Saturday, March 25, 2017

Congresswoman Visits Horace Mann to Celebrate Women's History Month

During March, we've been celebrating Women's History Month, learning about contributions made to all facets of our world by women from many different generations.  Posters in our library provide easy-to-access photos and important facts about these women, and have raised our awareness and appreciation.  We even have a special display provided by our Speech Therapist, Ellen McCafferty, with artifacts about her grandmother, a professional basketball player!

Mrs. Sloan's kindergarten class had a special treat on Friday afternoon when Ohio Representative Nicki Antonio read to them during their usual story time.  Our Congresswoman showed off her teaching background--and her love of children--as she gathered them around and read picture books about Nadia Comaneci and other ground-breaking women.  We think Representative Antonio is a pretty special woman in history, too :-)

Many thanks to all who helped organize our Women's History acknowledgements.  I've heard there may be a "local edition" in store for March 2018...

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Author Brings Sooper Yooper to Horace Mann

Like other 5th graders across Lakewood and Ohio, Horace Mann students and their teachers have been working hard to learn about many science topics in preparation for the state AIR test at the end of April.  The environment is a major topic in the curriculum. For example, students will be asked questions about threats to our environment, such as invasive species in the Great Lakes.

Well, Sooper Yooper to the rescue!  Author Mark Newman was invited to our school and led an in-depth--and entertaining--discussion with our 5th grade students about many aspects of our Great Lakes.  But what is this Sooper Yooper, you ask?  Well, he is a superhero who protects the Great Lakes from his home in Michigan's Upper Peninsula (sometimes knows as the UP...get it?!)

Mr. Newman emphasized that it is all of our responsibility to protect and enjoy our freshwater treasures, and he talked with students about what they can do.  I know their natural activist sensibilities were tapped by this session, and they have been hounding Mrs. Morris in the library for Sooper Yooper books since they were introduced.

We are grateful that Mr. Newman is funded through a grant from the Wege Foundation, making his visit free to schools in any of the Great Lake states.  If you want to learn more about Sooper Yooper and his adventures, check out the website:

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Horace Mann Students Tell About Favorite Teacher

Teachers and kids love to integrate technology in their everyday learning.  Last week, a group of 1st and 2nd grade students here at The Mann culminated their week of opinion writing in a fun way.  Several students chose to write about who has been their favorite teacher (in their long educational career ;-).  Then they used iPads--and an app called Chatterpix--to narrate, customize and animate their opinion.

We are so grateful for the availability of iPads and Chromebooks for our students to use in the classrooms.  These devices are highly engaging for students--as we all know!  There is no question in my mind that the integration of technology not only helps students overcome barriers in their learning, but can open pathways for creativity and initiative-taking.
Here is a link to the students' videos about their favorite teachers:  Enjoy!

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Mrs. Kehn's 4th Grade Stages a Debate

Before I describe the debate, I must mention the incredible week we had.  It was filled to the brim by Reading Spirit Week, GRANDS breakfast for special adults in kids' lives, Book Fair and Spring Party.  Thank you to our fantastic kids, staff and families for making our school such a fun place to learn!  Be sure to check out lots of great photos on the Horace Mann Elementary PTA Facebook page to see lots of smiles :-)

In other Horace Mann news, Mrs. Kehn's 4th graders morphed convincingly into the Patriots and Loyalists in their rendition of a Second Continental Congress debate.  Each student had researched their role (George Washington, King George, etc.) and took a turn at the lectern to make his (some of the men were played by girls, of course) point.  After point and counterpoint about specifics like the Boston Massacre and taxation without representation, Mrs. Kehn drew students back together to conclude on the big picture.  Students were incredibly well-prepared and had made props to make it all seem more real.  Many of them had impressive stage presence, too!

Congratulations to Mrs. Kehn and her students for experimenting with a high-impact mode of learning and finding a way to enjoy themselves in the process.