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Next Stop … Middle School


Fifth graders bid farewell to elementary school during moving-up ceremonies that celebrated their unique abilities and talents. Each of the graduates was given an award for a trait that makes them special. The awards at Bayville Intermediate School included Confidence to Take Action,Leadership and Responsibility, Making a Difference, Sense of Accomplishment, Curiosity and Creativity and Sense of Adventure. At Locust Valley Intermediate School, the award categories were 

Speakers included Board of Education trustees, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Anna F. Hunderfund, Principals and parent leaders. Each one shared memories, advice for middle school and their genuine pride and admiration for the students. Dr. Hunderfund had requested that the students send her information prior to the event and she shared their responses, which included their hopes for the future and their favorite memories of elementary school. She was pleased to report that the students stated they will miss their teachers the most and that they wished for a drug free society. 

The students performed songs, introduced all of the speakers and served as bell ringers. In each of the intermediate schools, ringing the bell at the moving up ceremony is a tradition that dates back many years and the six strikes of the bell represent the six years that the students were in the elementary school.

Congratulations to the fifth graders and good luck in middle school!




Award-Winning Writers

Three Bayville Intermediate School students have earned recognition for their outstanding writing abilities. Karina Hernandez, Abigail Maselli and Jonah Santoro, all in Maureen Pederson’s fourth-grade class were each first-place winners in writing contests that highlighted their creativity and their skill in the use of different writing techniques.  

Karina and Jonah each won the Nassau Young Author’s Writing Contest for their personal narratives. They were the only two winners for their age group from among hundreds of submissions. They both used writing techniques such as figurative language, show don’t tell, dialogue, internal thoughts and feelings and onomatopoeia. Their narratives focused on small moments in their lives and zoomed in on that time to help the reader visualize and “feel” what was happening.  

Karina described a time when her father brought her zeppoles from a fair and the powdered treat covered her face as she ate it. Jonah described the unrestful feeling of going through an adventure park, including the tightening of the harness belt and his knees feeling like clouds. Both students were recognized during a ceremony at Molloy College.

Abigail won the Long Island Language Arts Council writing contest for her age group. She submitted two pieces of writing. The first was her personal narrative about receiving a typewriter for Christmas. She described her love of writing and that the typewriter was the best present she could receive. She also wrote in detail the feelings she had when the typewriter did not immediately work, and then the euphoria as she finally heard the click, click, click of its keys.  Her second piece was in response to the writing prompt, “We Are More Alike Than Different.” She wrote a poem explaining that we all really do have similar interests even though we may be different, and how that bonds us all together. Abigail was recognized at a ceremony in Bay Shore.

Congratulations to Karina, Abigail and Jonah for their outstanding efforts!

Collaboration Across the Grades

Third graders became teachers when their classes at Bayville Intermediate School collaborated with kindergarten classes from Bayville Primary School. The younger students visited third-grade classes to prepare for their field trip to the Queens Zoo.

Third grade teachers Pamela Loher and Christine Arthur welcomed students from the kindergarten classes of Eleanor Madsen and Jenifer LeMieux to work with their students on reports about animals.

Ben Cote, a student in Mrs. Loher’s class enjoyed teaching his kindergarten partner how to research facts about the bald eagle and create a PowerPoint presentation on their findings. “It was kind of fun working with a little kid. You never get a chance to do that, to show them stuff,” he explained.

Mrs. Loher said the collaboration included working on Chromebooks, creating slides, editing, researching and alliteration.

Mrs. Madsen said that her students were enthusiastic about learning from older children whom they look up to as role models. She added that this was a wonderful introduction to more advanced research and writing. 

“The third graders were instrumental in helping the kindergartners document interesting facts about each animal's special physical features, their eating preferences and the habitat they live in,” explained Mrs. LeMieux. 

The kindergartners learned valuable skills, enjoyed the lessons and were well prepared for the trip to the zoo, ready to identify facts about the animals they saw.

National Winners in Toshiba ExploraVision Competition

Winners photo

Bayville Intermediate School students have been named national winners in the Toshiba ExploraVision competition for the second consecutive year. Two teams of students were named regional winners in March and both teams have now earned the top prize for their innovative projects. After being named regional winners, each team was required to create a website and video depicting their invention, which were used to choose the national winners. 

The students competed against thousands of young scientists from across the country and are among only four teams to earn the national prize this year. They won an all-expenses paid trip to Washington D.C. this June and will also each receive a $10,000 U.S. savings bond. 

One of the participants, fourth-grader John Hartnett was a member of the winning team in 2016 as well, making this his second national prize in two years.

In the K-3 category, a team of third graders won the national prize for their idea to create Float Tee’s, shirts made from woven fabric that has buoyant properties. The concept is intended to prevent drownings in children under five-years-old, since drowning is the leading cause of accidental death in that age group. The students felt that life vests and other personal flotation devices are bulky, making them uncomfortable for children to wear and difficult to pack for a family vacation. The team is researching the properties that keep plankton afloat and applying those properties to their invention. Coached by librarian Paige Coppola and mentored by teaching assistant Donna DeJesu, the team is made up of Emilia Bayerlander, Evie Bergman, Lucia Connolly and Adhvaith Sreenivas.

A team of fourth graders won the national prize in the grade 4-6 category for their idea to create robotic bivalves to filter PCBs from contaminated rivers. These cancer-causing chemicals are found in the sediments of riverbeds and ocean floors. Normal dredging to remove the contamination brings 10 percent of the PCBs back into the water. The team, inspired by advances in biomimicry, proposes that the robotic bivalves would function like living clams, mussels or oysters, sinking to the bottom of the riverbed, removing the harmful PCBs and floating back to the top without harming wildlife. Cyclodextrin sponges would collect the PCBs, which are known to break down faster when bonded to cyclodextrins. This ethical invention targets the Hudson River but can be used in other rivers that have PCB contamination. Coached by Paige Coppola and mentored by teaching assistant Debbie McKillen, the team consists of John Hartnett and Matthew Santibanez.

Toshiba describes the ExploraVision competition as an opportunity for students to expand their imaginations and have fun while developing an interest in science, technology, engineering and math. Participating students developed and researched solutions to different problems in the world and wrote detailed research papers that highlighted their ideas.