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Dad's Day

On Monday 9/18 and Tuesday 9/19 PQ Elementary celebrated Dad's Day. Dads, or other significant male role models, brought their children to school and enjoyed a morning of math games over breakfast. Dads walked their children to class and joined Mrs. Johnson and Dr. Bell for a short presentation on teaching math at the elementary level. Here are some of the photos from the mornings. #PQdadsrock


A New Year of Learning

Students, faculty and administrators are all ready for another exciting year of learning and growth in the North Salem Central School District.

At each grade level, administrators are hosting assemblies and orientations to acquaint and reacquaint students with the ins and outs of the school day.

At the middle/high school, new Principal Mr. Vince DiGrandi and Assistant Principal Dr. Kathleen Murphy have been introducing themselves to students and faculty as they too ease into their roles. They have hosted welcome assemblies for grades 7-12 and have given sixth-graders more time to assimilate to their new building.

“The kids are undergoing a lot of change [with the new administrators],” said Mr. DiGrandi. “But they seem open to new opportunity. Everything has been great so far.”

Pequenakonck Elementary School welcomed new Assistant Principal Dr. Stephanie Bell. She, with Principal Mrs. Mary Johnson, have been meeting with each grade level during the first week to review expectations and appropriate behaviors in various school environments including the cafeteria, hallways, playground and bathrooms.

“It has been a great start to the year,” said Mrs. Johnson. “There is a lot of new energy and the kids are happy to be back.” 

 


Being Friendly with Four-Legged Friends

Friends come in all shapes and sizes, and earlier this year, PQ’s ONE CUB Kindness Initiative made some new four-legged friends when they visited Our Farm Equine Rescue in North Salem. The visit was part of ONE CUB’s expansion to include teaching students about kindness toward pets and animals.

The ONE CUB team decided to use recycling money from bottles/cans donated by students, families, faculty and staff to make a donation to the facility to help feed the rescued horses, as they wait to be adopted and find a forever home. Sharon Kress, the Rescue founder, provided an informative, guided tour and introduced GiGi, Sadie, Harry, Obie and Nugget – the horses she rescued and is currently rehabilitating. Gazing into the expressive eyes of the beautiful animals, the team knew they had to do something to help this most worthy cause.

The team rallied the troops at PQ and sent a letter home to families announcing the project and asking for bottle donations. The response was overwhelming! On May 5, Ms. Kress came to PQ to receive a card containing $220 to help with horse expenses. Lisa Finer and Britt Togonon, PQ paraprofessionals and ONE CUB co-founders, recycled 4,400 bottles and cans over three months to raise this amazing sum.

Kress commented, “Thanks again! We are so appreciative and proud to be a recipient of this program. I am so proud of and impressed by your students. Great job!”

In addition to recycling, a bulletin board was created in PQ’s front hallway, which highlighted a different horse each month in hopes of getting one of them adopted. Greeting all those who enter the building were photos of each “horse of the month” along with what is known of the horse’s history.

Taking care of horses is a big responsibility, and the students in Mrs. Donofrio’s kindergarten class watched, “The Berenstain Bears’ Trouble with Pets” and learned that taking care of and being kind to any pet (large or small) is an important job. The young learners took turns sharing how they take care of their pets at home. 

“We encourage the community to continue supporting this non-profit organization in any way possible. The farm offers after-school enrichment programs and has a Facebook page and website (ourfarmequinerescue.org) detailing all the ways North Salem can help our four-legged neighbors,” Finer and Togonon said in a joint statement. “They will also be at the Old Salem Farm horse show with information about their organization. Together, we can find these beautiful animals a forever home.”

ONE CUB would like to thank PQ’s students, families, and co-workers for bringing in bottles to help the cause. Keep those bottles coming, and we’ll keep recycling to raise funds to spread kindness around our community!

ONE CUB’s mission is to empower students with the knowledge that they can make a difference in our world through kindness, communication, citizenship, problem solving, and celebrating the differences in us all.  It all starts with ONE CUB!



 


Acts of Kindness for the Earth

Kindergarten students celebrated Earth Day by performing acts of kindness that help the planet.

The grade has been engaged all year in the ONE CUB Kindness Initiative, and for Earth Day, students strengthened their school/home connection by bringing home two green leaves. At home, they wrote their earth-friendly acts of kindness on the leaves. Students wrote about acts such as turning the faucet off while they brush their teeth, cleaning up litter and helping their parents in the garden. Students shared their acts of kindness with their classmates before the leaves were added to a gradewide tree mural.

ONE CUB’s mission is to empower students with the knowledge that they can make a difference in our world through kindness.




 


Bringing Brightness to Salem Hills

With little April showers on their shoulders, Pequenakonck Elementary School’s kindergarten classes happily visited their intergenerational friends at Salem Hills Rehabilitation and Nursing Center in Purdys. This sojourn marks the sixth consecutive year of this get-together to share kindness, communication, literacy, music and smiles. This trip is part of the school’s unique, ongoing ONE CUB Kindness Initiative, founded by paraprofessionals Lisa Finer and Britt Togonon in 2008.

The young learners entered the arts and crafts room with a book in one hand ready to read to their senior partners and a handmade tissue paper flower in the other to present as a gift. The friends conversed and colored together as they enjoyed each other’s company. The trip concluded with a sing-along including old standard tunes and a patriotic song. You can’t help but get goosebumps listening to voices harmonizing whose owners are separated by 80 to 100 years!

This unique friendship is ongoing throughout the year. Kindergartners made “Thank you” stars in November for veteran residents at the facility. In December, all four classes arrived with presents for every senior friend to celebrate Christmas and Hanukkah. ONE CUB expanded beyond the kindergarten walls as all grades at PQ participated to write personal cards and letters, make gifts and stationery and collect water bottles to recycle. All recycling money collected was used to purchase a gift for each of the 130 residents. PQ families, faculty and staff donated new items to be gifted – a true collaborative team effort.

In February, Chris Bockis, the activities director of Salem Hills, visited kindergarten classrooms along with her assistant, Victoria, dressed in costume to celebrate the birthday of Dr. Seuss. Salem Hills gifted the kindergarten with a Dr. Seuss book as well as a very special game designed by the seniors for their young friends. The year culminates with this April visit – a heartwarming experience for all!

ONE CUB is a constant team effort – thanks go to paraprofessionals Claudia Badia, Denise Coursen and Carole Galligan, as well as the kindergarten teaching team, for their ongoing help and support.

The mission of ONE CUB is to empower our students with the knowledge that they can make a difference in our world through kindness, citizenship, problem solving, communication and celebrating the differences in us all. ONE CUB contributes to forming the foundation of these building blocks and skills that the students will cultivate and refine over their years at PQ, the MS/HS and beyond. A happy heart is an important thing to have - always! It all starts with ONE CUB!




 

 


Learning the Importance of Pollinators

 

Fifth-grade students at Pequenakonck Elementary School took their studies of plants and the environment outdoors in honor of Earth Day.

In a PTO-sponsored assembly, students learned the importance of pollinators and supporting habitats by replanting native plants and flowers in the area.

“Students helped to turn the PQ garden into a pollinator garden,” said Assistant Principal Julio Vasquez. “They planted many bee and butterfly friendly flowers.”

The flowers were seedlings that students had begun growing in their classrooms, as well as seeds that were sown directly into the garden.

“Some of the flowers students planted were milkweed, swamp milkweed, butterfly weed, joe pye weed, calendula, sunflower and poppies,” said Vasquez. “Many thanks to our fifth-grade students, teachers [Mr. Tavino, Mrs. Oswald, Mrs. LeFave, Mrs. Federici and Mrs. O'Brien] and a special thank you to Mrs. Tait for spearheading the project. This project served to develop our students' communicator, collaborator, critical and creative thinking skills, [and allowed them] to actively display citizenship by caring for our environment.”




 


 Sharing an Environmental Message

 

Leading up to Earth Day, senior members of the high school’s Environmental Club visited Pequenakonck Elementary School’s kindergarten classes to share a message about protecting the environment.

The high schoolers, in pairs, read the Dr. Seuss book “The Lorax” to each kindergarten class.

“We chose ‘The Lorax’ for its environmental themes,” said club advisor Ms. Kylie McCarron.

In addition to sharing an earth-friendly message, the seniors delighted in visiting their former classrooms and teachers and meeting with the younger students.

“It’s about building connections,” said Ms. McCarron. “It’s nice when the kids take charge and teach other kids.”

After the read aloud, the seniors shared some of the initiatives the club has undertaken to make North Salem a little greener. They then asked kindergartners what they have done and can do to protect the environment. The PQ students were eager to speak about times they had picked up garbage and planted trees.




 

 

Spreading Joy and Smiles

 

Kindergartners at North Salem’s Pequenakonck Elementary School continue to bring smiles to others as part of the ongoing ONE CUB kindness initiative. Students decorated “Feel Better Snowmen” cards to bring some cheer to the pediatric patients at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.

Prior to making the cards, paraprofessionals Claudia Badia, Lisa Finer, Carole Galligan and Britt Togonon read the Caldecott Medal winner, “A Sick Day for Amos McGee” by Philip C. Stead, with the students. They explained that making others feel better when they are ill is one way we can all share kindness. The students were soon busy coloring, gluing on sequins and stickers, as well as the following message of friendship and cheer:

This little snowman comes to say,
“Hope you feel better today!”
Love,
The Pequenakonck Kindergarten

PQ’s youngest learners were excited to create the cards and discovered that spreading joy and smiles to others can make your own heart happy too.

ONE CUB’s goal is to empower kindergartners with the knowledge that they can make a positive difference in our world through kindness.

 





2017 PARP Order Forms

Grade 1 Nick Bruel February 8th

Grades K&3 Laurie Keller March 9
Grade 2 David Adler March 28

 

 

 

 

2nd Grade Odyssey Gymnastics Trip

2nd Grade visits Odyssey Gymnastics to enjoy a fun-filled field trip
where they get to develop improved physical fitness as well as positive self-esteem through their involvement in gymnastics activities.




PQ's "Snowflake Ball"

All PQ girls invited their favorite special guest...Dad, Grandfather, Uncle, Brother, or other special guest for a night of dancing, ice cream sundaes, and much more!




Making a Difference at PQ

 

Pequenakonck Elementary School kindergarten students are learning they can make a positive impact on the world every day, thanks to lessons they received during the annual Make a Difference Day in October.

As part of ONE CUB, the ongoing Kindergarten Kindness initiative, students took home red and orange paper hearts to list all of their kind deeds for family and friends. The hearts helped reinforce the school/home connection and involved families in the students’ acts of kindness. Parents contributed by writing down the acts of kindness their children performed at home, ranging from cleaning their rooms and helping their siblings to setting the table and hugging family members.

The hearts were then brought back to the classroom, where students cheered for their peers’ acts of kindness before the hearts were hung on the tree mural in the kindergarten hallway.




 

 


Third graders visited The Hardscrabble Club as part of their tennis unit in Physical Education. Instruction focused on stance, grip, forehand & backhand swings.




Recyclo-Cubby Promotes Kindergarten Kindness

Visitors to Pequenakonck Elementary School will encounter a new greeter just inside the front doors of the school in Recyclo-Cubby – the latest addition to the school’s ONE CUB Kindergarten Kindness initiative that encourages PQ students to make a positive difference in the world.

Standing at 6’4”, Recyclo-Cubby is tough to miss. It was constructed during the last school year out of materials that were recycled and repurposed by PQ students, with assistance from paraprofessionals Lisa Finer and Britt Togonon. In total, Recyclo-Cubby is made up of 781 bottle caps, 273 snack wrappers, 246 plastic bags, 20 pounds of newspaper, along with miscellaneous pieces of memory foam, pool noodles, chicken wire, a box, six tall blue water bottles, a metal pipe, old sneakers and six layers of paper maché.

The school’s 360-degree mascot contains the following messages: recycle, honesty, kindness, respect, reuse, empathy, friendship, mindfulness, problem solver and perseverance; all life skills important to the PQ community as the students mature during their years at the school and beyond.

 


Kindergartners Thank Local Veterans

As part of the ONE CUB Kindness Initiative, all four Pequenakonck Elementary School kindergarten classes gathered in the cafeteria on Nov. 7 to learn about the country’s brave veterans and the importance of thanking them as Veterans Day approached.

Students listened to the story “Hero Dad” and created and decorated 3-D stars bearing messages of thanks. The stars were delivered to veterans at the Burke Rehabilitation and Outpatient Clinic in Somers, the Salem Hills Rehabilitation and Healthcare Facility in Purdys and the James J. Peters VA Medical Center in the Bronx. Stars were gifted to veterans working right in the North Salem Central School District, as well. The kindergartners also made star necklaces with a shiny penny in the middle to wear on Veterans Day or to give to a relative who is a veteran.

Kindergartners are learning that kindness makes a positive difference in our world — ONE CUB at a time! 

 

First Grade Visits Philipsburg Manor

First Grade students visit Philipsburg Manor and participate in a touch tour of the past. They visited the manor house, grist mill, kitchen and the farm to experience how families lived long ago. Here, they are looking at a cotton plant.

 


Dads Day Brings Special Guests to PQ 

 

 

4th Grade Sails the Hudson River on the Clearwater Sloop

 

 Profile of a North Salem Graduate

North Salem’s Board of Education heard a presentation at its Sept. 14, 2016 meeting that unveiled the “Profile of a North Salem Graduate as a Problem Solver.”
 
During the presentation, Dr. Michael Hibbard, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction and Human Resources, outlined the skills, concepts and qualities that the school district aims to instill in its students throughout their time at Pequenakonck Elementary School, the Middle/High School and eventually as high school graduates.
 
As problem-solvers, Dr. Hibbard said, graduates will demonstrate being:

·         Critical and creative thinkers
·         Collaborators
·         Communicators
·         Citizens
·         Continuously improving learners
 
This portrait aligns with the district Mission, which is to “Engage students to continuously learn, question, define and solve problems through critical and creative thinking.”
 
Please check the district website each week for a “Mission Monday” post sharing one or more of the ways North Salem students are engaging in Mission-related skills and developing the qualities that will allow them to become successful problem-solvers in all areas of their lives as graduates of the North Salem Central School District.
 
To read more about the “Profile of a North Salem Graduate as a Problem Solver,” please click here.



 

PQ Students Head Back to School

 

Pequenakonck Elementary School was buzzing with excitement on Sept. 6 as students returned to the classrooms, their new teachers and old friends for the 2016-17 academic year.

Younger students enjoyed tours of the building, which familiarized them with the various classrooms they will visit during the year, while older students became reacquainted with the school and learned about some of the responsibilities they will have this year, including setting an example for their younger peers.

 

Upcoming Events

Sep 5 PQ Family Open House 3-5pm  
Sep 6 First Day of School - Kindergarten dismissed at 11:30am, PTO Mtg & New Parent Tea 9am  

Sep 7 Curriculum Night K 6:45pm, Gr 1 7:45pm

 
Sep 8 Kindergarten and NEW Family PTO Ice Cream Social 5pm  
Sep 13 Curriculum Night Gr 4: 6:45pm, Gr 5: 7:45pm, Band Info Night 6pm  

Sep 14 First Full Day Kindergarten

 
Sep 18/19 Dad's Day 7:50am-9:30am  
Sep 19 Curriculum Night Gr 2 6:45am, Gr 3 7:45am  
Sep 20 PQ Picture Day  
Sep 21 & 22 No School - Religious Observance
Sep 26 Coffee with the Principals 9am  
Oct 14 Harvest Festival 12-3pm THIS IS A CHANGE!
Chase University River Central School District