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Grace Holds Sportsmanship Summit for Northern Lakes Conference

WINONA LAKE, Ind. – Grace College and Director of Athletics Chad Briscoe welcomed student-athletes from the high schools of the Northern Lakes Conference for a Sportsmanship Summit on Tuesday.
Ten student-athletes from eight NLC schools attended the conference, which was designed to educate student-athletes about sportsmanship and character training in athletics.
"We are pleased to be a part of building character at the high-school level through the Sportsmanship Summit," Briscoe said. "We hope it served as a great opportunity to educate and reinforce character education and to help promote the importance of sportsmanship for each student-athlete."
Students from Concord, Elkhart Memorial, Goshen, Northridge, NorthWood, Plymouth, Warsaw and Wawasee high schools spent the day together working in groups to discuss and challenge one another in sportsmanship and character-building opportunities in the athletic realm. The students worked in team-initiative opportunities to build camaraderie among the schools in the conference.
“The schools in the NLC are really supportive of one another. Sometimes that gets lost in the heat of competition on Friday and Saturday nights,” said Warsaw athletic director Dave Anson. “Efforts like this truly help our student-athletes and leaders continue emphasizing the important and lasting messages that athletics can send. Thank you to Grace for helping us as a conference meet the need for character emphasis in our schools and communities.”
The Sportsmanship Summit featured sessions from IHSAA Assistant Commissioner Sandy Searcy, Grace College Vice President Jim Swanson and Briscoe.
Warsaw sophomore Page Desenberg commented: “In our society, there is a lot of attitude and ego that’s all about me, me, me. Today helped bring to light the importance of decision-making and how we can have a big impact on kids looking up to us.”
Wawasee sophomore Stephen Possell added: “We were reminded today that sportsmanship is a goal that each team should have. The positive attitude and feedback student-athletes can bring to our schools can make a difference.”


Jefferson Spelling Bee

A whopping 68 5th and 6th grade students participated in this year’s Jefferson Spelling Bee, held on Tuesday, December 16, 2015. In the end, 6th grader Kaleb Harter emerged as the champ in the 6th round, spelling the winning words lozenge and churros. The runner-up was 5th grader Ali Sutter. The event was emceed by Miss Elizabeth Weiser.
Kaleb will participate in the county-wide Spelling Bee later this winter. Watch for details!
Congratulations to both Kaleb and Ali and to all who had the courage to participate. We are proud of each and every one!

(Pictured are Kaleb Harter, Miss Weiser, and Ali Sutter.)



Eisenhower 4th Graders Explore a Cow’s Eye

Eisenhower 4th grade students were given a special opportunity to explore the different ways the eye works as they participated in eye dissections guided by an expert in the field, Dr. Rozsa, a research scientist from the University of Michigan. Throughout the presentation, students had the opportunity to get their gloves dirty. At first, the students were a little nervous and uncomfortable, but as they got used to working with the eyeball, more and more students became intrigued by it. By the end, even the students who vowed not to touch it, ended up getting their hands dirty. When the students first received their cow’s eye, it was covered in fatty tissue that had to be removed. Later, Dr. Rozsa came around with a scalpel to open up the eye so the students could explore inside. The students discarded the aqueous liquid/gel from the eye and were then able to remove the cornea and look through it. Dr. Rozsa had the students find the shiny layer in the back of the cow’s eye called the “tapetum” - which allows cows to see at night. By far the students’ favorite part of the eye was the lens. They discovered that they could remove it, put it on a piece of paper and use it as a magnifying glass. It was truly a “STEMulating” experience for all of them!


Edgewood Sees 'Miracle' In Food Collection

Edgewood Middle School is collecting non-perishable food items for needy families at its school, as well as for Combined Community Services and Our Father’s House. The school almost didn’t have a food drive this year, but staff had a change of heart and made it happen. Students will be collecting items at the new and old Owen’s today from 4 to 8 p.m., and at the old Owen’s all next week through Dec. 19 from 4 to 8 p.m. Items also may be donated at the choir concert at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Edgewood Commons. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union

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Madison Students Donate to Animal Welfare

Instead of a gift exchange, first-graders in Amy Swihart’s classroom at Madison Elementary School donate to the Animal Welfare League of Kosciusko County each year.
“We call it ‘Enriching the Lives of Our Furry Friends,’” said Swihart last night at the third annual event. “All kids love animals, so they want to help.”
“I love it because it’s teaching philanthropy to the children. A lot of kids don’t have that in their life. It makes you feel good,” said Darla McCammon, AWL executive director.
Giving to the shelter doesn’t cost much, Swihart said. A person can donate something as simple as their stack of newspapers.
“Dog food is very helpful right now because of the prices,” McCammon suggested.
At the start of each school year, Swihart tells parents to start saving their newspapers. Three weeks before the event, she sends out an email reminding parents of the event. The parents and children then deliver the items to the AWL, with the first-graders taking some time to pet and play with the animals. After the donation was made yesterday, the students and their parents went to McDonald’s for the class’s monthly play night.
“For the age of her kids, she’s a great teacher,” McCammon said.
Swihart said she has a great bunch of parents. She also challenged the other schools in the community to collect for the animal shelter. If just all the Warsaw schools did something in December, she said the shelter would have a lot more of the stuff it needs for the cats and dogs it houses.
The shelter is always in need of the following items: clay cat litter, pet food, paper towels, liquid laundry detergent, hand sanitizer, bleach, almost all office supplies and printer inks (call for types), soft towels, disinfecting wipes, Neutra-air freshener refill cans, Frontline for fleas, dish soap, toilet tissue, hand soap, Kleenex and Staples rewards coupons. These items can be brought to the shelter during open hours.
The animal shelter is at 3489 E. CR 100S, Pierceton. For more information, call 574-267-3008; visit its website at awlwarsaw.com; or find it on Facebook at AWLeague.
McCammon said the shelter has a capital campaign going on now to raise money for a new shelter. Contributions are greatly appreciated, she said.

Animal Welfare League Executive Director Darla McCammon (R) accepts the donations from Madison Elementary School first-grade teacher Amy Swihart (C) and her students Thursday afternoon. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union

Courtesy of the Times Union


Washington Students Present on Insects, Weather

Second- and third-grade students at Washington STEM Academy Thursday afternoon demonstrated what they learned about insects and severe weather to the community.
The annual Teachers Credit Union-sponsored Lego® Robotics night was held in the school gym from 6 to 7 p.m.
According to second-grade teacher Derek Pike, the second-graders have been studying insect life cycles while the third-graders studied severe weather through project-based learning.
“Through all their learning, their final culminating project was to share what they learned with the community,” Pike said.
The insects his class looked at included butterflies, dragonflies and cicadas.
As part of their projects, his students had to present what they learned about an insect’s life cycle, predators, habitats and body parts.
Students then used Lego WeDo® robotics to build a creation with moving parts. They could program the robots to flap its wings or climb a tree or whatever else an insect may do.
The last piece of the presentation was a trifold with all the information about the insect on the board.
“It’s kind of like an expo where kids present their learning,” Pike said.
Students started studying insects at the start of the school year. In October, they started on their robots. Last week, Pike said, they made their trifolds.
The other second-grade teachers are Kara Nieter and Josh Wall.
Third-grade teachers are Kandi Kessler, Tad Nieter and Lisa King.
Nieter said the third-graders had four questions to answer for their projects on natural disasters. The first three questions were: What happens before, during and after severe weather? Each group then picked their own question to answer for the fourth one.
“We broke into five groups for each third-grade class,” Nieter said. “Each group decided what project they wanted to do.”
Students did their research on Encyclopedia Britannica on the Internet. They built research packets, made robots displaying what their natural disaster was and the effect it could have, and then made 3D prints to add on to the robots.

Washington STEM Academy third-graders Khareus Miller (R) and Jeremiah Dawson work on their severe weather project. They focused on twisters. Also in their group but not pictured is Caleb Aukeman. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union

Courtesy of the Times Union

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