down in their personal Gratitude Journals. The journals are to be shared with the students’ families during their Thanksgiving meals.

“This is a really great opportunity for the students to be mindful and to take the time to reflect on what is important,” Ms. Grodin said. “They are really enjoying the activity.”
Friday, January 18, 2019