Elementary News

Readers, Blast Off: Tad Hills, Author of the Rocket Books, Visits ASM

To the delight of ASM's young readers, writers, and artists, the New York Times bestselling author Tad Hills was at ASM from Wednesday, November 14 until Friday, November 16.

This opportunity was made possible thanks to the Fund for Excellence, which allows teachers and staff to bring the extraordinary to ASM.

The American children's book author and illustrator first gained acclaim with the picture book Duck & Goose, a tale about an adorable odd couple that inspired a series of stories. Hills later wrote How Rocket Learned to Read, a popular picture book about a dog named Rocket – modeled after his own family pet – that gets kids excited about learning to read. It won the Irma Simonton Black & James H. Black Award for Excellence in Children's Literature and also inspired a series of picture books and early readers.

ASM's elementary librarian, Angela Roberts, is the driving force behind the visit. "Tad and the library are connected on social media, through Twitter and Instagram. Last summer, I saw that he was traveling and working with a group in South Africa called Artworks for Youth. A former colleague of mine in Brooklyn runs the Artworks for Youth program so I messaged Tad to see if it was the same program and if we had the same colleague in common," she explains.

"I have been in love with the Duck & Goose books forever and love sharing them with our students, so I was happy to make the connection and arrange a visit to ASM, thanks to the Fund for Excellence," Ms. Roberts adds. The fund was created for learning opportunities and educational initiatives just like this one, that go beyond existing academic programs and are designed to inspire students.

To prepare for his visit, she read a selection of Hills' books to students during their library time and brainstormed questions that they would like to ask an author. "I have read his books to our students over the years so many of our older elementary students are already familiar with his work," she says.

As part of his visit, Hills gave presentations to each elementary school grade level, from the Early Childhood program up to 5th grade. He also offered individual writing and art workshops and work with Ms. Utter's Creative Writing class.

Click here to read more about ASM's Fund for Excellence.

Read more about Readers, Blast Off: Tad Hills, Author of the Rocket Books, Visits ASM
Early Childhood Students Celebrate Grandparents Day at Local Retirement Home

October 2nd was 'La Festa dei Nonni' (Grandparents Day) in Italy.

It was a perfect opportunity for celebrating that special bond between grandparent and grandchild. Since so many of our special friends are far away, we thought we would celebrate with neighbors. Across from our campus is a wonderful retirement home called Anni Azzurri, a well-known place for our students who perform there yearly. On October 2nd, the ASM Early Childhood students took a short trip over to Anni Azzurri to wish the elders a very happy Grandparents Day. They were celebrating with an "Adopt a Grandparent" day and students surprised them with small autumn crafts they had prepared and a certificate of adoption.

As a thank you gift from our new friends, each child was given a bag of candy, but it was the joy in each face that was our true thank you.

Read more about Early Childhood Students Celebrate Grandparents Day at Local Retirement Home
ASM Celebrates Street Art

Getting ready for LOOP Grafiti Fest at ASM in the Elementary Art Room

The first grade studied the work of Keith Haring, one of the world's first famous street artists. They incorporated their unit on lines to create variations around Keith Haring figures and then learned how Keith Haring used street art to communicate positive messages in communities and bring people happiness.

The 4th grade looked at the work of Raptuz, who is coming to our school to paint a wall in the High School. We looked at his works and his particular style of segmenting imagery and using different values of color within shapes. Now students are working in partners to color a Panther in Raptuz's geometric style.

Read more about ASM Celebrates Street Art
Elementary School Jog-A-Thon, Fitness for a Good Cause

Each year over 400 students, staff, teachers, and parents participate at this event.

The goal for each Jog-A-Thon participant is to raise as much money as possible from sponsors (family and friends). Sponsors pledge money based upon the number of laps completed by the student. This encourages kids to run for a good cause.

All funds raised at this event are for Casa Sollievo Bimbi di Fondazione Vidas, an organization that specializes in treating and housing patients with terminal illnesses. This year Fondazione Vidas is building a special department for children with illnesses; a place for them to stay, receive treatment and feel at home with family. To donate to this charity, please click here


Read more about Elementary School Jog-A-Thon, Fitness for a Good Cause
Elementary School Career Day

From doctors to veterinarians, to architects and fashion designers, ASM parents inspired elementary students as they talked about their chosen professions today!

Career Day sparked new interests for our young learners who were able to unleash their curiosity beyond the classroom. Thank you to our parents who dedicated an entire day to inspire ASM students!

Read more about Elementary School Career Day