Forest Lake Elementary School is dedicated to the achievement of academic excellence and the lifelong love of learning, the enhancement of self-esteem, the building of character, respect, and responsibility through the cooperation of home, school, and community.
Forest Lake students celebrated the birthday of popular author Dr. Seuss by reading his books and participating in a myriad of interdisciplinary activities on March 2. In Christine Torrellas’s class, the students read “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish” and “The Lorax.” After discussing the characters and the methods Dr. Seuss used in his literature, they made Lorax mustaches and Lorax planters with grass seed that will grow to appear like hair. The students also made Lorax cookies.
New York State Assemblyman Dave McDonough and New York State Sen. Michael Venditto spoke to Forest Lake fifth-grade students during an assembly about government. The presentation reinforced information from the students’ comprehensive fifth-grade government unit. Both New York State representatives described their jobs and explained how government works on the state level. They also took time to answer questions and sign autographs.
At Forest Lake, students predicted how many beanbags they could throw in 100 seconds into the hole of a beanbag throw game. Classes read poems and books, including Karen Fenstermaker’s “100 Animals” and Margery Cuyler’s “100th Day Worries.” Using a scale, they also predicted which 100 objects (nickels, paper clips, candy, etc.) weighed more and recorded their results.
Warming Hearts with a Coat Donation Forest Lake student council members collected coats for Assemblyman Dave McDonough’s 2014 Coats for Kids Campaign, under the direction of advisers Susan Burdick and Colleen Nicolosi. The students were delighted at the opportunity to give back to the community and were pleased with its overwhelming success. Mr. McDonough visited the students and thanked them for participation in this valuable campaign for adults and children in need.
Forest Lake kindergarten students were the recipients of wonderful books donated by members of the high school senior class. Wantagh High School students John Casella, Alexis Conway, Melissa Ehl, Emily Fenter and Kaitlyn von Runnen wanted to stock the kindergarten classrooms with some of their favorite books and took requests from teachers. As a surprise, John, Melissa and Kaitlyn read their donated picture books to excited and attentive students.
This Thanksgiving, while many are busy cooking their feasts or watching football, Forest Lake Elementary School special education teacher Christine Torrellas will don a Mother Goose costume and marches in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The annual trek through the streets of Manhattan has been a family tradition for the past 14 years.
In celebration of Veterans Day, Forest Lake Elementary School third-graders attended an assembly that featured discussions with community veterans. Many of the veterans were grandparents and parents of the students. The active and retired veterans discussed their experiences during active duty and shared their dog tags, a Purple Heart and a Marine Corps flag, as well as photos of the countries where they were stationed.
Kindergarten students in Lynn Adams’ class at Forest Lake decided that Duck, the main character in Doreen Cronin’s “Duck for President” has qualities that would make him a great U.S. leader. He won a proverbial election against Pete the Cat, a character in the popular Harper Collins series written by Eric Litwin.
Touchdown Terror, Graveyard Golf and Spider Bowl are just three of the 15 physical education stations that comprise the Halloween Fitness Funhouse at Forest Lake and Wantagh elementary schools. Wantagh Elementary School physical education teacher Christine Moran and current Forest Lake Principal Anthony Ciuffo developed this thrilling and spooky physical education unit a decade ago, and each year the students look forward to playing games like Candy Corn and Ghostbusters Bowling or traveling through the Tunnel of Terror.
With the approach of the fall season, first-grade students at Forest Lake and Wantagh elementary schools have been studying the properties of apples and utilizing math, English language arts and science skills in their examination of this versatile and popular fruit.
Dear Forest Lake Community,
The book that I have chosen as this month’s book of the month is called Enemy Pie, written by Derek Munson and illustrated by Tara Calahan King. Due to the shortened month and the importance of this topic, I have decided to make this our book for April and May. This book was generously donated to Forest Lake through a grant we received from Wantagh SEPTA. We are greatly appreciative for the ongoing support that our learning community has given to this valuable program.
In this funny yet endearing story, one little boy learns an effective recipe for turning a “best enemy” into a best friend. This story brings to life the difficulties and ultimate rewards of making new friends, a topic that we hold near and dear here at Forest Lake!
“It was the perfect summer. That is, until Jeremy Ross moved into the house down the street and became Enemy Number One. Luckily, Dad has a surefire way to get rid of enemies – Enemy Pie. But one of the secret ingredients is spending an entire day with the enemy!”
Derek Munson has written a charming, amusing story with a subtle lesson that will not be lost on young learners. His text and humorous dialogue are true to life and kids will really be able to identify with his characters. Tara Calahan King's wonderful, expressive artwork really compliments the story and together they send the important message that the best way to get rid of your enemies, is to make them your friends.
Enemy Pie serves up a sweet lesson in friendship and I am sure that your children will enjoy it. If you would like to view a reading of this story, you can search “Enemy Pie read by Camryn Manheim” on www.youtube.com. I once again look forward to the valuable life lessons and conversations that will ensue after your children read this story with their teachers and classmates.
Anthony F. Ciuffo Jr.
Forest Lake Elementary School