The Home Stretch!

After a nice long weekend (and what I hope was a blessed Easter for all those who celebrate it), we came back to Van Allen recharged and ready to go for the last stretch of the school year!

This week flew by, but lots of exciting things are happening. We began our final cycle of MTSS this week, shifting our focus to numeracy. Students are excited about the new groups, and some variety in their afternoons. Things are getting off to a great start!

In guidance this week, I set time aside to have Miss Stott come in to speak to the students about the upcoming blood drive. Miss Stott is one of our Special Educators and she has put in so much effort to organize the blood drive that will be held at Van Allen on April 27, from 3 to 6pm. Flyers with all the information about the drive will be coming home with your children this week. We encourage you to donate blood if you are able!

In order to engage our students and get them excited, she created a coloring contest for grades JK-1, and a poster contest for grades 2-5. The pictures/posters are all related to advertising the blood drive, and the winning student will earn an ice cream party for his or her class! The students are eager to do their very best art work to earn that ice cream!

Since the minimum age to donate blood is 16, the guidance lesson this week focused on thinking about other needs people have in the world (aside from the need for blood), that we are old enough to help with! Students talked about important issues such as world hunger, homelessness, people lacking access to transportation, medical care, clean water, and family support. They also talked about problems on the planet such as global warming and air/water pollution.

After our discussion, they all took time to write down the issue(s) most important to them, and what they could do (or will do when they grow up), to help fix those issues. Some students wrote about spreading awareness about adoption and foster care for children who don’t have homes, others wrote about cleaning up trash to save the environment, and still others wrote about growing up to be scientists and find cures for cancer and other diseases. With Earth Day coming up at the end of this month, it is a great time to be thinking about solutions to our world’s problems!

Here are some wonderful examples of student writing:

"People are being mean. Make the world a better place. Pick up trash. Help people stay alive. Help our people."

“People are being mean. Make the world a better place. Pick up trash. Help people stay alive. Help our people.”

"It's rude to separate the black and white people, and to change this you have to be nice to all kinds of people."

“It’s rude to separate the black and white people, and to change this you have to be nice to all kinds of people.”

 

"I would give them food. I would give them money, clothes, beds, crayons, medicine. I would give hair, clean the earth, supplies to kids for school."

“I would give them food. I would give them money, clothes, beds, crayons, medicine. I would give hair, clean the earth, supplies to kids for school.”

"Tell people about God. Then I would tell them to tell other people. So they would not be mean."

“Tell people about God. Then I would tell them to tell other people. So they would not be mean.”

 

We concluded with Kid President giving us a little inspiration to change the world:

I hope you all have a great weekend!

Shameem Balakrishnan
School Counselor

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