‘UNDERSTANDING DIFFERENCES’ ACTIVITIES ENLIGHTEN, INSPIRE FAIR HAVEN STUDENTS

Sickles School 4Volunteer Risa Bertodatti assists third grade students with a hands-on activity during Understanding Differences Day at Sickles School.

Press release from Fair Haven School District

Each year, an innovative day-long program at Viola L. Sickles School in Fair Haven helps third-grade students explore and celebrate differences. Presented on May 15, Understanding Differences Day featured hands-on activities and presentations throughout the day, hosted by school staff members and volunteers.

Covered topics covered physical disabilities (including visual and hearing impairments), as well as developmental and learning disabilities. Students engaged in interactive learning activities that included the maneuvering of crutches and wheelchairs (supplied by Little Silver Pharmacy), the making of name tags using Braille, and a demonstration of how a visually impaired person might keep track of money and organize food.

Guest speakers included Lori Timney, who is hearing-impaired and who shared her life experiences with students. Volunteer Sarah Maris helped students to understand the challenges faced by individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), Down’s syndrome, and cerebral palsy. Sickles School Social Worker Nicole Green and Sickles School Psychologist Ashley Goral hosted an information session about learning disabilities; this session included presentations by students from Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School who discussed their personal experiences and ways in which they have learned to cope through the years. At the conclusion of the morning and afternoon sessions, all of the third grade students participated in reflective writing sessions based on what they had learned.

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FAIR HAVEN YOUNG ARTISTS A HIT

FH artVisitors to the Fair Haven School District Art Show admire self-portraits created by eighth graders at Knollwood School.

Press release from Fair Haven School District

“Make Your Mark” was the theme of the Fair Haven School District Art Show, with more than 1,000 pieces of student-created original art displayed at Knollwood School on the evening of April 14.

This year’s edition of the annual show represented the District’s implementation of new standards in the visual arts.  The new standards focus on essential questions to help develop both critical thinking and problem-solving skills, with students are encouraged to create, present, respond, and connect their artwork to ideas that have personal meaning.

Kindergarten through third grade students at Viola L. Sickles School, and fourth through eighth grade students at Knollwood School each contributed at least one project for display.

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FAIR HAVEN KIDS MAKE A MARK FOR DOT DAY

RFH Dot DaySickles Art Teacher RoseAnn LaBrocca explains International Dot Day activities to her second grade students.

Press release from Fair Haven School District

The message board located near the entrance to Viola L. Sickles School in Fair Haven proclaimed, “International Dot Day – Make Your Mark.” Yet even after being forewarned, visitors to the school would still be pleasantly surprised by the level of excitement — as well as the sheer number of dots — creatively displayed throughout the building on September 15.

In the hallway outside Kerry Kennedy and Pamela Greenhall’s classroom, young Kindergarteners excitedly sponge-painted dots on a poster taped to the wall. Courtney Robinson’s first-grade class sat on a dot-embellished carpet while discussing the collaborative dot art project they would soon be displaying for the entire school to see. Nan Hagen’s second graders were thinking hard about how to represent themselves in individual name-glyphs, carefully marking colorful dots to represent their personal characteristics. The third graders had filled their hallway with a dazzling display of dot-centered artwork, displaying their talent and ability to “think outside the box.”

It was all part of International Dot Day, an initiative held each year on September 15, and inspired by the best-selling children’s book The Dot, written and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds.

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