Friday, January 22, 2016

News and Notes: Volume 2, Number 18

WLPS: We're Kind of a Big Deal
Our school newspaper, The Trojournal, has just completed its campaign soliciting response to the question "If you were principal for a day, what would do?" I was in charge of picking the winner (congratulations to Trey Cucuro), which I did in front of the newspaper class. Afterward, I started thinking about what things I should immediately highlight about our district for our upcoming principal. Two things quickly popped into my head. And they made me quickly realize WLPS is kind of a big deal.

I know Trey well. He is a good student, a good athlete and has a good handle on the ins and outs of high school life. But I bet he didn't know that for almost two weeks we took a whole host of exam study tips from our teaching staff and put them on Twitter to help our students prepare ( I thought it was well done. There were videos, links to our Pinterest boards and even some final exam humor. If you ever needed advice on how to prepare for school, it was there. But what made it really special was that our tips went international! It wasn't just WL students and parents sharing the tweets; it was people from as far away as India. You read that right, a school in India started retweeting our study tips. Pretty big deal.

Speaking of big deals, our Early Childhood Center earned another accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). To make sure Trey understands why this is important, I plan on sharing with him that only about 10% of early child centers earn this distinction in Michigan. The NAEYC is a mark of quality, and it ensures our programs benefit children with greater readiness for success in their K-12 education. I am proud of our director, Sue Wanamaker, the entire staff and the work they do. I am certain Trey will be proud as well. I'm also certain he will know that its a great day to be a Trojan AND that we are a big deal!


Our resourceful and creative Food Service department is always looking for additional ways to inspire our students to develop healthy eating habits. The focus for the next month? Healthy breakfast choices. From now until February 19, thanks to a grant from the United Dairy Industry, WLHS students will get a ticket every day they purchase a smoothie for breakfast. Then every Friday from now until February 19, two tickets will be drawn for Amazon gift cards. To add to our Chromebook craze here at WLPS, names from each week will be saved, and then on February 19, there will be a grand-prize drawing for one winner to receive his/her very own Chromebook!

The 20-ounce smoothies, made up of 8 ounces milk, 4 ounces yogurt and one cup of fruit, come with two packets of graham crackers. They are $2.50 for a full pay student, $.30 for students on the reduced breakfast plan and free for students on the free meal program. With a different flavor each day, students can try strawberry, strawberry banana, blueberry banana, strawberry mango and triple berry.

I commend our Food Service Director, Diane Tomakowski, for her diligence in pursuing grants like the MI Breakfast: The Smoothie Way to provide the very best for our students. For menus and details on our breakfast and lunch programs, check out the Food Service website here:

Mysteries Come Alive
Last week to kick off their mystery reading unit in a fun and unique way, our third graders became detectives right out of a Sherlock Holmes novel.

The crime? Someone borrowed another person's stuffed animal. With Mrs...excuse me I mean Chief Otterman and Chief Withers assisting their detectives as they explored their classroom...I mean crime scene, the case was bound to be solved!  Throughout the week, students checked for fingerprints, observed different types of footprints, compared clothing materials, checked acidity of a soft drink, along with other investigation tactics, with anticipation to solve the mystery. By the end of the week, the mystery had been solved, and our students were super sleuths-- we are talking Sherlock Holmes status.

"The imaginations were running wild! Why is there a can of pop? An ice tray? When they got their own mystery books, they dove right into them---you could hear a pin drop in the class they were so focused on reading, just eating those books up," said Mrs. Otterman.

Our staff do a fantastic job of  stepping out of the obvious and finding unique, creative and personalized ways to engage our students and get them excited about learning.

The Chiefs wanted to give a shout out to high school students Alexis Dancik, Megan Wilson, Ava Dancik and 4th grader James Dancik for helping with the set-up of the crime scene. 

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