News & Events from Elmbrook Schools

News & Events from Elmbrook Schools

Elmbrook to Offer Mandarin Chinese Language Courses
Mandarin Chinese I and II courses will soon be offered at Brookfield Central and East High Schools, providing students an opportunity to learn the language of 1/5 of the world’s population. Chinese language courses are growing in popularity at Wisconsin high schools, with 14 other districts already offering them. Other world languages Elmbrook offers include French, German, Latin and Spanish. Chinese courses are expected to start next school year, 2012-13.

All Elementary Classrooms to Receive SMART Document Cameras
All Kindergarten through fifth grade classrooms in the School District of Elmbrook will soon be equipped with SMART Document Cameras™ as a result of a $50,000 Lighthouse Grant from the Wisconsin Technology Initiative (WTI), the Elmbrook Education Foundation (EEF) and school PTO support.

SMART Document Cameras are able to project text from a book, three-dimensional objects, a student’s written work or a teacher’s original work onto a SMART Board. In addition, a microscope’s eyepiece can be used with the document camera to instantaneously show slides at a magnified level to all students at once. Content and images displayed on the SMART Board can then be captured digitally to allow for group editing, saving for later use, or sharing across classrooms. Ultimately, document cameras support a greater level of student engagement and increased understanding through their responsiveness to just-in-time classroom learning needs.

This technology initiative is just one of many made possible by engaged parents, staff and community members. Thank you to all supporters of excellence and innovation in Elmbrook Schools!


Band Concert Jan. 12
On Thursday, Jan. 12th the Brookfield East High School Band Program will present "Folk Songs From Around the World," featuring Masterworks for wind band based on folk songs from England, Korea, Louisiana and early 19th century America. The evening will also serve as a send-off concert as the Spartan Band heads for New Orleans, LA on Jan. 19th to perform at the National WWII Museum and participate in a clinic at Tulane University. The program includes Frank Ticheli's "Cajun Folk Song Suite," Pierre La Plante's "American Riversongs," Jared Spear's "At A Dixieland Jazz Funeral," and Bob Lowden's "Armed Forces Salute." Other folk song inspired works include Ralph Vaughn William's "Folk Song Suite," John Barnes Chance's "Variations on a Korean Folk Song," and Clare Grundman's "A Copland Tribute." The concert is being held at the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts at 7 p.m. and is free and open to the public. Hope to see you there.

EAST Excels at MSOE Competition
Two teams of science students from each of Elmbrook's high schools competed Nov. 22 at Milwaukee School of Engineering's 2011 Science Competition. Students competed individually on four tests — general science, biology, chemistry and physics. They also worked in teams of eight on a team exam. High schools from the metro-Milwaukee area as well as schools from the Madison area and northern Illinois brought teams to the competition.

On the individual tests, Brookfield East had award winners in General Science:  Aditya Trivedi, Biology: Chang Ge, and Chemistry: Aditya Trivedi. The students received certificates in recognition of their achievement.

Awards were also given to the top individuals overall on all four tests combined. At the top, scoring the highest of all the students participating was Aditya Trivedi. In a three-way tie for third was Advik Shreekumar; another three-way tie for fifth was Chang Ge. These students all received gold medals.

In the team division there were awards to the top three schools. Brookfield East's team placed third and was awarded a plaque for its achievement. The members of the Brookfield East team who earned this award are: Julia Barnes, Chang Ge, Max Hoffman, John Meurer, Advik Shreekumar, Aditya Trivedi, Tom Wester and Chih-wei Wu. This team was the top-scoring Wisconsin team at the competition. 

The other well-performing Brookfield East team members included Elaine Andersen, Kathleen Browne, Amir Kucharski, Rebecca Li, Sreedevi Nair, Katie Schwarz, Sorabh Singhal and Veronica Telega. 

Teachers accompanying the students at the competition were Ben Westphal (BEHS), Kelli Kwiatkowski (BEHS) and Elyce Moschella (BCHS).


Project STRIVE Hosts First Fund Raiser
Project STRIVE (Specialized Transition, Recreation, Independent Living & Vocational Experiences) held its first fund raiser on Friday, Nov. 4th. The event, "A Taste of Elegance," took place at the Boerner Botanical Gardens and was catered by Bartolotta Catering. The evening included hors d'oeuvres, wine tasting and a raffle, along with a silent and live auction. It was attended by 120 people. The fundraiser was a huge success and proceeds will support the newly adopted Project STRIVE. A big thank you to all who attended or contributed to the fundraiser!!

Project STRIVE is a community-based program for students between 19 and 21 years-old with cognitive disabilities and/or autism. Project STRIVE focuses on the transition goals and priorities of students to further develop independent living, community integration, and vocational skills. Students do not attend their high school, but instead are provided experiences in the community or an apartment. Students participate in recreational activities at the YMCA, shopping at local stores, and volunteering and working at various business and non-profits in the area. Objectives of the program are:

  • To provide opportunities for students to gain and fine-tune skills needed to live safely and as independently as possible
  • To connect students and families with community organizations and agencies that can assist in long- or short-term support
  • To assist students and families in appropriate goal setting, based on abilities and interests in the areas of independent living and vocational planning

For further information about Project STRIVE contact: Ramona Stavros, Special Education Director, stavrosr@elmbrookschools.org, 262-781-3030 ext. 1188; 
Sara Murdoch, Project STRIVE lead Teacher, murdochs@elmbrookschools.org, 262-785-3910; Megan Rindal, Transition Coordinator, rindalm@elmbrookschools.org, 414-587-5982.

Central’s Holiday Band Concert Rescheduled
Brookfield Central's Holiday Band Concert, originally scheduled to take place on Dec. 13th, has been rescheduled to Jan. 11th, at 7 p.m., at the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts. The concert is free and open to the public. Any questions can be directed to the Central's front office at 262-785-3910.


Reading is fun!
Have you ever read a book that you just couldn't put down? Mrs. Simons' 6th grade Read 180 class has! The class began reading the best-selling science fiction book, The Hunger Games. They enjoyed it so much that they wanted to read the second book in the series, Catching Fire. Principal Mrs. Martino offered to purchase the books, but Mrs. Simons' students decided to take matters into their own hands. They were eager to earn the money to purchase the books for themselves. After much thought and planning, the class received permission from Mrs. Martino to hold a Root Beer Float fundraiser. They advertised the fundraiser by making morning announcements to students and hanging up handmade posters in the hallways of WHMS. They worked during their lunch to make the root beer floats, which sold for $1. The fundraiser was a huge success! They needed $160 to purchase 16 books for the class. Mrs. Simons' students raised $166.

WHMS Visitors Receive a Warm Welcome
If you've been to WHMS recently, you can't help but notice the new Welcome sign that adorns the main entrance to WHMS. Mr. Knuth and his 2010-2011 7th grade Graphic Artist students are to thank for this beautiful new addition.

Mr. Knuth wanted to give students a feeling of what "real world" artists do and how they have to compete to have their artwork displayed in the community so he divided his 7th grade Graphic Artist class into five groups and gave them the task of creating a design to welcome people to our building. After the students collaborated on their ideas, they made a rough final sketch of their idea and the other 7th grade classes voted on their favorite design. When the winning design was decided, the students had to work together as a whole to put final touches and details into the artwork. The sign is made of mosaic tiles that the students hand made and hand glazed at school. It was assembled by the Graphic Artist students and grouted by Mr. Knuth.

The end result is a lesson not only in art, but friendly competition, teamwork and a beautiful new sign that will be admired by visitors to WHMS for years to come.


Kindergarteners Go To The Nature Center
Swanson Kindergarten students visited the Nature Center at Brookfield East. While at the Nature Center we met many new friends (some with scales, some with fins, some with fur, and some with feathers). On the trails we explored and looked for signs of animals. We are experts on trees and leaves and the Nature Center was a great opportunity for us to use what we have learned. We had a fun time making wood cookie necklaces, finding artifacts on the trail and especially feeding the animals! 


Tonawanda’s January Community Service Projects
Our school community will be engaged in two service projects during the month of January: a used book drive to benefit the Tonawanda library and the FOEGL Used Book Sale supporting our Elm Grove public library and the 4th annual Milwaukee Rescue Mission Penny Drive, which provides hot meals to the hungry and homeless in the Milwaukee area.

Key items to note about our winter service projects:
January Used Book Drive
Two collection bins will be placed in the school's front hallway for used books. Soft cover and hard cover fiction and non-fiction books for children, teens and adults will be accepted. Our Tonawanda library staff will have the first opportunity to sort through the picture, chapter and other appropriate elementary books to add to our school collections before all donations are transported to the FOEGL organization to be sold at the annual Used Book Sale supporting the Elm Grove Library. This year's Used Book Sale will take place March 2nd – 4th in the Village Community rooms. Donations will be accepted through Jan. 31.

4th Annual Milwaukee Rescue Mission Penny Drive
Our penny drive begins as soon as we return from Winter Break and runs through Jan. 27th. One hot meal costs approximately $2. The goal for each grade level is to raise $200 to feed 100 people. We welcome pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters and paper money … whatever you can spare to help us drive out hunger!

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.


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