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Fairfax Monthly Updates - November 2017
Counselor
Happy Fall!  Our Fairfax School Family is off to a great start this year.  So far, we have spent the month of October hearing about bullying, the difference between conflict and bullying, and what to do if you or someone else is being bullied.  We are also enjoying our new monthly School Family Celebration Assemblies- ask your student all of the new and exciting things we are doing in our assemblies.  As we approach the time change, please remember to adjust your clocks and remember that school begins at 8:50 a.m.  Students may enter the building at 8:25 a.m. for breakfast.  Lastly, if you are interested in participating in our monthly Conscious Discipline Book Study, please contact me, Mrs. Stoicoiu, at m_stoicoiu@chuh.org or Mrs. Kephart at k_kephart@chuh.org. 

First:
First graders took a trip back in time as we studied life long ago. The students made homemade applesauce and compared how long it took to how convenient our life is today where we can simply go to the store and buy it. The students took a trip to Hale Farm and Village where they got to see how people lived and worked 100 and 200 years ago. The students toured houses and saw a glass blowing and black-smith demonstration.  All the students agreed that life today is much easier. 

Second:
The second grade students recently returned from a field trip to the Superior Road School House in Cleveland Heights.  In conjunction with our current IB unit planner, Where We Are in Place and Time, the students had an opportunity to learn about all of the changes that have taken place in the Cleveland Heights community from the late 1800”s until today.  They were able to view a slide presentation that showed what the community looked like over 100 years ago, the transformation that has taken place throughout the years, and compared and contrasted life back then to their lives today.  They were even shown a class picture of a class at Fairfax during the 1920’s as well as a map of the Fairfax community from 1941.   

Fourth:
The fourth grade is working on “Where we are in place and time” for our current IB unit of study.  Students attended the show, “Hansel and Gretel” at Playhouse Square and drafted a “modern” version of the story after discussing some of the ways in which the story transcends all cultures, places, and time. In English and language arts and science, students are making connections and asking questions that guide their learning about fossils, organisms, and the environment.  As their cumulative assignment for this IB unit of study, students will conduct an investigative project informing the public how changes in an environment can harm or benefit organisms in that ecosystem.          

Fifth:
The fifth grade spent an afternoon in the community painting murals on a retaining wall. The neighborhood beautification project was also done with students from Boulevard and Heights High. Each student designed a house in art class with Ms. Friedland. The homecoming parade marched past the wall. Their knowledge of typical Cleveland Heights architecture was displayed in their paintings. We would like to thank all of the parent volunteers that were able to support us in completing this project.

Music Notes from Mrs. Gray:
We are excited for our grades 4 and 5 Fairfax Honors Chorus! We will be performing in the Musical “Shrek” at the High School on November 2nd and 4th at 7:00pm.  Go on line to purchase tickets at www.clevelandheightschoirs.com.  In grade 3 students are getting their recorders and will begin practicing.  Kindergarten is learning opposites in music fast/slow, up/down and what it means to keep a steady beat.  Grades 1 and 2 have started preparations for our Winter Concert “Freeze Frame”.  Look for songsheets to come home and help them practice.  Keep singing!

Intervention Specialist:
It's been an exciting October for students in Mrs. Klein’s and Ms. Joseph's classes. They have been taking swimming lessons on Wednesdays with the help of Ms. Blair, Adaptive PE teacher and the Warrensville Hts. YMCA.  On Thursdays, they are participating in horseback riding at Fieldstone Therapeutic Riding Center. Students have the opportunity to increase their safety and independence in the pool. At the farm, students learn about the equipment horses need, how to groom them and how to communicate with them, all while learning how to ride in the gorgeous backdrop of a park-like setting. Thank you to CHUH, Fieldstone Farm and the Warrensville Hts. YMCA for supporting these amazing activities!

PE Patter:
Schools Now Have a Bike Fleet to Teach Safe Cycling
While seeking to identify ways to maximize the use of limited Safe Routes to School funding, Chagrin Falls’ bicycle fleet intrigued Cleveland Heights. The founder of the Chagrin Falls Safe Routes to School program said that getting a bike fleet to teach students safe cycling was the best single thing their program had done, and she expected it to be a long-term benefit for their students.
With that endorsement, our own intrepid Cleveland Heights employee, Jennifer Kuzma, worked with suppliers to develop an application to purchase a trailer to convey bikes from school to school, bikes including 20 Giant 24 inch and 4 Giant 26 inch in size, many helmets, and a compressor to fill tires.  
First to use the fleet was Julie Lustic, PE teacher at Canterbury Elementary School. Being first has its challenges, but Julie reported, “The kids and I are loving having the bikes! This is a fantastic addition to our curriculum. Many of our students do not know how to ride or do not have access to a bike. They have learned a lot, including for some how to ride. Thank you!”  And a third-grader in Julie’s class said, “Getting to ride bikes and learning about safe cycling is the best thing I’ve done in school since I started!”
All Fairfax 3rd, 4th and 5th graders have had 3 weeks of bike safety training.  They practiced starting, stopping, hand signals, looking over the left shoulder and helmet fitting.  6 non riders learned to ride!
We have some wonderful PE teachers that enjoy including bicycling in their curriculum.  The fleet moved on to Fairfax Elementary School and will likely go to Gearity Professional Development School next.  Hopefully, all the elementary and middle schools will use it.
Safe Routes to School is a federal program that aims to create safe, convenient, and fun opportunities for children to bicycle and walk to and from schools. The goal is to reverse the decline in children walking and bicycling to schools, increase kids' safety and change the alarming nationwide trend toward childhood obesity and inactivity. 
 
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