Sunday, June 12, 2011

WAG June 13-17, 2011

June 12, 2011

Dear BCS Parents,

Wow, what a year!

The 2010-2011 school year is coming to a close and the BCS staff would like to say thank you for everything you have done this year to support us and our teaching and learning goals. You are truly what makes BCS shine. The end of the year can be a time where we sit back and reflect on the “What if’s”. I know I catch myself at this time wishing I would have done some things differently, reflecting on mistakes to improve for the following year, and thinking of ways to motivate the school community. Part of being the best is to continue to build on each year and make learning a process, not an event.
I would like to take the opportunity with this week’s W.A.G. and share some of the wonderful things we have accomplished in the 2010-2011 school year. This is just the surface as our students continue to create, produce, and become innovators from their own learning. What makes a great school? Here are some examples for what BCS has been up to this year:

Pauline Roberts was named Birmingham Teacher of the Year!
Pauline is a 5/6 teacher currently teaming with Rick Joseph. Her dedication to learning and her desire to connect subject areas and learning styles has not gone unnoticed. Pauline works tirelessly on green initiatives here at BCS and is a true leader when it comes to innovative learning. Pauline has been invited to speak at the world conference in Vancouver and attend Microsoft’s Innovative Education Forum in Seattle, Washington. Way to go Pauline!!

Through the leadership of BCS teacher Rick Joseph- BCS won a $800.00 grant for our participation and success in saving energy throughout the 2010-2011 school year. Rick and Pauline have also allowed students to learn from real life experiences (see link below)

Rick Joseph’s 5/6 classroom was nominated in the top 5 for the Seimens We Can Change the World Contest.

Future Cities – Led by BCS teacher Erica Maliszewski, won the Electro Technology Award

Engage teacher and facilitator Sara Wilkie presented at an International Conference in Australia

Along with BCS Spanish teacher, Sra. Toth, a group of 7th grade Spanish students and parents participated in a “traveling classroom” trip to San Antonio, Texas! The group visited all of the cultural and interesting sites of the city, and had an fun, busy and interesting time. Visit the trip page on Mrs. Toth’s website for more details and pictures!


The National Churchill Museum, located on the Westminster College campus in Fulton, MO, held their Winston Churchill Student Essay Contest for the third time this past school year.
The essay topic this year was “Winston Churchill: A Renaissance Man?” Middle school and high school students from across the state submitted scholarly essays in hopes of winning one of six cash prizes.
With his essay, “Winston Churchill-Renaissance Man,” Birmingham Covington School student Joseph D. won second prize in the middle school division. Claire B., also from Birmingham Covington School, placed third for her essay “I Met a Man Named Winston: A Present Day Renaissance Man.”

BCS Media Specialists Ann Truesdell and Barbara Clark headed the Battle of the Books (4th & 5th grade) and Birbery Awards (6th grade)

BCS teacher Angela Geisler helped create our very first Cross Country team this year.

6th graders who received an 80% on their final exam in Spanish, received their very first ever ½ credit for Spanish at the high school level.

We had 3 Winners from BCS for the 2011 Michigan PTSA Reflections Contest, one of them going on to the Nation Competition!
Visual Arts Honoree
Intermediate Division
Award of Excellence
“Untitled” Aaron K.,
Music Honoree Intermediate Division National Entrant – Award of Excellence “It’s A Lot More Fun” Angela R.
Literature Honoree Middle/Junior Division Award of Merit “Change” Claire B.

BCS teachers Sara Wilkie and Roy McCloud presented at the 2011 MACUL conference.

Our Technology Committee (headed by BCS parents) hosted the first Covington Technology Celebration (CTC).

BCS successfully launched Zon, an interactive virtual simulation game created by Michigan State to learn Mandarin Chinese.

Our Science Olympiad team finished 6th in the state!

John Prisciandaro, BCS Engineering Technology teacher, was part of a partnership and project that won the 2011 Microsoft Innovation in Education award.

Proud Dad’s worked with the Green Committee to create an organic garden that will be embedded into the BCS curriculum.

BCS is now on facebook:
and Twitter: bcscovington

I have just scratched the surface on student and teacher engagement. If there are others - share them by leaving a comment on my blog.

BCS continues to shine by empowering our learners and pushing the needle to move away from the status quo. It has been a great school year, and I cannot wait for what’s coming next! Enjoy your summer!

G.E.E.K.ed about 2011-2012,


WEEK AT A GLANCE – June 13-17, 2011
(Disclaimer: Please check all your calendars and in case we missed something)
Monday, June 13
8-8:20 AM - Yearbooks sold in front of the media center for $45.
Tuesday, June 14
8-8:20 AM - Yearbooks sold in front of the media center for $45.
MOVE UP NIGHT FOR PARENTS –MEDIA CENTER- Please plan to attend and learn more about these transitions
6:30-7:15pm Parents of students going to 5th grade
7:30-8:15pm Parents of students going to 7th grade
Wednesday, June 15
8-8:20 AM - Yearbooks sold in front of the media center for $45.
LOCKER CLEAN-OUT DAY – Please send in a sturdy garbage bag with your student to carry locker items home. All lockers must be empty by the end of the day. All items left in lockers after today will be disposed of
GYM LOCKERS – all gym lockers should be cleaned out today. All remaining locks will be cut-off on Thursday and contents will be disposed of.
NO popcorn sold today. POPCORN will return on September 14, 2011
3:15-4:05-Staff v. 8th Grade Volleyball Team Game-who will win this year??
4-6PM Kids' Club Spring Celebration Fiesta
Thursday, June 16
7:00AM SHARP – Busses leave for 7/8 end of the year trip to Cedar Point. Please arrive at 8:30PM to pick up your child.
5/6 end of year party to Imagination Station, Toledo-return in time for Choice Hour
3/4 end of year party at BCS
Friday, June 17- Last Day of School
8th grade breakfast-hosted by the 7th grade class
HALF DAY OF SCHOOL – Dismissal at 11:20PM. Busses are provided at the early dismissal time.
There is NO lunch service today.
Friday, June 24
Report Cards released today
Hot Entrée menu for the week: (subject to change, if necessary)
Available everyday: Pizza, Hamburger & Cheeseburger, Chicken Sandwiches, Nachos, Beef Soft Shell Tacos, Freshly Made Salads & Sandwiches, Garden Fresh Salad Bar
Monday –Baked Pasta Marinara,Garlic Bread,Green Beans and Cauliflower,BBQ Chicken Pizza
Tuesday –Chef’s Inspiration
Wednesday –Chef’s Inspiration
Thursday – No Meal Service
Friday –No Meal Service

• STUDENT MEDICATION - All student medication must be picked up by a parent no later than 4PM, JUNE 24. Non-emergency medications can be picked up any day during the last week of school. Student medication or forms do NOT carry over into the next school year. ALL medications not picked up will be discarded on Monday, June 27.
• BOOK FINES - Many students have been issued a FINE NOTICE for lost textbooks or classroom books. All outstanding fines MUST be cleared up before the end of the school year. Students may be asked to pay fines before departing on the end of the year field trip. Please check with your child to see if they have any outstanding fines.
• SAVE THE DATEs – Back-to-school registration is august 17 & 24, 2011, 9-12 am & 5-7 PM - Please mark your calendars with these dates and remember, every student should be registered before school starts next year!
• SUMMER PACKETS – The summer homework packets will be posted before the end of the school year. We will send you an email when they are ready for you to download.
• LOST AND FOUND – There is an incredible amount of lost and found items. Please look through the lost and found during this last week of school. You may find an item you didn’t even know was missing. All lost and found items left after the end of the day on June 17 will be donated.
• REPORT CARDS – End of the year report cards will be mailed home on June 24.
• PLEASE UPDATE YOUR eNEWS SUBSCRIPTIONS on the BPS website. - Please log onto your eNews account to “graduate” your subscription to reflect the grade your child will be in next year. We will send email over the summer and we want you to receive the appropriate grade level communications. Detailed instructions to update your account were mailed to your home with the “Move-Up Day” information.
The parent portal of POWERSCHOOL will be available until July 7, 2011. On July 8, 2011, the portal will be closed until parents receive notification that it has re-opened sometime in August
Move-Up Night for parents is June 14,2011 in the Media Center. Parents of students in 4th grade going to 5th grade will be from 6:30pm-7:15pm and parents of students in 6th grade going to 7th grade will be from 7:30-8:15PM. Please plan to attend and learn more about these transitions
Thanks to those of you who supported our Kiva choice hour hat day! We raised $100 to fund microloans around the world. Want to learn more about Kiva? Check out Our team name is the Kiva Kobras!
Students in grades 3-8 can participate in the Lego Robotics Club. Meetings will take place after choice hour in the fall 4:05-6:00 September through November probably on Wednesday and Friday. The Robotics competition is held on a Saturday in November (date to be determined). The club will prepare the students for the competition which includes programming Lego Mindstorm software, building strategies, presentations (oral and visual) and working in a group. See for details.
If interested, we will meet twice a month over the summer to get a head start. Please email with your contact information. There is a pay to play fee of $25 per student.
Back to School Registration – August 17 & 24, 9-12AM & 5-7
As this school year winds down, we are looking ahead to the next school year!!! Please mark your calendars for the Back-To-School registration dates….and remember, every student should be registered before school starts next year! We need lots of volunteers to ensure our registration is successful and the office starts the next school year well prepared for your children. Would you please look at the dates below and sign-up to help as often as your schedule allows? We really do need you. BCS 7th and 8th graders or high school students that are BCS alums are welcome to volunteer for community service hours credit, IF they are scheduled in advance.
The Birmingham Public Schools is proud of its athletic program. In the spirit of continuous improvement, this survey is being distributed to middle school student athletes who have completed the SPRING sports season. We appreciate you taking the time to provide feedback. Your input will assist us in providing you and future athletes with the best possible experiences.
An executive summary of the data from this survey will be published later this month. The summary will present the data and draw comparisons to the data collected from students athletes from previous seasons. The athletic directors will use the data to evaluate the overall athletic program.
This survey asks for some demographic data, but it is confidential. We ask that you do not put your name anywhere on this survey. No effort will be made on the part of the school personnel who administer and analyze this survey to identify the respondents.
Again, thank you for taking the time to complete this survey. If your athlete has not completed this SPRING SPORTS survey, please have them do so:
Athletic Physicals will be offered in the Groves gym on Tuesday, 6/14/11 at 4:30 on a first-come, first-served basis. Athletes must bring a physical form (can be printed from the BCS athletics website), the first page of which is completed and signed by parent/guardian, along with a check in the amount of $25.00 payable to University Physicians Group (DMC). If the student will not be coming to Groves next year, they should inform the physician so the correct school may be identified on the front of the physical. No athlete will be allowed to try out for an athletic team during the 2011-2012 school year unless the athlete’s physical is on file in the office and is dated on or after April 15, 2011 according to the Michigan High School Athletic Association.
8th grade parents-
Congratulations on a successful journey through middle school. For those moving on to Seaholm, welcome! The Seaholm bookroom is currently recruiting new volunteers to join us next year. The bookroom is open at August registration and at the beginning and end of each trimester. Pull textbooks, review accounts with students, checkout/renew student textbooks - all training provided. Shifts are at your convenience, occur between 6:45 am and 3pm and last one hour or longer. It’s a great opportunity to interact with our students. Request to be on the volunteer list and you will receive approximately five email requests for volunteers each year. Volunteer once a day, once a term, once a year - whenever it works for your schedule. Our busiest slots and the hardest to fill are between 6:45am and 8:30am. We welcome all potential volunteers but have a special need for early morning volunteers who can stop in for an hour on their way to work.
If you are have questions or are interested in joining us please email Barb Collins and/or Michelle Lakocy . Thank you.
at Groves- FOR BOYS Entering Grades 6-9
Dates: June 20-24
June 27-July 1
Time: 1-4PM
Cost: $99-includes T-shirt
Presented by Groves Basketball and directed by Birmingham Groves Varsity Head Coach and Quarton Elementary School 5th Grade teacher Scott Sheckell. Coach Sheckell will be assisted by coaches in the program and current Varsity Basketball players.
Register today at:
COURSE # 530032 2450 (June 20-June 24)
COURSE # 530032 2451 (June 27- July 1)
Seaholm Prospect Baseball Camp
Seaholm High School’s Incoming 6-9th graders
JUNE 27-30
Participants will begin a well-organized daily regimen that will include individual offensive and defensive skill development, team situational game education, skill competitions, as well as daily game play. Players will also go through High school designed practice formats introducing them to Seaholm Baseball! Registration forms can be downloaded through the Seaholm baseball website
Follow the “Seaholm summer baseball camps” tab.
News from the
Birmingham Bloomfield Community Coalition (BBCC)
· The YAB's Annual Battle of the Bands… Friday, June 17, 7:00 – 10:30 p.m. -- Shain Park, Downtown Birmingham. Come celebrate the end of school and check out the hottest high school bands as they battle for the top prize: a professionally produced recording session furnished by The Academy of Music Performance and noted Birmingham musician and producer, Michael King. For more information contact
· Birmingham Movie Nights. June 24, July 29 and August 12 at Booth Park co-sponsored by the Coalition and PSD. Bring your lawnchairs and blankets to enjoy movies under the moonlight. 7:30 p.m. pre-movie activities begin including merchant raffle, live music and park amenities. Movies begin at dusk. Admission is FREE. June 24 -- “Despicable Me,” July 29 -- “MegaMinds” and August 12 – “How to Train Your Dragon.” More info visit or>
Now you can shop online through the Coalition's special link at and a percentage of your purchase will go to support the Coalition & Substance Free Youth in Our Community!
Our Mission: To raise awareness and mobilize the entire community to prevent the abuse of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs, with a primary focus on our youth!
For more info on substance abuse prevention visit

Check out the April 27 issue of Keeping Our Youth Safe & Substance Free Newsletter
Living Life Online is a 16-page student supplement designed to reinforce citizenship skills that keep student safe online and off. As the introduction to students states, "Parents and teachers often talk about helping you stay safe, online and off. They try to teach you to think critically about what you see and hear, and make sure you have the skills you need to succeed in the 21st century. But the truth is that being a good citizen these days requires the same skills it always has: being honest and respectful of others, and treating other people the way you want to be treated. So whether you are texting or talking, posting photos or playing games, this guide has information to reinforce those citizenship skills that work online and off." Click here to download the Living Life Online (PDF).
Here are other technology safety supplements:
Cyberbullying Prevention (PDF) (IWB)
Created in partnership with the National Crime Prevention Council, this supplement provides tips for students, parents, and teachers on how to prevent and deal with Cyberbulling online, in school, and in the community.
Get Wise About Wireless: Be Safe, Be Courteous (PDF) (IWB)
Created in partnership with the national Crime Prevention Council and The Wireless Foundation, This supplement educates kids and their families about the importance of cell phone safety and responsible use and how to deal with issues like cell-bullying
Berkshire Community Garden
Interested in helping those in need? Berkshire’s Community Garden grows vegetables that are donated to local soup kitchens and homeless shelters. We need community volunteers throughout the growing season to help water, weed and harvest. Come at your convenience the week you sign up! All garden tools provided.
Call or email: Mrs. Lachowicz, 248-203-4706

Organic Garden Update
Thanks again to everyone who helped with the organic garden. It's looking good and will be a valuable asset to BCS. There is a need for some help putting on the finishing touches before the summer begins. On Saturday, June 25, the Proud Dads team will be back at the garden. They are looking for 6-10 Dads, Moms and students who can spend 3-4 hours. The group will meet at 8:30. They need to bring shovel, rakes and wheel barrows, if you have them. If you can join them please contact Mike Anderson (

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