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Manawa program helps students learn skills, prepare for careers

life after school


Waupaca County News: One committee got a first-hand look and later an in-depth explanation about a new program the Manawa School District hopes to launch.

At its Wednesday, July 26 meeting, the Buildings and Grounds Committee spent part of its time at 407 S. Bridge St.

“If I could have dreamt up the type of space that would work, this would be it,” said Danni Brauer, director of special education and curriculum for Manawa schools.

The district would like to start a Practical Assessment Exploration System (PAES). The downtown location would serve as the PAES lab, or hub for the program.

Brauer’s department has the goal to ensure that 100 percent of students leave with either a full-time, competitive paying job or a post-secondary education path.

The PAES lab would be for those students with individualized learning plans, meaning those with a variety of disabilities that affect learning.

“The kids I’m talking about are some of the hardest to employ,” Brauer said.

The downtown location would provide an atmosphere free of distractions like bells, so students who participate can focus on life after school.

“We have a very needy population of kids who need this training and we have some that just aren’t motivated,” Brauer said.

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Iola-Scandinavia Students Learn from Climbing



Waupaca County News: A climbing wall at the Iola-Scandinavia Community Fitness & Aquatic Center has been turned into a learning experience for students of all ages.

“The last two years, we had introduced the climbing wall in physical education classes at all levels of the school district,” center director Tim Welch said.

It only seemed natural to add it to the summer school curriculum and Welch said it has been a big hit.

“Climbing is called a Challenge by Choice activity,” he said. “This means students make their own choices how far and high to climb. This way, climbing becomes an individual fun activity not based on fear, but based on what they can do physically and what they feel comfortable doing.”

Students agreed.

“It’s a lot of fun,” said Ahnna Check, 8. “I was a little scared at first, but I love it now.”

“It’s much harder than I thought, but I like the challenge,” third-grader Korz Loken said. “Everyone should give it a try. It’s something new and fun to do.”

“I finally made it to the top,” added Jayden Ridge, 7.

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Kimberly High School students appear on ‘Jimmy Kimmel’ show

Kimberly High School

Appleton Post-Crescent: Kimberly High School’s national champion Rube Goldberg Machine team got some national exposure Tuesday night.

The team showed its “Kimberly Kitchen” machine on the “Jimmy Kimmel LIVE!” show. A video of the show can be viewed at

The team was invited to Hollywood to speak about their kitchen-themed Rube Goldberg Machine that completes a simple task through an overly complicated and creative process. This year’s challenge was to apply a Band-Aid. Their machine completes that task in about 70 steps.

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Kimberley Rube Goldberg team earns national berth

Kimberly - 1st place Kimberly Kitchen

Post-Crescent: There’s a collapsible kitchen in Kevin Janota’s technology education classroom at Kimberly High School.

It features all the equipment one would expect a kitchen to have: a stand mixer, spatulas, a tea kettle, a toaster, a cheese grater and measuring cups.

But this is no ordinary kitchen.

It’s the Rube Goldberg Machine the aptly-named Kimberly Kitchen Team will take to the national competition in Columbus, Ohio on Saturday.

“We just need to take simple, everyday objects and try to make complex tasks out of it,” said junior Chris Thompson.

The simple task of applying a Band-Aid takes the Kimberly Kitchen contraption 69 steps to complete. Students enroll in the Rube Goldberg Machine Class at the high school, split up into teams and create their masterpieces.

The kitchen team — which includes students Sam Barwick, Kyle Downham, Carter Eckes, Rachel Foster, Logan Hartman, Stephen Littrell, Logan Paalman, Thompson and Grant Zoromski — took first place overall and received the safety award at the regional competition.

They will compete against 16 other teams from around the nation on Saturday.

Kimberly High School is no stranger to the national Rube Goldberg Machine Competition. A group of Papermakers won it all in 2012 and another took third in the nation in 2013, Janota said.

The team is more excited than nervous for the experience.

“I’m excited because I’ve never gone to nationals for something,” Thompson said. “It’ll be a fun experience where we can show everyone what we can do.”

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Oshkosh North students learn about manufacturing careers

Fox 11 News: Some Oshkosh North high school students got an early glimpse into some potential careers.

“This really gave students exposure to all aspects of business,” said Julie Mosher with the Oshkosh School District.

During this year long project, called Project GRILL, the manufacturing and welding class teamed up with Oshkosh Corporation.

“They have really enjoyed being a part of working with Oshkosh Corporation and the executives, the engineers there” said Patti Andresen-Shew with the Oshkosh Chamber of Commerce, “They felt like they learned a lot, it’s been a real growth experience.”

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