What's New @ 542

October/November 2021

Financial Aid Night @ Battle Lake School

Battle Lake School hosted the annual financial aid night on October 28. Jon Erickson from Alexandria Technical and Community College spoke on the FAFSA and Randy Dorn from First National Bank talked about local loan options and managing finances in college

Each year, this is offered to all juniors and seniors. This year, nearly 30 people attended.

Welcome Back Mr. Klaers

Look who's back….Mr. Klaers! We sat down with him and learned a lot - check it out!

Mr. Klaers was born and raised on a small dairy farm between Watkins and Cold Spring, MN, and went to school in Kimball (this was before open enrollment and you went to the school in the district where you lived). With that said, he tells people he's from Kimball when they ask. Mr. Klaers is married with two children. His daughter, son-in-law, and two grandsons, farm by Vale, SD. His son and daughter-in-law live in Rapid City, SD.

You may be wondering how Mr. Klaers wound up in Battle Lake? Prior to moving to Battle Lake, he and his family lived in Wabasso, MN. He taught Agriculture there for 27 years. After his son graduated, he and his wife decided that they wanted to move closer to family. Another draw is being close to lake country and the opportunity to do some fishing.

When Mr. Klaers is not at school, he keeps busy by fixing, sharpening, and replacing parts. He also co-advises the FFA club with Mr. Ukkelberg.

When asked why he wanted to become a teacher, Mr. Klaers stated, "My high school Agriculture teacher, Dennis Voyles, inspired me to teach agriculture. I initially started at NDSU in Animal Science to become a veterinarian. That major was super competitive to get into, so I decided to switch. Mr. Voyles also inspired me to get involved more with FFA and take advantage of all it had to offer. That's what I hope to do for students in Battle Lake."

Mr. Klaers goes on to say, "I enjoy teaching, working with students, and helping them succeed. I especially enjoy working with FFA members. When I get to take students to competitions, they get to see a different side of me and I get to see a different side of them. It's amazing to see FFA members who knew nothing about their contest succeed and go to state and hopefully nationals."

We had to ask, "What is your favorite class to teach?" His answer was Construction Class. He especially enjoys this class when they build a house. Mr. Klaers shared with us that he has remodeled two houses now, Wabasso and Battle Lake. "I like the challenge of starting from nothing and have something to show when it is done. I used to teach construction in the Army as well. I find it the most challenging and fun course" he stated.

As we ask Mr. Klaers, "What is the most challenging thing about teaching?" He said that one of the most difficult aspects of teaching his classes is the wide range of experiences by the students on the tools that we use. Some students are have been using tools at home for many years and for others, it is the first time they've ever used a hammer. He goes on to say that he has to tailor projects to challenge the students who have the experience and find work that will challenge but not frustrate the students who are new to using tools.

Welcome back Mr. Klaers!

Getting to Know Mrs. Anderson

Mrs. Anderson was originally from Winona, Minnesota and was led to Battle Lake because her husband got a job in Fergus Falls. She has been married to her husband for 25 years and has two children, Annika (21) and Ethan (19). Mrs. Anderson loves to read, cook, kayak, and golf.

This is Mrs. Anderson's first year at Battle Lake School working as the Reading Interventionist. In this role, she helps support kids with reading, learning new skills, increasing their reading abilities, and writing skills. When asked what keeps her busy during the day, she responded, "Seeing a variety of kids for about 20-30 minutes each throughout the day." Mrs. Anderson helps 1st-6th grade currently but is eligible to work with K-8th grade. At her previous job, she was a Reading Interventionist and Title One Director for 12 years. Mrs. Anderson loves helping kids grow, increase their skills, and seeing them blossom.

Please join us in welcoming Mrs. Anderson to the Battle Lake School family!

Checking in on High School Musical!

The Battle Lake School’s production of High School Musical is this week, so we caught up with Mr. Neisen to see how things were coming along.

How have rehearsals been going?

Rehearsals have been going well. I will say at the beginning of this production, between navigating student quarantines, and other activities, it took a little while for everyone to get into a groove. But we've done our best to work with students on all of our crazy schedules!

What have been the best moments during rehearsals with your actors/actresses?

For one, seeing everyone back on stage has been a huge highlight, after not being able to perform for a year! Also, seeing some of our upperclassmen lead the others as great role models has been incredible.

What obstacles have you had to overcome with your actors/actresses?

I wouldn't say we've had any obstacles with any actors/actresses, but more so with everyone's activity schedules. However, this issue isn't new, and we've learned to accommodate and adapt over the years to ensure that participation can happen from anyone interested!

Are you excited for the opening night of Battle Lake's production of High School Musical?

Very! Especially after a year of not having a musical, I know everyone involved with this production is excited! Plus, who doesn't like the catchy music from "High School Musical?"

How long do you rehearse before the opening night of your show?

Many weeks! We started rehearsing on September 13, and have practiced every Monday/Tuesday evening and Thursday morning since! We have at least 5 hours of rehearsal a week. The students put in a lot of work outside of rehearsals too!

Make sure to check out High School Musical, see the days/times below:

Performing at the Royal S. Broberg Auditorium

Thursday - Saturday

November 18 - 20

7:00 pm

Sunday, November 21

2:00 pm

BL Chorale Travels to Concordia

The Battle Lake School choir group, "Chorale," recently traveled to Concordia and we wanted to know more, so we asked the choir teacher, Mr. Neisen, this is what he had to say!

What is Chorale?

Chorale is an auditioned ensemble of about 12-16 singers that rehearse outside of school hours. We typically rehearse on Friday mornings. This is a group that also performs at ensemble competitions in the Spring.

Did the Chorale members have the opportunity to sing with other schools at this festival?

Yes! Singing with students from other schools/towns/cities is always exciting! We get to sing some pretty great pieces at this festival too!

What requirements do you need to meet in order to be in the chorale?

Students need to audition, but they must also be in grades 9-12 grade, and enrolled in Concert Choir.

Has the Battle Lake Chorale gone to Concordia before?

Yes, many times! During my first year, I was able to bring students to the choir festival held in January, and have done so every opportunity since! As a graduate of Concordia College and having sung in the Concordia Choir (who also participates in these festivals), it was always exciting to sing with the high school students who were just as passionate about music-making as we were.

Cross Country Update

Junior High

JH Cross County had their conference meet on October 11 in Wadena. The boys team took 2nd and the Bulldogs had 4 All-Conference runners! Congrats on a great season!

Junior Varsity

JV won the Park Region Conference meet!


At the same meet, girls took 3rd and boys 2nd. At the Section 6A meet, girls took 8th and boys 6th.

The OTC Cross Country team had many great achievements to celebrate throughout this season. One highlight was having three girls run in the all-time Top 5: Nora Froslee, Kyleigh Shebeck, and Erika Heibel. With all their success, the team endured and worked through multiple changes as well. Varsity lost six seniors, but gained nine 7th graders along with five others new runners, for a total of 14 new additions to the team. Keeping runners wanting to run can be challenging. With that said, Mr. Speicher, head coach, tries to make it fun and by doing an egg toss and game ball for homecoming week.

Volleyball Update

We sat down with volleyball coach, Jennifer Roisum, to get a recap of this years' volleyball season. Take a look!

The volleyball team ended with 10-16 as their season record. There were 13 girls on the varsity team, six of those being seniors, and 28 girls on JV/Varsity. The team was constantly growing, learning, and gaining experience. Some obstacles they overcame this season were COVID-19, changing line ups, and inexperience. Some memorable moments included getting 4th place at a Barnesville tournament, taking part in three different fundraisers for the community, and how the team improved with every match.

Football Update

After having a fantastic season, we caught up with Mr. Mollberg requesting a football update. This is what he had to say!

"Being new to the team, I didn't know what to expect... I knew we had some talent coming back but I also know we lost some big time players in last years' senior class. I learned quickly that our boys loved playing together and they had fun in practice. They were respectful and hard workers right off the bat. As a coaching staff, we learned we had some athletes on the edges and guys that could make some big time plays. As the year progressed, as we won, we found a rhythm of what we were trying to do offensively and defensively. In football that's what its all about. The hot team that is playing well, usually finds a way to win the game. And that's what the Bulldogs seemed to do every Friday night! We were tough, especially in the 4th quarter. I think the boys began to believe that they were the best team on the field each and every game. It was an outstanding season and a lot of fun to be a part of! I know the future is bright for the Bulldogs! Huge shoutout to the senior leadership we had!"

Upcoming Events

November 23

Lego Club - Media Center

6:00 - 7:15 pm

November 25 & 26

No School for Staff & Students

All Day

December 13

School Board Meeting

6:30 - 8:00 pm

December 14

Blood Drive - Big Gym

9:00 am - 2:00 pm

December 21

Lego Club - Media Center

6:00 - 7:15 pm

December 23 - 31

Holiday Break

No School for Staff & Students

All Day

Download the BL Schools' App Today!

Catch up on school updates - download the BL Schools' app today! With the app, you can access sports scores, cafeteria menus, news updates and even emergency notifications. Download the app on Android: http://bit.ly/2noE8Ec or iPhone: https://apple.co/30W2O4A.
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