by rsullivan | Apr 10, 2017 | Stand Up for Public Education Blog
Marquette County Tribune: Montello High School Choir was welcomed by the Grand Ole Opry and its patrons prior to the March 25th performance.
The Music City Performance Program has become an exciting part of the Opry experience for visiting performing student groups. This program gives students and amazing performance experience at one of the nation’s iconic music establishments. “Being able to showcase talented students from across the country is very rewarding and fosters excellence in their musical development curriculum,” said Wayne Chandler, Director of Sales, GOO Entertainment Group.
The students performed for 20 minutes prior to attending the world’s longest running radio show. In addition, they received a commemorative performance poster and recognition during the Grand Ole Opry Performance. Their visit to the Grand Ole Opry was part of a trip to Nashville, Tennessee over their spring break, during which they experienced many sights and landmarks of the Nashville area.
by rsullivan | Dec 7, 2016 | Stand Up for Public Education Blog
Juneau County Star Times: Teachers at Olson Middle School have found ways to unlock students’ creative spirit that doesn’t involve sitting behind a desk.
On Monday, OMS held an open house to unveil its Makerlab, the brainchild of teachers Matt Regan, Kendal Sass, Bryon Hoehn and Jen Holberg. About a year ago, the teachers had an idea of converting an underutilized computer lab connected to the middle school’s library into a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) lab. Through STEM, students can learn through an interdisciplinary and applied approach.
With help from the Mauston School District, teachers received an instructional leadership grant and the OMS Makerlab was born. The lab opened at the beginning of the school year. Hoehn said the lab is gaining in popularity, with sixth graders heavily involved in the creative format.
“The biggest thing is that it allows the kids to figure out concepts by themselves,” Hoehn said.
Through technology and science, students learn how to solve complex problems through experimentation. Hoehn said it teaches kids to forge ahead even when a project becomes daunting. Since the launch of the Makerlab, students have collaborated to build projects, improving communication, creativity and critical thinking skills. Educators at OMS hope the lab will increase 21st Century skills-based learning opportunities for their students.
by rsullivan | Nov 28, 2016 | Stand Up for Public Education Blog
Juneau County Star Times: Mauston High School came through in a big way for the local food pantry.
MHS held its annual food challenge to raise money and collect perishable food items for the Mauston Area Community Sharing Pantry on Tuesday. Students amassed a grand total of 7,176 pounds of food, a value of $1,195.75, in the challenge. The challenge also included games and fun activities among students.
Through a program with the Second Harvest Food Bank, Mauston competes with other schools in the area. MHS traditionally does very well in the food challenge and the trend continued this year. The Bank of Mauston also chipped in with $2,000.
Pantry director Kathy Green thanked the school for its generosity. The annual challenge is an important food drive for the local pantry. Last year, the pantry provided food for 770 different families in the Mauston area. With its new renovation and expansion complete, the pantry has additional room for products.
“The kids did awesome and they always do,” Green said. “It’s a good group of kids to work with and be inspired by; we have great youth in this town. And the teachers too, because if they don’t step up and take an interest in it, the kids won’t. We have great staff here, altogether.”
by rsullivan | May 25, 2016 | Stand Up for Public Education Blog
Reedsburg Times-Press: There’s been a lot of talk about skilled jobs in Wisconsin, but one career remains the state’s bread and butter.
America’s Dairyland needs a talented work force just as much as any state and, like others, is doing what it can to encourage students to go into science, technology, engineering and math fields. Agriculture has been a challenging industry that has seen the disappearance of family farms over several decades.
Area schools are working to reverse that trend not only by teaching kids about agriculture but showing them that numerous kinds of jobs exist in the sector.
Todd Cherney knows it’s best to start early when introducing children to agriculture. As an agriculture teacher at Reedsburg Area High School, he partners with area farmers to teach younger students about farming. In early May, the Reedsburg FFA hosted Food for America, where FFA members taught elementary school students about dairy, beef, pigs, sheep, horses, goats, poultry, feed and equipment.
Cherney said that kind of education benefits both elementary and high school students. Older teens learn leadership and public speaking from their presentations.
It’s not so easy to find students who are familiar with farming. Cherney said 25 percent of his students once came from family farms. Today, that figure is closer to 5 percent.
by rsullivan | Apr 8, 2016 | Stand Up for Public Education Blog
Baraboo News Republic: From construction work to hairdressing, Baraboo fourth and fifth grade students had the chance to explore a variety of employment choices at the annual Career Fair on Thursday.
The event, which included 10-minute presentations from about a dozen area companies, was held on the University of Wisconsin-Baraboo/Sauk County campus for fourth and fifth grade students from all Baraboo elementary schools.
Tina Neuman of DL Gasser Construction outfitted her small groups of students with safety vests and assigned them responsibilities, just like on a real construction crew. “You have to get your keys, check your oil and drive your equipment,” she told the students who pretended to operate construction equipment.