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Bellmore-Merrick Community Parent Center Taking Back Drugs Day


A ‘Toy Story’ Study of Core Values and Leadership Principles

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Charles A. Reinhard faculty once again provided students with a fun-filled performance to teach the district’s leadership principles and core values during the annual pep rally on Oct. 11. 

Written by Coordinator for Student Services Elise Cahill, this year’s performance loosely reflected “Toy Story,” with all of the same beloved cast of characters but with emphasis on teaching Andy how to become a leader and a Rising Star. 

Under the direction of musical director Randi Andersen, each class performed songs based on one of the core values, while holding up handmade stars decorated with notations on how to become rising stars in the school and community. The entire student body also joined together to sing the Bellmore Stars Leadership Song at the end of the performance. Art teacher Michelle Block also worked with the student body to make the stars they carried to the performance.

The district thanks the following faculty for their amazing performance: Randi Andersen (musical director), Ari Bisk (sergeant 1), Michelle Block (Buzz Light Year), Elise Cahill (coordinator for student services), Regina Harten (Andy’s mom), Amanda Kowalski (Sid), Jennifer Magliano (Slinky), David Reilly (Woody), Kerri Ann Sanpietro (Hamm), Jamie Schantz (Bo Peep), Debbi Sebbesse (Mr. Potato Head), Jen Siano (Andy) and Marie Vevgas (Sergeant).

Leadership Scribbles

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A scribble was not just scribble-scratch as third graders in Elisa Braverman’s class at Winthrop Avenue took out their pencils and pens to mark renditions of the leadership principles and core values taught through the Bellmore Stars Character Development Program. 

Ms. Braverman said the exercise arose after the class read Diane Alber’s “I’m Not Just a Scribble” about acceptance and inclusion. The students were drawn to the scribbles on the inside of the book’s cover and the emotions each conveyed.  

The students were then instructed to create their own scribble art, linking their personal scribbles to the District’s leadership principles and core values. Some of the students rendered images and stories about teamwork and synergy, while others drew about continuous improvement or being proactive. Ms. Braverman described the class’s scribbles as thoughtful and insightful and illustrating that the students understood the tenets of the district’s character development program.   

Lights, camera, read!

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Winthrop Avenue students are being featured as Bellmore Star Readers during this year’s feature of Pick a Reading Partner. 

During the television/movie PARP-themed event, held from Oct. 2-25, students have been encouraged to read an additional 15 minutes each day with a partner. The school has set a goal to collectively read an additional 35,000 minutes this month and is striving for 100% participation. 

Principal Sally Curto told the student body, “You need to be dedicated to your commitment to read. You become better readers by reading.”

Throughout the event, photos of mystery readers will be placed on the PARP bulletin board in the main hallway, and students will have the opportunity to guess who the mystery reader is using Google Forum on their Chromebooks. At the end of the month, the classrooms with the most minutes and participation logged will be recognized.  

Winthrop Avenue faculty and staff also thank PTA PARP representatives Jen Kregler and Nikki Zimberg for hosting the event and designing the creative bulletin board.

Backyard science observation

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There is a new resident at the Charles A. Reinhard Early Childhood Center in the Bellmore School District.

For the past couple of weeks, the Reinhard Rising Stars have observed the development of a chrysalis (pupa), which is hanging from the leaves of one of the plants in the school’s new butterfly garden. On Sept. 26, students had noted that the chrysalis had changed color and the newly formed butterfly’s wings were about to show through.

“We are teaching students to be scientists and this has been an excellent way for all of the students to utilize their observation skills,” Principal Patricia Castine said. “They can simply go to their courtyard to learn firsthand about the stages of the butterfly.”

The impetus for the garden resulted from Ms. Castine’s attendance at an environmental workshop in which educators were taught how to create a science learning environment in their own school yard. With PTA funding and donations from a local nursery, the butterfly garden was created during the 2018-2019 school year with brightly colored flowers and a butterfly bush. The prekindergarten students released Painted Lady butterflies during the spring after learning about the life cycle of butterflies. Ms. Castine remarked that this chrysalis is the first evidence that butterflies are using the garden to form. 

Reinhard’s butterfly garden does need maintenance. In October, the school’s garden club will be cleaning up the garden and getting it ready for the coming spring.