STUDENT ACTIVITIESThere are a number of other school programs, which are not fundraisers, but which enjoy PTA or parent support.
Assemblies:A number of assemblies are held each year, including an annual Holiday Sing-A-Long. Some assemblies are commercially produced and are funded by our PTA. Others are related to school themes and feature our own students. When open to the public, notices will be sent home.
The World of Work:Students in various grade levels may be "hired" to do "jobs" around the school. There are many opportunities for school service assisting the Librarian, Art teacher, Music teacher, Physical Education teachers, the head custodian or the office. These may include art room cleaning, bus duty helpers, trash collecting, library helpers, etc. The children gain a sense of responsibility to the school, and the younger children see the older students helping the school community.
Wee Deliver:Wee Deliver is an "in-school" postal service designed to help improve students' reading and writing skills. With the help of their teachers, this "real life experience" also teaches them how to communicate through the mail. The hallways have street names and each classroom number represents a residence. Address directories and floor plans are available for reference. There are three mail drop locations throughout the school. We are currently using a variety of stamps designed by our children through our art program. The Post Office is located next to the gym across from the Main Office. Postal "employees" are Grade 1 and 2 students who have applied for jobs. Postal Service is supervised by Mrs. Nozell and Mrs. Bradatsch. New employees are selected by individual student applications.
Little Vikings Bank:With the generous assistance of the Walden Savings Bank and parent volunteers, MES students operate their very own school bank. Through this innovative program, students learn to apply math, communication and human relations skills in a real setting that provides a service to others in their community. They also learn the value of saving money for a "rainy day" or for a long term goal.
Students, under the guidance of adult supervisors, function as trained tellers, customer service agents and managers to provide an in-house banking station. The schedule of banking hours will be announced early in the school year. New students are welcome to open bank accounts. Little Vikings accounts can be serviced either at the school or at any branch of the Walden Savings Bank.
Parents as Reading Partners (PARP):PARP is a program designed to foster a love of reading in your child. During March, children are encouraged to read or be read to for a minimum of 15 minutes a day at home. Volunteer parents may also come in during recess periods and either read to or listen to children read in the library.
Band/Chorus:Students in grades 4 & 5 who elect to participate in band are expected to make a commitment for the entire school year. Preparation for the instrumental music program begins in the third grade where students learn the basics of music reading, utilizing the recorder in weekly music classes. At the end of third grade, students are screened to assess both interest and musical ability, and are advised on instrument selection.
The band program starts in the fourth grade. Each student enrolled in the program receives a half-hour lesson and rehearses with the band once a week during recess. The band performs in a winter and spring concert.
Students who love to sing may join chorus in Grades 3, 4 & 5. Chorus rehearsals also take place during recess. They also have concerts in the winter and spring.
The All-District Band and Chorus consists of the Grade 5 students from all five elementary schools. They combine their talents in June and perform in the All-District Concert.
What are "specials":Your child will come home talking about "specials." "Specials" are INSTRUCTIONAL periods usually spent out of the classroom with a specially certified teacher. Physical Education (2x per week), Art, Music, and Library are special instructional periods. Each class Grade K-5 has a "Special" each day. Fourth and fifth graders receive report card grades in PE, Library, Art, and Music each quarter.
Children are required to be free of jewelry and wear sneakers that fit securely (tie on or velcro, no slip-ons). Please donate any outgrown, washed sneakers to our "borrow box". Children wearing contact lenses must notify Gym teachers. Medical restrictions must be doctor certified and are kept on file in the health office.
OTHER PROGRAMS AND ACTIVITIESThe following are additional programs and activities in which your child may be involved during the year. Participation might be during recess or after school hours. Watch for details in Sounds from School.
Science Fair:The science fair is a voluntary learning exhibition. The children develop and demonstrate a project that will teach others an aspect of natural phenomena. It is open to all grade levels. The purpose is to open our students' eyes to the world around them through exploration of something they question. Awards are given to children for participation. The fair is open to the public and all are encouraged to attend this fun, hands-on evening of discovery. It is usually held during March which is designated Science in our Schools Month.
Family Hobby Fair:The hobby fair is an evening for collectors, hobbyists and buffs. Students, family members and staff show their "other" interests through display, discussion and demonstration. Collections and hobbies are great activities for families to do together. The fair is open for all grade levels to participate and is open to the public to visit. Come and get some great ideas of ways to spend leisure time together. Normally, we've held the Hobby Fair in late January, hoping that the holidays started some new hobby habits.
Curriculum Fair:Each classroom teacher selects projects that demonstrate the children's schoolwork throughout the year. These displays are set up by the children and teachers for viewing during the week in May that school elections and the annual vote are held.
Family Fun Nights:Friday nights are occasionally designated as Family Fun Nights. It may be anything from a Pizza Party to a Math Night, Starwatch, County Western Jamboree or Karaoke Cafe. Watch for fliers in your Thursday Folders. Any ideas for future Family Fun Nights? Contact Mrs. Lyons, Mr. Kessler or any PTA officer.
Reflections:The Reflections program, sponsored by the National PTA provides an opportunity for children to expand their creativity and explore various art forms. Students are encouraged to individually interpret a common theme using Literature, Music, Visual Arts, or Photography. Winners are chosen from the entries submitted at MES. The winning entries are entered in the District contest. District judging is held in mid-January. Information about the Reflections Program is sent home in December.
Art Show:This is an evening to showcase our finest art work. Grades 1-5 have many works of art on display representing the various materials, historical and cultural art forms explored in the art room during the school year. Kindergarten students are invited to participate- often by exhibiting one of the performing arts (e.g. dance, singing...). The show is held in late Spring.
Brown Bag Seminars:The Brown Bag Seminars are hour-long lunch sessions where a topic of interest is explored. Sometimes a member of the community talks about his or her profession or hobby. Students from the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade classes are invited to participate.
Odyssey of the Mind:For this creative problem-solving competition, teams are formed during the Fall and compete in Goshen in the Spring. Parents or teachers may serve as coaches. Interested parents may call Mrs. Lyons for more information. Coach training is available through BOCES. The winners of the Mid-Hudson regional competition will be invited to the State Competition. A high level of commitment is necessary, but this is a wonderful creative opportunity for the Intermediate Grades. On a non-competitive basis, Odyssey of the Mind is also offered to children in Grades K-2.
Recess Options:Each year the school offers different options for student participation at recess time. Past offerings have included Spanish, Creative Writing, Computer, Jazz-Dancing, Chess, Origami, Board Games, Tai Chi, Math Club and Sing-along. Students will be informed in September of the options available to them in lieu of playground recess.
Drama Club:Students meet during recess once a week starting in the winter. Rehearsals are held after school closer to showtime in the Spring. Past performances have included Grease, Annie and Guys and Dolls, and the Music Man.
PTA Founders Night:Held in February this school musical performance honors the recipient of the Honorary Lifetime PTA Membership Award (one who has demonstrated dedication to the objects of the PTA). The plaque displaying the names of past lifetime members is located in the main lobby of our school building. Volunteers are needed for each grade level to direct rehearsals, make props, and to wait with students in classrooms before and after their performances.