"What’s Happening" at W.D.P.S.?
Along with having fun while learning in the classroom, our students are always participating in a variety of activities throughout their day. Here are a few examples of what’s currently happening at Washington Drive.
A Visit From the Dirtmeister
The Dirtmeister, Steve Tomecek, came to Washington
Drive Primary School in the Harborfields Central School District for the
first of his three annual visits. During his October visit, Dirtmeister
shared with second-graders his Simple Attractions presentation,
explaining the properties of magnets, magnetic fields and the law of the
This interactive assembly left children eager to explore the world of science around them, and eager for his next visit!
Centerport FD Visits Washington Drive
Members of the Centerport Volunteer Fire Department
visited students of Washington Drive Primary School for a lesson on the
importance of fire safety. The visit gave the children an opportunity to
discuss a variety of scenarios and responses with volunteer
firefighters. Students also watched as the firefighters and kindergarten
teacher Andrea Dini dressed into firefighter gear so as to alleviate
any fears the young students may have about a firefighter’s outward
appearance during an emergency.
Kindergarten students had an opportunity to sit inside the fire engine
and familiarize themselves with the vehicle and the necessary equipment.
They were then dismissed to their classrooms, where their new learning
was further reinforced through class discussion.
Washington Drive Recognizes Constitution Day
On Sept. 14, second-graders in Denise Sullivan and Chrysti Busching’s class at Washington Drive Primary School celebrated Constitution Day by taking part in a lesson that coincides with a social studies unit on citizenship and community. Students explored the history of the U.S. Constitution and discussed the importance of rules. Using it as a model, students collaboratively drafted a set of class rules and individually signed their document creating their own classroom constitution. To supplement this exercise, the classes read “The Constitution Poem” by Teri Delich.
“It is important to have rules,” commented second-grader Julia. “If the world didn’t have rules, it would be a mess and people wouldn’t do the right thing. It would be loud and crazy.”
Proud to Be an American
Students of Washington Drive Primary School honored the
spirit of Memorial Day during their annual kindergarten Memorial Day
parade and patriotic performance. Though the rain prevented students
from marching in the outdoor parade, it did not stifle their American
spirit as they sang familiar tunes such as “America the Beautiful,”
“Grand Old Flag,” and a touching version of “Proud to Be an American”
that left the audience of parents and grandparents misty-eyed. The
audience sang along and encouraged the spirited students, who proudly
wore red, white and blue and waved the American flags and handmade
firecracker crafts they had created in class.
Our "Walk for a Wish" walk-a-thon was held on Saturday (April 21st) at Harborfieds High School. At this time, we would like to give a big "thank you" to everyone who helped make this event such a wonderful success. We were able to raise over $15,500! Wow! We are very proud that we were, once again, able to grant a child's wish! Thank you, to the Harborfields Community, for your continued support!
Five students from Washington Drive received the SuffolfK Region PTA Award of Excellence for their pieces that they submitted on Diversity for the Reflections Program. Congratulations to you!!
Students Giving Back
Students of Ms. Keith Golding’s second-grade class at Washington Drive Primary School, in addition to Mr. Rettino’s and Ms. Turrini’s fifth-grade classes at Thomas J. Lahey Elementary School, “filled buckets” and candy bags in collaboration with the Harborfields Alliance for Community Outreach (HACO).
The students worked diligently to create approximately 300 greeting cards and spring candy bags for members of the community who would benefit from them.
Young Poets Selected
Twenty-six students in Dr. Christine Fiorella Russo’s class at Washington Drive Primary School took part in a creative writing competition. The students presented their work and had their poems selected from among thousands of entries for publication in the Anthology of Poetry
by Young Americans, one of America’s oldest and most well-known publishers of students’ poetry and short stories. Congratulations to these fine young writers!
Bringing Books to Life
Students of Mrs. Sullivan's second-grade class at Washington Drive Primary School read the classic book Pippi Longstocking
, written by Astrid Lindgren. To celebrate the completion of the book, students participated in Pippi Longstocking Day, coming to school dressed as characters from the book, eating special snacks, and watching the movie version of the famous tale.
Author Scott Starkey Visits WDPS
Author, teacher and Washington Drive Primary School parent Scott Starkey visited Karen Ritter’s second-grade classroom to explore with students what it means to be a writer. A fifth-grade teacher for over 15 years, Mr. Starkey recently wrote the middle school level novel How to Beat the Bully Without Really Trying.
Mr. Starkey explained how he uses his own experiences and observations to take notes for his books and discussed the processes of drafting, revising, editing and publishing a story. He made a clear connection between the skills taught in school during Writer’s Workshop and the work he does every day.
Mr. Starkey took the time to answer students’ questions and shared the first chapter of the book he is currently writing, a sequel to his first novel.
Fancy Nancy Author Pays a Visit to WDPS
The second-grade students of Washington Drive Primary School received a special visit from Jane O’Connor, author of the popular Fancy Nancy
The students expressed their excitement by dressing in their “fanciest” attire for the visit, in which Ms. O’Connor read her newest book, Fancy Nancy and the Mermaid Ballet
. She also explained that part of being “fancy” was exhibiting good posture, and gave twenty audience members the chance to demonstrate this by balancing bananas on their heads.
The prolific author discussed some of the process involved in writing and publishing a book and took the time to answer students’ questions. Before leaving the school, she signed and personalized copies of her books presented to her by students.
The members of the audience enjoyed the time they had to share with the accomplished author.
Bus Driver Appreciation Day
WD held a breakfast for our bus drivers. We wanted to express our gratitude to the wonderful men and women who transport our students daily. The boys and girls from Mrs. Brown's and Mrs. Sheil's classes provided the entertainment by singing to them. The drivers received an envelope filled with pictures and letters created by the children on their routes. Thank you bus drivers!!
The children in grades kindergarten through second grade participated in our annual Read-In. There was a wonderful turnout of parents who volunteered to read to a group of students. The boys and girls dressed in their pajamas, enjoyed the cozy atmosphere created by their moms or dads. It was a fun day for all!!
Chinese New Year Mrs. Sheil's class celebrated the Chinese New Year by reading the book, The Missing Dragon. Afterwards, they created a dragon and paraded through the hallways wishing everyone "Gung Hay Fat Choy".
Mr. Coppola’s second grade students are returning to kindergarten as reading buddies with Mrs. Divers’ kindergarten class at Washington Drive Primary School. The two classes meet together several times during the year. Mr. Coppola’s children carefully select a book and generate questions to ask the kindergarten students when they meet. This gives the students an opportunity to interact with children of different ages. The second grade children provide the kindergarteners good modeling of reading fluency and comprehension skills. The visits take place in the kindergarten classroom, the second grade classroom and eventually on the first and second grade playground in June when the kindergarten students read a book they have selected to their second grade buddy.
Holiday Wishes for the World
Mrs. Brown, a second grade teacher, read the book, For Every Child, a Better World
to her class. The students took some time to think of how lucky they were compared to those less fortunate. They thought of a wish that they wanted to give as a holiday gift to improve the world and attached it to “a present”!
Acts of Kindness
Many students from the Washington Drive Primary School created holiday cards and placemats December 15th for the residents of the Carillon Nursing Home in Greenlawn, NY. Students used decorative materials, paper and cut outs to make the cards and placemats which will be distributed to the residents in time for the upcoming holiday season. The special activity, which took place in the school’s cafetorium, is part of the school’s character education projects, which encourages students to show empathy, respect, and understanding toward others.
Thinking of others this holiday season: Mrs. Phillips First Graders joined OMS with Operation Ziploc. The class assembled 25 care packages for soldier’s overseas containing candy, prepackage food items, magazine, books, hygiene products and even created each soldier a “Medal of Honor” to show their thanks! The class later received a special thank you from one of the recipients who expressed her gratitude!
Students of Washington Drive Primary School in the Harborfields Central School District participated in the annual Police SMART program with Suffolk County Officer Rosemarie McCormack. Officer McCormack spent time in each classroom introducing and reviewing the concepts of police safety with students. “What is an emergency?” she asked students in Mrs. Fealy’s kindergarten class. “I am going to show you what you can do to make good choices in those situations.” She reviewed concepts of stranger danger and dialing 911 and reinforced the concepts that students were exposed to in prior visits.
Students Are Police SMART at Washington Drive
During Thanksgiving week, students in Mrs. MacDonald’s first grade class worked together to make fleece blankets to donate to Project Linus. Project Linus is a non-profit organization that distributes handmade blankets to children who are in the hospital or are in need of additional comfort. The first graders are proud of their participation in this community service project and are happy to have this chance to be bucket fillers!
Students in Mrs. Fealy’s and Mrs. Justiano’s kindergarten classes at Washington Drive Primary School entertained their parents with a special Thanksgiving presentation in which they performed a series of songs and poems dressed as Native Americans and Pilgrims. At the conclusion of the celebration, students enjoyed a delicious feast with their parents.
WDPS Students Give Thanks
We were Caught in the Act...
In line with our Character Education curriculum, the following students were “caught" demonstrating strong Character Education skills. Special announcements are made and the students are recognized on our “Caught in the Act” bulleting boards!
Great job boys and girls!! Keep it up!!
Mr. Coppola's and Mrs.Sullivan's second grade classes celebrated Constitution Day by learning the history of the Constitution. They modeled their own version of the Constitution by creating a set of class rules and each student signed it.
Mrs. O'Connor's class celebrated Constitution Day by learning about why the Constitution is such an important document to our country. The students discovered all our freedoms granted by our Constitution, and how they are all very essential in our daily lives.
On Monday, October 31, the kindergarten students of Washington Drive Primary School enjoyed Halloween celebrations and marched in costume parades as their family members cheered them on. When the parades came to an end, the students performed a series of Halloween-themed songs and poems that they had studied in class.
Skills Bloom at WDPS
Members of the Centerport Garden Club paid a visit to Washington Drive Primary School in order to create autumnal centerpieces with Mrs. Sheil’s class. The Garden Club has been creating projects within the district for over 30 years. This program is intended to build students’ appreciation of nature while reinforcing skills in listening and following directions, two skills that are vital to academic growth.
A Visit from the Dirtmeister
The Dirtmeister, Steve Tomecek, came to Washington Drive Primary School for the first of what will be three visits. The theme of his October visit revolved around magnets. Experimenting with household objects, he demonstrated for students that “science is something you can do at home.” This interactive assembly left children eager to explore the world of science around them, and eager for his next visit!