Chalk Talk

March 28 is a no school/snow make-up day and spring break is March 31-April 4. The District Office will be open 7 a.m.—3 p.m., closed noon—1 p.m. for lunch.



March 28 is a no school/snow make-up day and spring break is March 31-April 4. The District Office will be open 7 a.m.—3 p.m., closed noon—1 p.m. for lunch. We hope our students and staff has a wonderful time and stay safe on their spring break!




Fifth-grader Erik Holtrop from Sheri Suryan’s class is this year’s prevailing chess champion from the after school chess club. Erik was awarded a small trophy for his top standing. In keeping with tradition, the chess champion plays a match against retired teacher and current board of directors president John Bridge.

The first game took place in the cafeteria on March 20 and the conclusion will take place on March 27.

In 1991, while a teacher at Haller Elementary, Bridge started the chess club. The club was on hiatus for a number of years, but was brought back last year. Thanks to the Haller PTO for furnishing chess sets. Chess club is over for this school year, but according to faculty advisor Eric Danielson, will return in December. Students can continue to brush up on their chess strategies at such websites as

The Star Reading Club, organized by Literacy Specialist Betsy L. Smith, and aided by para educators Debi Munro and Rhonda Cays, is an after-school reading program for struggling second-graders. The club has met every Tuesday and Thursday after school since last November and continues through May. There are around 18 children who are serviced through this program. The goal of the Star Reading Club is to raise these struggling second-grade readers to grade level expectations and to help them maintain their reading gains. Struggling readers who achieve this goal early in their education have shown that they can keep up with their peers throughout their educational careers.

Says Smith, “We divide into groups and practice poetry and reader’s theater and then perform in front of each other. The goal is to increase fluency. Of course, we also have “read to self” time to work on accuracy and comprehension. As kids reach grade level, we move them out and bring others in. It is a wonderful way to provide extra reading support to our super second-graders and lots of fun too!”

The Star Reading Club children would like to thank Subway, Hurricane Coffee, That Takes the Cake and Starbucks for donating coupons/gift certificates that are awarded as incentives.




Cheryl McAliley, school psychologist/counselor, would like to introduce a new concept called the buddy bench! The primary and intermediate playgrounds have been outfitted with new buddy benches. The benches are there to provide places for students to go who are looking for a playmate. They can go there to meet new friends! Students are very enthusiastic about the additions to their playground. This is just one more way we strive to have everyone at our school feel included.


Caryn Little’s fourth-grade class is working on elaborating their writing using the strategy Show, Don’t Tell. This strategy helps writers to “grow” their writing by showing how a character feels rather than just coming out and saying it.

Each student was assigned an emotion and had to use the strategy to show, and not ever tell the emotion in a short paragraph. Students had to make precise and descriptive word choices. Understanding how to write using show, don’t tell can in turn help readers learn to infer character actions and feelings through the author’s use of dialogue and descriptions.

Here are some examples of their work:

Excited: I just got a tablet for Christmas! I am bouncing off the walls like a kangaroo. Somebody stop me! I just calmed down. Oh no, I’m starting again. Boing, Boing. Avery Huswick

Tired: Bob woke up at 3 a.m. He had droopy eyes and was rubbing them and yawning, so he went back to bed and woke up at 4 p.m. Michelle Hagberg

Cold: When I went outside in the snow I started shivering and rubbing my hands together. Then I started chattering my teeth and seeing vapors of breath. When I played in the snow, I felt like my legs were cut off! Maria AsselinOld Chief

Nervous: At soccer, Rosie was putting her coat into her face. Then she looked blue and she was looking down. Layla Gibson




Trustworthiness was the key character trait for the month of February. February Students of the Month were Edwin Albright, Annabelle Armstrong, Jared Bates, Angela CarilloBurge, Quinn Danielson, Nick Ellison, Mathew Fowler, Brittney Gale, Payton Glasser, Hailey Gober, Sierra Gober, Alisha Grasser, Braven Headley, Aaron Jackson, Isabelle MacMurchie, Weston Mason, Rachal Nolle, Luisa Onofre, Lillyan Paulson, Kimberly Perez, Zane Phipps, Tanner Robins, Shawn Rollness, Angel Servin, Luke Silliman, Alexis Smith, Caleb Spencer, Elandon Washburn, Raelee Wessel, Madison Withrow and Sara Zarit.




ASB Secretary Allison Masangkay reports that on March 7-8, some of our top musicians, dancers and entertainers shared their talents on the stage at the Talent Show.

Judge’s Choice night on March 7 proved to be a test for the judging panel including Anne Lorentzen, Taylor Ackley, Noelle Johnson, Braden Torras and Jeremy Cays. The top act went to Matthew Kowitz, Elijah Sanford and Elise Beuke (first place) for their performance of an original song, “Horoscope.”

Second place went to Eric Anderson, who played his original piano composition, “Enjoy the Ride.” In third place, magician Mitchel Spencer wowed audiences with his amazing magic tricks. Additionally, at the end of the show, SHS’s Be the Change Club held a “Miracle Minute” collection, which raised nearly $100 to be donated to the Sequim Food Bank, and the SHS Choir’s state competition-bound Men’s Ensemble presented a sweet performance of “Loch Lomond.”

On March 8, it was the “People’s Choice,” where the audience voted to select the winners at the end of the show. This night, the band 3 Dales Down with members Caleb Simonson, Dylan Weeks, Mikayla Simonson and Rory Kallappa stole the show by performing the song “Kryptonite” by 3 Doors Down. Matthew Kowitz, Elijah Sanford and Elise Beuke garnered second place, and boy band Triple Stuffed, made up of Mikey Cobb, Eric Hermosada, Hayden James, Nick Johnston and Carlo Juntilla took third place, with their swoon-worthy performance of One Direction’s “Little Things.”

Out of 30 acts at the auditions, 17 acts were selected for the show. Other amazing acts from the show included singer McKayla Neale, pianist Carmen Wilwert, dancer Allison Masangkay, singer Tori Hall, singer Katie Rogers, singing duo Ciara Westhoven and Hayden James, a cappella singing group The Unknown made up of Ben Heintz, Emily Newell, Zach Campbell, McKayla Neale and Spencer Neale, rock band The Metatones with members Daniel Bedinger and Zach Campbell, singer Savanna Fowler, singing duo Mia Amaranto and Carlo Juntilla, dancer Ashley Westrem and singer Patrick McCarter.

There will be a band concert on March 27 in the auditorium.