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Winter 2019 E-Newsletter

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Lido class makes wishes come true

Lido class makes wishes come true photo

Fifth-grade students in Susan Garcia’s class at Lido Elementary School hosted an exciting carnival that supported a worthy cause to help others. The event, titled “Make Wishes Come True,” raised close to $400 for the Birthday Wishes organization that provides “birthday parties in boxes” to children residing in homeless shelters.

On Jan. 11, thanks to families’ donations that were used to obtain supplies, the class transformed the multipurpose room into a fun fair complete with decorations, games and other amusements. Students throughout the school purchased tickets in order to participate in activities such as a tissue box and cup stacking challenges, bean bag and ring tosses, a birthday candle estimation contest and more. Students also displayed facts about homelessness based on their research. Lido spirit buttons were sold the following day as part of the initiative. 

Proceeds are being used to purchase birthday party supplies that will be delivered to the Birthday Wishes office in Hicksville for distribution to homeless shelters. 

The idea for this team effort came about after Ms. Garcia’s class read the book “Fly Away Home” by Evan Bunting, which tells the story of a homeless boy and his father. The students were moved by the very real issues of homelessness and poverty, which affects more than 2.5 million children. They discussed the topic at length, read related articles and eventually decided to hold a fundraiser. They put about a month of planning and brainstorming into the development of the successful carnival. 

Long Beach IB Diploma Candidates Forge Ahead

Long Beach IB Diploma Candidates Forge Ahead photo
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Long Beach High School’s International Baccalaureate Diploma candidates are in the midst of their extended essays, dedicating much time and work to developing the intense, 4,000-word paper. At this point, they have all settled on subjects and conducted research, and now the writing process is well underway. The seniors participated in an all-day, in-school workshop held in the library on Jan. 9 to further focus on their essays and make greater headway with the assistance of their mentors. 

The diploma candidates are writing about themes they selected based on their own strengths, interests and curiosity. Each essay begins with an essential question that the content supports through valid information sources such as articles, videos and others obtained through databases. 

Alec Chasin, an All-State clarinetist, is focusing on music, while Sophia Munier and Nicole Celis are incorporating different aspects of their science research project on oyster restoration. Jamie Allegria is incorporating her interest in forensics by studying the transcripts of serial killers such as Ted Bundy, while Eddie Vrona is working on an essay about George W. Bush’s transparency in policies. 

“I’m very involved with local government and wanted to look at the Freedom of Information Act through a historical lens,” Eddie said.  

Madison Gusler was inspired to study the impact of the American Red Cross after doing a service project in the Dominican Republic for one of the organization’s programs that provides the community with sustainable work. Angelica Gonzales is doing a rhetorical analysis of the Consoler-in-Chief concept, comparing the effectiveness of speeches given by former presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama following the Sept. 11 attacks and Boston Marathon bombing, respectively. 

“I looked at both speeches and evaluated the ways the presidents used rhetoric to console the American people,” Angelica said. 

IB graduates have reported that the extended essays were of great value in preparing them for college. Members of the Class of 2019 will continue to polish their rigorous, advanced assignments in the upcoming weeks. 

Lindell Students Dream Big

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Fourth-graders in Lisa Rundo’s class at Lindell Elementary School have been reflecting on their dreams with creativity, tying in the lessons of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Using the open work environment and resources of the building’s new Innovation Lab Makerspace, the students expressed their aspirations and passions inspired by Dr. King.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day will be observed nationwide on Jan. 21. Students have been studying his contributions to the Civil Rights Movement and equality in the United States through interdisciplinary lessons and discussions. They listened to his famous “I Have a Dream” speech, which spurred the creation of their projects – “I Have a Dream” boxes that display their own interpretations of the theme. 

The class initially designed the boxes and wrote out plans, then visited the Innovation Lab Makerspace to bring ideas to fruition. Students cut, assembled and covered boxes of various forms that they adorned with meaningful words and pictures. They filled the interiors with items, more visual images and encouraging phrases and many incorporated their personal interests such as music and sports. 

Jake Impagliazzo embellished the exterior of his box with pictures of a peace sign and sun. Around the sides, he shared handwritten dreams including “For war to stop,” “That the sun will always shine,” “For violence to stop,” “For animals to live free and “For pollution to stop.” The inside contained a portrait of Dr. King and a note thanking the historical leader. His classmates ornamented their box layouts with positive notes as well. Anala Teemer wrote, “Look in the mirror. Do you see you? So don’t let anyone change who you are.”  

Other students chose messages such as “It’s cool to be kind,” “faith” and “peace,” and some honored Dr. King directly and decorated their boxes with his quotes and speech excerpts. 

Long Beach Public Schools “Community Reads” Events


BOE Work Session - Thursday, January 24 - Lido Multi-Purpose Room @ 7:30 PM

Topic:  Special Education/Budget

LB Middle School congratulates two writing wonders

LB Middle School congratulates two writing wonders
Long Beach Middle School eighth-graders Saoirse Marx and Yashoda Jaikaran both achieved awards in recent writing competitions. Saoirse was selected as the local winner in the VFW District No. 1 Patriot's Pen Essay Contest, and Yashoda won the Young Writers’ Stranger Sagas Writing Contest.

Saoirse’s piece focuses on showing appreciation for veterans and will now advance to the regional level of the competition. She was inspired by her grandfather, a Korean War veteran, as well as her father. Yashoda submitted a short story to the Stranger Sagas contest, which encourages creativity in middle and high school students. 

Congratulations to both of these outstanding writers on their outstanding accomplishments! 

Ancient Egypt comes to life in LBMS library

Ancient Egypt comes to life in LBMS library photo
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Long Beach Middle School’s sixth-grade social studies department showcased its annual Ancient Egypt Museum in the building’s library. Students conducted research, selected topics that were of specific interest to them and collaborated with classmates to develop projects that featured various aspects of ancient Egypt. 

Each project involved a book component for which students demonstrated their knowledge of the subject matter through writing and illustrations. They also created displays and presented details about their studies to those who visited their galleries for a museum walk. 

Among the featured themes were the pyramids, papyrus, afterlife, gods and goddesses, hieroglyphics and the mummification process.  

IB Biology Students Put Procedures to the Test

IB Biology Students Put Procedures to the Test photo

International Baccalaureate Biology seniors at Long Beach High School immersed themselves in an all-day in-school field trip on Dec. 18. Each student carried out experiments that they designed themselves based on their individual interests in the field of science.

As part of an internal assessment, this project accounts for a fifth of the students’ final grade in their second year of the two-year course. Students spent months preparing for this event and researched topics, wrote drafts, developed procedures, revised work and obtained supplies. They adhered to the intense IB rubric for writing labs, which they practiced earlier in the school year in classroom sessions. After hours of trial and error that ultimately led to successful execution of their plans, the students are now tasked with communicating and illustrating their objectives, strategies, observations and analyses in a 12-page report. 

Students worked independently, but served as assistants for classmates with projects in related categories. They studied aspects of enzymes and digestion, fermentation, photosynthesis and more, using apparatus and solutions that they made and advanced equipment such as a spectrophotometer. 

“It’s really impressive to see each student with such extensive set ups,” said teacher Karen Bloom. 

Long Beach Students Earn QuestBridge Scholarships

Long Beach Students Earn QuestBridge Scholarships photo
Long Beach High School seniors Alyscia Batista and Jaylyn Umana are among an elite pool of students across the country who have earned prestigious QuestBridge National College Match scholarships. They were selected for these honors based on rigorous applications that included essays and components comparable to the Common Application, and will receive full four-year scholarships to Ivy League schools.

QuestBridge received a record number of 16,248 applications, from which 6,507 finalists were identified. A total of 1,044 exceptional students went on to secure scholarship awards. Alyscia will head to Brown University, where she plans to start on the premedical track and major in literary arts or biology. Jaylyn will go on to Columbia University to study physics.

Both Long Beach High School students are International Baccalaureate Diploma Program candidates and very involved in their school and community. Alyscia serves as a National Honor Society officer, a senior editor for the Fragments literary magazine and has been a member of the varsity swim team since the eighth grade. She participates in the Book/Literary Club and Math Club and has won numerous distinctions for her poetry in competitions including the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards and Adelphi Poetry Day.

Alyscia also excels in science, is involved in the high school’s science research program and attends the Columbia University Science Honors Program. She completed the Columbia Engineering Summer High School Academic Program for Engineers last summer, and it was there that a teacher recommended that she take on the QuestBridge challenge. Throughout the year, she works with a medical professor researching polio. Her IB Extended Essay focuses on a literary comparison of how author Betty Friedan affected Sharon Olds’ poetry.

Jaylyn is an award-winning science research student and a senior editor of the Tide school newspaper. He also headed a student effort to increase diversity through awareness, advocacy and opportunities such as the Erase Racism conference. Last year, he represented Long Beach High School at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair after placing second in Physics and Astronomy category and winning the Yale Science & Engineering Association’s Most Outstanding Exhibit in Comp Science, Physics, Engineering or Chemistry distinction at the New York State Science and Engineering Fair.

He has done research work at Farmingdale State College for two years and is part of the Science and Technology Entry Program, which introduced him to the QuestBridge opportunity. He is also a member of the American Physical Society, for which he will present at a meeting in March. He is involved in the African American Club, Mathletes and the National Honor Society, and works with the Latino Civic Association in Long Beach. His IB Extended Essay will cover the effect of supermassive black holes on the critical density of the universe.

ENL Family Night

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The Long Beach Public Schools hosted an English as New Learners Family Night on Dec. 13. More than 140 parents of students from kindergarten through grade 12 came out to Long Beach Middle School, where the event was held, and attended workshops led by teachers. 

The night kicked off with ENL Coordinator Evelyn Daza welcoming the parents. Sessions, which were conducted by ENL teachers in bilingual formats, focused on topics such as the Wonder, Read and Play initiative, writing parents can do with kids, games that develop vocabulary, parent portal, rights and responsibilities and more. Community organizations were also present to hand out information on programs available for Long Beach residents. 

Transportation, food and babysitting were provided, and each of the approximate 30 children in attendance had the opportunity to take home books donated by the Book Fairies in Freeport and district staff members. 

World Language Updates


An Outstanding Fall Sports Season for LBHS

An Outstanding Fall Sports Season for LBHS photo
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Long Beach High School celebrated athletic achievements during Fall Varsity Sports Award Night, held on Dec. 4. The event featured introductions of all fall teams and summaries of the season’s highlights. As in years past, the students were applauded for demonstration of outstanding sportsmanship, teamwork and perseverance. 

Badminton, cheerleading, cross-country, football, soccer, swim, tennis and volleyball athletes were recognized. This fall was an especially exciting season as the girls volleyball team, coached by Kerri Rehnback, won the 2018 State Championship  and New York State Sportsmanship Award. They received proclamations from Senator Todd Kaminsky and Assemblywoman Melissa Miller at the awards ceremony.  

The boys volleyball team also triumphed, and made it to the Nassau County semifinals under the direction of coach Bill Gibson. The girls tennis team, coached by Tony Stricklin, won their conference and the boys soccer team reached the Nassau County Final Four. The girls swim team, coached by Lynn Volosevich, Kyle Swan and Danielle Cecco, celebrated four state qualifiers. Football player Alexander Ramirez was honored with the National Football Foundation Award, along with other distinctions. 

The boys badminton, boys cross country, girls cross country, girls soccer, girls swim, girls tennis, cheerleading, boys volleyball and girls volleyball teams were recognized as Scholar Athlete Teams for maintaining grade point averages of 90 or higher.

A colonial experience at Long Beach Middle School

A colonial experience at Long Beach Middle School photo
Long Beach Middle School’s seventh-graders received an informative and interactive lesson about the American Revolutionary War and life in the 18th Century on Nov. 21, when the Huntington Militia brought history into the modern day. 

Colonial Day kicked off a unit on colonial times by providing a realistic portrayal of some of the events that occurred and practices that existed. Dressed to the theme, Patrick Mantel and Andy Taubers of the Huntington Militia presented reenactments that involved students and displayed artifacts such as a historic cannon. Long Beach Middle School teacher John Marr gave a lesson on colonial attire and the manual of arms. 

Long Beach High School students learn about global issues

Long Beach High School students learn about global issues photo
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Approximately 300 students at Long Beach High School received important lessons from award-winning international human rights statistician and author Dr. Davina Durgana on Nov. 20. She discussed the troubling yet prevalent issue of global human trafficking, a matter in which she specializes and works to help abolish. 

Members of IB Social and Cultural Anthropology, Theory of Knowledge and IB Global Politics classes attended informative and impactful presentations led by Dr. Durgana. She emphasized examples of modern slavery crises that exist in parts of the world and how women and children become forced into it. 

Dr. Durgana also attended the IB Global Politics class, where she answered follow-up inquiries from students. They asked how she contacts victims, how to avoid buying products made by slave workers, what the government can do to stop trafficking and other thought-provoking questions. She shared her contact information so that students can reach her for their engagement activity. 

A report co-author and senior statistician on the Walk Free Foundation’s Global Slavery Index, Dr. Durgana has developed leading global models to assess risk and vulnerability to modern slavery. She is also an assistant professor of sustainable development at SIT Graduate Institute in Washington, D.C. and serves on several expert groups for the United Nations, the Department of Justice and the National Science Foundation. She has also worked as a sex trafficking specialist with the National Court-Appointed Special Advocates in Washington, D.C. and has used her knowledge as a member of Volunteer Fire Departments and an EMT to develop human trafficking-specific protocols for training and continuing education requirements. She has additionally been involved in numerous other outreach initiatives that focus on women and children.

STEAM Night Takes Off at West

STEAM Night Takes Off at West photo
Long Beach’s West School brought learning and fun together during STEAM Night, held on Nov. 15. Joined by teachers and family members, students gathered at the school for an evening of activities and games that incorporated the components of science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics. 

Students rotated interactive stations such as “Lemontricity,” “Rockin’ Rollercoasters,” “Stability Straws,” “A-maze-ing Mazes,” “Estimation Station,” “Cupstruction,” “Eggs-travaganza,” “Muscle Math” and “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Jar.” They engaged in hands-on challenges that supported inquiry-based learning and worked both collaboratively and individually to solve problems. Throughout the activities, they observed and reflected on which strategies were successful. 

Coffee Hour with the Superintendent

Join Dr. Gallagher for coffee and share your thoughts on all of the ways we are working to make Long Beach a place where students shine.

Tuesday, October 23, 5:00-6:00 p.m.
Monday, December 10, 9:00-10:00 a.m.
Tuesday, February 12: 5:00-6:00 p.m.
Tuesday, April 16, 5:00-6:00 p.m.

All gatherings are in the Administrative Office Conference Room.