Learning in Kinnelon

A Special Edition of the Kinnelon Public Schools Newsletter

The pages of this newsletter are filled with wonderful learning activities that your children have been involved with in our schools. We are proud of the educational opportunities that Kinnelon Schools provides for our students and know that these experiences will help shape their success as they pursue their dreams and goals while in school.

Learning in Pre-Kindergarten

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PreK Students Learn about Community Helpers

The PreK 3-year-old and 4-year-old students learned about various community helpers: dentists, doctors, nurses, veterinarians, paramedics, teachers, librarians, mail carriers, police officers, and firefighters. (just to name a few!)


The PreK classes felt lucky to have had special visits from Kinnelon community helpers such as Officer Rickey Ferriola of the Kinnelon Police Department, and Fire Chief Thomas Stearn from the Kinnelon Volunteer Fire Department.


Officer Rickey Ferriola reviewed what it takes to become a police officer, and the types of things he does to help in our community.


Fire Chief Thomas Stearn taught the PreK students about fire safety, and showed them what he looks like when he’s dressed up in all of his gear so that they wouldn’t be afraid if they see a fire fighter if they need to be rescued!

Learning in Kindergarten at Kiel and Stonybrook

Kindergarten Writing

Kindergarten students are finishing a unit on persuasive writing. Some of the topics they have written about include the best pet (Dogs had the most votes!), their favorite season (spring is on everyone’s mind), and taking care of our schools and classrooms. Students are working hard to tell their opinion and convince their reader of why they should listen. An example is: Please walk quietly in the hall because we are learning. Upon completion of this writing unit we will move into writing All About books.

Kindergarten Reading

Kindergarteners are using all of their ‘super powers’ to read their books and then talk about what they have read. They are completing the unit Bigger Books, Bigger Reading Muscles this week. As the unit comes toward an end, the students are focusing on retelling – remembering to include who is in the story, where it takes place, telling what happens in order, and talking about how characters feel. To quote Teacher’s College, Kindergarten readers are “Off to great places, we’re off and away! We have all that we need. We’ve turned up our powers! Oh the books we will read!”

Kindergarten Math

Kindergarten students are beginning to work on addition and subtraction using manipulatives to solve number stories. They are also searching the world around us for three-dimensional shapes. They have continued to look at attributes (weight, color, shape, size) as they group objects. Students have been using IXL Math, a web-based practice site, to support their learning at home. IXL Math is more than just numbers. With virtually unlimited questions, engaging item types, and real-world scenarios, IXL Math helps students experience math at its most mesmerizing!

Learning in Grade 1

Social Studies and English Language Arts

First grade students in Mrs. Alfano and Miss La Gratta's classes have spent the last month exploring the world around them! Through incorporating music and art, students have been able to learn about the seven continents in an unforgettable way. To culminate this hands-on learning activity, students developed a tri-fold poster highlighting the features of a continent of their choosing. Administrators, parents and guests were invited to listen to our young travel agents utilize their persuasive writing skills to take a vacation to the most interesting continent.

Science and English Language Arts

The first grade classes have been experimenting and learning about light, shadow and color. The focus has been on various types of light, refection of light, shadow formation, refraction (bent light), and rainbows. Throughout the unit, science vocabulary has been emphasized. The children make predictions, experiment, and record their findings and observations in their student science journals.


In conjunction with the science unit on light, shadow and color, students are learning to writing like scientists. The children have taken the knowledge they've gained on light, shadow and created an All About book. The non-fiction writing incorporates text features of that genre: a table of contents, chapters, glossary, captions and labeling, fun facts and more. The children have been encouraged to re-read, edit, and revise throughout the unit.


The interdisciplinary approach to teaching the science unit on light, shadow and color, with non-fiction writing has been exciting, challenging, and rewarding. We are seeing our students bloom into curious scientists and thoughtful authors.

Learning in Grade 2

Grade 2 Science

Grade 2 students are studying and comparing the foundational idea that matter can exist in three states: solids, liquids and gases. This knowledge helps students develop the concept of comparing similarities and differences and the concept of materials existing in different states under different conditions.


To illustrate this, students analyze objects that have some solid parts and some liquid parts, such as juicy fruits. Students think about the ability of liquids to take the shape of the containers that holds them. They then compare liquids and solids when they make homemade ice pops, which also reinforces the idea that matter can change from one state to another. Grade 2 students are also studying Non-Newtonian substances using Oobleck and shaving cream.


Currently the Grade 2 students are investigating what affects the flow rates of liquids by comparing the viscosity of pairs of liquids. Grade 8 students from PRM accompanied by Mrs. Romano’s and Mrs. McClain’s classes to help the Grade 2 teachers and students run these lab trials.

Grade 2 English Language Arts

Grade 2 students recently finished a unit of instruction on realistic fiction. Teachers collaborated with Mrs. Santagato, Kiel School's art teacher, to have students design clay figures that represent a character in their book. These wonderful works of art will be shared with families during our end of the year writing celebration. Currently, the Grade 2 students are in the midst of poetry writing and are also starting to write lab reports in support of our science activities.


Students in Grade 2 are working in a unit - Bigger Books Means Amping up Reading Power. This unit focuses on strengthening students' comprehension skills by focusing on fluency, understanding literary language, and accumulating the text as they are now reading longer books.

Grade 2 Math

The Grade 2 students are learning many strategies to add and subtract 3-digit numbers. They are also working on estimating, measuring using yardsticks and meter sticks, and graphing and analyzing data. These skill reinforce working with data in other fields including science.

Mindfulness Groups at Stonybrook

Mrs. Prezioso, Stonybrook School Counselor Runs a Grades 4 and 5 Mindfulness Group

As part of their Mindfulness group, Stonybrook students in Grade 4 and 5 have a chance to make their very own Mind Bottles. When they are upset, children are asked to “calm down” or to simply “breathe”. The Mind Bottle project was a way to teach students that they can calm their bodies and minds through watching glitter inside settle. It’s a simple but powerful technique to reduce stress and anxiety.

Music Education at Stonybrook

Grades 3, 4, and 5 Jam on Bucket Drums

Students in Grades 3, 4 and 5 recently completed a unit on Bucket Drums. Using hard plastic chopsticks as drum sticks, students were able to learn complex rhythms using large buckets. Students play quarter notes, eighth notes, sixteenth notes, triplets, and buzz rolls to a wonderful resource called KidStix. The KidStix book and CD contains exercises set to accompaniments along with Smartboard examples and songs that students can drum to on their bucket drums.


The author, Artie Almeida, is also a person of interest, as Mrs. Wichman and Mr. Tedesco will meet her at the next music workshop sometime in the fall. Students really loved playing the bucket drums and will revisit this throughout the rest of the year.

Grade 3, 4 and 5 Jump Bands

Keeping a steady beat is the foundation for being a good musician. Students in grades 3,4, and 5 are putting their beat skills to use as they work through a unit on Jump Bands. Jump bands are elastic cords that are stretched between two students while other students jump strategically through mazes. The “Enders” or “Bandees” hold the cords and can either stay stationary or they can move to the beat while the others are jumping through. Keeping the beat is essential for this to be effective. Students love it and are learning and having fun all at the same time. For a demonstration of what this looks like, visit

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7syuWYab8Og

Grade 3 English Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies

Grade 3 English Language Arts

Grade 3 students are working on units of study in both reading and writing that investigate character study and character traits. This ties directly into their writing unit on literary essays. Students read different short stories, then write literary essays that draw evidence from the text to support their thesis statements. It is useful for students of literature to understand how a character's thoughts, feelings and responses can influence a story.

Grade 3 Math

Students in Grade 3 are working with fractions, parts of a whole, the number line and are using examples of equivalent fractions to develop a rule for finding equivalent fractions. Students discover that visual representations enhance the understanding of fractions as parts of a whole.

Grade 3 Science

Grade 3 students are just finishing up a unit studying the Earth, Sun and Moon. Hands-on lesson provided the students many opportunities to construct knowledge about the structure, size, movement, and position of Earth, the Sun, and the Moon and their influences on our planet. They are excited to begin life cycles where they will farm earth worms, plant and care for plants and study the complex life cycles of butterflies and frogs.

Grade 3 Field Trip

Third graders recently went to the musical Miss Nelson is Missing at Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown. It was wonderful and tied directly in to the Grade 3 mystery unit in reading as well as our studies in Full Value!

Grade 4 English Language Arts, Math and Science

Grade 4 English Language Arts

Fourth graders have been working together on interpretation book clubs and literary essay writing. The students have been reading stories and identifying thematic ideas and pushing their thinking by comparing similar texts.


Grade 4 writers have been voraciously writing literary essays focusing on conceptualizing and identifying various themes and big ideas utilizing contextual supportive evidence throughout each essay. Our students have embraced this genre of writing and are excited to share drafts in their writing notebooks each and every day.

Grade 4 Math

Students in Grade 4 are currently working on solving multi-step word problems using various operations, conversions and fractions.

Grade 4 Science

Grade 4 students are investigating the properties and formation rocks and minerals within the contexts of social, economic and historic uses. Students perform experiments and identification tests and through this, they learn and appreciate the role of geologists and paleontologists. Grade 4 students will travel in April to the Sterling Hill Mining Museum to see some interesting geology and mineral collections.

Grade 5 English Language Arts, Math and Science

Grade 5 Reading

Fifth graders are currently holding author study book clubs. Students read several books by an author, then study patterns they find in that author’s writing. They haven taught to to question the author's intent by asking: What are these stories truly about? What is the same? What is different?


In addition students are working on a culminating project for the Author Study unit. They can choose between creating a PowerPoint presentation, Glogster or a poster to show what they have learned through reading multiple texts by the same author.

Grade 5 Math

Grade five students are learning about all operations related to fractions and mixed numbers. They have also been studying geometric shapes, specifically quadrilaterals.


In learning the Quadrilateral Hierarchy, students were surprised when they learned about the new definition of a trapezoid! A quadrilateral having two and only two sides parallel is called a trapezoid. However, most mathematicians would probably define the concept with the Inclusive Definition of Trapezoids, which is when any quadrilateral with at least two parallel sides is considered a trapezoid.

Grade 5 Science

Fifth graders have been learning about various substances and homogeneous and heterogeneous mixtures through several hands-on experiments. Students thoroughly enjoyed the lab when they created the colloidal suspension with cornstarch and water!

Learning at Pearl R. Miller Middle School

Peer Mentors

Cyber Safety and Appropriate Use Lessons
During the last week of March, Grade 7 and 8 Peer Mentors, with the help of School Counselors Mrs. Romano and Mrs. McClain, presented lessons to Grade 6 students on cyber safety and appropriate use of electronic devices. Students took information that they learned during an assembly run by Kinnelon Police and created lessons and activities to help the sixth graders gain a better understanding of their responsibilities of online access and social media, as well as the dangers and negative consequences of inappropriate and impulsive use.

Grade 6 Art

Grade 6 artists are applying what they learned in two-dimensional portraiture to a three-dimensional model.

Grade 7 Art

Grade 7 artists are are studying Jean Michel Basquiat and using his artwork as inspiration for a final project.

Grade 8 Art

Grade 8 artists are putting the final touches on their ceiling tiles to be hung permanently in the hallways at PRM. This completes a unit on public art and its voice through the ages and across the globe.

Grade 6 Health Focuses on Nutrition

PRM sixth graders are writing children's books about nutrition which they read to Kiel kindergarten students on March 31!

Grade 6 Music Appreciation Stomp Scenes

Rhythm is all around us. It exists in nature, the movement of traffic, or can be found in objects that are not intentionally designed to produce rhythm. This is the message of Stomp Out Loud, a production that originated from the ideas of Luke Cresswell.


The Stomp concept was highlighted in our sixt grade Music Appreciation unit on Rhythm. After watching the Stomp production, students were given a set of criteria to create their own Stomp scenes. The sixth graders rose to the occasion as they worked diligently in the PRM cafeteria using a variety of objects that could be manipulated rhythmically.


The outcome was amazing! Groups of students performed their Stomp scenes in class creating exciting rhythms over a minimum of eight measures, complete with props, choreography, and creativity. The students enjoyed the project, which took about a week to complete. For more information on Stomp, see an example on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ik8jICj8juc

Grade 7 Social Studies are studying the Declaration of Independence and the Constitutional Convention

Our seventh graders are learning that though they are connected in spirit, the United States Constitution and the Declaration of Independence are separate, distinct documents. The Declaration of Independence was written in 1776 and is a list of grievances against the king of England intended to justify separation from British rule.


The Constitution, the supreme law of the land, was written and signed in 1787 and is a charter of government that came to be ratified by the states. Our students learn how both documents have played an important role in American history and the spread of democratic ideals around the world.

Studying the Gifts of the Ancient Greeks in Grade 6 Social Studies

The ancient Greeks are responsible for so many of the world’s early steps into language, politics, education and the sciences, and our Grade 6 Social Studies students are going way back in time to ponder these roots and appreciate the ideas that have fueled progress throughout the centuries.

Grade 8 Social Studies Learn about Life for African Americans in the 1700's

Grade 8 students are learning what life was like for African Americans in both the North and South before the Civil War.

Grade 6 Students in World Languages

In Spanish I and French I, students are learning the parts of speech to describe people in the target language. The final objective is for students to be able to write and present an interesting and accurate description of themselves and classmates. They will also understand the cultural similarities and differences when addressing people in the target language.

Grade 7 Spanish

In Spanish II, students are utilizing knowledge of vocabulary and important grammatical concepts to write and present descriptions of family and homes in the target language. They are also gaining an appreciation for the cultural importance of family relationships and events, in particular “la quinceañerea”.

Learning at Kinnelon High School

Yearbook - A New Course at KHS

This is the first year that KHS has offered Yearbook as a course rather than a co-curricular activity. Since September, Mrs. Sappio and her students have logged over 1,655 hours together on the Herff-Jones website. That time and effort have produced a very detailed yearbook that includes photo credits to each individual picture.


This year the athletic team captains were honored on each sports page with a quote. Ben Cauz, a senior, designed the cover of the yearbook with the theme of Same, but Different. The Co-Editors-in-Chief, Dominique Molee and Kate Dolph have worked tirelessly with Mrs. Sappio to finish the in time for the various deadlines required by the publishing company throughout the year. They have made each deadline which is a proud accomplishment!


Everyone involved with the yearbook would like to thank the administration, faculty, staff, coaches and students for all their help with providing the yearbook staff with the information that is needed for each spread. The students and Mrs. Sappio can’t wait to unveil the product in June.

Grade 11 Health students

Students in the Health 11 classes are in the midst of completing their First Aid and CPR/AED training. In this program, the students will have an opportunity to become American Heart Association certified First Aid and CPR/AED administrators. This two-year endorsement course certifies they have been trained by a professional according to AHA standards and are able to administer potential lifesaving skills.

World Languages at KHS

Spanish Students Interview for Jobs in the Target Language

The Spanish III Honors students are learning the different professions and trades that exist in their community and that of Latin America. They have participated in research and class discussions regarding the various requirements for over 14 job opportunities ranging from lawyers to electricians. After this, they are participating in different interviews for each job by highlighting their qualifications and strengths. This unit has allowed students to make connections to the real world and to utilize prior knowledge learned in their finance classes to have a successful interview. It has been a challenging and successful project thus far. Great job to all!

Novice Spanish I Students

In Novice Spanish I, the students are currently exploring, comparing, and contrasting how food impacts a daily routine and the culture of a community and country. The students are using their skills in Spanish to converse about their preferences as well as researching the different foods in different parts of the Spanish-speaking world.

Spanish II CP Students

Spanish CP II students are currently researching cultural practices in restaurants throughout the Spanish-speaking world. The goal of this unit is to expose students to vocabulary and grammatical concepts so that they may appropriately choose the dishes they may wish to order, understand the cultural do’s and don’ts in a restaurant, and select restaurants based on opinions and reviews. The students are using interactive websites and culturally authentic materials in order to really understand how restaurants in other countries conduct business.

Introduction to College Spanish Honors Study Science and Technology

The students in Intro to College Spanish Honors are currently in the midst of a global unit with the central theme of Science and Technology, and are currently researching how to reach la sustentabilidad (economic, environmental, and societal). Each of the students is viewing all of the units of study throughout the year through the lens of a person within a Spanish-speaking country. They have chosen a country which they represent, and are now collaborating with a student from another “country” in order to tackle one of the challenges within their countries on reaching sustainability. They must create an international plan for tackling the issues, and present to a group of “stakeholders” on why they should support their ideas in conquering the issues within their respective countries. All of this is being planned and completed in the target language of Spanish, and includes authentic cultural resources from each of the represented countries.

Spanish V Honors Students Study Magical Realism

The Spanish V Honors students are currently enthralled in their Magical Realism unit, They are reading the works of Gabriel García Marquez and comparing them to the films of Guillermo del Toro. This allows them to gain multiple perspectives on how Magical Realism is infused into literature and film. The students are using applications such as Google Docs, Nearpod, and authentic supplemental websites and resources to identify the specific elements of Magical Realism, and connect them to the works they are reading and studying.

Mathematics, Social Studies and English at KHS

Algebra 1 Complete Scavenger Hunt

Algebra 1 students at KHS have just completed a Projectile Motion Scavenger Hunt where they applied their knowledge of quadratic equations to solve real-world problems involving trajectory.

Algebra 2/Trigonometry Honors in Simulation Lab

Students in Algebra 2/Trigonometry Honors completed a “Simulation Lab” as part of their Probability and Statistics unit. Lab pairs used technology to simulate a random event to make predictions about the outcomes.

Trigonometry/Pre-Calculus students:

Students in Trigonometry/Pre-Calculus are applying first and second derivatives in order to define characteristics of various functions.

US History 1 and World Cultures Students Research Topics

US History I CP and World Cultures CP students are learning how to write research papers. They have learned the research process starting with collecting information, how to write a thesis, and are now putting together their five- to seven-page papers. They are doing a fantastic job with the entire process!

Grade 10 English Honors Students Investigate Gatsby and the 20s

The grade 10 English Honors students are learning about the Roaring 20s along with the history of that time to add dimension to their understanding of The Great Gatsby. The teachers are utilizing the the Smartboards to highlight the music of the 20s as well as maps, fashion trends and other lifestyle characteristics of that period. In addition discussions surround 'old' vs 'new' money and the perceptions and realities of wealth and social status.

Grade 11 English Language Arts students:

Students in Grade 11 English are taking a creative approach to Wuthering Heights. Some are writing “ghost chapters” and fill in the missing spaces in Emily Bronte’s Gothic tale. Others are planning a dramatic monologue. Some students are writing college essays for one or more characters, based on the recently released Common Application questions.

AP English Literature Students Plumb the Depths of Moby Dick

AP Literature students are reading Moby Dick. Mrs. Robbins reports that for rest and relaxation her students are attempting to solve all the mysteries of the universe - a pursuit they feel will be easier and quicker than parsing the complexities of Melville’s novel.

Science Research Club at KHS Engage in DNA Research

The Science Research students are involved in two different research studies, Barcode of Life and Waksman Science Scholars at Rutgers University.


The Science Research Club students have completed stage 1 of the Barcode of Life Project which is the laboratory component and will be beginning Bioinformatic analysis of bee DNA in two to three weeks.


The students have also submitted their complementary DNA (cDNA) samples for sequencing to Rutgers University and are in the processes of Bioinformatic analysis of cDNA. The students will present their findings at Rutgers University’s Poster Forum on June 5 and the Research Symposium at KHS is June 7.

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Foresnsic Science: Toxicology

Forensic Science students are currently studying forensic toxicology where they explore the various types of poisons. During this unit of instruction, the students learn about the physiological and psychological effects of poisons on the body and how to detect a poison’s presence.


The students are performing a wide variety of detection lab experiments where students work with “known” synthetic poisons to identify particular unknown substances. During these laboratory activities the students utilize the skills and knowledge learned in previous classes such as, working with lab equipment like Bunsen burners, chemical such as acids, processes such as solubility tests, flame/burn tests, and reagent reaction tests to discover the identity of unknown substances.


The laboratory activities in which they are involved simulate real life postmortem or hospital assessment of (artificial) body fluid analysis for identification of the presence of a poison, the type of poison and the amount that was administered to the victim.

Business Education at KHS

Entrepreneurship Students Find Success at FDU

Ms. Ellington’s Entrepreneurship class at KHS entered the 2017 New Jersey Business Idea Competition sponsored by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Rothman Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the Silberman College of Business.


Students in the Entrepreneurship class were all given the challenge to create a new business idea and have it submitted to a panel of judges comprised of university professors and entrepreneurs. Ms. Ellington’s Entrepreneurship students worked collaboratively to create new business ideas for New Jersey Business Idea Competition. As part of the competition submission, students were required to create a new product or service, a name for their new product and describe their ideas, customers, competitors, goals and societal benefits.


Aaron Burt was named to the top 38 Business Ideas submitted in this year’s competition with his idea titled, Geo Drop, which is a new social media platform. Ms. Ellington is happy to share that Aaron placed 38 out of the 552 received submissions this year from 682 students from all over New Jersey! He now has the opportunity to become the winner of his region, which will be announced at the awards ceremony on April 7 on FDU’s Florham Campus.


Congratulations to all students who worked so hard on their entrepreneurial ideas and to Aaron Burt for his win in the competition!

Financial and Career Planning Research Opportunities

The students in Financial and Career Planning at KHS have just completed a rigorous career unit. Students prepared for future careers by taking several personality, color and value assessments to determine which careers align with their personalities.


Students then conducted research on the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Occupational Outlook Handbook to narrow their career choices and then began research on websites such as Indeed.com and Monster.com to find jobs to which they could apply for interviews. Students then created resumes, wrote cover letters and prepared for mock interviews.


The final culmination ended in a summative assessment, which consisted of a real-world job interview. Students must be prepared for the interviews by dressing in professional business attire, bring a resume and answer difficult interview questions. The KHS Business Department wants to ensure that students are prepared for the interviews they will face both in college and upon graduation from college in a very competitive job market.


Kudos to all Financial and Career Planning students who got through their intensive interviews!

Business, Sports and Entertainment Marketing Go Virtual

The KHS Business, Sports and Entertainment Marketing classes have been working on Virtual Business 2.0 - Sports and Entertainment powered by Knowledge Matters, which gives students the opportunity to “work” in the exciting sports and entertainment world.


The online simulation teaches students the hard business decisions that go into the sports and entertainment events the students enjoy in real life. Students handle promotion, ticket pricing, stadium operations and staffing, sponsorships, concessions, concert booking and player management.


Students must first read an article presented to them in the 10 learning modules, take a reading quiz and then complete the online simulation, which requires students to generate $1 million in revenue as stadium owners. At the end of the 10 modules, students compete against one another in a final, mogul online competition, which integrates all 10 Virtual Business 2.0 modules.


Ms. Ellington always loves to hear the students discussing their stadiums, their financial and marketing strategies and related problems of owning a business. Where else can you actually own and run your own stadium? The KHS marketing students always do a great job and meet their tough goals!

Fine Arts at KHS

Design Fundamentals Experiment with Color Pencils

Design Fundamentals students just finished a color pencil assignment that incorporated the use and applications of the grid system and the concept of abstraction in art. Students learned color pencil application methods with specific attention to the burnishing technique.


They will move forward with a mixed media cultural assignment based on the Mandala.

Art 2 students Study Conchology

Art 2 students just finished a scientific graphite rendering based on early 19th century amateur studies of conchology in America.


We will move forward with a pen and ink cultural drawing assignment based on the Japanese cherry blossom tree and its significance to America.

Art Major I Students Explore Self-Portraiture and Acrylic Painting

Art Major I students are finishing up two major assignments.


The first one is a mixed-media self-portrait based on the work of the contemporary artist Kehinde Wiley. Students applied ordinate painted backgrounds with classical poses in graphite.


The second is an acrylic painting applying the impasto technique. The subject matter was a cupcake of their choice. They will move forward with an aviary graphite composition emphasizing realism.


In this same class, Mrs. Castro’s student Samantha Schaper has been awarded a gold medal from Scholastic Arts for a charcoal still life composition we did earlier this year. Additionally, she has been chosen for the 2017 Fresh Perspectives juried high school art show. She earned this merit for another a pen and ink composition assignment we did in class. Lovers Eye’s, her title is based on a lesson I created on the Miniature Georgian Eyes of the 18th century.

Art Honors Present Six Compositions

Art Honors students are finishing up their independent study of six compositions based on their formal proposal.



They will move forward with a drawing assignment based on the feminist artist Kusama and her life’s work. We will be ending the year with mural studies for the high school based on art history.

Digital Imaging Students Create Surreal Animals

Is it Art or Biology? After learning Digital Tools and Techniques in Digital Imaging, the students in Mrs. Kivlon’s classes created their unique species by seamlessly merging and blending three different animals into one. After completing the merge, the students then named their newly formed animal.

Teacher Professional Learning in Kinnelon

Literacy Instruction at Kiel

Many teachers at Kiel start their Friday mornings with literacy learning. Mrs. Ciresi, Kiel School Princials, leads a Morning Literacy Group every Friday before school that focuses on professional learning around guided reading.


This small-group reading model allows teachers to target instruction to help readers move through the reading stages with support. Teachers learn how to move forward in their instruction by understanding the guided reading process and its components, interpreting reading data, understanding text characteristics and reading behaviors, planning guided reading lessons, and incorporating essential comprehension strategies.


Now in its fourth year, the Friday Morning Literacy Group is a great opportunity for teachers to get what they need along their learning continuum and share their knowledge with colleagues.

Science Professional Learning in Grades 1 to 8

Mrs. Travaille, District Supervisor of Science debriefed with the Grade 1 teachers the unit on color, shadow and light, in which students develop an understanding of light and its role in how we see colors and shadows.


She then worked with the Grade 1 team to plan for the implementation of the needs of living things a unit that introduces students to the traits of living things and how adaptations of these traits can enhance their survival. Students will also begin to recognize how living things rely on each other and their surroundings for survival.


The Grade 1 team also discussed the integration of the Active Science labs and use of the student science notebook data in collaboration with the science writing lab report/information writing unit.


The Grade 2 team worked with Mrs. Travaille on the the earth systems units where students be take part in various activities that enable them to reflect on and raise ideas about the presence of air around them. They will also investigate the presence of air in the soil, realizing its importance there for creatures such as worms and ants. Students learn about movement of the air with a focus on weather events.


Grade 3 teachers prepared and planned for the implementation of the life cycles unit where students will farm earth worms, plant and care for plants and study the complex life cycles of butterflies and frogs.


In Grade 4, teachers prepared for and planed the engineering of sound unit where students will gain understanding of various aspects of sound, including production, perception, properties, and characteristics. Students will also investigate the operation of musical instruments and sound equipment used in communication. To start, students experiment with cups, strings, and rubber bands as they observe that sound is produced by the vibration of objects in motion. Through hands-on experimentation students begin to build on the foundation that sound is a type of energy we can hear.


Fifth grade teachers prepared and planned for a unit on the life of animals where students engage in study that includes food chains, habitats and ecosystems, types and forms of skeletal movement, body coat and vertebrate animals, invertebrate animals, animal diversity, and observation and research; ultimately challenging students to reflect on the relationship between humans and animals, identifying positive as well as negative aspects of those relationships.


Mrs. Travaille continues her great work with our science teachers at PRM in their second year of implementation of the 6-8 science curriculum.

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Science Professional Development at KHS

The KHS science teachers and Mrs. Travaille, District Science Supervisor have been working on implementing the Next Generation Science Standards (NJ Student Learning Standards for Science) in the chemistry and physics curricula.


Mrs. Travaille has also been working with biology and chemistry teachers using the Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) method, a best practice method of teaching science.


Mrs. Travaille hosted a workshop for the KHS environmental science teachers in the Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) program. The GLOBE Program is an international science and education program that provides students and the public worldwide with the opportunity to participate in data collection and the scientific process, and contribute meaningfully to our understanding of the Earth system and global environment.

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Math Professional Learning in Grades 6 to 12

In the math world, primarily teachers who teach in Grades 6 to 12, Ms. Petrocelli, District Math Supervisor has been working with the math teachers to understand and use an instructional approach known as 3-Act Math, an inquiry-based, student-centered practice that exposes students to content through three distinct chunks:

Act 1. Instructor introduces the central conflict of a story/task clearly, visually, and using as few words as possible.

Act 2. The student overcomes obstacles, looks for resources, and develops new tools.

Act 3. Teachers and students collaboratively resolve the conflict, i.e. "solve the problem" and set up a sequel/extension.


The most famous example of this comes from none other than renowned mathematics instructor Dan Meyer: http://threeacts.mrmeyer.com/watertank/