Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Magic Carpet Theater Performance Encourages Imagination and Reading

On November 19, Michigan-based Magic Carpet Theater will bring its interactive show to Abbot. Designed to encourage children to use their imaginations so they will become better readers, this show asks children to participate through role-playing, creating sound effects and making rhythms. The performance is fast-paced with lots of humor and audience participation and includes children's literature favorites with positive messages, such as Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are and Dr. Seuss's The Sneetches.

Fourth and fifth graders will have special workshops in their classrooms after the show designed to promote reading and unlock the imagination, a key to the reading process. Once a student outgrows picture books, they need to be able to make pictures in their minds to comprehend what they are reading. The workshops use discussion, dramatic play and imagery to help students tap into the precious resource of their own imaginations.

A big thank you to Target for funding the all-school show. The workshops are sponsored by the Abbot PTO. Thank you PTO members.

Run-A-Thon Participants and Sponsors Raise Almost $8,000 for Abbot

The Run-A-Thon was a great success and was a lot of fun for so many Abbot families.  We had 141 registered participants this year who obtained a total of $6,973.75 in pledges (up from $6,243.56 last year). Great job! About $3,000 still needs to be collected and turned in to the office. Please do so by Monday, October 27.

We also celebrate the 28 participants who made the 100-Lap Club this year, up from 21 last year. In addition, 101 other students will be receiving a medallion or a trophy for completing the designated lap levels for their grade. Great job doing your part to support Abbot and accomplishing so many individual goals!  The Run-A-Thon Award Ceremony will be held on Friday, November 14 at 2:30 p.m. Parents attending are reminded to please sign in as visitors in the office first.

This year, the Run-A-Thon also raised $2,250 in event sponsorships from local businesses. Thank you Cardamom, Chelsea Rhone, McNamara Orthodontics, Dr. Robert Stevenson, DDS, and Taxi Cab Kids!

After expenses (tent rental, runner awards, event banner for sponsor publicity) and concessions profits the total profit for the PTO from the event was $7,944.48!  That is fantastic and provides a the largest single source of the PTO's funding for this year's activities.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Leslie Science Center Raptors Visit Abbot 3rd Graders

It’s all about survival! Three engaging raptors (a Hawk, an Barned Owl, and a Bald Eagle) visited Abbot's third graders on October 8 as a part of the Leslie Science Center's "Hunters of the Sky" program. Students saw the wild birds up close and discussed science concepts of habitats, adaptations, life cycles, conservation and the food web with a Leslie naturalist.

The live birds are used to demonstrate and model their amazing survival characteristics and techniques. Hands-on explorations of feathers, skulls and other bird parts provide a stimulating continuation of natural science concepts students have been learning in class. 
The Abbot PTO was pleased to sponsor the presentation, which challenged the students to figure out a variety of science and math questions.  See how many of the following you know and if you get stuck, ask a third grader.
  • Why do owls need to turn their heads nearly upside down and nearly all the way around?
  • How do bald eagles hold onto slippery fish?
  • What is louder, an owl wing or a vulture feather and why?
  • Why is a bald eagle called "bald"?
  • How many bones are there in an owl's neck?
  • What is an owl scat?
  • How does an owl hear so well without visible ears?
  • What can humans do with their eyes that owls can't? (Two possible answers here.)
  • If an animal active during the night is called nocturnal, what is an animal active during the day called?
All the birds used in the presentation were rescued and rehabilitated after being injured. The Barned Owl, for example, had been hit by a car and can no longer live in the wild because of his traumatic brain injury.