Archives for February 2017

JK/Ks Delight the Residents at the Beehive Homes!

Beehive Homes Visit_1By Reed Gabhart, Head of Goshen Campus

Everyone talks today about how “busy” we all are and the hectic pace of such a connected world. But sometimes you just have to take a step back and make room for something worthwhile and special in your day. That was the case this Thursday when I accompanied our JK and K students on a field trip just down the road to sing Valentine’s Day songs to the residents at the Goshen Beehive Home.

And while I thought about cancelling to make sure I attended to all of my “important” emails, I’m so glad I didn’t! Faith Murphy, Lower School music teacher extraordinaire, had our little ones in tip-top shape and ultra-excited to sing to their newfound friends. It was so heartwarming to see the responses from the residents who tapped their toes, nodded their heads, sang along a bit, and smiled throughout. Our teeny chorus enthralled them with their enthusiasm, dance steps, voices, inimitable cuteness, and, of course, youth. What led to this touching field trip? From Faith:

“When Kim Aberle taught the JK and K kids, she used to take students to sing songs at nursing homes. I felt it was time to bring back that tradition. I really wanted to go to Beehive because they are so close to our school. We started practicing at the beginning of January, and the children all worked hard and were very excited for this visit. It was very well received by the residents there, and I am hopeful that we can continue a relationship with them in the future. Everyone, big and little, got something out of it. I couldn’t be more proud of my students!”

One of my favorite moments of the exchange was at the end when our kids presented valentines to the residents. They approached them a little timidly in groups of two or three and asked them questions. As they grew more confident, the questions turned to laughter, shortly thereafter followed by hugs, and I even saw a kiss on the the cheek. Talk about lumps in the throat!

At St. Francis, we are firm believers in service learning and contributing to the local community. This was one of the finest examples I’ve been able to witness. Kudos to the JK and K teachers and Faith for making such a wonderful memory  – for the residents at Beehive, and for our impressionable youngsters as well. I hope everyone has a wonderful Winter Break!

School Notes for Week of February 6 – February 10

The Science Olympiad Regional Competition is Saturday, March 18th at KCD and parent volunteers are needed to prepare and run events. Science Olympiad is an all-day competition where Middle School and High School teams participate in 23 events covering all aspects of science; from technology and engineering, to chemistry and physics, to life sciences. Teams from both of our campuses have been working hard collecting materials, studying, practicing, building, breaking, and rebuilding.

The Louisville Regional Competition is the only one in the state that is completely organized and run by teachers and volunteers from the competing schools. For this year’s competition, we are still in need of Event Supervisors for three of the events at the High School level: Remote Sensing (using remote sensing imagery, data, and computational process skills to complete tasks related to climate change processes in the Earth system), Hydrogeology (manipulating a groundwater computer model to answer questions about groundwater concepts, and evaluate solutions based on hydrogeological evidence, to reduce anthropogenic effects on groundwater), and Experimental Design (determining a team’s ability to design, conduct, and report the findings of an experiment actually conducted on site).

If you or anyone you know would be interested in volunteering to prepare and run an event or would like more information about the events, please contact Downtown Campus chemistry teacher Luke Johnson

Studio Borgo AT 2017Interested in taking art classes in Italy? Join Goshen Campus art teacher Alex Taylor for a Plein Air Landscape Workshop in Tuscany July 17th – 21st. Alex has been invited once again to conduct a one-week drawing and plein air landscape painting workshop with Tom Ruggio in Tuscany, Italy. The experience is a truly memorable one, as you experience art classes, art history, local history, Tuscan cuisine, and living in a delightful Italian town. The workshop is limited to six participants, so if you are interested, visit the website and apply early. Please contact Alex Taylor with any questions or for additional information. 

Don’t miss the opportunity to reserve your copy of the 2016-17 yearbook! We are able to offer a reduced price of $50 until March 1st; after that, the price will be $57. Similar to last year, the yearbook will come out BEFORE the end of the school year so that students can sign copies and have them for the summer break. We will mail a spring supplement full of great photos from end of the year activities, graduations, etc. to each of you who purchase a yearbook. The spring supplement comes with an adhesive strip to insert into your yearbook. Also, all yearbook ordering and purchasing is done through our yearbook company, Herff Jones.​

Click here to purchase the SFS yearbook now. Please contact Rosanne Conlan or Trisha Amirault for any additional questions.

Photo Gallery for Week of February 6 – February 10

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Alexis Nelson ’18 Climbs the Ranks as the State’s Top Scorer

Alexis Nelson '18 FPWave 3 covers Alexis Nelson ’18 who notched her 1,000th career point in January and stands atop the Kentucky state standings for average points per game scored this season in girls’ basketball. Click here to read the article.

Winter Sports Spirit Night

Spirit WearBy Suzanne Gorman, Head of Downtown Campus

Tonight we celebrate our Winter Sports Spirit Night, honoring bowling and basketball athletes. The School Committee planned a Pajama Day yesterday, followed by Wyvern Wear Day today, and has also made banners for the basketball teams to run through prior to their games. Activities will get underway at the Goshen Campus as soon as we get out there after dismissal, as the faculty take on the students in a basketball game. (It is important to note that we do not allow current basketball players to take part in this. After all, we do not want them worn out for their actual games. And also, we don’t want to lose too badly.) Class of 2017 athletes will be honored with Senior Night festivities prior to tip-off of the boys’ basketball game v. Covington Latin at 6:00 p.m., followed by the girls’ game against Covington Latin at 7:30 p.m. Students will enjoy free popcorn and soft drinks and some halftime contests during both games. Thanks to the School Committee and to our Athletic Coordinator Catherine Lafronza for all the planning and work on this – looking forward to a fun night!

Our Faculty in Action!

Debbie Adkins Science ProjectBy Reed Gabhart, Head of Goshen Campus

This is the time of year when my Lower School counterpart, Jen Griffith, and I take a few weeks to observe each and every faculty member teach a classroom lesson. We do this for several reasons: to provide teachers with feedback on their teaching techniques; to see what is going on and be present in the classrooms; and to keep abreast with curriculum. As I always say to our wonderful teachers, I inevitably wind up feeling like I get more out of it than they do! And it is a visual, sonic, and experiential reminder of all the wonderful things happening in our building every single day. In the last two weeks alone I’ve witnessed:

  • Students doing a group work simulation on how pollutants get into waterways in Debbie Adkins’ class.
  • 7th graders learning how to play and sing “Hey Jude” on ukuleles in Bob Bertke’s music room.
  • Students learning about the Han Dynasty in ancient China through visiting multiple classroom stations (art, calligraphy, inventions, etc.) in Brandon Doble’s room.
  • Mexican Suns Alex Taylor Art ClassColorful Mexican sun masks coming to life via clay and kiln-firing in Alex Taylor’s art room.
  • A wonderful parallel between the difficulties associated with excessive immigration in the Reconstruction Period in post Civil War America and what is going on politically today in our country (through poetry no less!) in Patrick Donovan’s 8th grade language arts class.
  • Another simulation that demonstrated the vast differences in wealth and power among social classes during the Middle Ages in Julie Mushkin’s class. (Skittles are great motivators!).
  • And finally, an impressive experiment that culminated with DNA being extracted from strawberries for all to see in a lab in Jason Chlopek’s science class.

And from Jennifer Griffith:

  • Andrew Frechette, Heather McGraw, and Annette Rudd’s junior kindergarten and kindergarten classes preparing for the Chinese New Year celebration by reading books about Chinese customs and culture, and creating a dragon head from cardboard for the parade.
  • Colonial America Activities_12nd and 3rd grade Spanish classes starting rehearsals for “The Three Little Pigs” play with Salema Jenkins, which they will perform for the Lower School at the end of April.
  • 1st graders in Julie Dayton’s class preparing for the 100th day of school by writing what they think they will and won’t do when they’re 100 years old.
  • 4th graders making toys, crafts, and foods (johnnycakes) to experience what life was like for children in Colonial America with Sarah Dewberry, Joanne Brock, and Christine Brinkmann.
  • 4th graders in Michelle Hall’s science class making and experimenting with pulleys.
  • 3rd and 4th grade “Acts of Kindness” Project holding a bake sale to benefit Go Ministries. They made $300!

What you will notice in all these scenarios is that few of these activities involve worksheets or rote memorization. Almost all are interactive, interesting, fun, involve group work, and generally allow for differentiation. And I have to say in an ironic way, this is “routine” for St. Francis. We sometimes focus so much on all the other good things we’re doing around here that we forget that some of the most magical things are happening right under our students’ noses every day! I can’t wait to continue on in this journey over the next few weeks!

College Corner February 2017

college-cornerBy Kit Llewellyn, College Advisor

Don’t forget about your February college preparation to-dos! Read on to see what you should be doing now as a sophomore, junior, and senior.

Sophomores:

  • Consider a college summer program. Do your research on the Internet or with Kit Llewellyn.
  • Continue enjoying your extracurriculars, hobbies, or a part-time job.
  • Think about using the February Winter Break for visits to nearby colleges/universities for initial comparisons.
  • Give a lot of energy to your studies!

Juniors:

  • Register for the SAT and ACT tests online at www.collegeboard.org or www.act.org.
  • Those students who are eligible for extended time need to check in with Michelle Salerno in order to complete registrations for the SAT and ACT.
  • Those students who believe that they will qualify for fee waivers for the SAT/ACT, please see Kit Llewellyn.  
  • This is the last semester that counts towards your GPA so go for it; show the colleges what you have to offer!
  • Consider a college summer program, course, or job.
  • Each junior will have an individual meeting with Kit Llewellyn and together they will generate a list of suggested colleges.
  • Parents of juniors are encouraged to make appointments with Kit Llewellyn after the lists are composed for further discussion and planning.
  • Plan on taking the SAT in March or May, the ACT in April or June, and SAT Subject Tests in June if your colleges require those tests.
  • Consider planning some college visits during the February Winter Break and the April Spring Break.

Seniors:

  • Complete your taxes, send financial aid forms (*FAFSA and CSS Profile forms when required) and the specific aid forms from the individual colleges.
  • If a seventh-semester transcript is required, please ask Kit Llewellyn to send it.
  • Mid-year reports are required by some colleges.
  • Continue to research scholarship info in Kit Llewellyn’s office and online at fastweb.com
  • Keep working on your Senior Projects and enjoy!
  • Your senior grades will always be a permanent piece of your high school record…don’t slack off!
  • Check that all of your colleges have received all materials: applications, fees, test scores, recommendations, and financial aid forms.
  • Carefully read all emails and information coming from admissions offices: acceptance procedures, housing, financial aid procedures, registration, and orientation. Periodically check your spam because sometimes important messages may be posted there.     
  • Keep Kit Llewellyn informed of your acceptances (and otherwise!).

Doughnuts with Dad

Doughnuts With Dad_3By Renee Hennessy, Preschool Director

An exciting event happened today in the Preschool – which included yummy treats, special guests, and very excited children – Doughnuts with Dad! Here are just a few reasons that our four and five-year-olds love their dads: “You give the best hugs and kisses,” “You give me cupcakes and take me to the store,” “You play boss and tickle machine with me,” and “You drove to the airport and then flew to get me and then we flew back.” This event gave us a wonderful opportunity to talk to the children about how they like to spend time together with their dads or a special person in their lives. Young children love celebrations and showing their families what they enjoy doing at the Preschool. Thank you to all of our guests for visiting today! 

Photo Gallery for Week of January 30 – February 3

 

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School Notes for Week of January 30 – February 3

Parent presentations by Freedom from Chemical Dependency (FCD) are being offered on both campuses next week. Presentations will be Wednesday, February 8th at 8:30 a.m. on the Downtown Campus in the Space for Thought and Friday, February 10th at 8:40 a.m. on the Goshen Campus in the Multi-Purpose Room. RSVP’s are not necessary, but appreciated. Please RSVP to Terri White on the Downtown Campus or Julie Marks on the Goshen Campus. 

Prevention Specialist Sarah Burrill of FCD will be spending Monday – Wednesday on the Downtown Campus and Thursday – Friday on the Goshen Campus, providing education to 5th-12th graders. FCD is a non-profit organization that provides alcohol, tobacco, and other drug education to schools and colleges worldwide. One thing that makes FCD unique is that all of the Prevention Specialists have achieved long-term recovery from alcohol or other drug addictions. Most FCD Prevention Specialists began their own drinking and drug use during Middle School and High School. They have experienced the pressures, personal issues and social situations teens face with regard to alcohol and other drug use. They also have first-hand knowledge of the destructive aspects of drug use, and how occasional use, in their case, led to addiction. FCD believes in educating the whole school community, not just students. There will be an educational session for faculty and staff as well.

Adolescent alcohol and other drug use and prevention is such an important topic for our students and for parents. We encourage you to attend the parent presentation on your campus if at all possible.

The Science Olympiad Regional Competition is Saturday, March 18th at KCD and parent volunteers are needed to prepare and run events. Science Olympiad is an all-day competition where Middle School and High School teams participate in 23 events covering all aspects of science; from technology and engineering, to chemistry and physics, to life sciences. Teams from both of our campuses have been working hard collecting materials, studying, practicing, building, breaking, and rebuilding.

The Louisville Regional Competition is the only one in the state that is completely organized and run by teachers and volunteers from the competing schools. For this year’s competition, we are still in need of Event Supervisors for three of the events at the High School level: Remote Sensing (using remote sensing imagery, data, and computational process skills to complete tasks related to climate change processes in the Earth system), Hydrogeology (manipulating a groundwater computer model to answer questions about groundwater concepts, and evaluate solutions based on hydrogeological evidence, to reduce anthropogenic effects on groundwater), and Experimental Design (determining a team’s ability to design, conduct, and report the findings of an experiment actually conducted on site).

If you or anyone you know would be interested in volunteering to prepare and run an event or would like more information about the events, please contact Downtown Campus chemistry teacher Luke Johnson

Studio Borgo AT 2017Interested in taking art classes in Italy? Join Goshen Campus art teacher Alex Taylor for a Plein Air Landscape Workshop in Tuscany July 17th – 21st. Alex has been invited once again to conduct a one-week drawing and plein air landscape painting workshop with Tom Ruggio in Tuscany, Italy. The experience is a truly memorable one, as you experience art classes, art history, local history, Tuscan cuisine, and living in a delightful Italian town. The workshop is limited to six participants, so if you are interested, visit the website and apply early. Please contact Alex Taylor with any questions or for additional information. 

Don’t miss the opportunity to reserve your copy of the 2016-17 yearbook! We are able to offer a reduced price of $50 until March 1st; after that, the price will be $57. Similar to last year, the yearbook will come out BEFORE the end of the school year so that students can sign copies and have them for the summer break. We will mail a spring supplement full of great photos from end of the year activities, graduations, etc. to each of you who purchase a yearbook. The spring supplement comes with an adhesive strip to insert into your yearbook. Also, all yearbook ordering and purchasing is done through our yearbook company, Herff Jones.​

Click here to purchase the SFS yearbook now. Please contact Rosanne Conlan or Trisha Amirault for any additional questions.