Lawrence Kids Fall, 2017
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Lawrence Kids Fall, 2017
Seasonal Essentials - The Hawkins Season’s Readings Mama Spreer’s Funnies In Class This Lawrence Kid - Lola Martin No Coast Creatures
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Get Outside - Kaw River
cover photo by Amber Yoshida
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We did it! C E N T E R F O R G R E AT F U T U R E S C O M I N G AU G U S T 2 0 1 8
When the people of Lawrence come together, we can do amazing things. Thanks to your commitment and compassion, the Don & Beverly Gardner Center for Great Futures will soon become a reality. Five times as many teens will soon have an afterschool place of their own. They will have access toâ€Ś
CAREER EXPLORATION continuous exposure to skill development and career opportunities
INDOOR GYM healthy lifestyles through physical fitness and teamwork
CULINARY KITCHEN programs centered around healthy eating and the culinary arts
PERFORMING ARTS dance, perform, record, edit and create selfexpression through music
We achieved this dream together! Let us grab you a hard hat and give you a tour of the construction progress. To schedule a tour contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Don & Beverly Gardner Center for Great Futures â€˘ Lawrence College & Career Center (2910 Haskell Ave.)
Jeff, Heather, Mavrick (10), Sienna (5) & Atticus (9 months) Share Their List of Seasonal Must-Dos...
1. So many of our Saturdays in the fall are spent at Memorial Stadium cheering on the Hawks! We’re Jayhawks to the core and are raising our kiddos to be the same! Rock Chalk! 2. It’s always basketball season in the Hawkins house! We spend a lot of our fall evenings at Rock Chalk Park either practicing or playing basketball for the Kansas United basketball program. 3. The Schaake Pumpkin Patch is a fall staple for the Hawkins family. Picking out and then carving pumpkins make for some of the best memories. 4. One of our favorite things all year is trick or treating on Mass Street on Halloween. The people-watching experience is absolutely top notch! The kids have a great time walking with their friends – it’s a convenient, entertaining and safe way to spend Halloween evening! 5. We’re a little bit of a house divided when it comes to the NFL. Half of us spend our Sundays cheering on the Kansas City Chiefs and the other half pulls for the Pittsburg Steelers. It makes for quite a bit of fun, and well-intentioned smack talk. There’s always a few friendly “chore” wagers for those games they play against each other! 6. We love celebrating victories big and small. Our favorite celebration spot is Orange Leaf! If you asked any of our kids to pick a dinner out spot they’re answer would always be “ORANGE LEAF!” 7. The Lawrence Public Library is one of our favorite spots (no matter the season!). The reading nooks for the kids are some of our kids favorite spots. There’s no such thing as a “quick” trip to the Library for us – that place was made to linger! 8. There’s not a more beautiful spot than KU’s campus in the fall - especially when the leaves start to change color. We love to take family walks down Jayhawk Boulevard. It’s another avenue in our quest to make our kiddos love the University of Kansas just as much as we do! LK
Autumn Suggestions from the Lawrence Public Library
Autumn Picture Books for Preschoolers
Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn by Kenard Pak
A little girl walks purposefully through the autumn weather, distributing the late-year flowers to a good diversity of people, celebrating the changes of color, wind and rain, animals, and sun.
Little Frog and the Scary Autumn Thing by Jane
Yolen, illustrated by Ellen Shi Little Frog is scared by the changes in color and leaves falling around her. If you were 2 inches long you might feel the same! Overcoming fear is the message, with autumn flavor.
Yellow Time written and illustrated by Lauren Stringer
Every page is a splash of wonderful yellow! “Piles of yellow pool in gutters, decorate sidewalks, blanket fences…” Crows on almost every page, and at the end the children are shown identifying the leaves.
Wonderfall written and illustrated by Michael Hall
Wordplay, poetry, autumn holidays, and science, all from the point of view of a tree, with crisp colorful graphics. “Peacefall: A gentle breeze is jiggling me. I hear my acorns drop. Plink, plunk, plop.”
Bella’s Fall Coat by Lynn Plourde, illustrated by Susan
Gal Bella’s last year’s coat is wearing out, but she won’t be kept indoors in the wonder autumn weather. An active little girl, enjoying all the signs of fall: geese, leaves, and apples, with an old-fashioned gramma who sews and cooks.
Best Bear in All the World: In Which We Join Winnie-the-Pooh for A Year of Adventures in the Hundred Acre Wood
For the 90th anniversary of Winnie-the-Pooh, a new sequel! Winter, spring, summer, and fall: take a trip back to the Hundred Acre Wood with that oh so British A.A. Milne humor and lovable characters, with illustrations in the style of the originals by E. H. Shepard, none of that Disney stuff! A great read-aloud for all ages.
Coyote Autumn by Bill Wallace
Brad moves from Chicago to rural Oklahoma, and secretly rescues a young coyote that local hunters would rather set their dogs on. A tense situation, but merciful to all characters, emphasizing responsible decision making and the balance of nature. Aimed at ages 8-12.
Sketching Outdoors in Autumn by Jim Arnosky
In the 80’s Jim Arnosky completed a sketching cycle of the seasons. His enthusiastic tips are his personal experiences, out in the cooling autumn air, drawing animals and plants, carrying paper and the right kind of pencil; not a “how to” but a sketcher’s diary. He also is a prolific author of picture books for younger children! This title is probably best for ages 9 and up.
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One mom. Two daughters. Many, many stories. by Megan Spreer
doing what we all do.
s my husband went to get the wrench, I started the pep talk with HJ. She’d been riding her bubblegum pink bike with a white wicker basket for over a year now and the thought had never crossed her mind to take off her training wheels. Never, that is, until her good friend Chuck moved in down the street. He whipped around our cul-de-sac on his bike with no training wheels like he’d been doing it for years. He and HJ are the same age and have been going to school together since preschool. All he had to do was suggest she try it and she came running to ask her dad to take them off. “Now, HJ. It might be a little tricky at first, but keep trying. You can do it,” I said. “It’s hard? If I can’t do it, you guys can just put my training wheels back on,” she said. “Uh. Probably not. Be brave, HJ. Be brave like Wonder Woman.” This is a mantra that’s uttered at least five times a week at our house. I say it so much that the girls roll their eyes at me when I say it sometimes. I can’t help it. I love that this movie came out now when they are little. It’s giving me so much help in parenting. Crying during hair brushing? Be brave like Wonder Woman. I don’t think she cries when she brushes her hair in the morning. Trying spinach turkey burgers? Be brave like Wonder Woman. She eats spinach to stay strong. Going to the bathroom alone? Be brave like Wonder Woman. And wash your hands. But if we’re being honest, I use this phrase the most to convince them to do things I’m afraid they won’t try out of fear of failure. It totally stems from my own issues with this. Don’t judge me. It’s for their own good! And aren’t parents supposed to project their own insecurities onto their children?! I’m only
The first of many times I struggled with this was when I was in Ms. Mosser’s third grade class. We were learning about the government and elections. To help illustrate, our teacher conducted a class election of president, vice president and so on. These elected positions would have jobs throughout the year and even get some special privileges as a result. We had nominations, campaigning and speeches. I so badly wanted to run for president. I was a Type A, perfectionist little 8-year-old and I was new to the school district. I had only two friends and I was still trying to find my place in my new surroundings in a smaller town. I stressed about every social interaction at school. I wanted to be liked and have friends. I also wanted to be class president. When it came time to nominate classmates for elected positions, kids were pretty excited. Hand after hand raised. There were 13 or so boys in our class and only 8 or so girls. Nearly every boy nominated himself or his best friend. With every new name added to the chalkboard, they were high fiving and talking amongst themselves. I sat silent. I really, really wanted to be the class president, but there was no way in small town Kansas that I, a girl, was going to throw my hat in that ring of boys. They had their own club. They weren’t going to go for a girl who’s biggest claim to fame so far was the tube of roll-on strawberry lip gloss that smelled like candy in my desk. Right before the time ended for nominations, one of my two new friends raised her hand and through giggles gave my name to the teacher. I gave her the stink eye immediately. I wanted to crawl under a table to avoid what I was sure were judgy stares in my direction. I was sure this would be social suicide. I hadn’t even made more friends than I could count on one hand. I was going to fail and die of embarrassment in front of these kids I just met. I was sure of it, until the teacher gave all us nominees the opportunity to bow out of the race. My hand was the second one raised to have their name rubbed off the dusty chalkboard. “Are you sure? It’d be cool to have a girl up here,” Ms. Mosser probably said. (I can’t remember exactly.)
“I’m sure!” I was sure my too cool for this attitude was earning me extra points with the boys and cool girls in the class. Internally I was bummed, but I couldn’t risk it. The class moved on and ballots were handed out with the remaining nominees listed on each. We were to vote for our top choice. As I was folding my paper vote, a boy in our class returned from some smart kid program he was in (he’s a family doctor now, by the way) and whispered something to our teacher. Her loud response to him was “Well, she decided to rescind her name from the candidacy.” I was dumbfounded. I had a vote. From a boy. Then, I wanted to slap my stupid, chubby third grade face off. With even just one boy in my corner, I could’ve had a shot! I let my stupid fear keep me from doing something I actually wanted to do. What a huge mistake. From then on, I was bitter every time the boy who was elected president got to make a class announcement or have lunch in the room with the teacher. I would’ve rocked that presidency. I had the coolest Lisa Frank notebook in which to write down all my presidential musings. This whole ordeal made such an impression on me that now, 25 years later, I still have a complex about it — obviously. It’s the one of the first reasons I harp on my children to be brave. I don’t want them to lose out on something really cool because they were afraid to be vulnerable. And Wonder Woman is the perfect role model to use. Would Wonder Woman have let the fear of losing to some boys scare her away from being the leader of her third-grade class? Heck no, she wouldn’t. Wonder Woman would’ve run her campaign oblivious to her gender and had everyone blabbering about Aries. So, that’s why I’ve made it my job as a mom to be Wonder Woman’s hype girl and teach my girls to stare fear in the face and drop kick it in the crotch. It only took HJ a total of 30 minutes to figure out how to ride her bike without those training wheels. Her and Chuck now ride side by side like they own the neighborhood. Sometimes, they’re dressed as Superman and Wonder Woman. LK
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STUDENT. ADVENTURER. RIDES A BIKE. RIDE AND DRIVE LIKE A GROWN-UP.
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TRAVEL WITH CARE
IN CLASS A SNAPSHOT
OF LESSONS IN
The Bowman Birdhouse kinders are working on different ways to write numerals and letters by rotating through various kinds of learning stations. These stations include working independently, working with partners, with small groups, with the teacher and with technology. We sure have fun! - Krin Bowman, Quail Run Kindergarten
Each day, our first graders spend time engaged in the Latin language. During our time in Latin, we are discovering our immediate world. Vocabulary and grammar are not explicitly taught or drilled. Instead, the students are focused on what we are doing together. The grammar and vocabulary are acquired through daily comprehensible input of the Latin language. At Prairie Moon Waldorf School we follow principles of language that are guided by research and discoveries in second language acquisition, as well as the proficiency model of ACTFL (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) to understand what progress looks like. The students are not tested nor are there letter grades. The students, freed from worrying about future tests or grades, are free to live in the language in the present and to simply focus on enjoying our activities and tasks. The students love entering into this time in Latin, for it is something magical for them to experience their world in another tongue. In this way we spend our time discovering our world, creating new connections, and cultivating the imagination in a community of friends where Latin is the means, not the end. - Megan Corcoran for Prairie Moon Waldorff 1st grade
My class is deciding if a vegetable is classified as a fruit or vegetable based on whether or not it has seeds. The tables start by looking at the outside and taking notes on the appearance. Then I will give them slices that they can examine to help make their final decisions on classification. - Hanna Moews, Schwegler 3rd Grade
We are studying volcanoes. At the beginning of class, the kids watch a short video about volcanoes and the different types of lava. Then each table is giving a cup containing a different type of â€œlavaâ€? and the kids need to investigate to discover the differences in consistency of each lava. - LeaAnn Gomez, Kennedy 4th Grade
The Launch Cycle uses a design thinking process that artists and engineers use in the real world. Our Launch Project is called Superhero City. During this project the students will work in small groups to design their very own Superhero City using only cardboard, construction paper, duct tape, straws, and glue. The Launch Cycle has 6 specific phases. This is part of Phase 2: Ask a ton of Questions. The students had to generate inquiry questions that could be turned into true or false statements for a public survey asking â€œWhat should be included in a Superhero City?â€? In the end, each group will have their own Superhero City! - Katie Pinnell, Sunset Hill 5th Grade
photos: Amber Yoshida
Mason Hare had no idea he’d be an archer. His talent and passion for the sport happened almost by accident. “I tried it at Boy Scout camp about five years ago and really enjoyed it,” the 8th grader at West Junior High said. “I don’t know what it was about it, but I really enjoyed shooting arrows. I guess it just snowballed from there.” Since that first experience at camp, Mason has become one of the most accomplished youth archers in Kansas. “There’s just something about the whole process that I love,” Mason explains. “The people involved are all great and I like that my success really depends on me. This is something I see myself doing for a long time.” Larry Hare, Mason’s dad, said his entry into the world of competitive archery was slow. “I remember that night at camp he mentioned how much he enjoyed the archery station,” Larry explains. “He asked if we could try it again the next day. His first exposure was only a 10-minute session, and he was really excited about it. I thought another chance would be a great. When we got home from camp he kept mentioning it. After a few weeks, when he kept bringing up archery and shooting, we found limited local options until discovering the Junior Olympic Archery Development (JOAD) Program held once-a-week at Overton’s Archery Center in north Lawrence.” For a few months, Mason made the Saturday morning lessons and steadily improved. As basketball season began, Mason slowly seemed to lose interest. Then his Boy Scout troup had a meeting at Overton’s Archery Center. “I didn’t realize that I had been making progress and earing ranking points,” Mason says. “I got a bunch of patches and awards. That kind of got me excited again about practicing.” Larry laughs at the story. “Yeah, it sure helped that, in front of all his buddies, he was getting patches he had earned,” Larry says with a chuckle. “But I do think that afternoon reignited something in him and his passion hasn’t wavered since.”
Not long after that Saturday Boy Scout event, Mason expressed interest in competitions and getting serious about practicing. None of Mason’s friends were competitive archers. In fact, Mason didn’t know anyone his age that shot competitively. “I do think it’s pretty cool that this is my thing,” Mason says. “I’ve done all the other sports, but knowing that I’m the only one of my friends that does archery makes it a little more special.” Larry and his wife Jen praise the help and guidance from Jon and June Overton at the archery center. “Look, we knew nothing about competitive archery,” Larry explains. “Jon and June, and the entire archery community, have been great in stirring us to the best competitions for Mason.” Over the past few years, Mason has competed in dozens of local, regional and state competitions. The shoots range in terms of distance, number of arrows shot and length of competition. Some shoots are indoors for few a hours on a Saturday morning, others are weekend-long outdoor events. Mason likes them all. “I really get excited about the competitions,” Mason says. “It takes a lot of concentration and it can be tough knowing it’s all on me. I mean, if I miss a shot, I don’t have anyone to blame but myself.” Larry and Jen like that the competitions bring out the competitor in Mason and are proud of his accomplishments. However, they think the lessons he’s learning are more valuable than the high scores. “Mason has formed some great relationships with other kids, and a lot of older archers, through their shared passion,” Larry proudly says. “He has learned to conduct himself with respect for himself, others and the sport. It’s fun to watch him grow and learn.” To Mason, the competitions are fun and he looks forward to trying his shot in wilds of Wyoming with relatives, but he’s already achieved the nearly impossible: a Robin Hood. “Yeah, I shot a bullseye, then split that arrow with another one,” he says with humility. “It was pretty cool. I have it in my room. I guess I’ll try to do it again.” LK
Mason Hare / 13 / Archery USA Archery Kansas State Championships, Youth Compound Bow Division 2016 Indoor: 2nd Place 2016 Outdoor: 2nd Place 2017 Indoor: 2nd Place Archery Excellence Memorial Day 3D Youth Compound Bowhunter: 2017: 2nd Place Monster Buck Classic, Youth Male-Compound: 2017: 1st Place
SMART STRENGTH Michel Loomis had a small idea to help kids. A decade later she thinks sheâ€™s just getting started.
When the students at Central Junior High gather after school for Smart Strength, movement is the only constant. Students stretch and jump and jog. They talk and squat and twist. This undeniable action is a dream come true for Michel Loomis, who founded Smart Strength almost 10 years ago. Loomis was a teacher at Central Junior High. She couldn’t help but notice how many students were winded after climbing the stair to the third floor. Kids were overweight and out of shape. Around the same time, Loomis began training with Chad Richards of Next Level at The Summit in downtown Lawrence. “We were talking one day about the future,” Loomis says. “You know, about hopes and dreams. Chad told me that one of his dreams was to help young people get strong and live improved lives by being in better shape. That was great to hear because I had felt the same way.” Michel and Chad got to work and quickly developed Smart Strength, an after-school program designed to help Lawrence kids get functional fitness and nutrition training. “This was an idea that I had because of all we are seeing with kids’ fitness and their nutrition,” Loomis said. “Our country is just getting so obese and so I thought this would be one way to address that problem.” For nearly a decade Loomis has worked tirelessly to raise funds to compensate four trainers. Twice weekly, the trainers lead kids through stretches and cardio workouts in various junior high gyms across Lawrence. “Next school year will be our tenth year to run Smart Strength,” Loomis says with her customary enthusiasm. “We have not kept records until recently, but I estimate 500 participants, give or take a few.” Loomis is the driving force behind the success of Smart Strength. She applies for funding via grants and coordinates donations of healthy snacks from various local businesses. Though the success of the program is most often credited to her, Loomis is quick to share the praise. “There are so many accomplishments I could mention from adding staff and parents to the program and opening the program up to all middle schools, a
nutrition and dental program, and providing incentives for participants to stay with the program,” she says. “Perhaps the biggest accomplishment came from Chad Richards. He decided when the program ends every year to offer 5 students who apply to continue their training at the Next Level downtown. Instead of charging a fee the students, the students trade cleaning for training twice-a-week. All types of students have applied and been accepted. They range from young people who want to play a sport in college to ones that are basically interested in staying in shape for the rest of their lives. That generosity is enormous.” There are three Central teachers who recruit students and staff for the program. Loomis says the program would not work without Carol Souders, the face of Smart Strength at Central, and her colleagues, Jackie Stafford and Julia Battaglia. Lawrence businesses (The Merc, Hilary’s Eat Well, Wheatfield’s, Starbucks, Checkers, Dillon’s and Hy-Vee) donate healthy choice snacks for the program. As the program grows, Loomis has seen kids work their way through junior high into high school. Teachers often train with the students and more than a handful of parents have started coming the workouts. “That’s so fun to see,” Loomis says. “The goal is to get this kids moving and teach them healthy habits. When more adults are involved, it helps keep everyone accountable and increases retention. Unless a commitment is made to work out on a regular basis little progress is made. Therefore, we offer incentives to the participants who come regularly. The major goal is to instill lifelong fitness and healthy nutrition in the young people and adults in the program.” A decade working with the program has Loomis excited about the future. “So far, the community has been generous, the school district has financially supported us, and while I don’t receive all the grants I apply for, we get enough,” she explains. “And we have many success stories. Many who have left the program continue to work out on their own. Some, like Will Lauffer, and Katie Davis have received athletic scholarships to play soccer and volleyball at the college level. Zia Kelly competes in weight lifting contests in college. She is a national champion in her division. Now, if we can just keep raising enough money, we’ll be fine.” LK
Highlighting the best of family life in Lawrence, Kansas.