Chalk talk

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The special education staff in the Sequim School District would like to thank Sequim Sunrise Rotary Club members for their recent donation to help purchase iPads and accessories for use with students with special needs. Jacque Schaafsma, occupational therapist/assistive technology specialist who spearheaded this project, was present at the breakfast meeting on April 15 to receive a check for $3,500. The club’s contribution, in addition to previous private donations from individuals within the Sequim community, made the installation of this project possible. To learn more about this project or the advantages of using an iPad in special education, contact Schaafsma at, or visit


Here is a thank you note from one of the school district’s speech pathologists:


“I wish to thank all the generous folks who donated funds to help us purchase the iPads and application programs for our students with special needs. Since receiving the iPad, nearly all of my students have used it for some or all of their lessons. I wish there was some way for me to share the joy I have had observing incredible results with these children! I use the iPad with the students who say their speech sounds incorrectly and with students who stutter. They love performing their lessons with the iPad applications.


One young boy with autism had never spoken until we used an iPad app that caught his fascination. He began to speak a few words to the ‘Talking Cat’ and is now speaking much more throughout his day. A fifth-grade boy who resisted most of our attempts to improve his written language skills is now using a predictive keyboarding program with amazing results. He’s so motivated that he comes and asks to do lessons even on the days he is not scheduled for special services. Another student, one who is hearing-impaired, is using the iPad to learn sign language and express his emotions.


I also have a small group of boys who are using the iPad for social stories instruction. These are little stories that tell about how to act in certain social situations, for example, how to stand in line. Even one of our most severely impacted students uses the cause-and-effect programs, which involve motivating a child to touch the screen because something fun happens. The child is stimulated and wants to engage more. He smiles and laughs whenever he sees me with the iPad.


I have taught for 30 years and this is the most remarkable tool I have ever used. Thank you for your generosity, from the bottom of my heart. Please know that you have enabled many children to have a richer, more successful life.”


— Deneen Pond, speech pathologist, Sequim School District



• Monday, May 2, is kindergarten registration from 4-7 p.m. in the Helen Haller library. Bring your child for screening. Children need to be 5 years old on or before Aug. 31, 2011. Bring original birth certificate, proof of residency (current bill with physical address, rental agreement, etc.) and immunizations record. For more details, call the Haller office at 582-3200 or visit the school website at www.sequim.k12.wa.
— Debbie Buchillo, secretary

• Students who took part in the Washington State Science and Engineering Fair were recognized at the April 11 school board meeting. Principal Patra Boots introduced the student teams, who then spoke about their projects and introduced their parents in the audience. Each student received a certificate of achievement signed by Superintendent Bill Bentley.
• Students raised $5,945.25 for Jump Rope for Heart, which goes to the American Heart Association. Our goal was only $1,500! The event was for the month of March and students were collecting money up until April 1. We worked on Jump Rope skills in P.E. class throughout the month and held the jumping event March 21-25 during P.E.
The top students per grade level were:
Grade 1 — Tyler Mooney in Judie Lawson’s class, $500
Grade 2 — Sydney Smith in Jane LaBeaume’s class, $155
Grade 3 — Kyah Fukinaga in Tami Wall’s class, $386
Grade 4 — Caiton Smith in Pam Landoni’s class, $155
Grade 5 ­— Ian Miller in Rachel Oden’s class, $382.50
— Megan Thompson, teacher


• Greywolf Elementary’s kindergarten screening is 3:30-6 p.m. on Thursday, May 19. Incoming kindergarten students for the 2011-2012 school year will be screened in readiness skills. Registration packets can be picked up during regular school hours in the Greywolf office. If you have questions, call the office at 582-3300.
— Cheryl McAliley, school psychologist
• On April 6, second-grade classes kicked off their science unit on plants with a visit from members of the Master Gardeners Washington State University Extension program. These enthusiastic volunteers worked with students to teach them the parts of a plant, the importance of air, water, sunlight and chlorophyll in the process of photosynthesis, how we use plants every day and the parts of plants that we eat. These engaging lessons incorporated photos, drawings, puppets, poems and a special hands-on planting project for each student. The children have made predictions and are now observing and recording the growth of their five different seeds. Here we grow!
— Renee Mullikin, teacher


The Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) hosted a luncheon for staff recently as a way of showing their support and appreciation. We would like to thank the following parents for their contribution to a delicious lunch: Angie Bean, Kristen Baker, Debbie Chamblin, Karren Campbell, Krista Chatters, Vicki Copeland, Kris Galasso, Kate Galbraith, Matilda Henry, Katherine Holloway, Karen Holtrop, Julie McCrorie, Becky Mitchell, Leanne Nestor, Theresa Oliver, Stephanie Price, Branette Richards, Stephen Rosales and Carmen Wiker.
— Connie Stites, secretary


First Teacher:
Friday, April 22 — 10:30 a.m.,  Easter Egg Hunt
Monday, April 25 ­— 10:30 a.m., Reading Time with school board member Bev Horan. Each child attending Reading Time receives a free book!
Tuesday, April 26 — WIC (Women, Infants and Children). For more information about the WIC program, call Pam Walker at 417-2275.
— Cynthia Martin, director


Earth Day is Friday, April 22. Senior Audrey Lichten has organized a number of Earth Day educational events to take place at the campus during the week:
On Monday, the Environmental Club introduces new recycling bins on campus, along with a special broadcast on the Growl News Network at Members of the club will be positioned around campus to educate the student body on the bins’ proper use.
On Tuesday, the focus is on energy efficiency and the plan is to turn off lights and as many electronic devices as possible.
On Wednesday, students and staff are encouraged to carpool, walk or ride bikes to school in an effort to improve outdoor air quality.
Thursday’s focus is to promote less waste. Students and staff are encouraged to bring their own reusable bags, plates, silverware and water bottles to minimize the amount of trash generated in the cafeteria.
Friday, Earth Day, is a combination of all these practices. “We want to encourage people to use less technology and just go and experience the beauties and nature that the earth provides us. We want to get people thinking about giving back to the earth,” Lichten said.
— Dave Ketter, science teacher

Sequim High School Future Business Leaders of America attended the 2011 State Leadership Conference in Spokane on April 6-9. This year’s theme is “Journey to Greatness.” Attendees and the events they competed in include President Dalton Ackley (Entrepreneurship Team, Impromptu Speaking), Vice President Lucas Shores (Business Communications, Computer Applications, Computer Problem Solving, Client Services), Secretary Alice Hastings (Public Speaking II, Entrepreneurship Team), Treasurer Jason Galasso (Management Decision Making Team), Public Relations Patrick McCready (Marketing, Cyber Security), and members Josue Caderas (Management Decision Making, Technology Concepts), Sara Hankins (Entrepreneurship Team), Sara Jackson (Business Math, Introduction to Business Communications), and Mike Bowden (Computer Applications, Introduction to Business). Members also participated in a number of workshops and tours. Members were accompanied by advisors Stuart Marcy and Jim Heintz.
— Christy Ditlefsen, FBLA faculty advisor
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