Chalk Talk

At the seed identification station (from left), Julia Jeffers, Sam Stewart and Colby Ellefson teach kindergartners in Patty Sullivan’s classroom about how to identify plants and their seeds. - Photo by Patsene Dashiell
At the seed identification station (from left), Julia Jeffers, Sam Stewart and Colby Ellefson teach kindergartners in Patty Sullivan’s classroom about how to identify plants and their seeds.
— image credit: Photo by Patsene Dashiell


Renee Mullikin’s Garden Club students visited kindergarten classrooms on April 29 to teach them about seeds and how to plant them. Each kindergartner got to plant a seed in a cup, color a book about seed planting and identify plants and their seeds. The Garden Club meets after school on Mondays and maintains a small vegetable garden on school grounds.

Fifth-graders in Hailie Maynock’s class made congratulation cards for their kindergarten buddies in Patty Sullivan’s kindergarten class. The messages included praise and recognition for the wonderful progress that has been made and encouraged the young students to always do their very best.

Dubbed “Cards and Coins for Oso,” students created care cards to be sent to Darrington Elementary in Oso, the school located near where landslides devastated the community in March. They also collected $562.66 in change to include in the care package.

Staff also wrote letters to their counterparts at Darrington Elementary, so everyone in the building would receive some words of encouragement.

Said Principal Donna Hudson, “In sending cards and this money, we hope it will brighten their day, as we imagine they are still dealing with all sorts of bad stuff. It’s great for our kids to learn empathy and that their kindness helps other people, and they are proud to do it.”

Here is a letter written by Cathy Green, first-grade teacher:

“I was a student at Darrington Elementary from first grade through the beginning of sixth grade. Darrington was a magical place for me and I cherish many wonderful memories. So even though that was 50 years ago, I still feel a kinship to Darrington.

“I just wanted to say, that I am thinking of you and your community. I teach first grade as well and I know the challenges that you face on a normal day. I can only imagine the stress and sadness that you have had to bear in the past weeks and will continue to know.

“The teachers and students at Greywolf Elementary in Sequim want to spread some good cheer to you and your students. My students have written cards to send to your students. One of my students wrote down the song that we sing in the morning about friends. He hopes it will cheer you up.”


Chris Stevens had his second-grade students write letters about what they love about the planet Earth. Here is a sampling of their writing:

Thank you for the air that we can breath and keep us alive. I love that heat you give us. I like the snow you give us because that’s the only time we can have snowball fights. Alexander Kessler

I love the Earth because it gives us trees. It gives us animals. It gives us oxygen. It gives us flowers. It gives us grass. I will keep you clean. Arthur Williams

Thank you for the trees. They give us air and good climbing places. Thank you for the sand. It gives us a place to play, like at the beach. Thank you for the mountains. They are beautiful from a distance and have very good hiking places. Thank you for the river, with its animals, forest and plants. I will try to keep you clean. Breanna Mollinet

Thank you for the small animals that I play with. I also like the flowers that grow in my yard. I love the beautiful mountains I see when I pass my house. I also love the shining moon. But, most of all, I want to keep you safe and clean. Circe Wilkinson

Thank you for the air. I love to swim in the water. Thank you for the trees. Thank you for the flowers. Thank you for the grass. Thank you for nature. I like the beautiful sky. Thank you for the chocolate trees. Issac Bakken

Thank you, Earth, for the trees and plants that we have. Thank you for the water and food or animals. Thanks for the grass because I get to play tag. I will do my best to keep you clean. I like the cool air that blows on me. I always will try to keep you clean. It’s nice to have a planet. James Ashbaugh

Thank you for giving us a place to live on. Also for letting us play on you and for the sunny days so we can swim in your lakes and oceans, also for the soft grass for me to play baseball on. Thank you for the trees. Thank you for letting us go camping in the Hoh Rain Forest. I love you so much. I will try my hardest to keep you clean. Korbyn Domning

Thank you for your water, trees and grass. I hope people will take care of you better. Thank you for giving us trees that give us air and health. Riley Tadlock

Thank you for the trees so they can give everyone air in the world. I will make sure people will stop polluting you. You gave food so we could stay healthy. We plant flowers so you look pretty. You are Mother Nature’s biggest thing of all in the galaxy. You are the best. Sam Stewart

Thank you for air so I can breathe. Thank you for water so I can swim. I will pick up garbage and recycle. Scout Gagnon



Stephanie Lancaster’s fourth-graders have been learning about Native Americans. We have dug deep into the cultures and history of different native groups, especially those indigenous to our area.

Scott O’Dell’s popular book “Island of the Blue Dolphins” was a fitting selection that encompassed our studies. It is a historical fiction based on a native tribe that lived on an island off California’s rocky coast.

Group Two (Angelina Cooper, Payton Egnew, Justin Christianson and Faith Amaya):

We would probably do what Karana did. Karana was a young girl who was left behind on an island off of California’s coast. Like Karana, we would build a shelter and return to it every day, after looking for food. Of course, we would feel awfully afraid of the animals that lived there. Some of the food we would look for would be abalone, fish and berries. Every night we would sit by the fire, telling stories while cooking dinner. Dinner would usually be what we caught that day. After that we would go to bed. That would be our daily schedule. That is what we would do if we were stranded on an island. Oh, did I forget to mention that Karana has a schedule, too? Well, she does and it is really similar to ours. Did you know that having a schedule can sometimes keep your sanity? That’s what Karana did to keep herself sane.

Group Three (Kaylee Riley, Joseph Beck, Melanie Wiggins, Liam Kuh and Zachary Kruckeberg):

If we got deserted on an island, we would make clothing and household goods by hunting wild dogs and sea elephants just like Karana did. A sea elephant is a massive sea creature that has excellent hide for making clothes and their teeth can be used for weapons. They can be very dangerous, too. Another thing we would do is make boats, such as canoes, and go fishing. We would cook the fish and eat it. To cook we would need to make a basket out of kelp. After we made a strong basket, we would put water in it, fresh herbs and the fish that we caught. Then we’d put a hot rock in the basket to boil the water so our food would cook and not burn. Fish stew is a common meal of some Native tribes.

A very important thing that we would do is try to make some tools. We would need tools to survive. The tools would help us dig roots, catch fish, make traps and defend us from the wild dogs on the island. One method to catch fish that we learned is to put rope or kelp rope on a spear and throw it at fish. It doesn’t always work, but it is better than trying with our hands. As we were trying to survive the most important thing that we would do is keep a positive attitude, encourage each other and pray that someone would find us. At least we wouldn’t be like Karana, all alone on the island, we would have each other.



Principal Shawn Langston would like to extend congratulations to Emily Carter, Ben Heintz and Alexandra Stuart-Lovell! These three students have all been recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Program for their outstanding performance on the 2013 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT). Of some 1.5 million program entrants, each of these students is among the 50,000 highest scoring participants who will be recognized in the fall of their senior year.

May 9 is the last day to purchase tickets for the senior ball and turn in guest request forms by 3 p.m. at the latest. This also is the deadline date for collecting senior pictures/baby pictures for the special section in the Gazette.

The senior class picture will be taken May 12 at 10:45 a.m. Graduating seniors may sign up for graduation ceremony walking partners in the counseling office on this date.

The Digitools bypass test will be administered at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, May 13, and Thursday, May 15, in Room E3.


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