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 learned about weather firsthand with a visit from News 12 meteorologist Rich Hoffman. Second-graders recently finished a science unit on weather and have been studying the different types of storms and weather on Long Island.
Second-grade students at Forest Lake School shared their recently acquired knowledge of coding with third-grade peers while teaching them to make apps. In December, each of the second graders learned the basics of computer coding during the school’s first Hour of Code event.
Inside Forest Lake, students traded their jackets for Hawaiian shirts and their snow boots for flip-flops as they celebrated the school’s annual Beach Day. Even the snow piles and freezing temperatures outside were long forgotten as classes participated in a number of activities to celebrate the coming summer months on Long Island.
Even though Punxsutawney Phil failed to see his shadow on Groundhog Day, administrators and teachers from the district’s three elementary schools happened to see the shadows of 32 enthusiastic high school students, who followed mentors throughout the school day.
Forest Lake fourth-graders now know how to make wampum and cornhusk dolls and have tasted johnnycakes after participating in their school’s Native American Day. Teacher Michelle Anszelowicz explained that the students had learned about Native American life and the Iroquois of New York State in their social studies classes and discussed how the Pilgrims relied on the Native Americans’ knowledge to help them through the first harsh winter.
Forest Lake students engaged in a Skype session with popular children’s author Laura Murray, who wrote “The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School,” among other stories. “Students give me ideas and inspire me,” Murray said. “My ideas also come from funny and interesting things that happen in life.”
Forest Lake Elementary School students in Christine Torrellas’ class created a gift of construction paper mice with candy cane tails for the residents of the A. Holly Paterson Nursing Home in Uniondale. The class decided to give the gifts to the seniors, who may not receive visits from friends or family over the holidays. The idea was conceived after the students read about the Toys for Tots program, which prompted a discussion on how to make the residents’ holidays more festive.
Fourth- and fifth-grade members of the Forest Lake Student Council made personalized holiday cards for children 8 to 12 years old who reside in foster homes and who are assisted by the Little Flower Children and Family Services of New York. The activity allowed the Wantagh students to think about others and do something positive for children of the same age.
Students and staff at Mandalay and Forest Lake elementary schools dressed in hockey jerseys and donned blue and orange to welcome four members of the New York Islanders hockey team. On Islanders Day each year, schools are chosen to receive a visit from the players, who speak about teamwork, motivation, a healthy lifestyle and the key to academic success. The players also take the time to sign autographs.
Dear Forest Lake Community,
The book that I have chosen as this month’s book of the month is called The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes, by Mark Pett and Gary Rubinstein. I would like to thank Wantagh SEPTA for purchasing this month’s book and for their ongoing support of our Book of the Month program.
“Beatrice Bottomwell is a nine-year-old girl who has never (not once!) made a mistake. She never forgets her math homework, she never wears mismatched socks, and she ALWAYS wins the yearly talent show at school. In fact, Beatrice holds the record of perfection in her hometown, where she is known as The Girl Who Never Makes Mistakes. Life for Beatrice is sailing along pretty smoothly until she does the unthinkable–she makes her first mistake.”
The message in this book is clear as day and very easy for students of all ages to grasp. It is ok to make mistakes and important for children to be comfortable just being a kid without the fear of failure. Children need to learn to deal with failure. If they do not grasp this concept, they will be paralyzed by fear and that will keep them from trying new activities and living a care free life. We spent time earlier this year talking about a concept known as “failing forward.” It is a term that is used regularly in our Maker Space as students work on their ideas, learn from their failures, and move forward. It is a growth mindset as opposed to a fixed mindset that we are trying to get our students to function under.
This book is a great read for any young perfectionist. Growing up is a messy and frustrating process and it is so important that children learn to not take themselves too seriously. Sometimes kids just need to be kids……and it’s as simple as that!
Anthony F. Ciuffo, Jr.
Anthony F. Ciuffo, Jr.
Forest Lake Elementary School