Mountaineer Notes, November 9, 2016

dia-de-los-muertos-2Jenette Reyes Spanish students at MCHS recently participated in a Dia de los muertos painted pot project.  Most Spanish-speaking countries celebrate and participate in the Catholic All-Saint’s Day or All Soul’s day festivities.  Mexico is unique because of the Native Mexican (azteca, etc.) traditions that combined over time with the Spanish Catholic traditions, which is how the Dia de los muertos comes about.  Students learned about multiple traditions and one is an activity that children will do on and around this day in Mexico–painting calaveras (skulls) on themselves, painting pots/planting plants, making masks, building ofrendas, etc.


davis-reading-plusReading Plus.   4th grade teacher, Kayla Davis, is keeping track of how many words her students read on Reading Plus.  Reading Plus is the Tier 2 reading intervention being used at Waverly Yowell Elementary.  Kayla has decided to use a thermometer as a visual to show progress.  The kids are excited to see how much they are reading!  The top 3 word readers receive prizes for their effort.  Reading Plus also has awards for completing a designated amount of questions correctly and it opens new levels.  The progress monitoring and recognition is motivating the students to read and try their best.

blue-girl-2There is a new face to the Wetsel Middle School’s “Show Your Blue” initiative. Her name is “Blue Girl” and she sets examples of how to “Be Respectful, Learn Everyday, Understand Responsibilities, and Encourage Everyone!” You can view the first two episodes of “Blue Girl” by clicking picture at left.


On November 1, the Governor issued a proclamation naming November 2016 as Family Involvement in Education Month in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The State Board of Education also recognized Family Involvement in Education Month during the October 2016 Board meeting. For more information go to:

Congratulations to Grace Fox and Makenna Santinga for being named to the 2016 All Conference 35 Volleyball 1st Team.

Lane Warren Dedication.  On Saturday, November 5 approximately 40 people attended the dedication of the fountain in the MCHS Senior Courtyard which honors Lane Warren.  Lane passed away in the fall of 2013 during his senior year. 

Congratulations to the following Fall Athletes for being named the PCA Sportsmanship winners for their respective teams:

  • Golf: Jacob Clatterbuck
  • Cheer: Sam Estes
  • Girls Cross Country: Carrington Frazier
  • Boys Cross Country: Nico Barton
  • Volleyball: Grace Fox
  • Football: Chase Berry

The Varsity Football team will host Nandua on Friday night at 7pm at home in the 1st Round of the Region 2A East Football Playoffs. Nandua High School is in Accomack County.  Everyone come out and support the Mountaineers this Friday!

MCHS Varsity Football 2016

Great Things are going in the Wetsel and MCHS Art rooms.  Please see November newsletter here:art-portraits

Please come join us at WMS for our Empty Bowl Fundraiser to help support families during the holidays. Students in Tiffany Kitner’s Art Class are currently designing and glazing bowls to be sold at the event and the proceeds will be donated to MESA.  Members of the WMS staff have volunteered to provide a home cooked meal to those individuals that purchase bowls.  The event is scheduled for November 22 from 5-7pm in the WMS cafeteria.

?Waverly Yowell’s One Book, One School kicked off last Thursday.  During homeroom, students received their personal copy of  Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library after a week full of morning riddles and clues created by librarian, Rebecca Jasman, to build student excitement.  Later that evening, families were invited to come and read under the stars and enjoy some hot chocolate.  There were just about 100 people that showed up to read.  It was so amazing to see all the families engaged in a book.  3rd grade reading teacher, Rebecca Bader, even ran a reading circle/book club.  The excitement for reading made last evening truly magical.  Special thanks goes out to teachers Kayla Davis, Kelsey Reott, and Katie Gigilotti for making the hot cocoa happen; teacher Scott Aylor and Principal Joe Kubricki for getting covered in cocoa carrying it down to the picnic tables; and all of the teachers for advertising this event.


delegate-freitas-1School Board Met with Delegate Nick Freitas.  November is Take Your Legislator to Lunch Month endorsed by the Virginia School Boards Association.  On Friday, November 4, the Administration and the School Board met with Delegate Nick Freitas and his Aide Christian Heiens at Waverly Yowell Elementary School.  Superintendent Eberhardt, Director of Teaching and Learning Tina Weaver, and Principal Joe Kubricki joined Board members Karen Allen, Bob Chappell, Doreen Jenkins and Barry Penn Hollar

bucket-slip-goalMadison Primary School’s Bucket Filler Program is reaching new heights. We have set a goal for students to collect 4,000 bucket slips before the Winter Break. Students can earn a bucket slip by simply following our school-wide expectations of Be Responsible, Be Safe, and Be Respectful. We have collected a total of 1,455 bucket slips as of October 28th, and will certainly add many more to that total at our next character celebration assembly this Friday. We are very proud of students’ efforts.

free-dental-clinicFree Dental Clinic.  The Dental Clinic visited Waverly Yowell Elementary this week to help children with dental care.  19 students were seen from Waverly and Wetsel. 

At Madison Primary, students are making moves to show what they know. Based on strategies presented by Ron Nash at the VSUP conference, Seatwork to Feetwork, students are practicing math skills on a giant Hundred Chart and literacy skills on a massive Alpha-Grid, both posted in high-traffic areas of the school for all to see and use.

Wetsel Middle School’s two robotics teams achieve at regional competition.   The regional (Valley) FLL competition is sponsored by James Madison University’s (JMU) College of Integrated Science and Engineering, JMU’s Research and Scholarship, and of course the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council.

15 middle school students travelled to James Madison University this past weekend to compete against teams in our local area for FIRST Lego League (FLL). The Wetsel 7th grade group came in 4th place overall for their robot score and 1st for their project and presentation. Our 8th grade group received the Judge’s Award for showing gracious professionalism at the completion. The team is coached by Wetsel Assistant Principal Tori Gelbert and Technology Specialist Shawn McDonough for working with the students before and after school to help prepare them for competition.

FIRST Lego League (FLL), was created through a partnership between FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) and the LEGO company, and inspires future scientists and engineers.

The FIRST LEGO League (FLL), considered the “little league” of the FIRST Robotics Competition, is the result of a partnership between FIRST and the LEGO Company. FLL extends the FIRST concept of inspiring and celebrating science and technology to children aged 9 through 14, using real-world context and hands-on experimentation.

With the help of LEGO MINDSTORMS Robotics Invention System technology, young participants can build a robot and compete in a friendly, FIRST-style robotics event specially designed for their age group. Using LEGO bricks and other elements such as sensors, motors, and gears, teams gain hands-on experience in engineering and computer programming principles as they construct and program their unique robot inventions.

artist-of-the-monthArtwork from the first artist of the month this school year is on display in the library. Blake Watson is the November Artist of the month!  MCHS art teacher Ashleigh Pugh says that Blake is a resilient, passionate, and hard worker when it comes to the things that he likes. Blake demonstrates his love of North American animals in his artwork along with his attention to detail focusing on a deeper idea and meaning to his work (hence the title of his artwork). Blake continues to surprise me with his dedication and commitment to his artwork. 

MCHS teacher Gail Temple would like to thank the following who her Teachers For Tomorrow students observed last week.  PE teacher Ben Breeden and Preschool teachers Jennifer Taylor and Susan Estes. Students observed children at play and then identified the developmental stages and types of play they saw. It was quite enlightening as they saw how Mr. Breeden incorporated science and social studies into the P.E lesson and how Mrs. Taylor and Mrs. Estes worked one-on-one with individual students as the other students rotated through centers.

MCHS counselors Celinda Bailey and Hilary Stanton arranged an important informational  meeting last week for our seniors and their parents.  Becky Morris, from Germanna Community College, presented information on the FAFSA with its new filing date plus other financial aid opportunities.

From frogs to elephants!  MCHS students in Lori Mack and Brandy Nesbitt’s science classes had the opportunity last week to experience a trip to the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington D.C. as an extension of their Biology class.  This was the first trip to Washington D.C. for some of our students!

Did you know?

VT.  Did you know in a recent poll that the School Board Office overwhelmingly supports Virginia Tech football?

On-time Graduation Rate.  Did you know Madison is ranked tenth best in the state for on-time graduation rate out of approximately 130 school divisions?  This means we are a top 10.

Pittsburgh Steelers. To all my Pennsylvania friends and colleagues, did you you that the Steelers lost to Baltimore on Sunday 14-21?  I do need to say that the Steelers have won more Super Bowls than any other – 6.

WYES Service Club. Did you know WYES has a service club? This is a group of 5th grade students volunteering their time after school to complete service projects in the school and community.

Athletics. Did you know that 277 MCHS students participated in Athletics during the 2015-2016 school year which means over 50% of all students are scholar athletes?

Energy Management.  Did you know that MCPS is conducting an Energy Management Review with Ameresco to determine what improvements can be made with no cost to the school division?  (This is why there are sensors in some classrooms.  The company is monitoring energy usage.)

VRS Hybrid Members.  Did you know that you are leaving money on the table if you are not contributing the voluntary 4% to your retirement account?  The School Board will match your 4% with 2.5% toward your retirement.

Preschool. Did you know that Madison Primary School has the capacity to serve 72 preschool students?

SBO Colleges/Universities.  Did you know the SBO personnel have taken courses at the following colleges/universities?

  • Blue Ridge Community College
  • George Mason University
  • Germanna Community College
  • Hollins University
  • Indiana University of Pennsylvania
  • James Madison University
  • Liberty University
  • Mary Baldwin College
  • Old Dominion University
  • Piedmont Virginia Community College
  • Roanoke College
  • Strayer University
  • University of Dayton
  • University of Maryland
  • University of Phoenix
  • University of Virginia
  • Virginia Tech
  • Virginia Western Community College
  • Westminster College

WYES Service Club.  Did you know there is a WYES Service Club?   This group of 5th grade students volunteering their time after school to complete service projects in our school and community.  Teacher Katie Gigliotti and Counselor Nicole Keys are leading this wonderful group of students.




  • All Month                       National Native American Heritage Month
  • November 11                 Veteran’s Day
  • November 14-18            American Education Week
  • November 14-18            School Psychology Awareness Week
  • November 16                 National Education Support Professionals Day
  • November 16                 National Parental Involvement Day
  • November 18                 Substitute Educators Day
  • November 19                 World Day for Prevention of Abuse & Violence against Children
  • November 20                 International Children’s Day
  • November 20-26            National Family Week
  • November 24                 Thanksgiving

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