Avalon Eagles Newsletter

June 2021


Cohort A

Tuesday, June 1 - Last in-person day of school (NO early release)

Thursday, June 3 - Last virtual day of school

Cohort B

Wednesday, June 2 - Last virtual day of school

Thursday, June 3 - Last in-person day of school (NO early release)

*Both cohorts need to participate in this week's usual Wednesday Zooms.

All Chromebooks will go home with your student over the summer. Please remember to take extra special care of them - keeping food and drinks away from the devices and wiping them down with a microfiber cloth as needed.

Your student's grades will be available on the Infinite Campus Parent Portal this Friday after 8:00 am.

Get outside. Play with friends. Hug grandparents and extended family members or neighbors. Read for fun. Ride a bike. Make something. Enjoy your time together so your student can recalibrate and re-charge to be ready for the next school year! Even if they attend summer school, give lots of opportunity for FUN at home too!


Some of the special messages of appreciation during Teacher & Staff Appreciation Week

Thank you Mrs. Guglielmi for being such an attentive and engaging teacher. The passion you have for teaching and connecting with your students is appreciated! You Rock!

For Mrs. Gould:

Thank you for your hands on approach with Jacie! You challenge her to be a better learner and ultimately a better person. I appreciate you and all that you do for your students.

For Ms. Ritchie:

She is very helpful and really working hard in taking care of my child. I really appreciate her support. Words cannot describe the work she does, all I can say is Thank you & Thank you again.

All Khalids teachers have done a lot for him. I would like to recognize Dr. Lowe for taking her time in working very well with my child. Even in difficult times like being online, she has done her best to help him. I really do appreciate her work and would like to thank her for all her work. Teaching is not a easy job, especially to young kids. Thank you very much.

Ms. Straughter believes in her students. She does an awesome job motivating her class. I listen to the Zoom classes and she really wants her kids to be successful. Whenever my son has questions or needs help, she will take all the time needed to make sure he understands. She's awesome.

When CCS was virtual full time, Mr. Whyte would play an upbeat song Friday morning when the kids would log on. It became a family event to hear what song Mr. Whyte would play! Now that we are back in school, every Thursday and Friday is car ride home of the retelling of the jokes Mr. Whyte made in class, what experiments they did and what they learned.

Mrs. Barna has been able to put the love of reading in Isabelle so much that we are constantly maxing out our library card! Isabelle has grown in her vocabulary with Mrs. Barna helping her along that way and always encouraging her to do her best!

Ms. Straughter, thank you for making Shayla immediately feel like part of the classroom community. Coming to a new school is never easy, but you made the transition smooth. We appreciate all that you have done for our daughter and we wish you all the best and pray you have an amazing summer!

I want to extend such appreciation for Ms. Tallman’s excellent communication, all her help, her insight, and dedication to my child in his first year in school, in Ohio, and especially during this crazy pandemic. It takes someone very special to dedicate their lives to someone else’s kids. I have much gratitude for her!


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Laura Bailey

Laura Bailey has taught for 10 years, six years in kindergarten and four years in second grade. She has been at Avalon for eight of those years. Mrs. Bailey has been married for 10 years and she has three children; Lawna, 8, Logan, 7, and Remmi, 3. In her free time she loves to spend time with her family. They go hiking, play games, and go camping.

Tabitha Fisher

Tabitha Fisher graduated from The Ohio State University with a Masters degree in education.

She has worked at Avalon for 22 years. Mrs. Fisher is married and has three boys who keep her very busy with band and sports. Will is 17, Ryin is 14 and Aidan is 12. In her spare time she loves to read, take walks and spend time outdoors.

Courtney Sheehan-Lobert

Courtney Sheehan-Lobert has been working in classrooms both teaching and coaching for 17 years, and has taught all grades from pre-k through third. She has a B.S. and a master’s degree in Early Childhood Education from The Ohio State University. Mrs. Lobert is also a Reading Recovery trained teacher and a Literacy Collaborative trained coach.

Mrs. Lobert is married with two children, one in high school and the other in college. Mrs. Lobert loves to read, sew, and collect sea shells. She has four cats and one dog. Her favorite colors are green and purple and she is trying to learn Spanish.

Judy Ritchie

Ms. Ritchie loves to read nonfiction books.

She had started reading World War II books about 20 years ago, but since 2014, she has read as many as she can- learning about the sacrifices of our men and women.

Prior to her WW II journey, she had taught in Florida and North Carolina, and learned (along with her students) about the history and importance of that part of the United States. A fictional series based on the area of Blowing Rock, NC is the Mitford Series by Jan Karon.

Deborah Tallman

Ms. Tallman is completing her 27th year teaching, (21st within CCS). She received her teaching degree from the Graduate School of Education U.C.L.A. and her masters is in reading. She has two grown boys and an adopted dog. Interests include church activities, family history, and the beach. She considers it an honor to be at Avalon.


Camille Allen

Ms. Allen is a proud alumni of Columbus Public Schools and HBCU attending Central State University. After graduation, Ms. Allen started her career in Detroit, MI where she partnered with friends to start a non profit organization for young girls who needed guidance and continued to work in the education field.

Ms. Allen moved back to Ohio to give back to the same community that helped her succeed. Ms. Allen enjoys spending time with family, friends, traveling, trying out new restaurants, jumping rope, swimming, and relaxing outside with a cold drink of Starbucks Frappuccino.

Camille Allen is an accomplished professional with over 10 years of working in the education field. She has experience with recruiting prospective students and proven ability to facilitate classrooms. Ms. Allen has excellent communication and interpersonal skills allowing interaction with all levels of management. To her surprise landed her a teaching position as a first grade teacher. She enjoys working at Avalon with the staff, parents, community, and her most pride of all, the students. Ms. Allen’s lifetime goal is to continue to make positive contributions and mentor people.

Rosa Blosco

This is Mrs. Blosco's 12th year teaching in the Columbus City School district. Mrs. Blosco graduated from The Ohio State University where she received her bachelor's degree in Human Ecology and Master's Degree in Early Childhood Education.

Mrs. Blosco loves to watch movies, go to the park with her son and visit the zoo. She also loves dogs and watching or playing sports. Mrs. Blosco enjoys doing various crafts, and also knitting when she has time. Mrs. Blosco lives with her husband, 4-year-old son Levi, and pug named Doug.

Alice Butterworth

Ms. Butterworth is a first grade teacher at Avalon. This is her second year teaching at Avalon, and her fifth year with CCS. She has been teaching in the Columbus area for 17 years. Ms. Butterworth graduated from Kent State University and later completed her Masters in Reading at Ashland University. She grew up in Bellaire, Ohio and moved to Columbus after college. Presently, Ms. Butterworth lives in Westerville with her boyfriend and dog, Scarlet. When she's not teaching her amazing students you might find her on a beach, cheering on the Ohio State Buckeyes or the Pittsburgh Steelers, reading a book, or shopping in the area. Some of her favorite things are chocolate, ladybugs, and her niece and nephew.

Courtney Peterson

Ms. Peterson is a first grade teacher and has been teaching at Avalon for two years. Before that, she taught at Bridge Gate Elementary School. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University in 2018 with a degree in Early Childhood Eduction. She also played field hockey in college and now is the assistant coach at the high school she graduated from. Some things Ms. Peterson enjoys doing in her free time are running, reading, and taking walks with her dog, Remy. She also enjoys spending time with her parents and her sisters, Keri and Sophie.

Leigh Ann Taylor

Mrs. Taylor has taught in the Columbus City Schools for 23 years. She is trained in Reading Recovery and as a Literacy Collaborative Coach. She obtained her bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Kent State University and her master's degree from Western Governor's University in Learning and Technology.

Mrs. Taylor grew up in Eastern Ohio and moved to Columbus with her husband 26 years ago. She is the mother of four children and has two grandchildren. She loves spending time with her family, travel, and gardening.


Felicia Fant

This is Mrs. Fant's first year at Avalon Elementary. She recently moved to Ohio from Charleston, South Carolina. One of her favorite parts of living in Ohio is that it is much cooler here than in South Carolina. She is a graduate of the College of Charleston and the University of Phoenix. Teaching has been her lifelong passion but is actually her second career. Mrs. Fant loves to read and watch Hallmark movies. She is married and has two children.

Pamela Flinn

Thank you for your many years of teaching and service to children! We hope you have a very HAPPY RETIREMENT!

Christine Gould

Christine Gould completed her undergraduate degree from The Ohio State University and received her Pre-K - 3 teaching license, 4th/5th grade endorsement, as well as her Reading Endorsement from Ashland University. She has taught in grades 2-5 in schools all over the district for the past 13 years, however second grade is her favorite!

Mrs. Gould is married and has two children. Aside from being a mom and a teacher, she also coaches volleyball in the fall and travel softball year-round. Her kids and their activities definitely keep her busy. In her spare time, she loves to hang out with her family the most! She likes to watch movies, play games, travel, and just be silly. Mrs. Gould also enjoys reading and spending time outside.

Amanda Guglielmi

Amanda Guglielmi is an Ohio State Grad. She has been at Avalon for six years. She loves teaching second grade because they are the best! She lives with her husband, her two sons, Grant and Steven, her adorable dog, Gidget and a hamster (on the loose for two years) named TimBit.


Laura Barna

Mrs. Barna was born and raised in Portsmouth, Ohio. She has taught for 26 years, 21 of those years with Columbus City Schools. This is her eighth year at Avalon. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Ohio Wesleyan, a Master's of Education from Rio Grande, and has a Reading Endorsement from Ashland University.

Mrs. Barna is married, has two daughters, a son-in-law, and is a proud grandmother of two girls, Emma and Millie! Her favorite place to be is at the beach, riding bikes, and walking outdoors. She enjoys all sports, especially college basketball!

Go Kentucky Wildcats!

Sarah Martin

Mrs. Martin has taught for Columbus City Schools for 21 years. This is her eighth year at Avalon. She received a Master's in Education from Otterbein University with a Reading Endorsement. Mrs. Martin grew up in Columbus and is a proud CCS graduate from Fort Hayes. She is married and has one daughter who just finished first grade. She loves to read, shop, anything Disney, spending time with her family, and watching sports, especially baseball.

Lisa Straughter

Lisa Straughter is a native of Columbus, Ohio. This is her sixth year teaching at Avalon and 23rd year as an educator. Ms. Straughter received her bachelor's degree from Otterbein. She also has a Master's Degree in Education and two endorsements: one in reading and the other as a teacher leader.

Ms. Straughter is a Columbus, Ohio native and a mother, sister, aunt, cousin, and sorority member. She enjoys spending time with family and friends and watching sports. She is a true BROWNS FAN! Her favorite color is red and she collects angels. Her favorite place to get decaf coffee and a dragon drink is STARBUCKS. Ms. Straughter likes to travel, and her dream is to go to Hawaii. Her passion has always been to impact the lives of others. Teaching is her calling.

Chad Whyte

Mr. Whyte graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Education from Bluffton University in Bluffton, Ohio in 2000. Mr. Whyte received his Master’s Degree in Education from Ohio Dominican University in 2012. He also received his TESOL (Teaching English as a Second Language) endorsement from Ohio Dominican University in 2017. Mr. Whyte has been teaching for 21 years, 17 of those years have been with the Columbus City School. Before coming to Avalon almost six years ago, Mr. Whyte served as a district Math Coach and Math/Science Leadership Specialist.

In his free time, Mr. Whyte likes to spend time traveling with his wife, Mrs. Heather Whyte, who also teaches within the Columbus City Schools. He especially likes traveling to Alaska in the summer. He also enjoys hiking and reading. Mr. Whyte lives with his wife and their dog Maleina. Fun fact about Mr. Whyte that people may not know is that in College, Mr. Whyte was the station manager and on-air radio personality for his college’s radio station, WBCR.


Jane Stoney

Kindergarten Instructional Assistant

Ms. Stoney is a kindergarten instructional assistant for Mrs. Lobert and Mrs. Tallman. She assists her teachers in class and works with students that need extra help with learning to read. She has been at Avalon for seven years. She has a 12-year-old daughter and fun and crazy dog, Stella. Ms. Stoney makes all kinds of arts and crafts. She is an amateur rockhound and loves digital photography.

Preparing for next school year 2021/2022 starting August 26, 2021

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Summer Learning Ideas from Scholastic for Grades K-3!

Summer Math Activities

Shopaholic: What can you buy for $5 at the corner store? From the ice cream truck? In a hardware store? At the beach?
Change it up: Start collecting change in a jar on the first day of summer. On the last day, estimate your change, count it, and plan a special purchase.
Summer patterns: Create patterns using summer items (popsicle sticks, shells, flowers). Or, draw patterns in the sand or dirt using a stick or your hands. See how long you can carry out your pattern — along the length of the sandbox, or across the grass.
Napkin fractions: Fold paper towels or napkins into large and small fractions, from one-half to 1/16. Use markers to label and decorate the different fractions.
Design hunt: Keep an eye out for shapes, patterns, and designs when you’re out and about. You never know what you’ll find in the architecture at the airport, the shopping mall, or even the grocery store.
100% delicious: Use ice cream to make fraction sundaes. Can you make an ice cream sundae that is one-half vanilla and one-half chocolate? What about one-third chocolate, one-third vanilla, and one-third strawberry? Can you cover a scoop of ice cream with one-quarter each nuts, sprinkles, cookie crumbs, and gummy bears? Or can you eat a bite of ice cream that is one-half chocolate, one-half vanilla? For older children, calculate the percentage of each ice cream flavor in the sundae.

Summer Reading Activities

These ideas will keep kids engaged in reading, writing, and thinking creatively even on the hottest days.

Water writer: Using a pail of water and a brush, have kids write words on the blacktop or sidewalk.
Sell summer: Tell kids: Try a new product or activity and write about it. How would you describe it? Would you recommend it? Create an advertisement to sell it to others.
Plan a trip: Have kids use the Internet, travel guidebooks, brochures, and maps to plan a dream day, weekend, week, or month-long trip.
Summer sleuth: Have kids follow a story in a newspaper during the summer, or investigate a local story (e.g., an upcoming fair). Tell kids: Write about the event as it unfolds so that you have it documented from start to finish.
Play it: Take an adventure book with a clear plot (The Phantom Tollbooth, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, etc.) and invent a board game based on it.
Comic strip: Write a comic strip about a fictional character or yourself. See how long you can keep the strip going. Read classic comics for inspiration.

Summer Science Fun

Summer is the perfect time for children to explore their extracurricular interests, like science. Here are some activities that will have children hypothesizing all the way to September.

Map the weather: Keep a running log of the weather. Include temperature, humidity, clouds, precipitation, wind, air pressure. Can you predict what the weather will be tomorrow?
Invent a recipe for a summer drink and share it with your friends. For example, the Citrus Sizzler: 1/2 cup Sprite, 1/2 cup pineapple juice, 1 spritz lime juice.
Museum gallery: Collect pinecones, rocks, shells, or other natural objects to organize, categorize, and label. Present your own natural history museum.
Hot-weather inventor: Design an invention that you can use during summer. Some ideas: sunglasses that change color from red to yellow to blue, or a new beach toy.
Answer a question: How long does it take an ice cube to melt outside in the summer heat? In the refrigerator? In an air conditioned room?
Float or sink: In a pool or the bathtub, hypothesize which items (soap, dry sock, bottle of shampoo, rock, etc.) will float or sink. Test your hypotheses.

Summer Travel Fun

Car bingo: Create a car bingo card with words, shapes, colors, and items that children will likely see during a trip (stop signs, billboards, railroad signs, etc.) to reinforce reading skills, math, and sight words.
The number game: Look out the window and call out when you see one, two, three, or four of something, and so on.
The alphabet game: One person chooses the right side of the road, and the other chooses the left. Call out objects that you see in alphabetical order (you can use a sign only for one letter). The first person to get to the letter "z" wins.

Franklin Park Conservatory

Join us for Community Day at Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens for a FREE day of fun on the first Sunday of every month! Community Days include access to the entirety of our gardens and collections and current exhibitions Community Days are part of the Conservatory’s mission to make the gardens more accessible.

Check out our Educational Programs and Nature Play Activities, including virtual story time.

Admission is free for residents of Franklin County and the City of Columbus on the first Sunday of each month.



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Columbus Museum of Art

Columbus Museum of Art (CMA) is excited to offer Columbus City School families free admission this summer through Aug. 31; enter code CCS2021 at checkout. The Museum is free every Sunday. All tickets must be reserved online in advance due to ongoing capacity guidelines.

If you prefer to explore the arts from home, CMA is selling Studio-in-a-Box kits to make art in the comfort of your own home. Scholarships boxes are available for families that qualify based on need; download an application here. Free, online studio workshops facilitated by CMA staff and artists are also offered weekly; view dates and times.

Learn more at www.columbusmuseum.org.

Audubon Center

Grange Insurance Audubon Center is now open! Conveniently located in the heart of downtown Columbus, this facility offers multiple options for family enjoyment, including a library, gardens, and beautiful grounds. Bring your family to explore, learn, and play with us!

Visit https://grange.audubon.org/ for details on hours, activities and reservations.

Zoombezi Bay

JUNE 17, 2021
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

The world's top water safety and training organizations join forces to present THE WORLD'S LARGEST SWIM LESSON (WLSL) to build awareness about the vital importance of teaching children to swim to help prevent drowning.


The City and YMCA are partners in the Earth Service Corps program to employ 400 teens and young adults ages 16 to 24 for litter cleanup in city neighborhoods. In addition to offering paid employment June-October, Earth Service Corps provides daily lunch and experiential service learning focused on environmental education and hands-on projects. Participants will develop soft skills and become empowered leaders of environmental stewardship. The hiring process by the YMCA and training will occur in May. For more information, visit ymcacolumbus.org or email amber.broadus@ymcacolumbus.org.


JUNE 20, 2021

9:00 AM - 7:00 PM

Bring dear ole' dad out to the Zoo for a wild time at your Columbus Zoo and Aquarium! In celebration of Father's Day, the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium is offering free admission to fathers and grandfathers (an $11.99 - $21.99 value) who are accompanied by at least one of their children/grandchildren, regardless of age. (The child's admission rate will follow the Zoo's regular admission rules based on his or her age or membership affiliation.)



Youth need opportunities for fun, engaging enrichment experiences each summer. Those ages 6-14 can be healthy, active, make new friends and create lifelong memories at a Columbus Recreation and Parks Department day camps. There are a variety of camps to meet many interests, including arts, fitness, sports, science/STEM, outdoor exploration and adaptive recreation.

Click here to view exciting camps that are being offered.

Click here to register!

We make every effort to ensure summer camps are accessible and affordable for every family, which includes free camp options and PLAY Scholarship Fund. This scholarship fund provides assistance to financially-challenged families, creating opportunities for all children in our community to participate in our fee-based programs.

Click here for Financial Assistance.


2021 Farmers Markets in Columbus

Farmers’ Markets are the best place to buy local produce through the Ohio growing season. Many farmers markets also offer craft items, soap, honey, baked goods, plants, meat, eggs, cheese, and more in addition to the wonderful produce.

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