Collaboration was key for students as they participated in Mandalay’s STEAM (science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics) Day in the gymnasium. Under the direction of STEAM consultants Joan Soldano and Brianna Paul, and with supplies donated by the school’s PTA, students in each grade lent their ideas to the completion of specific tasks that honed the engineering and design processes.
In recognition of National Nutrition Month, Mandalay students are taking a closer look at what they are eating during lunch. During March, the school goal is for students to become more mindful when choosing food items, to incorporate more lean proteins, whole grains and vegetables and to limit sugars and processed foods.
Fourth-grade students at Mandalay dissected owl pellets during a unit on ecosystems and their interactions with living and nonliving things. After reading about ecosystems from literature in the Wonders Reading Series, the students used their science textbook to further explore key vocabulary and concepts. They learned how energy is transferred in ecosystems, the roles of living things in an ecosystem and how living things acquire their energy.
In celebration of Valentine’s Day, students have been busy decorating Mandalay Elementary School’s Tree of Love. Sponsored by the school’s PTA, the Tree of Love is located in the main lobby and holds decorated hearts with messages about what students “love” most about their school.
In honor of Veterans Day, Mandalay Elementary School’s student council members hosted a collection drive for a local chapter of the Blue Star Mothers of America, a nonprofit organization that sends care packages to members of the Armed Forces with items requested by them. The students packaged all of the items with handmade cards.
To enhance the District’s STEAM initiative, students at Mandalay, Forest Lake and Wantagh elementary schools are provided with additional science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics workshops in the schools’ STEAM labs. Under the direction of STEAM teacher Kaitlin Dayton, students can work on various projects during recess time.
In addition to learning core academic skills, Mandalay students have been brushing up their manners with the Manners of the Month program. During this yearlong program, students focused on one key “manner” per month including choosing words carefully, saying thank you and sorry, watching their tone of voice, demonstrating patience, complementing peers, greeting others and saying excuse me.
Summertime seems to move faster than we would hope for, and before you know it I will be greeting all of the Mandalay children back to school on September 1st. The start of a school year marks new beginnings, and memories to be made. I am pleased to know each child’s name that is returning to Mandalay, and eager to learn about our incoming kindergartners and new students to the district. One of the greatest joys of my job is gaining a small glimpse of the children each day while they are at school.
This summer my family and I embarked upon our own new journey, as we moved to another town. Watching my children prepare to attend a new school (with an anxious feeling inside themselves) reminded me once again on just how important the role of a school factors into a child's social and emotional well-being.
I look forward to a successful school year.