Annual student writing contest begins

Shawano Area Writers has launched its 11th annual George Putz Memorial Student Writing Contest with a call for entries.

Letters have been delivered to schools and home- schooled groups announcing the 2017 contest for students in Shawano and Menominee counties.

The contest deadline is March 31.

Students compete in three grade groups — grades 1-4, grades 5-8 and grades 9-12 — in the categories of poetry, fiction and nonfiction.

Each entry must include an entry form, but students can compete as much as they want. There is no charge to enter.

The contest judges are chosen from outside Shawano and Menominee counties. Judges choose first, second, and third place winners in each category, and within each grade group. Each of the three winners in each age group receives cash prizes.

All winners, including honorable mentions, receive certificates of achievement at the awards ceremony held at the Mielke Arts Center.


School Notes

Contributed Photo Freshman history students at Gresham Community School play Trench Warfare with dodgeballs and exercise mats.

Bonduel Elementary School

Are you aware that our third-graders at Bonduel Elementary are required to learn cursive handwriting? We have used the Zaner-Bloser approach for over 25 years.

Students not only learn the correct way to form the letters, but also how to write and read words in cursive. They work on legibility, spacing, size and slant.

According to Iris Hatfield, a handwriting coach, here are the top 10 reasons to learn cursive:

1. Improved neural connections. Cursive handwriting stimulates the brain in ways that typing cannot.

2. Improved ability to read cursive. When an individual cannot read cursive, they are cursively illiterate in their own language.

3. Increased speed. The connectivity of a simple cursive style is faster to write than the stop-and-start strokes of printing. Speed has been shown to increase attention span during writing.

4. Improved fine motor skills.


First time’s the charm for winning speller

Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Anna Etten, a sixth-grade student at Shawano Community Middle School, looks toward the judges as she spells a word in the first round of the Shawano School District’s spelling bee on Wednesday. After more than hour, Etten was victorious after spelling “stilton” correctly.

Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski The remaining 20 contestants return to their seats after a short break during Wednesday’s district spelling bee at Shawano Community Middle School. About 40 students competed in the annual event; 46 students in grades 4-8 were eligible.

Anna Etten showed few signs that she didn’t know how to spell a word as she coasted to victory in the Shawano School District’s annual spelling bee on Wednesday.

Etten, who is in sixth grade at Shawano Community Middle School, was competing for the first time in the spelling bee, which included almost 40 students from the middle school and Olga Brener Intermediate School.

Her winning word was stilton, a type of English cheese — almost poetic for a student living in the heart of the dairy state.

Etten will go on to compete at the regional spelling bee at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 15 at Bonduel High School. The winner of that contest will compete in the state bee March 25 in Madison.

Etten said it felt good to win, even though she was surprised about the word she received at the end.

“I was just guessing,” Etten said. “I did quite a bit of studying — about five or six hours or so.”


Area 4-H member will attend inauguration

A Bowler 4-H member is one of 31 Wisconsin 4-H representatives who will attend the inauguration of Donald Trump as the nation’s 45th president Friday in Washington, D.C.

Lauren Bahr, a freshman at Wittenberg-Birnamwood High School, will attend Citizenship Washington Focus, a 4-H program that strengthens youth citizenship skills, which for the first time is convening during a presidential inauguration.

“It’s a chance for me to learn about the government in a more hands-on learning atmosphere with people from across the country,” Bahr said. “I am excited to be part of this.”

Approximately 500 4-H members from around the country will gather for five days next week to learn more about the democratic process, the executive branch, careers in politics, history of the presidency, election process and role of the press.


Wildcats in living color

Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Gresham Community School students, from left, Kali Jones, Billy Mommaerts, Ryan Schroeder, Sydney Coffman and Misty Wilson-Goranson paint a mural that, once completed, will show the eyes and facial features of a wildcat, the school’s mascot. The students have been working for weeks on the mural, one of two that will be hung in the school gymnasium.

Two white boards with painted segments sit in the basement classroom of art teacher Natalie Onesti at Gresham Community School. They don’t look like much now, but in a couple of weeks, they will be sources of pride for students and the greater Gresham community.

Students in the school’s advanced high school art class have been working tirelessly for weeks on murals representing the school’s wildcat mascot. One shows the eyes and the facial features of the wildcat, while the other shows slashing claw marks with a big G, basketball and volleyball.

Once complete, they will hang in the gymnasium.

“It’s been a process where we’ve tried to involve the community,” Onesti said. “The students came up with all of their ideas, and they’re transferring their designs to do the work.”


Teacher gets grant to help students build chicken coops

Contributed Photo Tim Dobbs, right, a teacher at the Student Health Center of the Menominee Indian School District, recently received a grant from the Meemic Foundation to help students build and sell chicken coops. Shown, from left, are Karl Morrin, student director at the Student Health Center, Jim Mayefski, from the Schoolhouse Agency in Green Bay, and teacher Beth Waukechon.

Tim Dobbs, a teacher at the Student Health Center of the Menominee Indian School District, recently received a $500 grant to help students plan, design, construct and sell chicken coops.

The grant came from the Meemic Foundation, a nonprofit organization created by Meemic Insurance Company.

Under Dobbs’ guidance, the students will also help develop and implement the school-based business program that will eventually offer chicken coops to rural community residents.

Students who attend the Student Health Center are nontraditional learners who sometimes struggle with behavioral health or substance abuse issues. Most of the students cannot function to their full potential in a regular classroom setting.


Sacred Heart plans Catholic Schools Week activities

Sacred Heart Catholic School in Shawano will celebrate National Catholic Schools Week from Jan. 29 to Feb. 4 with a community service project and a week filled with faith and fun.

The school, which sponsored 13 community service projects during the 2015-16 school year, is partnering with Bellin College and Friends of Haiti to hold a supply drive throughout the week for their spring mission trip.

The school will collect simple yet high-demand items such as bars of soap and children’s tooth brushes all week, and then present them to Kathie DeMuth, assistant professor of nursing at Bellin College and Friends of Haiti representative, who is coming to share her experiences in Haiti with the students on Feb. 2.

Schools typically observe Catholic Schools Week with Masses, open houses and other activities for students, families, parishioners and community members to share the value Catholic education provides to young people, our communities and nation.


School Notes

Shawano Community High School

Shawano Community High School freshmen orientation is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Monday at the school.

Shawano Community High School’s Winter Wonderland dance will be held from 8-11 p.m. Jan. 21 at the school.

Hillcrest Primary/LEADS Charter School

Hillcrest is looking for volunteers to assist with listening to students read during the day and putting books away in the guided library. Any interested community members are encouraged to call 715-524-2134 for information.

Shawano School District

For more information about the district’s inclement weather policies, check under Quick Links on Contact your student’s school office if you have questions or concerns about the district’s policies.

There will be no school for students on Jan. 16.

Sacred Heart Catholic School


Principal goes bananas

Leader Photo by Scott Williams Bonduel Middle School students take turns Thursday using duct tape to suspend Principal Mark Margelofsky from a wall as their reward for a successful holiday fundraiser.

Leader Photo by Scott Williams Bonduel Middle School Principal Mark Margelofsky is all smiles Thursday while wearing a banana costume and allowing students to duct-tape him to a wall inside the school cafeteria.

Bonduel Middle School Principal Mark Margelofsky told students that if they raised enough money in donations to help needy families this holiday season, he would wear a banana costume and let students duct-tape him to a wall inside the school.

The students did their part by raising $1,500 to help 17 families in the school district.

Margelofsky made good on his promise Thursday and was taped to a wall inside the school cafeteria while wearing a bright yellow banana costume.


School Notes

Gresham Community School

There was a two-hour delay on Dec. 14 due to heating issues.

Gresham Community School participated in Christmas Is for Caring. Mittens marked with items needed were placed on the school Christmas tree. Anyone willing to donate was encouraged to take a mitten off the tree and donate the item listed. Nonperishable food donations were also collected by the Gresham FFA chapter during the FFA Haunted Forest.

There will be a nine-day vacation for students due to winter break. School will resume Jan. 3.

Bowler School District


Subscribe to RSS - Schools