National School Breakfast Week & Celebrating Dr. Seuss

Studies indicate that students who eat breakfast increase their math and reading scores and improve their cognitive speed and memory, according to the Food Research and Action Center.  Students who are “fueled up” with a nutritious meal increase the chances that their mental and physical stamina is up to par for a great day at school.

 

The Learning Center Charter School celebrated National School Breakfast Week March 5th-9th both as a means to recognize the importance of this meal and to increase awareness of the school’s Early Bird Breakfast Club.

The Learning Center’s Early Bird Breakfast Club begins at 7:15am daily. The nutrition staff offers up both hot and cold breakfast options as well as cereal, fruit, yogurt and milk. The program was the first in the state to win the Breakfast Champion Award in 2012.  Additionally, the program has received two grants – one from No Kid Hungry North Carolina/Share Our Strength, and another from Action for Healthy Kids School Grants for Healthy Kids.

 

As part of the week long breakfast celebration, the school marked the birthday of literary giant, Dr. Seuss. Kitchen staff wore Seuss costumes, the Dining Commons was decked out in Seuss colors and decorations and students were served green eggs and ham.

School Child Nutrition Director, Hilary Dixson, said, “Offering well prepared, healthy food that nourishes our young learners is a cornerstone of our educational environment. National School Breakfast Week was a way to teach the importance of eating a nutritious breakfast and the silly costumes and green eggs and ham made it fun and memorable for our students.”

6th Grade Adopts Endangered Species as Part of PBL Project

Sixth grade students at The Learning Center Charter School adopted not one, but two endangered species as part of a broader Project Based Learning (PBL) project in science class.

PBL projects are part of the regular approach to learning at the charter school.  PBL is a teaching method in which students gain knowledge and skills by working for an extended period of time to investigate and respond to authentic, complex questions, problems or challenges.

In this instance, students tackled not only learning about specific animal species and all the science related to that task, but also the ecological, environmental, economic and social circumstances that are threatening the existence of the species.  They gained insight and understanding of the fact that it is not as easy as it may seem to change the factors threatening animals.

These students learned about and found ways to help endangered species across the globe.  They researched various animals, narrowed down their choices, and came up with ideas to raise money to help their selected species. The students finalized their plans and raised enough money to symbolically adopt both a polar bear and a Sumatran rhinoceros.

Jessie Karagenes, sixth grade science teacher at the school, said, “These students have diligently worked through the standards in this science unit.”  Karagenes went on to explain that the connections these students made to one of several 21st century skills that the school stresses, thinking globally, made this project even more impactful for the class.

 

Art and Social Studies Collaboration in Kindergarten

Recently, kindergarten students spent time making art as part of their social studies lesson on Africa. Working across the subjects in this manner develops a deeper and wider understanding of the subject at hand. The students loved learning about the geography, animals, food and culture found in Africa.

Grow Zone Players Gearing Up For Spring Musical. Are You?

The Learning Center Charter School’s drama group, The Grow Zone Players, are busily preparing for this year’s spring musical, Oh, Horrors, It’s Murder. The school will offer three performances; Friday, May 4th, Saturday, May 5th at 6:30pm and Sunday, May 6th at 2pm.

In Oh, Horrors, It’s Murder, the Hamilton museum has opened an exhibit entitled, “Monsters, Murderers, and Madmen.” Professor Johann Vanderveer has invited world renowned Egyptologist Dirk Carlton to speak about his recent trip to Egypt and the discoveries he made concerning the ancient Tomb of Menkaura. However, during the presentation, something goes awry and someone ends up dead. It is up to Lt. Dani Morrow to crack the mystery

This play is appropriate for all ages with hilarious comedy and toe-tapping songs throughout.  Some audience members may get a chance to accuse characters in an attempt to discover the truth.

In addition to the perplexing mystery, there will be a live exhibit from the display of Monsters, Murderers, and Madmen for patrons to enjoy both before the show and during the intermission.

Play Director, Ryan Bender, said, “I want to thank the Jackie Ward Foundation for Academics and the Arts for supporting us, and the school for continuing to be a place that fosters not only education, but a long-lived passion for the Arts.  The cast is working really hard to put on what hopes to be our best, funniest, and most hair-raising play yet!”

The musical will be performed in the auditorium on The Learning Center campus at 945 Conahetta Street in Murphy.  There will be three performances — May 4th and 5th at 6:30pm and May 6th at 2pm. Purchase tickets now in the front office or via our website at www.naturallygrownkids.org or call 828-825-7240.

Kindergarten Continues Cooking Around the World

You might remember that Kindergarten students are cooking their way around the world (click here to read more.)

Their social studies continued recently and the next stop was Asia. The students learned about the Philippines and how to make spring rolls with the help of an awesome parent volunteer.

In addition to cooking and eating, the kids had the chance to ask questions and found out many facts about the continent of Asia.  They were especially surprised to learn that in Philippines, if someone knocks at your door, they must be invited in and given coffee or tea. In fact, if it’s meal time it is expected that they will join you.

7th Grade Science — Human Body

Earlier in the school year, seventh graders worked a project based learning project (PBL) to discover how the systems in the human body work together. Students were tasked with creating a life size diagram of the human body-illustrating three of the systems. Additionally, students created multimedia presentations to explain how the systems of the body function together.

2nd Grade Studies US Presidents

Second graders spent a week completing a cross curricular unit where they learned the history of US Presidents. Through the use of technology, literature and writing, students completed many activities learning about our presidents. The students completed a Lapbooks project to go along with their studies.

2nd Grade Celebrates Chinese New Year

Recently students in second grade learned about the Lunar Calendar and the celebration of Chinese New Year. The class used technology with interactive activities, crafts and literature to learn about why and where this celebration happens.

Students also had an interactive experience as they “visited” China through the use of technology. They were able to experience the culture and customs and traditions that surround the celebration.