The new Loma Vista Immersion Academy — part of the Old Adobe Union School District — opened earlier this year with the eight initial classrooms needed to serve more than 200 students in kindergarten through fifth grade. Plans to open a sixth grade next year are on track. Final phases of construction are in full swing, with the entire updated campus opening to the student body by the end of November. Last week, the students at Loma Vista celebrated Day of the Dead with a sugar sculpture decorating activity followed by a multi-generational celebration that evening.
The Wilson School Wildcats are rocking it! According to principal/superintendent Eric Hoppes, the school's music program offers kindergarten through third graders musical instruction twice a week with an excellent extra curricular band activity for students in grades fourth through sixth. Wilson School also offers a Homework Club for those who need some extra assistance. The Wildcats are not only working hard in the classroom, but also taking their best effort to the field as part of the school's flag football team. Last week, Wilson players took on the Dunham Dragons. Dunham School District includes Dunham Charter School consisting of kindergarten through sixth grades. Dunham is a California Distinguished School, located in the rural dairy lands of northwest Petaluma. Established in 1870, Dunham is the only school in its small district, serving a total of 180 students annually with one class per grade level. The sports league, made up of smaller schools in the Petaluma area, offers competition in traditional sports as a way to build community between campuses. It's just for fun and the teams don't keep score. This week, Two Rock takes on Wilson and Cinnabar plays Liberty. Dunham students will miss playing this week because the fifth and sixth graders are going to Yosemite for several days as part of the school's outdoor education curriculum. Good luck to all the teams, and safe travels to our local Yosemite-bound explorers.
Another example of a community-building program at local schools is Sonoma Mountain Elementary School's introduction of Soul Shoppe as part National Bullying Prevention Month. Presentations were made to students, staff and parents in an effort to help students navigate all sorts of situations with a common vocabulary to express their experiences. This will be an ongoing program for the campus with the intention of providing all students with a better understanding of the impact of their words and actions.
It is Monarch Mania at St. Vincent Elementary School. Mrs. Salmassian's second grade class has enjoyed learning about and witnessing the incredible metamorphosis of the Monarch butterfly over the past few weeks. They have studied and come to appreciate the fascinating life cycle of the butterfly. Petaluma's own Sharon Dado provided the class with six butterfly eggs. The eggs soon hatched into tiny caterpillars that ate "tons" of milkweed. According to SV parent Kristi Kavanaugh, they quickly grew and became plump, green, yellow, white and black caterpillars. After a few weeks and lots of munching, the caterpillars formed a beautiful chrysalis of pale jade green with gold dots. After about 10 days, the chrysalis turned dark with shades of orange turning into gorgeous butterflies. The second graders have released five butterflies so far, and are excited for the last one that will join his mates soon to winter at Muir Woods or Pacific Grove right here in California. It was a true example of bringing a academic lesson to life for these young students.
A new volunteer was spotted at Lincoln School in recent weeks. Roscoe Born, an actor seen on several soap operas and nighttime shows from the '80s (Incredible Hulk," "Murder She Wrote," "Six Million Dollar Man," to name just a few), joined the school as a classroom volunteer. Mr. Born is helping with round-robin reading, reviewing vocabulary words, and teaching fourth-grade math problems to the students. He also cheered on the students playing a game of soccer during recess, and will be bringing his guitar to sing with students in coming weeks. As we enter this traditional season of giving, a special thank you goes out to each and every one of the amazing volunteers who give so much of their time and talent to our school communities each and every day. You are All Stars in our book!