I-G Panther News

December 2018 - District Monthly Newsletter

This newsletter is available in Spanish, large print, and/or high contrast versions. Please scroll to the bottom of the newsletter and choose buttons in the black bar for your preferences.

(Este boletín está disponible en español, en letra grande, y/o en versiones de alto contraste. Desplácese hasta la parte inferior del boletín y seleccione los botones en la barra negra para sus preferencias).

Introducing our new District Monthly Newsletter called I-G Panther News! Each month we will share celebrations and events happening at IGEMS and IGHS.

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Click Here for our IGEMS Panther Donation Wish List

"How Can I Help?" and "What Do You Need?" are questions we often hear at IGEMS. To connect our communities and classrooms, we created a list of suggestions. Please click on the button above for suggestions. We appreciate every donation!

Contact Mrs. Oberfoell if you wish to have our IGEMS Donation Wish List emailed or mailed to you. Call 943-6311 or roberfoell@igs.k12.wi.us

Introducing our new Backpack Food Program called Panther Packs!

Our new Panther Packs Program has started collecting items to stock our pantry. In the past, some of our kind parents have inquired about starting a program that would send a few meals home with students in need on Fridays. A Backpack Food Program discreetly puts a few items in the child's backpack before the weekend. Ms. Delaney Orr is organizing our program at IGEMS and we hope to kick off the program THIS WEEK! If you would like to donate or be part of the program, please send Ms. Orr or Mrs. Oberfoell an email or call the IGEMS office. We would appreciate any donation to help get our own Backpack Food Pantry started. We need easy-to-make items, like soups (Chicken Noodle), rice bowls, ravioli, spaghetti, applesauce cups, fruit cups, juice boxes, granola bars, small bags of crackers, and single serving cereal boxes/bowls or Easy Mac. If possible, we would prefer items with pop-top lids as well. Our Student Council will pack brown bags with a meal: entree, fruit cup, crackers/granola, and juice box. Our teachers will recommend students in need and adults will discreetly put a meal or two in a student's backpack before the end of the day on Fridays. We are only able to support a few students and families at first, but we are hoping to be able to support others as the program grows. We are fortunate to have such kind and generous people helping our students. Our donations list is on the Panther Wish List link with food items and suggestions for financial donations, such as $3/meal or $5/weekend for two meals. We have already received packages from Amazon and Walmart with food donations that our terrific donors ordered online. Please help us get started and fill our pantry shelves. Our IGEMS families are the best!

What's Happening at IGEMS?

LIBRARY: In our IGEMS Library, Mrs. Bast is incorporating coding and makerspace lessons into Library lessons. Critical thinking and creativity spark interest and enthusiasm in our Panthers. Several teachers have added building sets to our Panther Donation List (above). We want our Panthers, big and small, to challenge their minds.

ENCORE: Each day, our middle school and high school start with an ENCORE period from 8:00-8:27 a.m. Teachers and students focus on checking grades online, goal-setting and SMART goals. SMART is an acronym for goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based. On Fridays, students are reflecting on their goals and measuring their progress. These skills are building blocks for successful futures in school and employment.

CHRISTMAS STORE this week: Our First Grade Teachers (Ms. Lynch, Mrs. Pierick, Mrs. Wasley, & Mrs. Zajicek) want to send a very heartfelt thank you to everyone who helps make the Christmas Store such a success. For 25 cents each, our children are able to purchase a gift for Moms and Dads. A big thank you to our Holiday Grandmas from Montfort, Linden, Livingston, and Cobb, as well as our Retired Teacher Grandmas who volunteer their time each year.

MIDDLE SCHOOL: 7th graders are working with an interactive graphic novel maker called Storyboard That. December's focus will be "A Christmas Carol" - stay tuned for some awesome graphic novels designed by our very own 7th grade Panthers. The 8th grade entered the VFW Essay Contest for the first time this year. Students have been busy presenting science projects, showing horror stories that they created in iMovie, and completed a QR code activity in social studies researching diseases in the Middle Ages. A favorite activity of the year is writing "Helping Hands" letters that help IG families in need.

LEGO WALLS: This summer, many IG teachers were able to attend the Summer Tech Splash. They learned a lot about STEM activities. STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. Through the training, our teachers learned that Legos can be a great tool for implementing STEM activities into student learning. Our terrific teachers: Molly Leibfried, Marta Leix, Gina Peat, Heidi Pierick, and Brenda Wasley applied for a grant through the Iowa-Grant Education Foundation to purchase Lego plates and Legos to build a Lego Wall in each of their classrooms. THANK YOU to the Iowa-Grant Education Foundation for granting our request! These Lego Walls will help develop a set of thinking, reasoning, teamwork, investigative, and creative skills that students can use in all areas of their lives.

PAJAMAS and BEDTIME STORIES: The 4K and early childhood students performed in a Thanksgiving Concert on November 19/20. The students spend the month of November learning all about being thankful and making a difference in the lives of others. We culminate that spirit of making a difference with hosting a pajama drive and giving pajamas and bedtime stories to those children that are in need. Even at a young age we can grasp the concept of giving and making a difference in the lives of those around us. If you would like to join us in our campaign for a "Good Nights Create Good Days" you are welcome to drop off a new pair of pajamas in the office marked 4K before December 5th and we will make sure they find their way to a grateful child.

DAY AT THE IMPROV: Some IGEMS students (Dealya C, Will F, Quinn H, Laila R, Everett Z) learned some of the fundamentals of Improvisational Theatre. They used these skills to play Improv games and act out scenes. We learned some basic stage acting techniques and how to best express emotion and character through movement and vocalization. We Had A BLAST!

KINDERGARTEN WRITING: Our Kindergarten Teachers (Ms. Fenstermann, Mrs. Leibfried, Mrs. Mayne, Mrs. Nelson) are incorporating a new Writing Program to go with our reading series. We have some new themes planned for the year. We closed the chapter on our Scarecrow days and instead wore our favorite Halloween costumes. We enjoy using OSMO (iPad resource) during WIN Time with our little ones. We look forward to using the computer lab during WIN time too.

FIFTH GRADE AUTHORS: Mrs. Sigg's fifth grade students used illustrations from Chris Van Allsburg's book, The Mysteries of Harris Burdick, as writing prompts for original mystery stories. Next, they recorded themselves reading their stories and created QR codes of the recordings and displayed them in the library. During recent visits, third and fourth graders learned about the author and illustrator, Van Allsburg, and the fifth grade writing project. In these photos you see third graders scanning the codes and listening to what the fifth grade students had written. They loved this activity! What a great way to share your hard work with others, fifth grade! Keep reading and writing! See photos in our gallery.

READING THEIR HEARTS OUT WITH THE PRINCIPALS: THE PIZZA HUT BOOK IT! program celebrates National Young Readers Week with a Principal Challenge. The BOOK IT! program continues its tradition of challenging principals across the country to be examples for literacy and read one entire school day - from first bell to last. One lucky principal will win Kate DiCamillo books for their entire school! Students at IGEMS "read their hearts out" on November 8th with Mrs. Oberfoell and Mrs. Bast in the main hallway.

ANATOMY and PHYSIOLOGY: 1st Grade traveled to the high school to learn about muscles and skeletal system with Mr. Zimmer's Anatomy and Physiology class. They were able to touch and move a chicken wing, while discovering that it moves very similar to our arms. The kids and had so much fun!

ANIMAL DISCOVERY: Thank you LB Equestrian Services for visiting I-G's 2nd grade classes to share some different animals with us as we continue our Animal Discovery unit. Our 2nd grade students had great questions to ask about each of the animals' habitats, diet, and life span. Such wonderful inquiries were made after their own research on a wild animal of their choice over the last couple weeks. Also, thank you to Mr. Johannesen for allowing us a warm place to gather in the Iowa-Grant H.S. shop. It was much appreciated!!

CLIFFORD, THE BIG RED DOG: Did you know that Clifford, The Big Red Dog was out and about while IGEMS students browsed the book fair? The IGEMS Book Fair was a terrific success, thanks to Mrs. Carolyn Laufenberg and our many volunteers. Keep reading, Panthers!

NEW in SIXTH GRADE: Sixth graders will begin working with hyperdoc-based lessons to better focus on the goals of the units and their own learning. Hyperdocs give a set of directions and links to various informational websites or apps that help them judge how their learning is progressing. In Language Arts, our sixth graders entered essays for the local Elks Lodge on "What Makes You Proud of America." The November elections and Veterans Day celebrations sparked some truly patriotic pieces. With the goal of inspiring lifelong readers, the sixth graders will be part of the classroom Book Clubs in December to share and discuss books.

FIFTH GRADE: In social studies, our 5th graders are learning about explorers and why countries were in a big rush to get to the New World and seeking the fastest routes around the world. Mathematicians are working on multiplying/dividing whole numbers, fractions, and mixed numbers. Students are working hard on our Simple Solutions competition, along with Prodigy and Education Galaxy. In reading, students are learning about the elements of discussion, as well as sequence, greek roots, homographs, cause/effect, and responding to questions with text evidence. They are also finishing up the Global Read Aloud with other students from around the world. Our scientists are studying about space - the final frontier! They have learned about gravity, atoms, molecules, and the creation of the universe and our solar system. As we get closer to Earth, we'll learn about moon phases and how our seasons are created.

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Upcoming Events at IGEMS

Drivers: Please remember that the road behind IGEMS is CLOSED each day from 11:00 am-1:00 pm for safety reasons.


3rd - Our new Panther Packs Program begins!

3rd - Mrs. Moen's 3rd Grade Shout Out on Channel 15 at 4:45 am and 6:10 am

3rd-5th - Christmas Store is open for business

5th - Kindergarten Holiday Program at 2:00 pm

5th - Donations of Pajamas due for for the 4K "Good Nights Create Good Days" program

5th - Donations due for the Toy Drive and Food Drive

6th - IGEMS Annual Toy Drive & Food Drive Distribution Night from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Donations of new or gently used toys and food can be dropped off at the IGEMS office between now and December 5th.

10th - School Board Meeting 6:30 pm

11th - Mrs. Frey's 3rd Grade Shout Out on Channel 15 at 4:45 am and 6:10 am

11th - High School Band and Choir Concert - High School - 7:00 pm

13th - Middle School Band and Choir Concert - IGEMS - 7:00 pm

17th - Mrs. Rogstad's 3rd Grade Shout Out on Channel 15 at 4:45 am and 6:10 am

19th - IGEMS Holiday Programs - 12:30 pm for Grades 1-3 and 2:00 pm for Grades 4-6

20th - Ms. Orr's 3rd Grade Shout Out on Channel 15 at 4:45 am and 6:10 am

21st - EARLY RELEASE at 12:30 pm



14th - School Board Meeting at 6:30 pm

18th - EARLY RELEASE at 12:30 pm

IGEMS. One Team. Game On.

Panther Celebrations!

We celebrate our partnerships with Our Lion/Lioness/LEO Clubs:

The Iowa-Grant Lions Club, Cobb Lions Club, and the Cobb Lioness Club are all affiliated with Lions Clubs International. The main objectives of LCI are: 1) Vision, 2) Hearing, 3) Diabetes Awareness, and 4) Childhood Cancer, as well as providing other services to the community. The local clubs collect old eyeglasses and hearing aids and have them properly recycled and reused. We also provide vision screening at IGEMS and can help with any families in need of glasses for their children who are not covered by insurance. We also provide money to help send kids to Lions Camp in the summer for students who are visually impaired, hearing impaired, diabetic, and cognitively disabled. We provide opportunities for benefits to help local people or groups in need and scholarships to graduating Iowa-Grant seniors. We also do many projects and fundraisers to benefit our local villages and fill needs in the community. These community organizations are also the sponsors of the Iowa-Grant LEO Club at IGHS. Special thanks to Mr. Bucky Boland who organizes our school efforts and connects our school with these amazing groups.

50 YEARS: Just before we all left on our travels for Thanksgiving, we had one particular person to be incredibly thankful for on his travels! Chuck Virtue, bus driver for Bus Route #5, has been safely getting students to and from school for 50 years! What a huge accomplishment! To celebrate 50 years behind the wheel of the big yellow bus, students and staff greeted him with signs, tootsie rolls, and many cheers. He is described as always having a smile on his face, the kindness bus driver around, and so patient with every student. We are lucky to have such a wonderful driver. Thank you so much Mr. Virtue for keeping our students safe!

CONTEST WINNERS: The Dodgeville Chronicle had a writing contest for all Iowa County 7th grade students. Sixteen of our students entered the contest in October. We are so proud of all of the students who put forth their best effort for the contest. Congratulations to Lilliana V., Lillian W. and Adriana J. for winning! We hope that you saw their stories in the Dodgeville Chronicle.

BOWLING TEAM: Did you know I-G has a high school bowling team? It was created this year and had a very successful season that ended with them winning the Southwest Wisconsin High School Bowling Club Championship! This week we honor the members of this newly formed team: Ethan Kuhls, Keaton Durni, Colin Steffl, Carter Christianson, Zackary Pitzer and Isaac Albaugh. This is a unique group of guys with different personalities, priorities and academic levels. They have found something they enjoy immensely and are proud to share. It is wonderful to see our students bonding over a common interest outside of school and having success!

WHY I HONOR THE AMERICAN FLAG: Audrey R., an 8th grader, was recently chosen as the winner of the Montfort VFW’s Essay Contest. Audrey wrote a 300-400 word essay on Why I Honor the American Flag. Her essay will now advance to the district competition. The VFW representatives presented Audrey a $50 check at the Veterans’ Day program held at IGEMS on Monday. Congratulations to Audrey!

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HS Principal's Corner

Another year is already almost half over and we have had a great start of the year. The first quarter is already behind us and Christmas is fast approaching. We have many things going on at school so please make sure to check the school’s calendar, website and Facebook page and become involved with the many things that the district has to offer.

Parents/guardians, please make sure you are continually checking your child’s attendance, grades and schedule on PowerSchool. If you forgot how to access this important information, please contact Mrs. Brennum in the high school office. It is the district’s goal for each student to reach their full potential and with everyone working together that goal will be reached. Requiring good student attendance, insisting on punctuality, supporting teacher expectations and monitoring class work are significant ways parents help to ensure student success. Great communication is a necessity, so please contact your child’s teachers or myself if you have any questions.

Mr. Zwick and Mr. Larsen led our students in this year’s musical, Secrets Every Smart Traveler Should Know. The cast included: Sydney Lundell, Samantha McLeer, Isabelle Harwick, Lauren Harmening, Allyson Cullen, Lucas Oyen, Hannah Maughan, Carissa Varholik, Nathan Daniels, Teris Baker, Emma Cullen, Mariah Blum, Elly Lindner, Lillian Drew and Sawyer Dobson. The crew included: Stage Manager - Faylea Cartwright; Lights-Hannah Cammack and Sara Buckhaus; Set Painters - Mariah Blum, Faylea Cartwright, Sawyer Dobson, Abby Fowell, Marijah Kammes, Kora Kite, Elly Lindner, Ivy Lindner, Hannah Maughan and Treven Trace. Stage Crew - Hannah McCracken, Abby Fowell, Montanna Freymiller, Hailey Howell, Marissa Hahn, Marijah Kammes, Kora Kite, Jay Schaefer, Sage Soman, Courtney Spease and Brena Straka. Please congratulate Mr. Zwick, Mr. Larsen and the entire cast and crew for their hard work and performance.

This year the high school building is excited to provide juniors access to Method Test Prep, an online course that helps students build their math, reading, writing, and ACT test prep skills. Juniors can access this through their Career Cruising accounts. Students can listen to math, verbal and writing tutorials and each tutorial is accompanied by a quiz to test student mastery. The program is highly adaptive and keeps track of a student’s strengths and weaknesses. Students have access to a large pool of practice questions and receive instant feedback upon completion of each question. This feedback includes easy-to-understand explanations. We are planning on having Juniors work on the program in school during Encore time as we get closer to the February ACT date. I also recommend that juniors spend time at home working on this program to better prepare themselves for the ACT. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Mrs. Benish or myself.

The spring season wrapped up at the end of October. The football team, under the direction of Coach Gary Allen, worked hard all year and just missed the playoffs. Coach Marla Simon and the volleyball team made it to the Sectional semi-finals of the WIAA tournament before being defeated by River Ridge. The team worked very hard and accomplished a lot including a Regional Championship! Great job girls! Coach Winkler and the cross-country team did an awesome job this year and worked very hard all year. Please congratulate Nicholas Connolly for making to state in Cross Country for the second year in a row. He finished 35th at State. Awesome job Nicholas! I would also like to congratulate the Iowa-Grant cheerleaders and Coach Harwick for the wonderful job this year. The girls did a great job in cheering on our teams, preparing signs and posters and being good role models for the crowd. Please take the time to approach the coaching staff and our young men and women who participated this year in football, volleyball, cross country and cheerleading and congratulate them on their seasons. I would also like to thank Mrs. Gile and the high school band for playing pep band for the home games. The band’s performances were outstanding and I always enjoy listening to them during home events. Finally, I would like to thank the student section, parents and fans that attended our events this year. We had wonderful support for our student athletes during the fall and I hope that this continues. Thank you to everyone. It is my hope that we continue this great behavior and atmosphere into the winter and spring seasons.

Winter sports have already started so please check the school website and the school’s Facebook page for events. A special thank you goes out to the Iowa-Grant Booster Clubs who are always supporting our school district. I would also like to thank all the businesses and community members who constantly support the district. Without great people and organizations like we have in our district, many of the things we offer and do would not be possible.

I would like to briefly talk about attendance. Attendance is a priority to ensure student success. The more class time a student misses the more difficult it is for the student to keep up with the content in class. Not only is attendance a must for success, it is state law that students must be in school. State law allows parents/guardians to excuse their children from school in writing and in advance for a total of ten days during the entire school year. Please attempt to schedule appointments during times school is not in session. I do understand it is impossible to schedule everything outside of the school day, but the fewer days missed the less likely that your child will fall behind academically. After a parent/student has used up the ten allowed days, only doctor excuses will be accepted. School sponsored events do not count towards the ten days allowed.

It has been a great start of the year. Please continue to be part of your child’s education and stress the importance of respect, communication, integrity, attendance, and working beyond capabilities and expectations. Every day we have Encore built into the schedule. This time was created to give students the ability to access teachers 27 minutes five days a week. I hope everyone has a great holiday break and a wonderful year. My office door is always open and please feel free to contact me at any time. Go Panthers!