Valley Stream Students Unite to Prevent Cyberbullying
Fourth-grade students throughout Valley Stream District 30 participated in engaging anti-cyberbullying workshops on March 23, facilitated by National Honor Society students from the Valley Stream Central High School District. The high schoolers visited Clear Stream Avenue, Forest Road and Shaw Avenue elementary schools throughout the day to teach the students about how to be respectful digital citizens and talk about the signs of cyberbullying.
The program was part of the Inter-District Wellness Committee made up of representatives from each Valley Stream school district. Under the guidance of National Honor Society adviser Alisha Varian, the honor society members presented on what cyberbullying is and how it can make one feel, as fourth-graders answered questions. The elementary students also learned about the numerous social media platforms that bullies utilize, as well as how to be an upstander and how to report a bully.
“We’re here to teach kids how to be smart on social media before they become proactive in the online community,” said senior and National Honor Society secretary Alisha Victor.
The students were divided into six groups and rotated as the high schoolers ran different activity stations to dive deeper into cyberbullying. Among the variety of activities, fourth-graders participated in role-playing scenarios on how to face a bully and created social media responses on Post-Its, on how they would react to a negative online situation. Through the lessons, fourth-graders learned how words can affect emotions.
“I liked that they gave us a model in the first group of how you can feel if someone says something hurtful to you or something positive,” said Clear Stream fourth-grader Chris Brockington.
Families Receive a Superhero-Sized “Taste” of District Services
More than 100 administrators, staff, students and family members gathered at Shaw Avenue School for Valley Stream District 30’s annual Taste of a Service parent fair on March 5. Coordinated by Director of Special Services Nicole Schimpf and Shaw Avenue Assistant Principal Christopher Colarossi, the superhero-themed event featured informational booths and activities showcasing the beneficial tools and services that the district offers its students.
Although it was only the third year that the district hosted the event, attendees made it a record breaking turnout. Families toured the gymnasium and hallway to speak with faculty members about different services and strategies to help their child succeed. They had conversations with reading/math specialists, speech therapists, occupational therapists, classroom teachers, school nurses, school psychologists, enrichment specialists, S.T.E.A.M support staff, English Language Learner teachers and special education teachers from throughout the district to utilize what is being done in the classroom and reinforce that support at home to guide their child’s learning.
One of the stations featured Shaw Avenue sixth-graders in the district’s Quest program, an enrichment program which challenges third- through sixth-grade learners with a broad range of advanced-level enrichment experiences. Under the guidance of teacher Ilissa Epstein, the students learned how to administer CPR and educated attendees on the life-saving technique. Additionally, parents learned about the enrichment activities that are push-in services available to all students shared by Danielle Bonaccorso, enrichment teacher.
Younger students were also welcomed to attend the event, as well as incoming kindergartners and their parents. Supervision and entertainment were provided for the students as family members browsed the booths. Refreshments were served and as part of the district’s 2017-2018 “Show Your Character” theme, superheroes were the stars of the event. This included a visit and show from Spiderman for students to learn about character traits to live by, as well as crafts and balloon animals to enjoy.
“We are very proud of the parents for coming out and joining us for this special event,” said Schimpf. “We really hope they received a taste of the many services that we are extremely fortunate to offer, walked away at least with one take-away home strategy and also made connections with different staff across the district to reach out to in the future if their child needs support.”
District Celebrates School Psychology Awareness Week