The Mountain Times

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News briefs from Killington Elementary School

Virtual Field Trips Extend Learning Opportunities
By Loren M. Pepe, Principal

Fourth graders at Killington Elementary School (KES) relished their hour-long session with new friends at Marcellus Elementary School in Michigan. Maria Garland discovered that this fourth grade in Michigan too was studying the solar system. At a recent "virtual" meeting that took place through the Learning Network of Vermont, both classes joined together to make solar system inquiries of each other, as determined by each student.

Our students' displayed increased learning and engagement throughout this process as they prepared for and participated in this enriching opportunity.

Stargazing and the world beyond our own
By Daniel Whitaker, Grade 6 KES

Have you ever wondered what lies in the skies at night? Well, on the night we went stargazing, we got a glimpse of the world beyond our own. On Friday, Feb. 19, Tim Brennan, a teacher at Woodstock Union High School, and Paul Otavsky, a docent, showed us how to, if you look closely, see amazing sights such as the Seven Sisters, a group of stars very close to each other; the Orion Nebula, found in the Orion Constellation where his sword would be; and even planets like Venus and Jupiter! It was a great experience for everyone!

KES guidance update
By M. Hoag, KES Counselor

The Killington Kids Buddy Program is underway. It is a program of peer mentorship where 6th grade students act as a "big brother" or "big sister" to younger students, providing friendship, positive role modeling and/or academic assistance. Buddy matches occur once or twice a week at lunch or recess, and generally last for three to six weeks. Most young children want a Buddy and it is our aim for all who wish for a Buddy to have a Buddy!

In addition, Castleton State College undergrads will be joining us beginning March 2. This has been a long awaited event and we are excited for what CSC has to offer our students! Four undergraduate students will be coming to KES one day per week, to act as mentors to our students in a group format, held during the lunch/recess hour. The topics of discussion and activity will primarily involve strength based life and leadership skills, much like our small social groups, but in a larger context with energetic young adults at the helm! The topic of Tropical Storm Irene (the initial plan/focus), will be a topic of discussion as well, but as an initial lead into the group and with a focus on the strengths gained from the experience, as individuals and as communities.

Many parents have given permission for their children to participate, therefore, no further action is necessary. If you have not signed your child up for the experience and would like to do so, please contact either Mrs. Pepe or myself, and we will be happy to accommodate.

Tagged: KES, Killington Elementary School