Tag Archives: Kelloggsville

School News Network: ‘I Just Made Them My Friends’

Students mentors work on “Start with Hello” banner.

By Erin Albanese

School News Network

 

When eighth-grader Jaden Delosh started attending the middle school right after spring break, he was happy to have Ke’Waun Blackmon show him around.

 

“It gave me a friend,” said Jaden, who moved from Waterford, near Detroit.

 

Ke’Waun made the transition a little easier, showing him around to classrooms introducing him to teachers and classmates, and inviting him to join him at lunch.

 

About 30 students in grade six through eight are assigned as mentors to befriend and welcome new students, making sure they feel welcome.

 

Counselor Michelle Barrows started the mentorship program, which involves twice monthly meetings, to build a team of students that reach out to others, whether that’s new students or anyone appearing isolated or upset. Teachers recommended students to serve as mentors who have showed good leadership skills and the ability to take initiative.

 

“They are a force for positive change in this school,” Barrows said. “If they see someone being made fun of or who is crying, they are supposed to step up.”

 

Ke’Wau Blackmon is helping new student Jaden Delosh around Kelloggsville Middle School.

They have welcomed 41 new students this year, and many have formed relationships. Sixth-grade mentors will also help fifth-graders during Move-Up Day in May, when the younger students visit to tour their new school building.

 

Mentors participated in “Start with Hello,” part of the Sandy Hook Promise campaign, which equips students with skills needed to reach out to and include those who may be dealing with chronic social isolation. The goal is to create a culture of inclusion and connectedness within their school.

 

The Sandy Hook Promise is a national non-profit organization founded and led by several family members whose loved ones were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14, 2012. It provides programs and practices that protect children.

 

“I really want it to make it a little more than just showing a new kid around,” Barrows said.

 

Ke’Waun said mentoring Jaden and another student earlier this year has helped him learn how to “be friends with everyone.”

 

“I learned how to respect different people and to have good relationships,” he said.

“I said, ‘If you need anything, you can come to me and ask me. I just made them my friends… It was really fun helping other students come to our school and know they are going to be safe and have a good time here.”

 

Check out School News Network for more stories about students, schools, and faculty in West Michigan.

Game on: WKTV’s featured game for Friday, March 10

WKTV’s high school sports coverage crew was at Monday night’s tipoff of the opening round of the MHSAA district tournament at Godwin Heights. We will be there for the finals Friday. (WKTV)

WKTV Staff

 

This week WKTV’s featured Friday night high school sports event will be the finals of the boys MHSAA Basketball Basketball District 50 tournament at Wyoming Godwin Heights.

 

In Monday opening-round games, tournament host Godwin Heights had an easy time in a 80-32 win over West Michigan Aviation Academy, and (in WKTV’s covered feature game) Wyoming Kellogsville scored a 87-49 win over Kentwood’s Grand River Prep.

 

Tonight (Thursday, March 9) games will find Kellogsville (now 18-3) trying to avoid the upset by Wyoming-Lee (10-10) in the 6 p.m. game. Then Godwin Heights (20-1) will face off with Grand Rapids South Christian (10-10) at 8 p.m.

 

The winners of those games will play Friday, with WKTV cameras on hand, for the District title and a berth in the Region 11 Regional Tournament next week.

 

Th game will be aired that night on Live Wire 24 at 10:30 p.m. and repeat Saturday at 11 a.m. on WKTV 25 and AT&T U-verse 99.

 

For a complete schedule of all local high school sports action in January, see now.wktv.org/sports/

 

DVDs and Blue-Rays of each game are also available for purchase at $20 including shipping. For more information, visit WKTV.org

 

School News Network: Ring-toss or slime-making, it’s all about fun

Fifth-grader Sebastion Escalante gets his hands messy while Darryl Jackson watches.
Fifth-grader Sebastion Escalante gets his hands messy while Darryl Jackson watches.

By Erin Albanese

School News Network

 

After school on Mondays through Thursdays, more than 40 middle school students participate in TEAM 21, where they do homework, eat, play sports and participate in activities.

 

But a recent night was all about fun, complete with doughnuts and apple cider, slime-making and pumpkin ring-toss. Students participated in Lights On Afterschool, a national event that celebrates after-school programs.

 

TEAM 21 is run through a partnership between the City of Wyoming Parks and Recreation Department and Godfrey-Lee, Wyoming, Godwin Heights and Kelloggsville Public Schools. Fifteen schools offer programs for more than 2,000 students ranging from kindergarten to ninth grade.

 

Launched in October 2000, Lights On Afterschool promotes the role of after-school programs in keeping kids safe, inspiring them to learn and helping working families. The effort has become a hallmark of the after-school movement and annually sees more than 1 million Americans celebrate at more than 8,000 events nationwide.

 

Be sure to check out School News Network for more stories about students, schools, and faculty in West Michigan.

2016 Election Results: Kent County School Boards

The unofficial election results from Kent County. Winners are in blue.

 

Godfrey-Lee School Board (2 positions)

Katie Brumley 1068

Lynn D. Velthouse 944

 

Godwin Heights School Board (3 positions)

Lee Ann Platschorre 1,595

Jan Allen 1,580

Jason Conklin 1565

Richard Hamilton Jr. 1557

 

Kelloggsville School Board (2 positions)

David L. Skinner, Jr. 2510

Gary Marihugh 2212

 

Kelloggsville School Board Partial Term Ending 12/31/2018 (1 position)

Donald E. Scott 2992, uncontested

 

Kentwood School Board (4 positions)

Mary Ann Madden  13466

Angeline M. Forton 12990

Allen Young  12905

Angela Hovermale  12322

 

Wyoming School Board (2 positions)

Lisa Manley (i) 5,016

Jessica Hanselman 4,640
Adrian Lamar 4,278

Darlene A. Yasick (i) 3,494

 

Wyoming School Board Partial Term Ending 12/31/2018 (1 position)

Thomas J. Mott 9697, uncontested

Visit a Senior, Meet a Pilot or a Teacher, or an Artist

Kelloggsville High School senior Thu Nguyen plays bingo with a resident
Kelloggsville High School senior Thu Nguyen plays bingo with a resident

By: Erin Albanese — School News Network

 

High school students have learned many interesting tidbits about the residents they are getting to know at American House Senior Living Community in Kentwood.

 

Each resident has a story, they’ve learned: Betty Reynolds was the first teacher at Battle Creek Christian School; Lois Laffey was a pilot. Margie Halstead is an artist who has 10 children, 35 grandchildren and 53 great-grandchildren. Margaret Gazella’s husband had to leave on their wedding day to fight in World War II.

 

“I love talking to the residents,” said Kelloggsville freshman Miles Thomas-Mohammad, while crafting glittery cardboard flowers with several ladies, and learning even more details about their lives. “They are so nice.”

 

They’ve learned other things as well while joining residents for crafts, games and snacks. Kelloggsvile senior Thu Nguyen, who is from Vietnam, said special moments happen over Bingo and just getting to know each other. “I want to make them feel happy so they don’t feel lonely,” she said.

 

And residents like it too. “It makes you feel young again,” said Elaine Wigger.

 

Added Ginger Kay, “It’s nice to have young people here, because they are so positive.”

 

Kelloggsville freshman Miles Thomas-Mohammad sets up crafts for senior citizens
Kelloggsville freshman Miles Thomas-Mohammad sets up crafts for senior citizens

A group of about eight Kelloggsville students, many who are English-language learners, visit the assisted-living and memory-care facilities monthly to spend time with seniors. Coordinated by EL teacher Susan Faulk, the volunteering opportunity is a way for students to give back and step out of their comfort zones and get to know others.

 

“The students gain patience and confidence as they work with the seniors,” Faulk said. “Many students are really shy and feel awkward around the seniors at first. I see their confidence grow as they realize that they are able to help someone else. I also see them having to learn patience, as a game of Skip-Bo and Rummikub can take a long time with a senior who has to think for a long time before taking action.”

 

For the past two years, Faulk has also coordinated a volunteer group at Women At Risk International Volunteer Center, a Grandville-based nonprofit organization that unites and educates women and children in areas of human trafficking and sexual slavery.

 

American House staff said the visits are very meaningful to residents.

 

Kelloggsville High School senior Dim Ciin eyes her Bingo board
Kelloggsville High School senior Dim Ciin eyes her Bingo board

“It’s always exciting to see people cross age barriers relationally,” said Susan Faulk’s husband, Steven Faulk, American House chaplain.

 

Activities assistant Betty Torres said the residents “love relating to the younger crowd. They have a lot of good stories to tell, our residents. They get so exited about a group coming in. It fulfills their whole being.”

 

Be sure to check out School News Network for more stories about our great students, schools, and faculty in West Michigan!

What’s in Your Bucket?

Kindness Bucket 2
Counselor Lisa VanKampen is helping students develop a common language around bucket filling at school

By: Erin Albanese — School News Network

 

Every student at West Kelloggsville Elementary School has an invisible bucket. Johana Cruz explained the importance of keeping everyone’s full.

 

“If you’re a bucket dipper, you’re not going to have any friends,” explained the second-grader.

 

Students at the second- and third-grade school are thinking a lot about “bucket filling” and “bucket dipping” as they interact with one another.

 

“The bucket has one purpose: It holds your good thoughts and good feelings about yourself,” said counselor Lisa VanKampen. “When our bucket is full, we feel great. When it’s empty, we feel awful. Yet most children, and many adults, don’t realize the importance of having a full bucket throughout the day.”

 

When students fill buckets with kind words and actions, almost magically their own fills up too, she explained. But, alas, say an unkind word or act in a hurtful way, and buckets sink low. VanKampen’s “Have You Filled Your Bucket Today?” program, based on Bucket Fillers 101, is all about spreading kindness to benefit everybody.

 

Kindness Bucket
Compliments are free and anyone can give them

She says it’s creating a common language at school, a way for students to express their feelings and teachers to state expectations using the bucket as a symbol. Smile at someone: Buckets fill. Scowl? Buckets empty. Students learn everybody has a bucket, regardless of age.

 

“Bucket filling is inviting someone to play when they are all alone,” Johana said.

 

“It’s being nice!” said second-grader Scarlett Shepard.

 

“It’s giving high fives and fist bumps,” added second-grader Angel Gomez.

 

Filling Buckets

 

VanKampen has conducted two lessons in each classroom on bucket filling and bucket dipping. The idea is based on the book, “How Full is Your Bucket?” by Tom Rath, which tells of a boy who begins to see how every interaction in a day either fills or empties his bucket. The children’s book is a spin-off of an adult version written by Rath and Donald Clifton. Both books emphasize that it hardly takes any time and it’s all free. “Everyone, no matter if you are 1 or 101, can fill buckets,” VanKampen said.

 

Kindness Bucket 3VanKampen passed out cards with behaviors written on them for students to categorize under “Bucket Fillers are people who…” and “Bucket Dippers are people who…” Each class received its own bucket with blue slips of paper that read, “I’m filling your bucket.” Students write positive feelings, comments or compliment to someone in their class. Teachers read out of the classroom bucket to reinforce the lesson.

 

“I wroted one to my BFF Eaden,” Scarlett said. “I wroted that you’re the bestest friend anyone can ask for.”

 

VanKampen also has an interactive bulletin board about bucket dipping outside her office. She hangs bucket-filling “tear-offs” around the school for kids to have for themselves or give to others.

 

Third-grade teacher Bethany Kamps took the program a step further and hung buckets for each child on her classroom wall.

 

“I wanted to add it into the classroom because I feel like the whole culture and environment of the class really affects how they learn,” Kamps said. “When kids are treating each other positively and getting along, it makes it easier to get learning done.”

 

VanKampen and East Kelloggsville counselor Hillary DeRidder are hosting a parent night in May to introduce, educate and model the bucket story with the hope that it will be extended to students’ homes.

 

Be sure to check out School News Network for more stories about our great students, schools, and faculty in West Michigan!

Kelloggsville students make a statement against the recent violence in their community

Kelloggsivlle High School students Melody Szatkowski and Analise Cabrera were part of a handful of students who recently led a silent protest against violence in their community.
Kelloggsivlle High School students Melody Szatkowski and Analise Cabrera were part of a handful of students who recently led a silent protest against violence in their community.

While some were getting ready for prom and others were just enjoying a beautiful Saturday, a handful of Kelloggsville students were silently protesting about the violence in their community.

 

“I don’t like living with the violence,” said Analise Cabrera, a Kentwood resident who is an 11th grader at Kelloggsville High School. Cabrera, like all the students holding signs on the corner of 44th Street and Division in front of the RiteAid, has personally been touched by violence. Her friend, Michael White, a former Kelloggsville student, was killed in March by two out-of-district students.

 

“There are a lot of people sitting back and just watching what happens,” Cabrera said. “We need people to step up and do something.

 

“We are doing what we can do and we want to just make an impact on others. You have to start somewhere.”

 

Kelloggsville student Alexandrea Groters and Calvin College student Morgan VonThaden were part of the silent protest last Saturday.
Kelloggsville student Rebecca Minier with D.O.C.K director Laurie Zuverink and GRIL leader Jordan Seebeck..

Interns for the after-school program D.O.C.K., Discipling of Christ’s Kids, the four students participated in the leadership program GR Initiative for Leaders (GRIL U). A faith-based training for teens, the nine-month program is designed to help students find their passions and then show them the tools they have available to share that passion, said Noele Stith, who is part of GRIL U.

 

“It is designed to show them they have a voice and how they can use that voice in a positive way to encourage change in their community whether that community is home, school, a place of worship, or a neighborhood,” Stith said.

 

In the GRIL U program, students set aside two hours of service for their church or organization, in this case specifically for D.O.C.K. The students meet with a mentor once a month and with that mentor, work on learning about the causes that interest them. The topic of violence came to the forefront after Kelloggsvile student Isaiah Blue was shot in January and then the murder of White a couple of months later.

 

Kelloggsvile student Alexandrea Groters and Calvin College student Morgan VonThaden were part of the silent protest last Saturday.
Kelloggsvile student Alexandrea Groters and Calvin College student Morgan VonThaden were part of the silent protest last Saturday.

“For me, it was important for people to understand what violence is,” said Melody Szatkowski, a Wyoming resident and 11th grader at Kelloggsville High School who stood on the corner holding a sign with the definition of violence. “It is behavior involving physical intent to hurt, damage or kill.

 

“I hope this creates a better understanding of what violence is because it is not just killing, but hurting and damaging someone or something as well.”

 

The students stood out on the corner from about 10 a.m. to noon holding signs and saying little. Cars drove by, beeping their horns in support and a few students stopped to chat with the protestors.

 

The event was one of three that took place within a week all organized by students who participated in the GRIL U program. There was one on human trafficking at RiverTown Mall on April 20 and another on voter registration on April 27.

Evening of Science, Slime and Snacks

School News Network - Kelloggsville Rocket Science nightBy: Erin Albanese – School News Network

 

Colorful slime gelled and circuits connected recently during Rocket Family Night at Kelloggsville Middle School.

 

Five classrooms were set up with hands-on science experiments for students of all ages to experience. Each allowed youngsters to create something to bring home, such as paper airplanes and slime. Rocket Family Night is a district initiative to offer the community a free meal and an evening tied to academics.

 

“We want parents to get into the buildings and the district. We also want our students to know how fun some of the subjects can be if you give them a chance,” said Middle School Principal Jim Alston.

 

Along with going through lots of science supplies, staff served more than 250 plates of food.

 

Be sure to check out School News Network for more stories about our great students, schools, and faculty in West Michigan!