Students save with pocket change

February 1, 2011

Endeavour Elementary School third-grader Zoe Czaja gives her deposit to her mom Teresa Czaja while third-grader Zander Schock forks over his money to his mom Alison Schock. By Laura Geggel

Whether depositing four quarters or a $30 check, Endeavour Elementary School students are saving for their futures through school banking. Read more

Childrens’ dancing brings fairy tale ‘Cinderella’ to life

February 1, 2011

If you recognize the love story that casts two evil stepsisters, a fairy godmother and an irresistible prince, then you will be familiar with the story of Pacific Northwest Ballet’s next production.

Chloe Chow (center) and two other young ballet dancers rehearse choreography Jan. 26 for a scene from Pacific Northwest Ballet’s upcoming ‘Cinderella’ production. By Alysha Alibhai

The timeless fairy tale “Cinderella” debuts at McCaw Hall Feb. 4 in time for Valentine’s Day. The excitement is brewing as three Issaquah children prepare for their parts in the highly anticipated show.

The stars

Anna Park, Chloe Chow and Vincent Bennett sat patiently in a studio among their fellow cast members in The Phelps Center waiting for rehearsal to begin Jan. 26, 10 days before opening night. Poised and elegant are not typical words used to describe children of their age, but these young dancers are as focused as they are talented.

“This production is much different than other ‘Cinderellas,’” Kent Stowell said to the rehearsal audience.

He choreographed the production based on the classic French fairy tale and is one of the founding artistic directors of the ballet company.

“It’s a classic story and it’s really fun,” said Anna, a ballerina from Challenger Elementary School. Anna has been dancing since age 5, and said she is “very excited” to be a part of this show.

Vincent, who also attends Challenger, is the youngest of the three Issaquah ballet stars and is in the third grade. He first became fascinated with the art form after watching “The Nutcracker” and has been dancing since he was 3, said his mom Aleksandra Bennett.

Read more

Issaquah teachers earn national certification

January 11, 2011

After hundreds of hours of self-reflection, videotaping their classes and studying for subject tests, 31 teachers in the Issaquah School District have earned their National Board Certification.

This brings the total number of district board certified teachers to 81. Read more

Students inflate their knowledge

September 14, 2010

Fourth-graders Riley McCabe and Donovan Bahall (above) and Haley Magee (right) paint paper mache balloon globes blue during a geography lesson at Challenger Elementary School. Photos by Laura Geggel

Many elementary school students know their city, state and country of residence. But do they know the difference between latitude and longitude? The definition of the prime meridian? The number of oceans swishing around the earth? Read more

Girl Scouts host open houses

September 7, 2010

Local Girl Scout troops are hosting informational meetings or open houses. Learn more by calling 641-1126. Middle and high school troops are welcoming new girls as well. All events are from 7-8 p.m.

Information meetings (all take place in school multipurpose rooms)

-Newcastle Elementary — Sept. 23

-Clark and Issaquah Valley elementary — Sept. 27, Clark multipurpose room

-Apollo Elementary — Sept. 28

-Cougar Ridge and Sunset elementary — Sept. 29, Cougar Ridge multipurpose room

-Briarwood and Maple Hills elementary — Sept. 30, Briarwood multipurpose room Read more

Teachers take the initiative in learning program

August 31, 2010

Dr. Duane Baker presents to about 900 Issaquah School District teachers at Skyline High School, telling the teachers about improving instruction through observing other teachers’ classrooms. By Laura Geggel

Teachers are a valuable resource, especially for one another. Read more

Volunteers sought for VOICE mentor program

August 24, 2010

Paula Cockerham earned Cs and Ds in her high school classes until her biology teacher pulled her aside and said, “You’re smarter than this.”

Cockerham began spending more time on homework and studying harder, transforming herself into an A student. Now, she works at The Boeing Co. as an environmental chemist.

“It just took having someone tell you, ‘You can do this’, and ‘I believe you can do this,’” she said.

In 2006, Cockerham decided to return the favor to Issaquah’s students. She registered with Volunteers Of Issaquah Changing Education — more commonly known as VOICE — and began mentoring high school students in physical science.

Cockerham is one of VOICE’s 155 mentors, and Director Susan Gierke said she hopes to raise membership to 200 volunteers this year. Read more

Ideas sprout at ‘green’ schools

August 17, 2010

For many students heading back to school this year, green is the new black.

From the clothes and appliances they buy to the way they conserve energy and recycle waste, green students are infusing their lives with an environmental perspective.

But even students with the greenest of intentions need guidance, and many got it from King County’s Green Schools program. Out of Issaquah’s 25 schools, 10 have participated in the program: Cascade Ridge, Challenger, Clark, Discovery, Endeavour and Newcastle elementary schools, Beaver Lake, Maywood and Pine Lake middle schools and Liberty High School.

Jack Sansing (left) and Katie and Noah Springborn directed their classmates to use the correct bins after lunch as members of Cascade Ridge Elementary's 2009 Green Team. By Christopher Huber

King County Green School began as a pilot program in 2002 and opened to K-12 public and private schools in 2003, Project Manager Dale Alekel said.

Read more

Powered by gravity, steered by fun

July 20, 2010

More than 50 special-needs children suit up for 13th annual Rotary challenge race

By Greg Farrar Mary Hartung (left), co-driver, waves at the crowds and Caitlin Gaylord, driver, prepares to pilot their gravity car

On July 17, Second Avenue Southeast was transformed into a racetrack as soapbox cars full of grinning children whooshed down the hill in lieu of the usual streams of weekend traffic.

The road was closed off for the 13th annual Issaquah Rotary Challenge Gravity Car Race.

More than 50 special-needs children of all ages came to participate in the race as co-drivers. Each was accompanied by a driver, one- or two-dozen children ages 11-13 who were trained to operate the cars earlier in the day. Read more

Big stars are on the rise at Challenger Elementary School

June 15, 2010

Challenger Elementary School students danced and sang their way to school success at the recent talent show. Below, fourth-grader Kyliann McClain’s Hula Hoop/dance extravaganza was a showstopper, as she twirled to several popular songs, including MC Hammer’s ‘Can’t Touch This.’ Photos by Tanja Fontana

Challenger Elementary School students of all ages danced, sang and dribbled their way to community stardom at this year’s school talent show June 4. Read more

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