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In Honor of Those Who Served

Editor's note: Schools across Kent County observed Veterans Day with a variety of events. Here is a sampling. Byron Center Boys Scouts brought up the flag; "My Country, 'Tis of Thee" was sung; red, white and blue were worn; and...

Chromebook Funding, Fundraising, Moving Slowly

Arlhyn Madrigal checked math homework and Delfina Hernandez played a game called "Buzz Math" on their Chromebooks in their sixth-grade Wyoming Intermediate School classroom. "It's easier to check stuff and you don't need the teacher to help you," said Arlhyn,...

Buck Creek Hunter, Master Ear Wiggler, Life-long Wolf

School: West Elementary Other positions you have held in education (title, school, district, state): Sixth-and-seventh-grade social studies teacher at Jackson Park Junior High School 9th and 10th-grade social studies teacher at Wyoming Park and Rogers High schools Assistant principal at...

Police, Fire Join Alpha Wolf 11 Honorees

High school students and staff recently honored 38 City of Wyoming Police and Fire Department personnel as Champions of Character. Each semester, Wyoming High School staff members and administrators name six students as Alpha Wolf 11 champions, "supreme pack leaders,"...

Toothpick Structures Teach Teamwork, Economics

With toothpicks and miniature cups of glue priced at $500 apiece, Wyoming Intermediate School fifth-graders quickly learned that building a bridge with a $100,000 faux budget was no easy task. "This costs a lot of money and it's extra hard,"...

Volunteer Builds Robots to Teach Engineering

Students on the Wyoming High School FIRST Robotics team explain their robots’ ball-launching mechanism with notes of pride in their voices as they talk about competing against much bigger teams in intense match-ups. They built the machine in six busy...

Is Play Still a Kindergarten Expectation?

Ask any parent of a dinosaur lover who can identify an Apatosaurus atage 3 if learning occurs during play, and the answer is an obvious “yes.” But with the added work on kindergartners comes less time for leisure, and one...

Four Districts Ask Voters for Help Nov. 3

Four Kent County school districts will ask voters for financial support on the election ballot next Tuesday, Nov. 3. The tax requests would pay for everything from building repair and construction to new technology and security measures. Here’s a...

Wyoming Scouts Give Elementary Children a Nicer Place to Play

When West Elementary School moved into the former Newhall Middle School building, students inherited a schoolyard never used by children in kindergarten through fourthgrade. The building was vacant for a year after the middle school closed because of district...

Students Pitch Trash to Clean Schools, Park for Service Day

When Vicki Johnston challenged Parkview Elementary School students to choose a community-service project, they overwhelmingly chose a cause: "Trash the Trash." Hosted by the school's Peer Mentoring Program, about 300 of the Wyoming Public Schools students spread out across Wyoming's...

Teachers Train Together to Help Close the Gap

A fence illustration is often used to show the difference between equality and equity. Two pictures each show three children, one tall, one short and one in between, trying to peer over a fence. In one picture, they are treated...

New Sense of Belonging Leads to Improved Grades, Behavior

As a school social worker and black woman, Brooke Davis found a trend at Wyoming Junior High School distressing: The African-American girl population was leading every other group of students in suspensions. Girls were acting out and turning on each...

Butterflies, Borrowing Books Part of New Life

Parkview Elementary first- and second-graders Erik and Isaac Alfaro spotted monarch caterpillars on milkweed plants at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, in Grand Rapids Township. “How many are there?” asked Lisa DeMaagd, Wyoming Public Schools English Language-Learner coordinator. “Cuatro!”...

First Graders See, Touch and Talk Numbers

It's time for math in Sarah Bultema's Parkview Elementary first-grade class. "This is a 100 chart," Bultema told students who responded with "oohs" and "aahs" as she lifted up a huge sheet of black paper. "And it's missing the numbers...You...

Goodbye to Lecture-based Science

Wyoming Intermediate School teacher Janet Norman's sixth-grade students brainstormed during science class. They considered: What kind of packaging is strong enough for a drone to deliver a fragile item onto a doorstep? "How would I design something and solve this...

When Monsters Call and Teachers Read, Students Listen

The shared love of a book was on display in English teacher Shantel VanderGalien's eighth-grade honors class as she read aloud from "A Monster Calls." Creating a monster voice with a plummy British accent, VanderGalien revealed her theatrical side. The...
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