Monthly Archives: September 2017

Spoede Elementary Hosts Annual S.T.E.A.M. Carnival

Last week, Spoede Elementary held its annual S.T.E.A.M Carnival (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math) over two days! The event helps kids get excited about the science and technology topics they will explore throughout the year.All of the 1st and 2nd graders attend one day, and 3rd and 4th grade students attend the next day. Students are placed in groups of five or six and rotate through eight stations, which are run by parents, teachers, community members, high school teachers, and high school students. The stations provide opportunities to explore scientific topics the learn about in the curriculum throughout the year, but in fun and engaging ways. This year, the students had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity; they got to touch a real human brain!

Booths This Year:

  • Lava Lamps (mixtures and solutions)
  • Blueberry DNA
  • Virtual Reality
  • Microscope Investigations
  • Rocks and Minerals
  • Human Body
  • Rockets
  • Hot Air Balloon
  • Electricity
  • Sound
  • Leaf Identification
  • Nutrition

Check out the gallery of photos below, and click here to view more!

Spoede Best in State for 2017 Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Congratulations to Spoede Elementary School, which has officially been named the #1 school in Missouri for logging the most minutes in the 2017 Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge! Thanks to our inspiring teachers and parents, we have some excellent young readers in our schools, and they’re powered up to read throughout this school year!

Spoede Elementary students read a total of 191,466 minutes this summer!

The Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge is designed to help kids turn the “summer slide”—the learning loss which can occur over the summer months—into a “summer leap” by discovering the power and joy of reading for fun. The program offered kids the chance to log their reading minutes to earn digital prizes as they completed weekly reading challenges, gaining access to 18 reading activities, including games, quizzes and videos based on popular children’s books. Parents and families also had access to free summer reading resources, including booklists across all age groups in both English and Spanish.

The school will be listed in the 2018 Scholastic Book of World Records and will receive a special personalized plaque to commemorate the students’ summer reading achievements.

Nearly 4,000 schools, libraries and community partners participated in this year’s Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge. Students from the U.S. and around the world read a whopping total of 138,399,392 minutes! That’s the fifth year in a row kids logged more than 100 million minutes.

Alumni Publishes First Novel, Bases Character & Setting on Ladue Schools

Michael Currinder (Ladue Schools Class of ’83) has recently published his first novel for young adults titled Running Full Tilt. Praised by Newbery medal winner Jack Gantos as “a quick read with a kick at the finish,” his novel sensitively and memorably captures a teen runner’s relationship with his older brother who is autistic. The novel is set in Ladue Horton Watkins High School circa 2006, and the Coach Gorsky character is based upon former Ladue Schools track coach legend, Phil Brusca. The American Library Associations Booklist publication recently awarded the novel a starred review stating, “The characterizations are complex and realistic, with sensitively depicted virtues and flaws, evoking empathy and sympathy in the reader. Currinder’s novel is poignant and powerful, with a story that is greater than the sum of its parts.”

Michael ran cross country and track at Ladue Schools, and earned a college athletic scholarship to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His first novel is a hybrid of his collective experiences as a competitive runner and as an adolescent with an autistic sibling. Michael is currently living in Tokyo and is teacher and track and cross country coach at The American School in Japan.

Conway Elementary Third Grade Class Worked Collaboratively in Creative STEM Project

Students in Mrs. Brooks’ 3rd grade class at Conway worked in collaborative groups to act as safety engineers. This lesson is a trans disciplinary project inspired by the district’s STEM cohort. The students were given the task of making an “evacuation plan” for a flood on the “Island of Fun and Fitness.” This project allowed students to think about the challenges and struggles being faced by the many areas that have recently been dealing with flooding.

Their work included strategically deciding on supplies to purchase, using their math skills to round and estimate their total cost for supplies, and then making a map to plan the evacuation route. The final step was to test their evacuation plans, and then work to improve upon the plans. The third graders did an amazing job asking questions to ensure their plans met all of the constraints and criteria. The drone footage shows 1 of the 6 “engineering teams” testing their first evacuation plan. The other engineers are analyzing the plans to help them during the revision process.

The class loved fulfilling the STEM vision: Students and Teachers Engaging Minds!

Ladue Middle School Counselor Roger Scherck Recognized with September Excellence in Education Award

Roger Scherck, a counselor at the Ladue Middle School, received the September Excellence in Education Award at the Sept. 25, 2017, Board of Education meeting. Congratulations to Roger on this prestigious recognition!

Roger has worked for the Ladue School District since August of 1994, when he took a position as a high school social studies teacher and soccer coach at Ladue Horton Watkins High School. During his time with the district, Roger has coached boys and girls soccer and track and cross country at the middle school, supported the Learning Center at the high school and taught three years in the Excel program.

Assistant Principal Sarah Adams Schwartz has said, there are few people who contribute more to the Ladue Middle School community than Roger Scherck. Roger offers his time, energy and support to various areas throughout the school and district. He is involved in Character Ed at both the district and building level, as well as in the local community.  He has coached in the 8th grade sports program, as well as coordinated the Middle School Milers running program. He oversees the I Am LMS day program that is put on by the LMS Diversity cadre.

Seventh Grader Writes Article for St. Louis Jewish Parents Magazine

Seventh grader Shreeya Ravindranath wrote an article for the St. Louis Jewish Parents Magazine entitled “Music—My first language”. Check out her article here, located on pg. 8!

Spoede Elementary Celebrates National Day of Character

For last Wednesday’s National Day of Character, all students and staff at Spoede Elementary created a heart on one of their fields! Check it out below! #SpoedeRocks

2013 Graduate Annie Kopp Attends Emmys with Late Night Show

Annie Kopp, 2013 graduate, was at the Emmys on Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, with the show Full Frontal with Samantha Bee. For those of you that do not know her, she’s the one in the teal dress 4th from the left. Go, Annie!

Full Frontal with Samantha Bee is a leading late night show that covers Washington politics, spotlights stories throughout the states and travels around the world to cover international news.

Ladue Schools’ Morgan Taylor Opens for Benefit Concert at the FOX

Morgan Taylor, a freshman at Ladue Horton Watkins High School, opened for Brian McKnight and Genuine at a benefit concert for Mathews-Dickey Boys’ and Girls’ Club last week at the FOX Theatre! This was the largest crowd Morgan has performed for to date. Check out the video below!

Around the district, Morgan is known for her strong voice and angelic melodies. Check out another clip here of Morgan (then an 8th grade student at Ladue Middle School) wowing well-known singer and songwriter Johnny Gill while he was touring St. Louis with Charlie Wilson (GAP band) and Fantasia. She sang “Total Praise” by Yaw Osei-Owusu and even shared her CD with Johnny!

Last year, she sang at the first Courageous Dialogue Meeting at Ladue Middle School and at AA Recognition Night.

Congratulations, Morgan!

 

Twenty-One LHWHS Students Named National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists

Twenty-one Ladue Horton Watkins High School seniors have recently been recognized as semifinalists in the 2017 National Merit Scholarship Competition—the highest number of Ladue Schools students to be honored in a single year, and more students than any other school in the state. These students qualified based on their performance on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) taken in their junior year.

“We are incredibly proud of these students. They have demonstrated the results that can be achieved through years of dedication to their studies and I have no doubt this is just the beginning of great accomplishments these students will experience,” Superintendent Dr. Donna Jahnke said. “This year, we celebrate the largest number of students to receive this recognition, but it’s important to remember that while this accomplishment is made in high school, every educator who has inspired and supported these students along the way has played a role in their success.”

All of these students are eligible for scholarships that will be offered next spring.

These students include (from top left to the bottom right of the attached picture): Abhay Cashikar, Anthony Schuster, Glen Morgenstern, Joel Hsieh, Charles Loitman, Aaron Umen, Eric Yang, Lily Hauptman, Audrey Wang, Julia Wang, Xiwen Zhang, Ryan Miller, Annie Liu, Evyn Levy, Justin Chen, Albert Liu, Aleesha Shi and Sophia Li. Levi Dyson, Macey Goldstein and Edward Wu were not pictured.