• History in the making

    Using photographs like a time machine, six students in Carlson Elementary’s gifted education program looked into the history of Clear Creek County to learn about their community.

    The fourth- and fifth-graders took pictures of various locations in the county and compared them with historic photographs. They presented their findings to parents at the school on May 13.

    Participating in the project were fifth-graders Emma Sanderourth, Maria Salinas and Ashley Hillman, and fourth-graders Seattle Schuessler, Elsie Gothman and Bhodi Yohn.

  • A well-populated play date

    Not far from where a class of elementary-school students kicked their shoes into the air in a colorful hail of flying footwear, 8-year-old Sam Haver leapt from the ground.

    He was airborne for what seemed like forever, going further than any of his classmates ó even the enthusiastic girl in pigtails. He landed with an explosion of sand and won a first-place ribbon in the long-jump competition.

    Sam, a second-grader at King-Murphy Elementary School, offered his key to jumping success: “Use a lot of speed.”

  • Vice principal, curriculum director in lesson plan

    A vice principal to split time between the middle school and high school and a curriculum director are needed to improve student achievement, according to the Clear Creek School District’s recently released master education plan.

    District Superintendent Todd Lancaster said the plan calls for hiring a vice principal for the high school/middle school to free principals from administrative work, so they may help teachers in classrooms. Lancaster said freeing up the principals will help build teachers’ instructional skills.

  • Making a difference

    Trying to make the world a better place one lunch at a time, Georgetown Community School fifth-graders are implementing a series of changes to reduce the amount of trash the school generates.
    Students are planning a series of trash-reducing strategies such as composting and cutting down on non-compostable material.

  • Whimsy and flair

    Expressions of creativity, whimsy and artistic flair covered the second-floor walls of the Majestic Building in Idaho Springs on April 9 during a colorful school-district-wide art show.

    The exhibit, displaying work by students in kindergarten through 12th grade, gives the public a peek into the imagination of local youngsters. The free show closes May 5.

    Lisa Arnold, art teacher at Carlson and King-Murphy elementary schools, and Ryan Wood, who teaches art at Clear Creek Middle and High School, put the show together.

  • Fair gives Clear Creek students a taste of many occupations

    There’s no better way to learn about a nursing career than by trying your hand at the kids’ game “Operation.”

    Or doing pushups to learn about training to go into the Army.

    Or smelling hops to learn about brewing beer in the restaurant trade.

    These hands-on activities were part of the biennial career day for Clear Creek High School and Middle School students on April 10.

  • The meaning of ‘rockets’ red glare’

    The national anthem is all about bravery, courage and hope, according to Carlson Elementary School fifth-grader Madison Kish.

    Madison interpreted the song lyrics as part of an annual essay contest sponsored by the Idaho Springs Elks Lodge. This year’s essays on “What the ‘Star Spangled Banner’ Means to Me” were written in December by students in teacher Anne-Marie Schmidt’s fifth-grade class.

    Madison, along with Mekiah Fink and Noah Peck, received awards and recognition for their essays during an assembly on Monday.

  • School study: Turnover led to confused priorities

    The Clear Creek School District is financially sound and has a strong sense of pride, but the turnover in superintendents in the past seven years has made it difficult for staff to understand district priorities, a study says.
    The district also should work on ensuring that curriculum is being implemented properly and provide the staff more time for professional development, according to an assessment of the district’s strengths and weaknesses called the Comprehensive Appraisal for District Improvement.

  • Tumbling into gymnastics

    Georgetown Community School students are receiving a crash course in gymnastics this week from former Silver Plume Mayor Earl Ballard, who is a former professional gymnastics coach.

    “They’re loving it. The kids are doing very well. They’re improving rapidly,” Ballard said.

    Ballard, who sits on the town’s Board of Selectmen, finished his two-year term as mayor last year. Retired from education, Ballard occasionally is a substitute teacher at the community school.

  • String theory

    Georgetown Community School students are learning to become real-life Guitar Heroes.

    The school recently purchased 22 guitars, and art/music teacher and guitar enthusiast Sam Brockman is teaching kindergartners through sixth-graders to play.

    “It’s going great,” Brockman said. “They are really responding well. A lot of them are really enthusiastic about practicing outside of class, and coming in and showing off what they mastered throughout the week.”