Mountaineer Notes, April 1, 2015

Happy Spring, All!

Teacher Appreciation Week is May 4-8, 2015

The Madison County Education Foundation hosted its third annual March Madness fundraiser in conjunction with the NCAA basketball tournament at Graves Mountain Lodge Pavilion on Saturday, March 22.  This year’s event provided increased revenues for MCEF with an estimated 170 in attendance, donations, bids on silent auction items, and a spontaneous “bucket filling” campaign to fund Camp Unakite, spearheaded by supporter and former School Board Chairman, Jeff Early.  According to Foundation Treasurer William Hinkes, the event raised an all-time high of over $25,000!  

MPS EgyptWalk like an Egyptian.   MPS Second Graders presented their musical program, Temples and Tombs, last week to excited families, teachers, and students.  As a way to conclude their Ancient Egypt Social Studies Unit, the students sang and danced about pyramids, mummies, The Nile, and King Tut.  They even had a pharaoh with guards!  The hard work of the students and teachers was well worth it!  Congrats on an AWESOME program!

Spotlight on PBL.  Senior English students will be presenting evidence to prove the mental illnesses afflicting various characters in MacBeth.  Students researched symptoms and treatments that fit the actions/symptoms of their chosen character.  Students will defend their diagnosis in front of an Evaluation Committee. 

Madison won the VHSL State Championship (AGAIN!) with 34 points over second place Central-Wise with 9 points and Union High School in third with 7 points.  Previously, Madison won the Catholic Forensic League (CFL) State Championship and the National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA) State Championship in Speech for Virginia. MCHS Forensics participated in the VHSL State Championships at Clover Hill High School last Saturday.  Placing for Madison were:

  • Camryn Powers and Bryanna Smith, State Champions in Serious Duo
  • Jackie Dews, State Champion in Poetry Interpretation
  • Jordan Taylor, State Champion in Dramatic Interpretation
  • Autumn Chasse and Rebecca Young, State Runner Up Champions in Serious Duo
  • Devon Bewley, State Runner Up Champion in Dramatic Interpretation
  • Summer Davis, State Runner Up Champion in Original Oratory
  • Dustin Cone, State Runner Up Champion in Extemporaneous Speaking
  • Malachi Garr, State Runner Up Champion in Impromptu Speaking
  • Jacob Corbin, third place, Dramatic Interpretation
  • Aliya Turcios-Sanchez, 8th grader, third place in Poetry Interpretation
  • Shannon Blow, fourth place, Prose Interpretation

Madison holds the VHSL record for the school with the most VHSL State Championships in Forensics.  This was the 17th VHSL State Championship in Forensics since Mr. Hitt has been Head Coach; the last four of those have been the combined coaching efforts of Donald Hitt and Jason Dart, Assistant Coach.

Congrats to WMS teacher Tori Gelbert and MCHS teacher Jessica Gooch!  Both Stem Programs have been listed in the VSBA Showcase for Success.  You can check it out here.

Pi Day 2015 was Epic! Posters were hung in all the schools. WYES, WMS, and MCHS had great activities for their students.

Pi Day WYESPi at WYES:  “Waverly Yowell celebrated Pi day and Albert Einstein’s birthday a day early, on March 13, 2015.  March 14 is Pi day, because of the numerical value starting at 3.14 and continue indefinitely.  Fifth grade students were asked to memorize as many digits of pi and recite them to earn a chance to “Pi” their teachers.  Each classroom had a winner, with the big winner, Jackson Taylor from Jeff Tilbe’s class.  Because he had the most, at 87 digits, Jackson was able to “Pi” both his teacher, and another unsuspecting volunteer.  Students were also asked to wear Pi shirts or dress as Einstein to help the celebration.”

Pi Day WMSPi at WMS:  “Wetsel celebrated Pi Day by focusing on the first 10 digits of pi which happened to match up with the exact date and time.  Students in every math class were asked to write the first ten digits of pi.  If they successfully did this, they voted a teacher to be pied during lunch.  The student at each grade level that was able to list the most numbers of Pi was the lucky one to throw it.  The sixth graders chose Jared Morris and the thrower was Hannah Gessler who named the first 103 digits of pi.  The seventh graders chose Emily Everard and the thrower was Khalid West who named the first 58 digits of pi.  The eighth graders chose Principal Tim Taylor and the thrower was Erick Teo-Abrego.”

MCHS PI DAY T-SHIRT DESIGNSPi at MCHS.  MCHS teacher, Chelsea Matis, had her Advanced Math Class organize MCHS Pi Day events this year through class projects.  The students had fun creating Pi Day T-shirt designs, a school-wide Pi Day Trivia Contest, Pi Day Posters, a Pi Day News Broadcast, and more.

The following All-State Winter Athletes will be recognized by the School Board.


  • Ben Dillon
  • Kimmie Dillon
  • Claudia Gohn
  • Jeana Grace Kelliher
  • Kara Morgan McHaney
  • Dale McNamara
  • Christine Mullen
  • Rosemarie Mullen


  • Dylan Berry
  • Gabe Farmer
  • Jaylyn Simms

Anatomy SkeletonStudents in Lisa Taylor’s Anatomy class had to create a mini skeleton with the correct number and shape of all the bones in the body. Students were given craft sticks, toothpicks and hot glue to use as supplies. Skulls were then molded with the correct bones and showing all the correct sutures.

Senior Emily Butterworth has started a weekly news program for MCHS.  It is broadcast through you tube to the staff.  First block teachers are sharing it with students each week.  This is a project that she wanted to create and hopes that it will be sustained even after she graduates.  This week features Mr. Allison, the Baseball team and the Forensics team.

MCHS PE Recognition.  For outstanding PE participation and skill, Chase Smith is recognized for best attitude in volleyball and Sarah Johnson for most volleyball hits. Instructional assistant, Mrs. Alma Frye joins the class and is recognized for most volleyball touches. Students are learning to set and dig as they improve their motor skills.

The MPS Jump Rope for Heart donations were mailed today.  This year, Primary raised $8,000 for the American Heart Association!!   This brings our 15 year total from 2001 – 2015 to: $80,000 in donations to the American Heart Association from the students at Madison Primary School!  A big thank you goes out to PE teacher Ben Breeden for organizing the event and to our Madison community for its outstanding support.

WYES SB VisitThe School Board visited Waverly on Friday, March 27.   School Board members Jim Nelson, Doreen Jenkins and Barry Penn Hollar thoroughly enjoyed visiting WYES.  The Board was very impressed!  Pictured is Barry Pen Hollar observing student Lego designs.

Sixth grade science teacher, Kim Adams, recently used Google classroom as a vehicle to send assignment information to students.  Students were placed in groups to research severe storm systems.  She placed the research links and a Google slides template that students could use as a guide.  They also used Google forms to create a 5 question quiz to administer after presenting their slides.  On day 2, students “Jigsaw(ed)” into new groups and took turns presenting and administering their quizzes.  All presentations and quizzes were shared with Mrs. Adams.  The students really enjoyed the process. The opportunity to teach and assess prompted discussion about effective presentations.  Mrs. Adams heard one group describe how they “know that teachers look at data from tests.”

Two students from MCHS teacher Julie Heffron’s 2nd & 4th Chemistry classes stayed after school Monday and made supersaturated sodium acetate solutionsLexy Jones and Jared Ross found it quite a laborious/time-consuming process.  Both solutions worked on Tuesday when tested.  The application for the solution is use in some commercial hand warmers.   This shows students the importance of accuracy as well as sometimes needing a little bit of patience in the lab!  The topic covered is molarity (i.e. concentration] of substances.


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