Afton Express Newspaper
Fall ~ 2022
Welcome to the first edition of the Afton Express Newspaper for 2022 - 2023!
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Children's Author ~ Susan Verde 📙 ✏️ 📗
Written By: Emma L. & Myra B.
On Thursday, September 29th, author Susan Verde came to visit the students of Afton School for a special assembly. She shared what it is like to be an author of children’s books, things about herself, and read us one of her books. Sne of her many books are The Museum, the I Am series of books, and many more. Some of her books have been on the New York Times Best Seller List.
Ms.Verde grew up in New York. She was a Kindergarten teacher before becoming an author in 2010. Have you read her book I Am Yoga? Well, she based the book off of her teaching yoga and mindfulness to kids.
She has three children named Gabe, Joshua, and Sevy. Gabe and Joshua are twins. She also has an older brother named Michael. Along with the accompaniment of her three kids she also has multiple pets.Their names are: Cuddles the tarantula, Dakota the hairless cat, Gizmo the dog, a cat with hair named Oliver, and a bearded dragon named Marc Antonio. They all give her ideas for writing children’s books. Cuddles the tarantula inspired her to write a funny poem about a spider in her shower. If I saw a spider in my shower - I would be terrified!
Ms. Verde is about helping students learn ways to be happy and grow. She taught us a helpful trick to get all of our energy out, pretend to roar like a lion. To do the lion’s roar, you inhale deeply then roar all the air out. It helps to release any stress and feel more relaxed.
Everyone enjoyed Ms. Verde and all of the cool and helpful things she taught us. We are so grateful to have Susan Verde visit us at Afton School for an assembly.
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Welcome to Mr. Sodano ~ Physical Education Teacher
Written By: Jagger B. & Brayden E.
Mr. Ryan Sodano is our new Physical Education teacher at Afton School. Recently, he was teaching in a Hamilton Township School in New Jersey. Mr.Sodano attended Pennsbury School District when he was growing up. As a Physical Education Teacher he loves the moment when a new skill clicks for a student and when the student learns how to perform that skill in a controlled manner. Also, he loves being physically active, playing sports like rugby. His favorite foods are wings and pineapple. In his free time he enjoys being with his friends and snowboarding.
✏️ 🤵 🧖 Mrs. Pfluger's First Grade Class 🧖 🤵 ✏️
Written By: Ozea J. & Timothy H.
Every year Mrs. Pfluger does many fun things with her First Grade class. This year one of those fun things are celebration days. Her students work to fill a bucket with cubes by Soaring With The Core Four. If they fill their bucket, they get a special celebration day such as Stinky Feet Day, where they can take their shoes off in school. Another exciting day is Board Game Day, where they get to play different board games throughout the day. Also, they have Blooket Day, where they get to play lots of Blooket on their computers.
Mrs. Pfluger gives out Pfluger Pfrancs(play money) to students who earn them. The students can cash them in for special privileges, such as being a King or Queen of the Day, where they can sit in the teacher’s chair. Sometimes they play games and fun activities like: Four Corners, Days Of the Week Games, Math Games, and they love Go Noodle.
Mrs. Pfluger’s class loves these special events every year: Fancy Day, Daily Sharing, the Mother’s Day Program and One Hundredth Day Centers.
This year in the First Grade Field Trip they will most likely go to the Camden Aquarium like they have in the past. This year's field trip will be awesome!
As news reporters, we thought that it was a lot of fun interviewing Mrs. Pfluger!
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🗳️ Student Council Elections ~ 2022 🗳️
Written By: Sophie F., Asfiya M. & Adam R.
Have you ever wondered about Student Council Elections? This article will inform you about everything you need to know about the Student Council election. This year, our Executive Board members are Colten Tresch as President, Caleb Repash as Vice President, Asfiya Mubarek as treasurer, and Riya Shah as Secretary. The election took place on September 23, 2022. All interested 5th grade students had to write a speech and present it to all of the 4th and 5th grade students in the cafeteria. They explained why they would be a good candidate for the position they were running for. Then,the fifth grade students voted for their candidates on a google form. Each person got one vote for each of the positions: President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary. Mrs.Linkchorst received all of the votes on a google form. At dismissal time, Mrs. Linkchorst announced the winners. There was a round of applause for all the contestants who participated in the election.The day of the elections was a very exciting day, and if you are interested you can run for any of the Student Council positions when you are in 5th grade. Trust us, it is a wonderful experience to cherish.
📝 What's Happening in Fifth Grade in Mr. Woods Class 📝
Written By: Drew W. & Rishi M.
It’s October and Halloween season, so Mr. Woods challenges his students to write about the grossest, scariest, nastiest, haunted house and “post” them for sale. He says, " Only weird or scary families like the Addams family, will come to buy the houses." After the students are done writing their advertisements he hangs them around the room in places where the students can easily spot the projects. He says, "It’s fun for everyone to read, and fun for the kids to write and helps make the students learn to be a more creative writers." This is a four paragraph assignment, and must include: an introduction, two body paragraphs, and a conclusion. The students love this scary writing project in Mr. Woods Class.
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White Cane Day
Written By: Maci T., Elizabeth M., Grace B., and Pyper R.
Have you ever heard of White Cane Day? White Cane Day was created to recognize people with a disability called Cortical Visual Impairment (CVI). It is a brain based visual impairment. The brain has difficulty interpreting the information that it receives from your eyes.
At Afton, we have a girl named Evalyn who has C.V.I. and uses a white cane to assist her movement throughout the school. Evalyn is a strong, kind, and courageous student. She is like every other student. She loves summers, school, basketball, her family and having fun with her friends and classmates. Evalyn is now a fifth grader in Mr. Woods class. Her best friend, Myra, another fifth grade student formed a friendship together last year when they both were in Mrs. Rochonchou’s fourth grade class.
Evalyn uses a white cane to help navigate the floor. At her house, she doesn’t use her cane because she is very familiar with it. Sometimes, when she goes somewhere new, she feels nervous or scared. Last year was the first year that she felt comfortable going into her classroom every day.
Evalyn was very excited to celebrate White Cane Day at school and was so surprised by all of the students wearing white that day to show their support for her. We thank Evalyn for helping us to learn about C.V.I.
Moving forward, Evalyn is very excited to move on to sixth grade and knows that we at Afton will miss her very much!
🎵 Mr. Bailey ~ Band Director 🎵
Written By: Kelly C. & Jiya P.
Mr.Baliey is the 4th and 5th grade band teacher here at Afton School. He has been teaching here for 6 years and his favorite instrument to play is percussion because he plays it professionally. He started to play instruments because he thought it sounded cool. He went to Afton School as a child and learned how to play instruments in 4th grade. He went on to study music at Temple University and became part of a degree program that included classes for all of the instruments. Also, he took lessons from professional musicians from the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Mr. Bailey plans the Spring Concert which is on April 19th this year.The band will perform at the Spring Concert and during the Holiday Sing.The Holiday Sing will take place on December 22nd.
We hope this year's band is as good as it has been throughout the years,especially with Mr.Bailey here. Mr.Baliey is the best band teacher ever!
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The Wonders of Autumn
Written By: Hailey P. & Lucy S.
Falling and changing
Getting ready for color arranging
Oak and Maple Leaves
Falling from the top of trees
Red, orange, or yellow
Changing for the winter
A leaf lies
Leaves like feathers
Changing in the weather
Red, orange,and yellow ombre
kids and grownups like to play!
🐄 Holy Cow ! A Second Grade Cow 🐄
Written By: Seraphina F. & Matthew J.
Did you know that Mrs. Kelly’s Second Grade class adopted a cow? The cow's name is Paisley! Her parents' names are Phoebe and Overload. She was born on September 8, 2022. That makes Paisley almost two months old now.
Even though the class adopted her, she lives at Walmoore Holsteins dairy farm in Cochranville, Pennsylvania. It is located in Chester County, Pennsylvania. The second grade students have created growth charts from the information the farmer shares with them about how Paisley is growing. The students are learning how to ask questions about topics they are interested in or unfamiliar with related to farming and cows.
Here’s a Fun Fact about cows - Farmers have a microchip placed in the cows that measures how much milk they produce! The students have enjoyed learning that milk is produced by cows such as Daisy. According to Mrs. Kelly, and the other second grade teachers, the students are having a blast, with more fun to come!
🌞 Energy Endgame: Save a Watt, Save a Lot! 🌞
Written By: Jack F. & Jack M.
On October 10th, 2022, Afton students enjoyed an assembly called Energy. Thank you to Christina Kerrigan from PECO for sponsoring this show from the National Theater for Children.At the assembly students learned all about renewable and non-renewable sources of energy and how to save and conserve our energy. They also learned about units of electrical measurement, like watts and kilowatts per hour. SPARK teacher, Mrs. Slota arranged for this assembly to help our students understand that we need to make good energy choices at home and at school. Their slogan is, “Save a Watt, Save a lot!” Afton students had an amazing time at the Energy Endgame assembly. Some students even got to participate and interact with the actors while learning how to save energy. Thank you to the National Theater for Children and Mrs. Slota for bringing this spectacular show to Afton School.
🎃 Halloween Parade ~ 2022 🎃
Written By: Mason H. & Ethan P.
This year Afton Elementary School had the traditional Halloween Parade on October 31st. In this article we will be telling you about 3 big parts of the event; The most popular costumes, our Principal being back, and getting back into the swing of things after Covid.
First, every year there are popular costumes that lots of kids like to wear. This year these were some of the big hits; Minecraft skins, inflatable chickens, inflatable dinosaurs, inflatable aliens, clowns, Phillies players, and Eagles players. This year the parade was held outside our school. Unlike last year, where we had to have the parade inside due to Covid restrictions. This year the parents got to come and watch us parade halfway around the outside of the school. Everyone was excited to see all of the students and many different costumes before they went back into school for their classroom parties.
Each year the teachers vote on costumes they would like to wear. This year it was witches and wizards. Mrs.Mendlow, a fifth grade teacher, dressed as a Hocus Pocus witch, Mrs. Birkbeck was a witch, too and Mr. Woods dressed up as Harry Potter. Dr.Masgi was dressed as Doctor Strange from Marvel Comics.
Dr. Masgai, our Principal, has been in Washington, DC for the past 2 years, so he did some things differently than before Covid. But everyone still had a great time on Halloween day. We were glad we could wear masks, not like last year because we were wearing Covid masks. Also, things were stricker last year with our parties and the food that the homeroom parents were allowed to bring. We were glad to be back to a regular Halloween.
We hope you enjoyed our report on the three big parts about the Halloween Parade: the most popular costumes, Dr. Masgai being back, and everyone hoppin’ back to it after Covid!
Check out the video below. Just click Halloween 2022.
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Fourth Grade Gifted Support Update
💡 Written By: Vivienne G. & Avery C. 💡
In Mrs.Koch and Mr.Stoffregen’s 4th grade gifted support class, the students had fun researching about Thomas Edison and his many inventions. They read some amazing books, and learned about some of his famous inventions like the: first light bulb, the phonograph, kinetoscope, and the first movie camera.
Also, they found out that Edison was a telegraph operator and used Morse Code to send and receive messages. Then the students created their own secret codes and used them to make up secret messages about Thomas Edison.
The students are missing Mrs.Koch as she is out for a short period of time. While she is out, Mr. Stoffregen is having us write a fun poem called How To Be. The poem is about a variety of randomly chosen inventors.
Also, the students are giving their brains a workout by trying to solve puzzles in Breakout Rooms. The students in D-40 are having fun while working hard at challenging activities.
🦇 Kindergarteners Are Going Batty 🦇
Written By: Quinn C., Ellie W., and Colette G
When Halloween arrives each year the Kindergarten Teachers love to teach the students about bats.
They want the students to learn about the real things involved in Halloween instead of made up things like monsters and witches, so they won’t get scared. They read informational texts, sing songs, and write facts about bats. They made projects with bats like a drawing bat page, raining bats, AT family rhyming words, and vowel bats.They like reading non-fiction instead of fiction when it comes to bats.
The students did some research and found out what bats like to eat, what color they are, and their prey and predators. Bats are helpful to farmers,too. Also, they’re nocturnal mammals that use echolocation to communicate. Look for their projects displayed outside of the kindergarten classrooms.
📢 Super Soar Squad 📢
Written By: Ellie Z. & Laya A.
Mrs.Gougher has been our music teacher here at Afton Elementary school for the past 10 years. She loves to sing, direct plays and musicals, as well as creating her own music. Mrs. Gougher also enjoys coordinating and leading 5th Graders in our SOAR Squad.
Mrs. Gougher first started SOAR Squad 2 years ago. Soar Squad used to be called Spirit Squad. Last year the 5th graders voted to change the name to Soar Squad. She created Soar Squad because she wanted older kids to set a nice example for other kids. Also, she wanted 5th graders to be leaders of the school since she knew we were ready. The Soar squad meetings are held in the music room where we plan different activities.
SOAR stands for:
Show you care
Open your mind
Respect yourself and others
We are proud to be part of the Soar Squad and help spread appreciation for others.
We hope you enjoyed the activities the Soar Squad shares with the students throughout the year. Thank Mrs. Gougher for starting the squad here at Afton School.
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🐶 Book Review 🐶
Written By: Purva D. and Vasudev B.
The story begins with, “Hi my name is India Opal Buloni and I moved to Naomi,Florida with the preacher during the summer.” One day, her dad sent Opal to the grocery store to get food. Opal got the food but also came back with a dog! She had to convince her dad to keep the dog that she named, Winn Dixie. During the story, she makes lots of friends and learns many lessons about life.
We really liked this story because we like animals and it is a lot of fun to read! We give this story 4 out of 5 stars. If you like animals and adventures then you will like this book!
👻 Haunted Houses of D-40 ~ Read at your own risk 👻
Written By: The Fifth Gifted Support Students in Room D-40
In the one and only room D-40, the students planned and decorated spooky haunted houses for Halloween. This was a fun, independent, competitive project that was completed as an at home assignment. The students had a lot of fun designing and creating each of these wonderful haunted houses to share with the rest of the school.
The students used a variety of popular items to make their houses like: Legos, lights, cardboard, paint, tissue paper, construction materials and a lot of scotch tape! Each house had a unique style from a Lego creation to the Day of the Dead theme and even a Breakout Haunted House.
Over 200 students voted for the best haunted house before Halloween arrived.
The final standings were as follows:
Third Place went to Adam R. ( house #7 )
Second Place went to Timothy H. ( house #4 )
First Place winners were: Mason H., Myra B., and Alexa M. for ( house #1 ).
The other participants were: Braedan M, Brayden E, Gisela J, and Ben R. Even though there was only one clear winner, everyone rose to the occasion and went home happy with their accomplishments. So always remember, when faced with a challenge, do your best and just have fun!
Check out our video below.
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🌟 Student Council Representative Responsibilities 🌟
Written By: Grace B. & Pyper R.
As Fourth Grade Student Council representatives, we thought that you might like to know the responsibilities of being in the Student Council! After reading this article, you will understand what it takes to be the perfect representative for your classroom! If you choose to run for classroom representative next year, we guarantee this will help you!
If you are going into third, fourth, or fifth grade you will have an opportunity in the beginning of the school year, to run for Afton Student Council. If you are elected by your classmates to the Student Council, you will need to attend before school meetings twice a month. After the meetings you and your partner will report to your classmates and teacher and share important information that was discussed at the meeting. You will share exciting, upcoming events like Pajama Day,
Pizza day, or fund raising events for cancer like “Wear Pink Day” or even soft pretzel sale events.
If you are lucky enough to be voted in, you must always remember to be responsible and to work as a leader. Most importantly you must always remember to SOAR with our school’s Core Four:
You must cooperate with everyone and try to make their ideas happen!
You will respect all the students and staff members at our school!
You will be responsible and be punctual to all of the student council meetings!
You need to be safe and present school appropriate ideas!
We hope this article made you aware of the responsibilities of being a great Student Council Representative! If you plan on running for Student Council next year, “Good luck!”
Below in the first picture is the fourth grade student counselors.
The second picture is the whole student council collecting for the Food Drive.
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🏃♀️ 👟 Girls on The Run 👟 🏃♀️
Written By: Elizabeth M., Maci T.,Elise P.
Are you a girl who loves running? Maybe a girl who loves kindness? Then we would like to introduce you to Afton’s Girls On The Run. This is an after school program that helps girls have fun and exercise with girls who share your same interest.
On Mondays and Wednesdays, Afton’s Girls on the Run otherwise known as G.O.T.R., meet in front of Afton school ready to begin a fun lesson prepared by parent volunteers. According to Mrs. Perri the lessons center around showing kindness, caring for others, friendship, and supporting each other. In addition, they enjoy physical exercise as they run, walk, or jog with friends.
Head coach Mrs. Kim Perri said, “I believe Girls On The Run brings girls and the community together while exercising. The girls think it is a great program, they love doing it, and making new friends while having fun running!”
We hope you will consider joining Girls On The Run to be a part of the fun as we support our school community.
🐀 Book Review ~ Fourth Grade Rats 🐀
Written By: Mason K. & Charlie B.
If you are in fourth grade you will enjoy reading about a fourth grade boy named Suds. His friend Joey thinks he needs to toughen up and be a Fourth Grade Rat. Joey tries to convince Suds to do some very strange things like push little kids off of the swings and steal their Twinkies. Suds doesn’t think he can do it especially when he is told to trash his room and refuse to clean it up when his mother asks him.
Suds doesn't think he has what it takes to be a rat and wishes he was still an angel back in third grade. On the other hand Joey is becoming a rat and he’s enjoying it. He is getting attention and proving to his class that he is a true rat. When Suds realizes Judy Billings, his crush, is paying more attention to Joey, he decides he wants to be a rat,too. As Suds becomes more and more popular from becoming a rat he is not really happy. Does Suds end up becoming a Fourth Grade Rat? You will have to read this book to find out. We loved this book and think you will,too.
🦃 Thanksgiving Poetry 🦃
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Thank you to all of the reporters/writers who submitted interesting articles to this edition of the Afton Express Newspaper. We are so proud of your commitment to reading and writing.
Mrs. Koch & Mrs. Rochonchou
Gifted Support Teacher