C E N T R A L N e w s
S C H O O L
D I S T R I C T
Y o u r
S c h o o l s
F r o m
Y o u r
B o a r d
E d u c a t i o n
2009-2010 SCHOOL YEAR
Dear Parents, Welcome to the latest edition of Building Futures, our end-of-year curriculum bulletin. This publication provides information about our educational programs and initiatives. Our teachers build upon each childâ€™s unique strengths and talents and then develop enriching programs to ensure success. We provide our staff members with professional development opportunities to make certain that they have the requisite knowledge and resources to provide an exemplary education.
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Our students continue to excel in academics, athletics and the arts. Throughout the past year, the Board of Education has recognized hundreds of students for their outstanding accomplishments in regional, state and national competitions. Inviting students to monthly meetings is a tradition that the members of our community thoroughly enjoy. Building Futures will enable you to envision the many ways in which we provide a perfect blending of academics, athletics and the arts to ALL children in our uniquely diverse District. We are certain that you will agree that Half Hollow Hills is truly a Triple A District! We look forward to our continuing work together. Sincerely,
Dr. Sheldon Karnilow, Superintendent of Schools
Board of Education Anne Marie Sorkin, President Jeanine Bottenus, Vice President Carole Catapano Eric Geringswald Frank Grimaldi Jay Marcucci James Ptucha
525 Half Hollow Road Dix Hills, NY 11746
Half Hollow Hills Central School District
Dr. Sheldon Karnilow, Superintendent of Schools
Subject Art and Music Business Continuing Education English Language Arts Family and Consumer Science Guidance Counseling Program – High School Health and Physical Education Interscholastic Athletics
Pages 2-3 4 24 4-8 8-9 10 10-12 12-13
Subject Languages Other Than English (L.O.T.E.) Mathematics Research Science Social Studies Special Education Summer School Technology and Computing
Art and Music
Pages 13-15 15-16 20 18-19 17-18 22-23 24 20-22
The study of the arts is a vital part of a child’s well-rounded education and a necessity in any well-structured, comprehensive educational program. It is the goal of our Half Hollow Hills art and music staff to create a learning environment and atmosphere where the creative spirit not only grows, but flourishes. Inherent to this goal is the awareness, development and implementation of the Arts to all students who desire it. Consequently, we strive to maintain a professional learning community that fully supports the Arts in an endeavor to give our students a well-rounded, diverse education, rich in all areas of learning. An education in absence of the Arts cannot endure!
Introduction to the Arts
of a variety of materials, processes, mediums and techniques, and use appropriate technologies for creating and exhibiting visual art works. They engage in individual and group visual arts projects and describe various roles and means of creating, exhibiting and performing works of art.
Art and music instruction in Half Hollow Hills has been a chief resource for expanding students’ experiences beyond their immediate surroundings. Instruction in the arts encourages students to take pleasure in performing and creating, regardless of their talent or previous experiences. Our art and music students learn about and utilize tools and resources, and learn to observe and appreciate fine art and musical performances while applying critical standards to understand how the arts reflect and broaden the history and cultures of the world. The State Education Department reports that our understanding of the way people learn is changing. In Frames of Mind, author Howard Gardner reminds us that schooling has not fully tapped all of the intelligences that children possess. According to Gardner, schools focus primarily on the logical/sequential, mathematical and interpersonal intelligences, while the intelligences that Gardner labels visual/spatial, musical, kinesthetic, and intrapersonal are less well represented. Studies show that these intelligences, the ones most directly addressed in arts education programs, are important not only for their own sake, but as vehicles for learning in every area of study.
In grades K-5, all students receive a weekly art lesson. Art clubs are available as after-school programs for those students who wish to further engage their talents. As they enter the middle schools, students receive 10 weeks, 20 weeks and 40 weeks of art instruction in the sixth, seventh and eighth grades, respectively. In the eighth grade, advanced students are given the opportunity to participate in “Studio in Art,” a high school-level course for graduate credit. Art clubs are also available to middle school students who wish to further develop and utilize their artistic skills. In the high schools, students are offered a variety of art electives encompassing the full range of art mediums. Courses include Studio in Art, Media Arts, Creative Crafts, Design and Drawing for Production, Photography, Ceramics and Sculpture, Web Design, Video Production, Computer Graphics, Architectural Design, Fashion Illustration and Fashion Design, Drawing and Painting, and Design and Illustration. Our high schools also offer the full spectrum of Advanced Placement art courses for possible college credit, including Drawing, Two-Dimensional, Three-Dimensional and Art History. After-school activities include an Art Honor Society and various art clubs and art service clubs.
Art Opportunities in HHH Art instruction is available to all students in grades K-12. Half Hollow Hills students are given opportunities to create works that explore different kinds of subject matter, topics, themes and metaphors. Students are taught to understand and use sensory elements, organizational principles and expressive images to communicate their own ideas. Students develop skills in the use 2
Music Opportunities in HHH
Districtwide Elementary Art Festival and Secondary Juried Art Show. At the high school level, many students are recognized for their talents at the Heckscher Museum of Art, the Huntington Camera Club, the annual National Congressional Art Competition and the Suffolk County Art Leaders Association. In 2010, Half Hollow Hills was recognized by Newsday for having an “Award of Excellence” student selected for the prestigious Long Island Arts Alliance Scholar-Artist program. Half Hollow Hills students also win various awards at the annual Long Island Media Arts Show and the Huntington Camera Club competition. In addition, state honors and national recognition have been credited to students participating in the PTA National Reflections Program. Artists in our advanced high school classes have won statewide contests for architectural design. Additionally, students and staff involved with our high school Fashion Design and Illustration classes put together a fabulous fashion show at each high school for the entire community to enjoy.
Half Hollow Hills is proud to have the distinction of being recognized by the NAMM Foundation as being one of the top 100 communities in the nation for music education. The Music Department in Half Hollow Hills impacts every student in grades K-8 and opportunities are provided at every grade level, K-12, to experience, perform and create music. Once students enter high school, approximately 25 percent elect to continue in a performing ensemble. Throughout the District, every musical opportunity students encounter enables them to satisfy the need for a rewarding, educational experience in a positive social setting. In the elementary schools, each child has a weekly classroom music lesson, and fourth and fifth graders are encouraged to join the school’s band, chorus or orchestra. These ensembles rehearse twice a week, either before or after school. A pullout program provides instrumental music lessons for band and orchestra on a weekly basis.
Music Excellent results of music students are also evident in the number of musicians selected to perform with the All-County and AllState ensembles. Half Hollow Hills is consistently among the highest achieving districts within New York State. In 2010, well over 1,200 students participate in the annual NYSSMA solo/ensemble statewide assessment. In 2009-10, over 90 percent of these students scored a rating of outstanding or excellent (Level I-IV) or A+ or A (Level V-VI). Consequently, Half Hollow Hills has had one of the largest number of participants from any single school district in New York State at the annual NYSSMA All-State Conference several times throughout the past ten years. This year, with 24 students selected for All-State honors, Half Hollow Hills had the highest number of participants in Suffolk County! Two of these students were chosen to represent New York State in the National Honors Orchestra, performing at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. We also boast one of the largest numbers of student participants in the annual All-County SCMEA and LISFA Festivals each and every year. This year, in the annual NYSSMA Major Organization Festivals, we had several groups participating at both the elementary and secondary level receiving “Gold” awards consistently. In regional competitions, our high school performing groups score consistent “Superior” and “Excellent” ratings across the board.
At the middle schools, classroom music instruction is provided for all students not participating in a performance ensemble. Each middle school has a music lab that integrates music technology into the Music Explorations curriculum in a hands-on approach to performing and composing. Middle school performing ensembles include orchestras, concert bands and choirs. All participating students receive weekly music lessons as part of the curriculum, facilitated through a pullout-rotating schedule. Students are also encouraged to participate in the annual school musical and the jazz band as an extracurricular program. Each high school has a 9th grade band, 10th-12th grade band, 9th-10th grade string orchestra, 11th-12th grade symphony orchestra, concert choir and chamber choir that meet during the school day. Every enrolled student also receives a weekly pullout music lesson as part of the curriculum requirement. Extracurricular activities include instrumental and vocal jazz ensembles, a “Cross-Campus” Chamber Orchestra and Wind ensemble, the Tri-M Music Honor Society and annual participation in an extensive major musical production. In addition to our performance-based ensembles, classroom music courses at the high school level include Music Theory, Music In Our Lives and Music Production Technology, which are all taught in our state-of-the-art music technology labs.
For updated highlights of current student achievements, look under “Student Achievements” in the Art and Music section of the Half Hollow Hills School District website.
Student Achievements Student accomplishment in both art and music is evident at all grade levels. The success of our programs is evidenced by the number of students recognized for their artistic talents. Our staff members pride themselves in providing as many out-of-District opportunities as possible for their students, including performances, contests and exhibits in a variety of venues.
Goals These individual and group achievements are reflections of the Half Hollow Hills art and music programs throughout the District. The newest standards of achievement prescribed by the State Education Department outline and codify the curriculum this District has been presenting for many years. These standards will be reflected in revised and updated curriculum guides continually being developed on a year-to-year basis. We will continue to focus on the development of talent and potential, while providing every student with opportunities to excel in programs of his or her choice.
Art Each year, many of our Half Hollow Hills elementary and middle school art students participate in and achieve awards from several different local, state and national poster contests and art competitions. In addition, Half Hollow Hills sponsors its own 3
■ National Business Honor Society – At each high school, the Business Honor Society promotes leadership and fosters an interest in the world of business. In addition to the community service component necessary for acceptance in the society, members completed a minimum of three additional hours of community service. Members also participated in internship programs with local businesses that provided students with in-depth instruction in interviewing, resume writing, public speaking, communication and job search skills. ■ At the DECA regional tournament held in January 2010, 75 Half Hollow Hills students won their respective competitions and qualified to participate in the DECA New York State Career Conference, where 31 of them placed in the top 10 of their respective divisions. As a result of their performance at the State competition, four Half Hollow Hills students qualified and attended the international DECA competition in May. ■ In March, qualifying students from both high schools participated in the DECA New York State Career Conference and Competition held in Rochester. Half Hollow Hills students were extremely successful, with six placing number one in their category, therefore qualifying them to participate in the International DECA Competition. ■ Students in the Future Business Leaders of America club participated in the Business Leadership Competition at Farmingdale University sponsored by the Young Professionals Chamber of Commerce. HHH students took first place in the Job Interview category and third place in the Entrepreneurship and Hospitality Services categories. ■ National Financial Capability Challenge Business students participated in this 2010 online event sponsored by the United States Department of the Treasury, and as a result increased their knowledge of financial topics thereby helping them take control of their financial futures. ■ The day-to-day operation of the School Stores in both high schools provided business students with hands-on experience in the operations of a small business. The students stocked inventory, sold products, determined how much of each product to re-order and handled the cash drawer.
The Half Hollow Hills Business Education Department strives to provide students with the technical, problem-solving, critical thinking and analytical skills necessary for pursuing a college education, entering the workplace and functioning in a global society. In the pursuit of these skills, the department works with students to assist them in becoming clear and effective communicators, self-directed and lifelong learners, and collaborative and high-quality workers.
Enrollment in business courses continues to grow. Participation in such classes as Business Ownership and Marketing, Accounting, Business Law, Advertising, Fashion Merchandising, Fashion Apparel and Accessories, Sports Marketing and Sports Management provide students with access to 21st century skills and additional learning experiences not found in the core curriculum areas. Courses such as Career and Financial Management and Financial Decision Making help students become financially literate and provide them with the knowledge and skills necessary to make smart decisions and responsible plans for achieving their financial goals. Throughout all courses, the business teachers involved their students in a number of authentic, real-world projects and experiences.
Business Department Highlights: ■ Business World Experience - In an effort to provide Half Hollow Hills business students with real-world business experiences, forty-five business students from both high schools are working with the Esselte Corporation as part of a two-year project, to create new school supplies that will be sold to high school and college students around the world. Esselte manufactures thousands of different supplies, and is looking to create new and exciting products geared toward the student of today and beyond. The HHH business students worked with Esselte throughout the 2009-2010 school year in focus groups and product development sessions to create these new products. The students are receiving hands-on training and experience in marketing, sales and product development.
English Language Arts
the interdependence of the skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening.
Language is the most powerful, most readily available tool we have for representing the world to ourselves and ourselves to the world. Language is not only a means of communication, it is a primary instrument of thought, a defining feature of culture, and an unmistakable mark of personal identity. The English Language Arts curriculum in Half Hollow Hills expands upon the learning standards established by the New York State Department of Education and integrates technology tools and 21st century skills. We strive to utilize the NYS standards as the common ground in which teachers, administrators and the community possess clear goals upon which to centralize their efforts on behalf of students. The four standards clearly show
Standard 1: Students will read, write, listen and speak for information and understanding. Standard 2: Students will read, write, listen and speak for literary response and expression. Standard 3: Students will read, write, listen and speak for critical analysis and evaluation. Standard 4: Students will read, write, listen and speak for social interaction.
The Half Hollow Hills English Language Arts philosophy proposes that: ■ Literacy growth begins before children enter school, when children must be exposed to oral language and reading and writing experiences, upon which they continue to build. ■ As active thinkers, students are responsible for and knowledgeable about their own learning. ■ Reading, writing, listening and speaking are complex processes that students acquire as they engage in meaningful and authentic language use. ■ Reading, writing, listening and speaking develop interactively and are mutually supportive. ■ Regular and extensive reading and writing are essential in order for students to become proficient readers and writers. ■ Broad content reading and learning increases knowledge about language and the world, which in turn extends comprehension and communication skills. ■ Students should be able to use language clearly, strategically, critically and creatively. ■ The English Language Arts standards should be integrated across all curricular areas.
Strong partnerships between home and school are essential at this grade level, as well as in those that follow, to maximize student success. Half Hollow Hills’ Kindergarten Fun Packs were created with this belief in mind. Four times a year, kindergartners bring home teacher-made, seasonal activity kits designed to stimulate and guide home learning. These popular learning kits include books and manipulatives to reinforce and advance language and academic skills across the curriculum. Families report that they look forward to their turns to interact with their children by exploring, communicating and problem solving together. Leveled book collections for guided reading instruction at every grade have been expanded to provide a wide range of levels and subjects. Students are matched to books based on readiness and interests. In addition to leveled books, kindergartners and first grade students read varied materials, including poems, picture books, classroom signs, letters and simple informational magazines and books. Their comprehension abilities and fluency skills develop through a variety of structures, including read-aloud experiences, flexible guided reading groups and independent reading.
At the heart of our elementary literacy program is a rich learning environment in which initiative, thoughtfulness, curiosity, resourcefulness, perseverance and imagination are nurtured and celebrated. Children become avid and competent readers and writers as they learn to live richly literate lives by reading and writing purposefully, rigorously and joyfully.
Our classroom libraries support students’ developing skills and foster a love of reading by providing children with ready-access to an extensive collection of varied and interesting books. Second and third grade students develop fluency and comprehension by reading books with more elaborate story structures and less supportive illustrations. Students apply expanding comprehension strategies to understand an increasing range of narrative, literary, functional and informational texts, which are read independently with a partner or read aloud by the teacher. In third grade, students learn to ask questions for clarification or to further a discussion and build on the ideas of others. Third grade writing is extensive and reading skills are complex; students take notes, compare ideas from two or more sources, and write about what they learned.
Our balanced literacy approach begins in kindergarten, where oral language and its use for personal and social development are emphasized, along with the critical understanding and skills necessary for emerging reading and writing. Children are immersed in a wide variety of literature, from rhymes and poems to songs and stories. Extended read-aloud libraries are used to provide the foundation for reading comprehension. kindergartners begin to communicate in writing by using approximate or inventive spellings, and they use tools such as magnetic letters and boards to learn about conventional, correct spelling through focused instruction at appropriate levels.
Critical thinking through discussions about readings from highquality literature is addressed at every grade level. Teacher training and special literary collections for the Junior Great Books (JGB) program are available for every level, kindergarten through grade five. The JGB reading approach is termed “shared inquiry,” and the aim of instruction is to sharpen students’ interpretive reading/thinking skills. Students ask original questions; listen to others; form opinions; and write in response to the literary pieces that they read. Even our kindergartners participate through the JGB’s read-aloud version, which bridges the gap between children’s limited print skills and their capacity for complex, critical thinking. Expanding and thriving classroom libraries are the centerpiece of reading instruction in the elementary schools. All of our classrooms are furnished with extensive classroom libraries to support students’ daily independent reading. These classroom trade book collections are valuable tools for developing reading competencies. Equally important, they are vehicles which drive children’s desire to read. 5
Fourth and fifth grade students continue to read and write across the curriculum to broaden their vocabulary, language skills and knowledge. They learn to ask probing questions and respond thoughtfully to comments and questions, as they develop the skill of articulating a position and supporting it with reasons or justification. Writing is used to convey information from several sources, to narrate a procedure, to express individual thinking, to respond to literature, and to create fictional stories with interesting characters and situations. In fifth grade, students listen and read actively and respond to literature in a variety of formats, from book talks to dramatic plays. They become familiar with the characteristics of the works of many authors and illustrators, acquire knowledge of nonfiction and literary genres, and demonstrate understanding of literary elements and figurative language. They use critical thinking skills as they summarize, synthesize, compare and evaluate information from multiple sources. written and oral texts. Half Hollow Hills’ students continue to meet and exceed State standards, with over 90 percent of students at each grade level demonstrating mastery of the NYS English language arts standards.
Literacy is stimulated and celebrated beyond the curriculum in all of our elementary schools with student-author teas, storytelling events, schoolwide poetry readings, professional author workshops and book signings, student plays, Parents as Reading Partners (PARP), student-run bookstore, Guest Reader Day, book fairs, First Grade Book Convention, cross-grade reading buddies, author/illustrator evening fair, Storybook Character Dress-up Day, student publications, and writings entered in a variety of local, regional and national contests. These examples represent a small sample of literacy-related activities enjoyed throughout the school year by our elementary school students, teachers, parents and administrators!
Middle School Program The Middle School is a place of great change. Students are moving into a different experience both in location and physiology. To better inform teachers of where students are in terms of their understanding of English language arts, baseline examinations are given to all youngsters as a diagnostic tool to assess their knowledge in necessary English skills. An exit exam at the end of the year is also used to assess what skills have been acquired.
We are committed to fostering family-school partnerships that will contribute to students’ academic success. Our popular spring workshops for parents provide forums to further that goal. Reading comprehension was the theme of this year’s spring workshop, I Read it… Now I Get it! Along with a deeper understanding of the reading process, participants acquired a variety of practical techniques and resources for extending their children’s reading/thinking skills.
The middle school language arts curriculum is a true integration of reading, writing, listening and speaking. As noted in the ELA standards for grades six and seven, the reading competencies that students continue to develop are word recognition, background knowledge and vocabulary development, comprehension strategies inclusive of analytical response, and motivation to read independently. The writing competencies students continue to develop are spelling and other written language conventions, handwriting, composition, and motivation to write independently. The listening and speaking competencies that students continue to develop are attentiveness to spoken text and oral presentation, appropriate verbal responses during classroom conversation, proper use of vocabulary and other conventions of spoken language, and participation in group discussions on a range of topics and for a variety of purposes. All of these literacy competencies are demonstrated through a variety of performance indicators (oral presentations, research, unit projects, creative writing, analytical writing, argumentation and text interpretation, to name a few) as children progress through sixth, seventh, and eighth grade. Grade eight includes all of these competencies with an additional emphasis on fluency/prosody – the ability to read with appropriate expression, phrasing and pacing – and on comprehension – the ability to understand, without assistance, written and spoken language at or above grade level.
As research repeatedly points out, volume reading is essential for expanding reading interests and developing reading proficiency. To encourage elementary students to continue to read throughout July and August, our popular Summer Readers program is in progress for the tenth consecutive year. Students are reading and responding to four books from recommended book lists, which have been updated with many new choices at each grade level. Our entering Kindergartners and their families have been invited to participate by using read-aloud selections. Summer readings and projects will be celebrated in the fall when students will be recognized for their participation in the District program. Elementary students in third, fourth and fifth grade participate in the annual New York State testing program. The NYS English Language Arts Assessments test students’ reading and listening comprehension, as well as their ability to use writing to communicate an understanding of a wide variety of challenging
Students learn and practice these skills by studying a variety of literary genres and learning to achieve mastery as readers and writers of these genres. Fiction choices such as short stories, novels, poetry and plays, and nonfiction choices such as essays, articles, biographies, autobiographies and memoirs give students a broad lens from which to choose as they develop and learn to master the English language.
by means of developing their vocabulary skills, and by writing compositions, essays, reports and works of fiction. Oral reports based on literature are assigned. These reports may take the form of speeches, book reports, and/or dramatic presentations. Systematic vocabulary study, critical thinking skills and advanced research skills are taught. A research paper is required in all four years. Students have the opportunity for more indepth study of literature and writing in Honors courses, and many students elect to take Advanced Placement English Language and/or Advanced Placement English Literature in the 11th and 12th grades. In addition to the required yearly study of English, students can choose from a wide variety of elective course work: American Culture in the Age of Hollywood, Creative Writing, Debate, Film Criticism, The Heroâ€™s Journey, Journalism, Media Communications, Mythology, Public Speaking, Reading Strategies, S.A.T., and Theater Arts and Production. We have also incorporated senior-specific courses such as College Writing, Poetry as Performance Art, Search for Identity, Sports Literature, and World Drama.
Teaching children to become independent thinkers starts with teaching children to become independent readers and writers. The Half Hollow Hills English Language Arts Department has a number of literacy initiatives designed to nurture self-direction and intrinsic curiosity in our youngsters. Some are: The Always Reading Project, developed by middle school teachers, encourages students to select books of their own interest for the simple pleasure of reading. Book talks occur before and after school, and often during lunch periods, during which students sit together with their teachers to converse about their readings.
It is the belief of the English Language Arts Department that all students, regardless of their experiential background, capabilities, developmental and learning differences, interests or ambitions should have equal opportunities to achieve their potential.
Independent reading libraries are now a part of the many resources available to students. These libraries, located in every ELA classroom, foster independence and self-directed study. Research shows that students who are exposed to classroom libraries have a better understanding of themselves as readers; they can identify genres that appeal to them and authors who write within a certain genre, and they can identify the idiosyncrasies that exist within the genres. As writers, they learn to mimic certain professional styles in their own writing, thereby growing their own writerâ€™s craft and finding their own voices as writers.
Grade 11 English Regents 2010 Ninety-eight percent of our students scored at proficiency level on the English Regents. Sixty-five percent of our students scored at mastery level or above. Advanced Placement Courses Taking the 11th grade AP Language and Composition and/or 12th grade Literature and Composition course allows students to demonstrate a high level of English proficiency. These courses involve college-level rigor, whereby students can receive college credit from a number of universities by scoring well on the three-hour examination that culminates the course. Twenty-three percent of our 11th graders take the 11AP course, and 23 percent of our 12th graders take the 12AP course.
Student choice in required summer reading projects. Students have autonomy in text choices for summer reading, provided their choices are within the thematic curriculum goals appropriate to their grade level. Mastery Seminar is an additional course offered at the eighth grade level. This course is designed to support all children in achieving mastery level performance in the newly designed eighth grade English course.
Awards, Recognitions, Involvement and Publications Many of our students have expanded their interest beyond the borders of the school to test their written and oral skills in a public forum. Through these efforts, our students received many honors.
It should also be noted that much of what is studied in both seventh and eighth grade English is done in conjunction with the social studies classes, and is written under the guidance of the English teacher and included in the curriculum thereof. Additionally, each student has been assigned his/her own research manual that specifically targets and prepares the students for the writing tasks mandated by the State.
Adelphi University Poetry Awards Terence Daye (HSW) Helen Liu (HSE) Kimberly Karter (HSW) Kathleen Keogh (HSW) Poulomi Muhkerji (HSW) Sabrina Ross (HSW)
Grades 6, 7, and 8 ELA 2010 This data will be released by the New York State Education Department on July 26, 2010. High School Program The English curriculum emphasizes literature through the study of novels, short stories, plays, poetry and essays. Students will continue to enhance their ability to write clearly and effectively
Anne Frank Memorial Garden Poetry Contest Jeannine Hennawi (HSW)
Huntington Youth Project Sarah Han (HSW)
JV Extemporaneous: Shreyas Havaldra, Miranda Lupion, Tyler Fisher, Jake Ethe, Rohan Goyle Congress: Jason Stern, Jacob Dorfman, Brian Dorfman, Matt Sokol, Alyssa Hasbrouck, Spencer Fogel, Arielle Koppell, Gabrielle Persichelli
Huntington Youth Writes Contest Caitlyn Dwyer (HSW) Derek Nelson (HSW) Sabrina Ross (HSW)
Young Writers of America Danah Han (Candlewood) Published Poem
Poetry for the H.A.R.T. Sarah Han (HSW) Chantal Lee (HSW) Emily Brandsdorfer (HSW)
* David Kahen (class of 2009) winner of last year’s Last Poet Standing Contest, was asked to be a feature poet at the Nuyorican Poets’ Café in NYC. Congratulations, David!
TOBY Awards (HSW) Nick Regueiro: Best Actor in a Supporting Role Adrienne Ianciello: Best Actress in a Leading Role Corrine Valenti: Best Actress in a Leading Role, Best Female Vocal Alyssa Sokol: Best Female Vocal Jason Rudin: Best Actor in a Featured Role Athena Margarites: Best Actress in a Featured Role Erica Fisher: Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Publications Each of our secondary schools publishes a periodical that is shared by students, staff and faculty. The high school publications have received an impressive share of awards and top honors over the years. Literary Magazines: Pegasus (HSE), The Wolf Hill Review (HSW), Eyes Wide Open (CW) Newspapers: Thunderbird (HSE), The Roundup (HSW) Yearbooks: The Hills Horizon (HSE), Trailblazer (HSW)
Half Hollow Hills High School East Speech and Debate Team Debators Varsity: Alyssa Hasbrouck, Sachin Sharma JV: Dan Friedman, Zack Zadek Novice: Sachi Patil, Puja Bansal Varsity Public Forum: Jacob Dorfman, Christian Laskaros, Krishma Sabhnani, Alexa Goetz Orators Declamation: Zakiya Williams-Wells Varsity Extemporaneous: Jake Cohen, Jason Sterm, Taha Ahmad, Alyssa Hasbrouck
Summer Reading Encouraging students to read over the summer vacation commits us to promoting literacy in the District. Our goal is to foster a love of reading, and in order to encourage effective reading habits, suggested summer reading lists are provided at the different grade levels. These can be found on the school website: click on Teaching and Learning, then click on English Language Arts, and then click Suggested Summer Reading. The required readings for grades 8-12 have their own separate link on the same page.
FACS Year-End Report for 2009-2010 The 21st century brings with it new and diverse demands on all aspects of family life. Families are facing rapidly changing living patterns, are grappling with greater demands of the workplace on home life, and are witnessing an accelerated change in family member roles and functions. If we are to prepare our children for happy and prosperous futures, we must critically examine their preparation to become healthy and productive citizens, parents, consumers, home managers and wage earners.
■ prepares individuals to be competent, confident, and responsible in managing personal, family and career lives ■ helps students meet challenges of daily living ■ provides laboratory experiences that foster leadership and group skills ■ provides individuals with knowledge and skills in: - personal resource management - family and human development - early childhood education - nutrition and food preparation - clothing and design - housing and environment - consumerism and financial management - career awareness and planning - parenting and care giving
Family and Consumer Science
The Family and Consumer Science department strives to address the essential living competencies all individuals need to function in our rapidly changing society. The attitudes, skills and knowledge learned in the FCS content areas provide a basis for success in balancing home and work responsibilities as well as for transitioning to career pathways.
Department Highlights 2009-2010 Energy Conservation and Awareness and Healthy Lifestyles An essential goal of the FACS curriculum is to continue to create student awareness of global environmental issues. Throughout
Family and Consumer Science coursework, providing 3/4 credit at the middle school level and many elective course opportunities at the high school level: 8
Community Service Students enrolled in the Child Development and Psychology courses created illustrated children’s books and shared them with students at the elementary level. Students within all courses aided the community through various projects for Unity Day and Relay for Life. Seventh grade students participated in a Long Island Harvest “Harvest Day” project at the end of their foods unit to collect canned food for the needy in our community. Members of the Home Economics Club produced a blanket to send to Haiti to help in the disaster relief efforts. Staff members also participated in raising funds for UNICEF.
the year students practice conservation measures within the classroom to REDUCE, REUSE AND RECYCLE by employing wise water use measures during food labs, and recycling plastics, glass and metal. During this year’s Earth Day celebration, each faculty member created specific lesson plans that dealt with such topics as carbon dioxide foot-printing, appliance energy rating, “ways to go green at home,” earth-friendly lifestyles, and electricity and water conservation in the home. Particular
New Course The FACS department is in the process of developing a new course for September 2010, titled “Food and Fitness,” which will highlight the interrelationship between healthy eating and an active lifestyle. Central to the program will be the use of online computer systems to create nutritional meal plans and an exercise program to reach each student’s desired healthy living goals. Technology In a quest to instill 21st Century skills into FACS coursework, the department utilizes a learning community wiki in which staff members post lessons, calendars and collaborations. This technology allows teachers to collaborate asynchronously on curriculum issues when their individual schedules do not permit face-to-face meetings. This year, each school has its own departmental projector which is used extensively for short video clips of skill demonstrations. Several staff members use the District subscription to SchoolWeblockers as a way of students handing in assignments digitally in order to conserve paper. The department also experimented with the use of District podcasting technology by having Culture and Foods students research and present cultural food diversity projects. Students in Adolescent Psychology classes worked together on multimedia presentations focusing on dating relationships. They also completed posters on self-image using various web 2.0 tools such as wordle, prezi.com and glogster.com Students in Child Development classes created video presentations on diverse types of families. Departmental internet-based research projects and digital presentations developed by students in the past year have included inquiries in the areas of career exploration, consumerism, comparison shopping, kitchen planning and design, nutrition, obesity, child development and psychology, child care programs, teen pregnancy, and childhood disabilities and illnesses. Technologyinfused differentiated lessons addressing multiple intelligences, web quests, slide shows and PowerPoint presentations were some of the activities used by staff members to enhance student understanding in the classroom. Technology has also played a role in the ongoing development of lessons for children with severe disabilities. Each school’s department now uses a digital camera to record and then reinforce specific lessons and activities as well as celebrate the accomplishments of students. One department room in each school now has been fitted with an LCD projector that will allow instructors to display instructional video clips from the internet.
emphasis was placed on finding eco-friendly solutions to commercial cleaning products. This year, a second emphasis department-wide was placed on the concept of healthy lifestyles. Curriculum in all topic areas emphasized how students need to make personal choices regarding eating, exercising and making good decisions. Middle school students created “Red Light, Green Light Foods” showcases for National Nutrition Month, in which information concerning the nutritional merits of various popular foods was displayed. Career Explorations Representatives from several culinary arts schools (Johnson & Wales University, Clemens College, the Culinary Academy of Long Island, Nassau Community College, Suffolk Community College) hosted food preparation demonstrations and information sessions for high school students considering careers in the food industry. Middle school students visited the “A La Carte” cooking school in Lynbrook for lessons and conversations with professional chefs. Within their coursework, students in high school food preparation courses investigated entrepreneurial career possibilities by creating “Gifts from the Kitchen,” trying their hand at what is involved in the home catering arena. Middle school students compiled personal Career Portfolios as a culminating activity for the career exploration unit in seventh grade. Students also participated in job-shadowing exercises at Best Buy, meeting with department managers to discuss the commonalities between job and school experiences. The middle schools worked collaboratively with the Guidance Department to organize Career Day, which was held in May. This year over 60 presenters from diverse career areas visited the school to speak to the students. This has become an annual event with presenters returning year after year to play a part in their community service to young people. 9
High School Guidance Counseling Program
The counseling center provides various services to assist students during their high school years. The goal of the guidance staff is to provide a safe and trusting environment where students can feel comfortable discussing personal and educational topics. Equally, we focus on developing the wellbeing of each student-child and maximizing student success.
Counselors assist students with study skills, educational planning, interpretation of test scores, and career exploration. Career fairs are held annually to give students a chance to speak directly with a wide variety of professionals in order to broaden their awareness and gain information regarding careers. College fairs provide students with valuable information relating to entrance requirements, degrees and majors.
Your child will begin each year by meeting with his or her individual counselor for an orientation program. The orientation will focus on informing students on the types of programs we conduct throughout the school year.
As students approach their junior year, the counselor takes an extremely active role in the college planning process. Counselors advise students on planning an appropriate schedule and preparing for college-bound testing programs such as the PSAT, SAT and ACT. Individual parent-student conferences are conducted in the late winter/early spring to develop a plan of action regarding college applications and graduation plans. College fairs, college representative visitations, and a financial aid night forum are held during the senior year. At the beginning of the school year, students will receive a password to access NAVIANCE â€“ an individualized and interactive online college search program that will enhance college and career searches.
School counselors act as partners with you and your child as they face the sometimes difficult social issues common to adolescents. Some of these include social development, peer relationships, adjusting to high school, teacher relationships, family situations and future planning. Students are encouraged to become familiar with the counseling center early in their high school careers. The counseling center is responsible for creating an individualized schedule for your child based on interests, needs, goals, and graduation requirements. We also highlight personal goals and activities particular to each student and grade level. The counselor will meet with a student whenever academic intervention is necessary and assist in utilizing services such as extra help and peer tutoring.
Counselors are readily available to listen and work with you regarding any concerns you may have about your child. We encourage you to be involved in the programs and services we offer in order to make the high school experience memorable, rewarding and successful.
Health and Physical Education
Health instruction in Half Hollow Hills focuses on a comprehensive school health education curriculum. This plan is a sequential K-12 program for teaching students the information and skills they need to become health literate, and providing them with the foundation for maintaining and improving their health, preventing disease, and reducing healthrelated risk behaviors. Students will have the opportunity to learn the skills that will enhance their quality of life for years to come. We continually review and examine these skills to enable students to make healthy choices now and to prepare them for a healthy future. In addition, we will continue to work on the shared partnership between school and community and its positive influence on our children. At the elementary schools, students receive formal instruction from health education specialists who address the core curriculum and State standards. Students must receive instruction on topics including tobacco, alcohol and other drugs, AIDS, fire and arson prevention, and nutrition and its connection to obesity. Personal health guidance is also provided according to individual needs of pupils.
The Family Life Program includes an evening of communication between the child and a significant adult in his or her life. This interactive program is available to all fifth-grade students. At the middle schools, students receive required health instruction in grades six and eight. The health curriculum includes violence prevention, mental health, safety education 10
and sexual abuse prevention education. For the second year, the sixth grade level will be part of a program called The Great Program, which is delivered by the Sheriff’s Department. This program covers the critical topics such as conflict resolution, teasing, bullying, peer pressure and understanding how respect becomes an important part of the solution. We must ensure that students have sufficient time and instruction to develop skills in these areas, no later than middle school.
comprehensive knowledge of fitness concepts, designing fitness programs, and setting personal goals. In order to help students make the commitment to lifelong regular exercise, instruction will be aligned with the New York State and National Learning Standards for Physical Education. The health-related fitness program Physical Best/Fitnessgram will address the standards from a curriculum, instruction and assessment perspective. Physical Best (philosophical aspect) moves beyond traditional programs by raising children’s awareness of physical fitness and the connection between physical activity and health-related fitness, and by making physical activity health related and noncompetitive.
In the 2009-10 school year, students in the fourth through eighth grades will continue the prevention program titled Life Skills. Students in the third grade will be introduced to this program. The curriculum is designed to help students develop decisionmaking and refusal skills, which will have a profound effect on them throughout middle and high school.
All students K-5 will be involved in the Fitnessgram testing program. This assessment will help students focus on their own health-related fitness, and enable them to set short- and longterm goals. Fitnessgram will also enable students to record their own fitness scores on a computer and generate personal programs for improvement.
The eighth grade unit on parenting responsibility, Baby Think It Over, continues as a serious educational program designed to prepare students to make responsible, informed choices about parenting. At the high schools, 10th grade students participate in a required health education class. Electives in Introduction to Sports Medicine and Human Sexuality are offered to students who have completed their required health course.
Physical Education Adaptive Physical Education, K-12 The adaptive physical education teachers (two) are certified in physical education and have advanced training to work with our special needs population. Every school in the District is provided this mandated program. Approximately 90 percent of the students serviced are seen in their mainstream physical education classes with adaptive physical education support. Evaluations and assessments are given by the adaptive physical education teachers in order to design a program for each student to comply with the child’s IEP. The adaptive physical education staff also supervises afterschool programs for many students in the District. One such activity is the Clinical Recreational Sports and Adaptive Swim Program. Additionally, many adaptive physical education students participate in the Suffolk County Special Olympics and the Empire State Games for the Physically Challenged.
All students in kindergarten through grade five attend physical education classes, taught by physical education teachers, two times a week. Students in grades six through 12 attend physical education class 2.5 times per week, utilizing an A-B scheduling system. Classes begin with a warm-up designed to increase flexibility, improve aerobic endurance, muscular strength and endurance, as well as to regulate body composition. A variety of sports and activities are taught, ranging from Project Adventure and physical fitness to rhythmics. Units range from approximately five weeks to ten weeks, depending on the grade level. Students are required to indicate knowledge of instructional units and demonstrate proficiency and competency in selective areas.
Regular Physical Education One of the major goals of physical education is to prepare students to be “Active and Healthy for a Lifetime.” We want young people to acquire the skills and self confidence to participate in a wide variety of physical activities while in school and throughout the rest of their lives. Students must make a lifelong commitment to engage in some form of regular exercise. In order to instill within students a desire to be active and healthy, activities must be designed to focus on fitness and healthy lifestyles. At all levels, the program emphasis will include increased competency in a variety of physical activities, the development of personal and social behaviors, the development of a
Often during the school year, elementary school students in grades three through five will wear step counters (pedometers) in 11
their physical education classes. The step counters help students understand the relationship between activity (movement) and how technology can be a motivation in helping them learn. But even more important, students begin to understand the link between movement and fitness. Fitness is movement that can be fun and part of our lives.
In addition to fitness education at all levels, adventure education (Project Adventure) continues to increase in popularity throughout the District, with added challenges for students at the high school level. Students at all levels will learn to further appreciate individual differences and to support each other in these challenges. The implication for positive social behavior change is realized to the fullest extent in an atmosphere of cooperation and trust. Also, the opportunity to develop respect in these activities can reinforce skills learned in health education classes (see health section).
At the middle school, students are using heart rate technology through the use of heart rate monitors. A major goal of physical education is to teach students the importance of aerobic fitness so that they understand how to reach their target heart rate. For teachers, the heart rate monitors provide an objective measure of a studentâ€™s effort, regardless of skill or athletic ability. These devices were popular with many students who began to objectively assess their workout effectiveness. The addition of aerobic equipment at the middle schools in 2009-10 has increased the opportunity for students to be aerobically involved in an active learning environment throughout the year. This equipment, linked to the heart rate monitors, will provide a controlled work area (laboratory), better known as a wellness center.
Intramural sports offer a wide variety of activities to students at all grade levels. At the elementary schools, the emphasis is on cooperative games and having fun through movement. At the upper grade levels, some activities, such as volleyball, softball, soccer, basketball, and touch football include a competitive schedule of games. Students may choose from activities ranging from weight training and physical fitness to swimming and games such as team handball and badminton.
The Half Hollow Hills Central School District understands that interscholastic athletics are a significant part of the educational process. The combination of academics and athletics enhances the quality of studentsâ€™ lives and expands their options for learning and personal growth. Athletics provide an educational opportunity in which students can learn essential life lessons beyond those that can be learned in an academic classroom.
and respect for others. This program provides an opportunity for all to share their common interests, to celebrate their differences, and to appreciate physical competition as a lifelong process. All involved in the program must show a personal commitment to the goals of the team and make the personal sacrifices necessary in order to achieve success. Making such a commitment to excellence nurtures a sense of pride, loyalty and leadership qualities in an athlete, enabling the individual to become more resilient and better prepared to face lifeâ€™s challenges. This unique experience allows students to achieve their full potential as students, athletes and citizens.
The interscholastic competitive environment provides an opportunity for our participants to learn positive life skills, values and ethics in a climate that demands dedication, responsibility, self-discipline, cooperation, a positive work ethic
It is the nature of athletic competition to strive for victory. However, the number of victories is only one measure of success. Ultimately, the real challenge is guiding the individual and the team to reach full potential. This is the true measure of achievement. The competitive athletic environment is one that demands respect for a full effort and applause for those who rise to the challenge and accept the risk of defeat. Those who are successful in life are those who have learned to embrace challenge and take personal risks. Dedication and self-sacrifice on the athletic field do not always result in victory over the opponent. However, if one strives toward reaching full potential with a passion and perseverance, personal victories that last a lifetime are the end reward, even though the win-loss record may not always meet expectations.
Philosophy The Half Hollow Hills Interscholastic Athletic Program offers a wide variety of individual and team sports. The experience begins with a modified four-sport season program, provided for
middle school seventh and eighth grade students. The high school program progresses to a three-sport season, which includes opportunities for participation in freshman and junior varsity programs, culminating with a varsity-level experience for the elite athlete. During the 2009-2010 school year, the student-athletes in the Half Hollow Hills School District continued to excel. The interscholastic program offered 139 teams, of which 49 are varsity teams. Outstanding Achievements for the 2009-2010 School Year ■ All varsity teams were NYS Scholar/Athlete Teams at both HSE and HSW ■ HSE and HSW have been named a “2009-2010 Scholar/Athlete Team School of Distinction” by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) ■ Half Hollow Hills High School West has been named “Top Suffolk County Athletic Program” for 2010 by Ultimate Athlete Magazine ■ Two varsity teams were Long Island Champions ■ Half Hollow Hills West Football was named the Rutgers Cup Winner, Best team in Suffolk County, by the Coaches Association ■ Jevahn Cruz, HSW Football, was named Hansen Award Winner and the NYS Player of the Year ■ Half Hollow Hills West Basketball reached the NYS Class AA Championship Game. The team was ranked 18th in the nation by USA Today ■ Tobias Harris, HSW Basketball, was named a McDonalds All-American and NYS Player of the Year
■ Thirty-four varsity teams were involved in playoff competition ■ Fifteen varsity teams were league champions ■ Six varsity teams were undefeated county champions ■ Seven varsity teams were county champions ■ Two varsity teams were county runner-up teams (2nd place) ■ Thirty-seven teams won Suffolk County Sportsmanship Awards ■ Half Hollow Hills High School East Boys’ Varsity Tennis Team won the Suffolk County Championship, for their five championships within the last six years ■ Half Hollow Hills High School West Boys’ Varsity Indoor Track team has won six consecutive Suffolk County Championships. ■ Half Hollow Hills Boys’ Varsity Swimming Team has won four consecutive Suffolk County Championships. ■ Three student-athletes received News 12 Scholar/ Athlete Awards
Languages Other Than English (L.O.T.E.)
The Writing Process
forward to providing our students with an opportunity to interact with the people in France, Italy and Spain. One day we will travel to China and Taiwan as well! This new and exciting opportunity is only available to high school seniors enrolled in a LOTE course.
Director Francesco L. Fratto and teachers explored best practices on the writing process so that this important skill is integrated throughout the curriculum. The department discussed in depth the writing process at several meetings so that students can become better writers in a language other than English. LOTE teachers were encouraged to dialogue with English Language Arts teachers to discuss best practices in this area. The document that was produced and that is available on the LOTE web page, “The Writing Process,” provides guidelines for LOTE teachers to improve this important skill. In addition, students are encouraged to transfer this important skill from their native language, English, to their second language.
New Textbooks and Materials After an exhaustive review of current Spanish textbooks on the market, the districtwide committee of Spanish teachers selected and the Board approved the textbook series Realidades. The series has many ancillary materials and an online edition (eBook) with listening activities included to continue to excite our learners. The textbooks will be phased in for grades seven and nine during the 2010-11 school year. Furthermore, we are purchasing new materials for all languages so that we provide our students with the most current materials that will continue to improve our students’ acquisition of a language. In the near future, we will review textbooks for French and Italian classes for possible adoption within the next several years.
Overseas Educational Excursions To be in further compliance with New York State and national standards for languages other than English concerning communication skills and intercultural understanding, Half Hollow Hills has reinstated our travel abroad program. We look
The Foreign Language Independent Study Program
schools in other parts of the world, but with the videoteleconferencing equipment, it will facilitate the process and it will allow for greater classroom participation. In addition, up to fifteen sites (schools) can connect at once and dialogue in the target language. The first experiment in connecting with schools overseas occurred when one of our teachers, Mrs. Sirulnick, used video-conferencing or distance learning to have her classes communicate regularly with students in a school in France. Projects were developed between Ms. Sirulnick and the teacher in France and students were able to communicate on various subjects related to the curriculum. Ms. Sirulnick continues to refine the program that she established and her enthusiasm has spread to other teachers who are now in the process of establishing connections with schools overseas and between classes at both our high schools. Ms. Merejo, our Spanish teacher, now has her class communicating with a private school in the Dominican Republic. Our goal is to provide students with opportunities to speak with students in the target language not only in other continents, but within the United States. Our ultimate objective is to provide them with the skills to succeed in our ever-shrinking global community.
This unique after-school program offers high school students the opportunity to study languages not offered during the school day; we are the only school district on Long Island that offers students critical languages in an after-school program. Students take classes one hour a week and receive recognition of this endeavor on their official high school transcript. The program serves more than 150 students each year who study less commonly taught languages such as German, Russian, Hebrew, Hindi, Chinese, Japanese, Greek and Latin. Arabic will be among the languages that will be offered in the fall of 2010. Our enrollment continues to grow each year!
Fifth Grade After-School Programs In order to give fifth grade students an introduction to the languages that they will take in the middle school, the LOTE Department offers students the option of taking three eight-week sessions in Chinese, French, Italian and Spanish at each of the seven elementary schools. The program has been very successful based on parent feedback and ever-increasing enrollment.
■ Various teachers did their Self-Directed Professional Inquiry Projects on United Streaming, iNotes, Podcasting, Animoto, YouTube and Voicethread to name a few. Many podcasting projects can now be seen and heard by going to the various teachers’ eBoards. Students can hear the words and the meanings so they practice pronunciation as well as test themselves. For those students who have an MP3 player like the iPod, the podcasts can be downloaded and listened to from any location. With the inclusion of the new software, teachers reported a significant impact on their classes. Used daily, it allows them to access materials from multiple sources which have made the sources more authentic and current. Websites that contain cultural/historical references serve as sources for discussions and/or reinforce lessons. All website cultural topics are now accessible immediately from the classroom and are projected on the screen. Units on French, Italian and Spanish artists were enhanced by allowing access to museum galleries around the world, as well as online galleries of the artists’ works. Furthermore, many teachers have also done an incredible job in constructing their eBoards, which are both informational and instructive. Many have links and websites tied to the weekly activities and/or lessons. Students access these links for homework assignments and topics for discussion in class. In addition, student projects, including audio and video projects and podcasts, are now placed on the teachers’ eBoards.
Focus on Technology The LOTE Department continued to focus on new ways to include technology in the foreign language classrooms. Our goal is simple: provide students with 21st Century tools in order to expose them to the global community that is just a click away! ■ The LOTE web pages were selected “The BEST LOTE Website of the Long Island Region” by The New York State Association of Foreign Language Teachers. We are certainly proud of this accomplishment. We practice what we preach! ■ Video-teleconferencing: In the past, teachers used Skype and/or other technologies that allowed them to connect with
Enrichment Through Extracurricular Activities
Hills always having the highest number of winners in Suffolk County in addition to many national winners. Half Hollow Hills won the award for having the most student partcipants in Suffolk County.
Numerous extracurricular activities and clubs take place in the department that enrich their experiences in the study of another language. Our achievements are too numerous to list, but below are a few of our accomplishments. Please visit the LOTE web page, “Department News,” to read more.
■ Examples of classroom field trips and activities include visits to The Metropolitan Opera and NYC Opera to see La Bohème,La Traviata and Carmen; and The Metropolitan Museum to view various exhibitions of art. Several classes went to the culinary school, À la Carte, where they learned how to prepare different ethnic meals in the native language. Other classes went to Tango Mambo, where they learned to dance various Latin dances and sample Latin foods. Italian students went to The Metropolitan Opera. Others went to various elementary schools in our District to read books which they had created in the target language and had lunch at a French restaurant.
■ There are National Honor Societies for each language in each high school that schedule formal inductions of honor students each year. In addition, there are culture clubs for each language that provide students with cultural activities and give them more in-depth understanding of the culture being studied. ■ Each year students at all four schools enter the French, Spanish and Italian National Examinations, with Half Hollow
As of this update, our 2010 Math Assessment Scores for grades 3-8 will not be released until the end of July, 2010 but based on the 2009 cut scores our results should be similar if not even better.
The 21st century takes us into a new era in mathematics education. Changes in technology have made mathematics an alive and dynamic science in itself, as well as an integral part of our daily lives. Now, more than ever before, educating students for life requires that we provide all students with a strong mathematical background.
High school students continue to excel on Regents exams, with over 95 percent of students passing the New York State Integrated Algebra Regents and 35 percent achieving mastery (a grade of 85 percent or higher), over 97 percent of students passing the new New York State Geometry Regents and 49 percent achieving mastery, and over 92 percent of Half Hollow Hills students passed the new Algebra 2/Trigonometry Math Regents with 56 percent achieving mastery.
The mathematics program offered by the Half Hollow Hills School District is ranked among the best on Long Island and in New York State. In 2009, the performance of Half Hollow Hills’ students on New York State mathematics assessments was the highest ever. The percent of students meeting the state standards in grades 3 to 8 is listed in the chart below. Grade 3 4 5 6 7 8
Percent of Students Meeting the State Standard 98% 96% 96% 93% 97% 95%
The mathematical instructional approach, implemented in kindergarten and first grade classrooms, is based on the recognition of mathematical concepts in the everyday experiences of children. Beginning in elementary school, the mathematics program focuses on the development of critical thinking and problem-solving strategies. The use of various manipulatives enables children to enjoy a hands-on approach to learning. Computer software is used to facilitate the acquisition of math skills. Students participate in small group activities where they learn to listen and consider the ideas of others in solving problems. Students continually communicate mathematical ideas and solutions and explain their reasoning. Many students participate in the Problem of the Month, sent to each elementary school to provide a challenge and some fun to the students in each grade level every month. Classroom assessments are modeled after the New York State assessment and assess students’ facility with skills, problem solving, critical thinking and writing in mathematics. In addition, next year our entire K-5 elementary school population will be learning mathematics with the new enVisions math program that was carefully piloted and chosen for our students.
Even more impressive are the percentages of students achieving mastery on the assessments, that is, a score of level 4, the highest level attainable. Mastery results were as follows. Grade 3 4 5 6 7 8
Percent of Students Achieving Mastery (Level 4) 40% 60% 55% 47% 56% 39%
Middle School Program At the middle school level, in grades 7 and 8, teachers use Glencoe’s Applications and Connections, a program in accordance with the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics standards that recognizes problem solving as the main focus of the mathematics curriculum. Students continue to use manipulatives, calculators and computer software, as well as paper and pencil, mental math, and estimation where appropriate. Reallife applications and cooperative learning are incorporated into the program. In the 2008-2009 school year, grade 8 students in Math 8 switched over to the Holt PreAlgebra book to help prepare them for Algebra 1 in ninth grade, and the students in the accelerated program in the eighth grade will be using the Holt Algebra 1 series. In addition to excellent textbooks, the Holt programs offer exceptional ancillary technological materials, including a web-based tutorial for students on every topic in the book.
(Precalculus Honors, Math 12S and Math 12L). The high percentage of students taking four or more years of mathematics is a measure of the success of our mathematics program.
Technology The use of technology is expanding throughout the District. Since graphing calculators are now allowed on Regents assessments, SAT exams and AP examinations, students receive instruction on the use of these devices. The TI-84+ graphing calculators are also used to enhance teaching in calculus, precalculus and elective mathematics courses.
The 2010-2011 school year will see the continuation of Math Seminar for seventh graders. This popular course introduces students to explorations of mathematics that extend and enrich the current curriculum with topics such as origami, fractals and Sierpinski’s Triangle, and magic squares that assists students in preparation for the Integrated Algebra course offered at both the middle school and high school.
The “student response system” has been used in some of our courses this year. In a student response system setting, each student receives a remote control device to input his or her answers to a question. In the mathematics classroom, the teacher poses a math problem, usually from the computer, and it is projected to a screen or SMART Board. The students then work on the problem and when they are ready, input their answer to the remote control device. The class can immediately see a graph of how well they did as a whole in getting the correct answer and the teacher can see, on his or her computer, the individuals in the class and how they answered the questions. This system is very motivating to students and is an immediate assessment of understanding and misunderstanding.
High School Program At the high school level this past year, the Mathematics Department introduced the new New York State curriculum in Algebra 2/Trigonometry to replace Math B curriculum. Algebra 2/Trigonometry was offered to those students who successfully met the requirements of geometry. Three levels of the program were offered, and our students performed exceptionally on this new Regents exam. Students completing the required sequence of courses are offered electives in mathematics or computers. There are electives in computer science and two half-year math courses called Math Connections and Practical Applications of Mathematics. The math electives explore both the mathematics that relate to everyday life as well as new developments in the field of mathematics such as fractal geometry.
Teacher Workshops Many mathematics teachers this past year took PDP or inservice credit in courses that dealt with innovative teaching strategies, such as learning stations. Other popular workshops included workshops on assessments in mathematics and using textbook-computer enhanced instruction.
Within the department, over 200 students are enrolled in Advanced Placement courses, including AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, AP Statistics and AP Computer Science. Those who do not wish to take Advanced Placement math courses may choose from College Calculus, Advanced Computer Programming, or any one of the three levels of Math 12
The accomplishments of the Mathematics Department are the result of dedicated professionals, involved parents and motivated students striving for excellence. 16
Social Studies In social studies classes at Half Hollow Hills, students explore questions about people, events and ideas in the past and in the present. The District social studies curriculum, K-12, centers on the key “big ideas” and how they represent the diverse details of the social studies content. Big ideas are the broad content understandings that encompass the entire social studies curriculum, K-12. They serve as organizing centers from which the various grade levels and courses emanate. These big ideas are ■ “The world is a place that is organized and understandable.” This understanding includes such concepts as law, borders, calendars, time zones, etc. ■ “All people are similar, all people are different.” This understanding, while emphasizing multicultural awareness and tolerance, also appreciates the uniqueness of the individual. ■ “Where we live affects how we live.” This understanding underscores the significance of geography as a determinant of culture, economics, government and basic human behavior. ■ “The past helps us to understand how we live today.” This understanding justifies the study of history. ■ “How we live today will affect how others and we live in the future.” In social studies we probe the past, observe the present, and contemplate the future. One important application of this idea is the appreciation of the importance of our delicate environment and our roles in protecting it. As the Native American saying goes, “We have not inherited the earth from our parents. We have borrowed it from our children.”
concentric circles, beginning in kindergarten, students learn about themselves, their families, communities both at home and around the world, their state, nation and, ultimately, the world. This instruction helps students assume their role as responsible citizens, and active contributors to our democracy. Throughout the K-12 program, the curriculum closely integrates technology applications, and, where appropriate, other academic disciplines. The Social Studies Department is proud of its students’ performance on recent New York State assessments. As the chart on the following page indicates, by the time Half Hollow Hills students are tested in high school, they have acquired the necessary knowledge and skills.
Elementary Beginning in kindergarten, the social studies program integrates content, concepts and skills for later learning and life in a democracy. Skills developed relate to gathering, using and presenting information; considering differing points of view and interpretation of events; participating in interpersonal and group relations; and personal management. Helping students become aware of self evolves into understanding of relationships with others – at home, in school and the wider community. Throughout the elementary program, students are introduced to the use of primary source documents (photos, editorial cartoons, charts and graphs, etc.) with the goal of acquiring skills needed to interpret data and to write coherently about that data. By grade 5, students develop a rudimentary sense of the geographic, economic, social and political underpinnings of societies, with an emphasis on the countries of the Western hemisphere. Students are able to compose expository essays that become increasingly sophisticated in the middle school and, later, the high school levels.
The social studies program emphasizes the teaching of cognitive skills: to think logically, analytically and reflectively. Skills development relates to gathering, classifying and presenting information. Students apply critical thinking skills in understanding perspective and differing points of view, as well as forming and validating hypotheses. Building on a series of
Middle School The middle school social studies curriculum reflects the New York State scope and sequence. In the sixth grade, emphasis is on the Eastern hemisphere, providing students with a basic understanding of the geographic, social, economic and political elements primarily of ancient civilizations in this part of the world. The program in grades 7 and 8 shifts to the United States. The seventh grade begins with the exploration and colonization of our nation and concludes with the Civil War and Reconstruction. The eighth grade begins with a study of Industrialization and progresses into the twentieth century and, ultimately, the 21st century. Skills introduced in the primary grades are further developed. At the conclusion of eighth grade, due to the State’s elimination of the statewide social studies assessment, students will be administered a District-level departmental final examination.
High School New York State mandates four years of study in social studies with commencement assessments at the end of grades 10 and 11. Students in the ninth and tenth grades take a comprehensive global history and geography course. Using a chronological 17
framework, the major developments, contributions and problems of the Western and non-Western worlds are explored. In grade 11 the study of United States history and government is revisited with greater emphasis on the relationship of our nation to the rest of the world since its inception. The social studies program culminates in grade 12 with half-year courses in economics and Participation in Government. Honors/Advanced Placement Courses Students in the high school have an opportunity for more indepth study of the course curriculum. Many elect honors and Advanced Placement classes. The high schools currently offer Advanced Placement courses in European History, American History, Politics and Economics. Beginning in the 2010-2011 school year, a new course, AP Human Geography, will be offered. Honors classes are also available in Global History 9 and 10, American History 11 and Social Studies 12. Youth Educators High School students are given opportunities to prepare social studies lessons on such topics as political cartoons and AfricanAmerican history. The lessons are then presented in all of the District’s elementary schools. Recently, lessons involving global awareness issues have been presented in freshman high school and middle school classes.
Currently over 40 percent of high school students have accepted the challenges of these more rigorous courses. Electives Students in high school have the opportunity to enroll in a variety of social studies electives, including Psychology, Sociology, Criminal Justice, African-American History, Experiences in Law, Comparative Religion, Sports in American History, The Holocaust, Ethics and Exploring Teaching.
Regents Results Oral History Project During the past school year, our oral history project was continued with a local assisted living facility. Students, under the guidance of their teacher, prepare interview questions for the senior citizen residents, encompassing their life experiences in immigration, the Great Depression, war and a host of related topics. Students record their interviews utilizing District technology and share them on our department website.
2010 NYS Regents Examinations Global History & Geography 95% passing 67% scoring at mastery U.S. History and Government 99% passing 86% scoring at mastery
The Half Hollow Hills science curriculum is shaped by a vision of the lasting knowledge and skills that students should acquire by the time they become adults. This is based on the concept of a common core of learning from grades K-12 that addresses the particular needs and interests of the students within our District. Our Science Department has been making a concerted effort to provide for the District a program that is exciting, enriching and engaging for students.
program or the concept of Advanced Placement as a true secondyear program, we do not.
High Percentage of Students Take Four Years of Science An indicator for success in any program is student involvement. Our program boasts an unusually high number of students taking four years of science. In fact, since 2001, over 50 percent of our students, based on average enrollment, successfully completed at least four full years of laboratory science (more than twice the NY State average). The four-year Regents sequence comprises The Physical Setting – Earth Science, The Living Environment, Biology, The Physical Setting – Chemistry, and The Physical Setting - Physics. The science teaching staff believes that our students are highly capable and that they should be expected to take the full complement of program offerings whenever possible. The June 2010 Regents results Districtwide were
Science Program Designed to Maximize Learning All of our Regents, accelerated and Advanced Placement courses take place in fully equipped lab classrooms with access to hightechnology equipment, and are offered for seven-and-a-half periods per week. We can take great pride in knowing that our commitment to lab instruction is of the highest caliber. While surrounding and similar districts may short-cut either the lab 18
The Nature and Scope of Our Extended Science Program
excellent. Of the 2,600 students that sat for the Regents examinations in science, 95 percent passed with over 59 percent achieving mastery level scores.
With a fully equipped molecular biology laboratory in each high school, all of our students enrolled in Living Environment and upper-level biology classes have the opportunity to expand their knowledge and interest in this cutting-edge biotechnology area. Other unique aspects of the Half Hollow Hills K-12 science program include a fully operational planetarium as well as a simulator/mockup of the space shuttle. In the planetarium, experienced and trained science staff work with curricular issues and present lessons designed specifically for each grade level. This culminates with the high-level work done by our entire Earth Science student population. Students in grades K-5 are also presented with outstanding hands-on opportunities in the shuttle room. Mechanics, rocketry, electricity and other aspects of physical science are explored in this dynamic lab setting.
Large Percentage of Students Takes Five Years or More of Science The diverse and complete Advanced Placement program offerings in science include AP Psychology, AP Biology, AP Chemistry and AP Physics B and C. It is anticipated that in the 2010-2011 school year, we will have students taking approximately 940 Advanced Placement exams in these subjects. Last year our students averaged close to 93 percent mastery levels (a score of 3, 4 or 5) on all Advanced Placement examinations. This achievement was more than 30 percent higher than the rest of the national talent pool taking these prestigious exams. This results in our students having a “leg up” when they enter college, and may also provide for substantial monetary savings through placement out of similar freshman course work in college science.
In the 2010 school year, we will be introducing many upgrades to our shuttle room, which will now be known as the HHH Discovery Center. In addition to new curricular activities, students will have the opportunity to experience robotics and remotely operated vehicles in a simulated Martian landscape. This will also serve as a fundamental component of our newly created HHH Robotics Program.
The Nature and Scope of Our Elective Program Our elective program is dynamic in nature. The science staff is dedicated to fostering a strong elective program, and therefore proposes and develops electives pertinent to the expanding reach of science. Electives such as Anatomy and Physiology, Genetics, Marine Science, Forensic Science, and Astronomy (which utilizes our on-site planetarium) serve a vital role in the District by providing students with the opportunity to pursue their interests. We will also be offering the elective course Principles of Engineering. This course will serve as a hands-on, project-based class to supplement our other physical science courses.
Students in the fifth grade have a unique opportunity to study the local environment in their science classes. Students venture to Caleb Smith Park and participate in an outdoor education program specifically designed for the curriculum used in Half Hollow Hills. Our District has also been nationally cited and used as a model for success by the DNA Learning Center at the world-class Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories for our work with the sixth grade students. All of the sixth grade students in Half Hollow Hills are presented with a program that focuses on an introduction to DNA. Students learn about cell development, genetic impact, DNA structure and recombination, and all are treated to a wonderful culminating lab experience at the DNA Learning Center. This year all of the seventh grade students participated in an authentic scientific investigation of the local environment. In the fall, they explored the various ecosystems of the Sunken Forest on Fire Island and in the spring completed an investigation of the glacial geology on Long Island. This project offers students an opportunity to experience and reinforce the diversity and complexity of Long Island’s ecosystems. In eighth grade, Earth Science students took part in a field analysis of Wildwood State Park and examined evidence of Long Island’s glacial history. At the high school level, physics students participated in the annual Half Hollow Hills Physics Day where they applied the formulas and concepts they learned in class to real world examples. The Science Department has made it a goal this year to increase student awareness of globalization and to focus on the fundamental skills required to compete in an ever-changing world. Through our variety of course offerings, teachers and students will be working to develop critical thinking, problem solving, and conceptual understandings that will enable them to adapt and excel in the future. 19
Results of the Year 2009-2010
The Half Hollow Hills Research Program has been used as a model of success for many districts across Long Island, and is a statewide, national and international leader.
■ 1 Intel (STS) Science Talent Search Finalist (top 40 in nation) ■ 1 Intel (STS) Science Talent Search Semi-finalist ■ 7 Siemens Westinghouse Semi-finalists ■ 1 Intel/ISEF(International Science and Engineering Fair) Finalist (awarded fourth- place team project in Grand Awards ceremony) ■ 8 Long Island Junior Science and Humanities Symposium Invited Finalists ■ 23 Long Island Science and Engineering Fair Semi-finalists ■ 13 Long Island Science and Engineering Fair Finalists and Special Awards ■ 22 New York State Science and Engineering Fair Competition Finalists (including 3 top-8 team projects)
The research courses are open to selected accelerated students in grades 9-12 who demonstrate a high level of motivation. These students will have the opportunity to expand their horizons by doing research in any area of mathematics, science, engineering and/or social science. Students will do extensive reading of both general and professional journal articles related to the area(s) of their research interests. Additionally, they will learn the principles of conducting a valid survey, application of statistics, and skills necessary to write and present a research paper at our annual research symposium. Students are directed and supported as they participate in various summer and other research programs here and abroad.
Summer 2010 Student Activities
The results of this program have been outstanding. The program has consistently produced top winners in competitions including the INTEL Science Talent Search (the oldest and most prestigious competition in the USA), the International Science and Engineering Fair, the Siemens Westinghouse Competition, the Long Island Science and Engineering Fair, the Long Island Junior Sciences and Humanities Symposium, and many more.
■ 8 students attending HHH research program at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute ■ 3 students named as Simons Fellows to conduct research at Stony Brook ■ 2 students attending Michigan State HSHSP program ■ 2 students attending SUNY Stony Brook Garcia program ■ 1 student attending Roswell Park research program ■ 2 students conducting research at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories ■ 2 students attending Brookhaven National Laboratories HSRP program ■ 4 students conducting research at local hospitals and medical centers ■ 26 students participating in various programs and mentored lab experiences at SUNY Stony Brook
Many students’ works have been published in science and math journals. A number of students received college scholarships due to their original research results, and have been accepted to the nation’s finest colleges, universities and medical schools.
Technology and Computing Continued Implementation of Web-based Student Information System
records. Through the Parent Portal parents/guardians can view the grades of their middle and high school children online. This system provides real-time grade reporting. Information is available immediately to parents once a teacher has entered grade information into their electronic grade book. Details on viewing your child’s grades can be found on the District website at http://www.hhh.k12.ny.us/page.cfm?p=974967
In order to realize the District’s goals of maximizing student achievement and improving communication, additional components of Infinite Campus, the user-friendly, web-based student information system were implemented this year. This system enables the District to support our students in reaching their full potential by connecting the school community to easily accessible information. Teachers, counselors and administrators have online access to student information including attendance, quarterly grades, standardized test scores and demographic data. Data analysis tools allow authorized stakeholders to easily and independently perform multidimensional, “big picture” data examination and reporting. The Parent Portal provides all parents online access to view their child’s school calendar, schedule, attendance, NY state assessment scores, secondary progress report and secondary report card. The Student Portal, available to all secondary students, enables students to view their own
Instructional Computing Program Information literacy, the ability to find, analyze, evaluate, manage, present and share information, as well as the ability to adapt rapidly to the changes brought about by the availability of information, is a critical skill for 21st century citizens. Students need to become skilled in using the range of technology resources they will encounter in school, at home, in the community and at work. These skills will not come from special computer classes or from “drill and practice” computer use, but through the full integration of technology in their education. 20
As 21st century jobs become increasingly information based, workers need to: ■ Use multimedia tools to communicate and present ideas and concepts orally and in writing ■ Separate the important, relevant information from the vast mountain of available data ■ Quickly and continuously learn specialized information ■ Work effectively in physical and virtual groups ■ The District’s philosophy of integrating technology into the instructional program reflects these issues.
hardware and infrastructure has been incorporated into the instructional program: ■ To facilitate communication and access to information resources, an OC-3 fiber optic network connects all school buildings in a high-speed wide area network. ■ Every classroom is equipped with at least one computer and a printer connected to the District’s wide area network. ■ Every school has a number of mobile laptop carts for use by students and teachers as needed. ■ CD burners, DVD burners, color scanners, digital still cameras and digital video cameras are available in every school. ■ All libraries K-12 are fully automated and provide students and teachers access to a wealth of electronic resources. ■ Card catalogs and circulation process are available electronically in the library as well as from every classroom within each school and from home. ■ All libraries have multiple computer workstations that provide students access to the internet for research purposes, as well as to their own personal documents.
Instructional Computing Technology Integration Plan The overall purpose of the District Technology Plan is to assist in maximizing student achievement by providing students technology tools to support authentic learning experiences by enabling them to find analyze, manage, present and share information and construct new knowledge. Across all grade levels, access to technology allows for: ■ Differentiation of instruction ■ Student use of real-world tools ■ Increased collaboration among students ■ Student acquisition of visual and information literacy skills ■ Student acquisition of basic technology skills ■ Students engaging in higher-order thinking activities ■ Student use of concept maps to help them organize, interpret and use information in new ways ■ Student use of media tools to enable them to express their ideas in creative and engaging ways, allowing them to express processes and complex ideas more clearly and easily than they could with text alone.
Integration of Technology Into the Instructional Program Half Hollow Hills shares the perspective of the New York State Education Department as presented in the curriculum, instruction, and assessment frameworks. Goals that reflect the District’s aims with regard to the use of technology as a tool within the various curriculum areas are: ■ Students will have knowledge, skills and attitudes that challenge them to pose questions, seek answers and design solutions. ■ Students will use a full range of information systems, including computers, to process information and to network with different school and community resources, such as libraries, people, museums, businesses and industries. ■ Students will acquire the knowledge and skills related to the tools, materials and processes of technology. Students will understand the relationships among various disciplines, identify and connect common themes, and apply these themes to other areas. ■ Students will apply the knowledge and thinking skills related to various disciplines to address real-life problems and make informed decisions.
Professional development in the use of technology tools is critical for the integration of technology into the curriculum. The in-service program reflects the philosophy of active participatory learning. Teachers are trained in the mechanics of using the hardware and software through the exploration of tools that enhance and expand the curriculum by including learnercentered, interdisciplinary, constructionist activities. All staff development sessions have been designed to serve as models for participatory learning. As learners, the teachers engage in activities that involve collaborative learning, discussion and independent research.
In order to implement these standards and to support the belief regarding the importance of computer technology, the following
To assist teachers and administrators in expanding their skills and to further incorporate technology into the curriculum,
Technology and Staff Development
professional development workshops are held during the summer and continue throughout the year. A significant array of in-service courses in technology is offered. In addition, teachers attended topic-specific workshop training sessions before and after the school day. All of these courses incorporate current research-based educational strategies regarding best practices of teaching and learning, such as differentiated instruction and attention to multiple intelligences, integrated with the instruction of technology tools to support curriculum.
school teacher for her effective integration of technology into the curriculum to enhance student learning. ■ Half Hollow Hills has been designated an Apple Exemplary Program for the 2009-2010 school year. The District now joins 38 other districts nationwide recognized for this honor. The Apple Exemplary Program is reserved for educational programs that have demonstrated a strong use of technology in education and illustrate “best practice” qualities of a 21st century learning environment. In particular, Half Hollow Hills was cited for the District’s commitment to enhancing educational practice with technology and for providing the requisite support for teachers through professional development.
Program Recognition ■ Western Suffolk BOCES Model Schools Technology Integration Grant of $1,000 was awarded to an elementary
■ Half Hollow Hills Cited by eBoard as the School District With Greatest Number of Viewers. The District was contacted by eBoard, our teacher website host, with the news that eBoards have been viewed more than 1.5 million times since September 2009. This is the greatest number of “hits” recorded in one year by any of the hundreds of school districts supported by eBoard. The company reports that HHH teachers have exemplary websites and the company often uses our District’s eBoards to illustrate best practices in communicating information to parents and students alike. ■ An elementary teacher was the recipient of a $1,000 award from Chase Bank as part of The Chase Multimedia in the Classroom program. This program recognizes projects that are collaborations between teachers and students showing how they can use technology to creatively enhance their learning experiences. It is open to all K-12 teachers and their students in public and non-public schools in the tri-state area and HHH was one of the ten winners.
Special Education includes specific goals, as well as any modifications and/or testing accommodations that the child may need to perform in his or her current setting. Students with disabilities are placed in the least restrictive setting and integrated with their nondisabled peers to the maximum extent possible, based on each student’s individual needs. Currently, 95 percent of our students with disabilities are integrated in our District schools, with 5 percent receiving their education in schools outside the District, such as BOCES and special day and residential schools.
Sheri Keller, Preschool Special Education and Related Services Brenda Friedland, Elementary School Special Education Daniel Helmes, Middle School Special Education Michelle Melfi, High School Special Education Special Education encompasses a comprehensive array of services, instructional methodologies, materials and equipment to provide students with disabilities additional educational support. Special education services are uniquely applied to each individual in purpose, content, delivery, mode, intensity and duration. Such services are recommended by the Committee on Special Education, and an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) is then developed based on a student’s present level of performance and individual needs.
Program Highlights Staff Development Staff participated in the following workshops: ■ teacher mentoring program for new teachers ■ new teacher & probationary teacher training ■ IEP training in IEP Direct ■ implementation of instructional modifications and testing accommodations
The IEP is developed by a multidisciplinary team consisting of the child’s teacher, psychologist, special education teacher, related service providers and input from the parent. The IEP 22
■ integrated co-teaching on-site staff development ■ specialized reading programs: - Horizons Training – focusing on direct instruction in reading - Fundations Training – to build phonetic awareness and sound symbol recognition ■ person-centered planning ■ learning strategies ■ differentiating instruction ■ auditory therapy for the hearing impaired – Speech and Hearing Department Training
parents to meet with building staff to learn about their different roles as well as programs/services available at the secondary level. Parent and Community Workshops and Meetings Informal teas are held for parents of all incoming preschoolers with disabilities to familiarize them with the District’s special education services and CSE process. A PowerPoint presentation of the District’s special education kindergarten program was presented by special education administrators. Informational meetings for parents held by the Special Education Subcommittee of the PTA during the 2009-10 school year included the following topics: attention deficit disorder, stress management, parenting issues, after-school and summer programs, alternative assessments, estate planning for families of children with special needs, and the continuum of special education services
In addition, special education paraprofessionals received in-service training on a series of topics relating to their role in the classroom: ■ Functional Behavioral Analysis (FBAs) and Behavioral Intervention Program (BIPs) ■ social skills training ■ disability awareness ■ positive behavioral support techniques
Assistive Technology A Certified Local Assistive Technology Specialist provides services to students with disabilities requiring assistive service in special education with ongoing student, staff and parent training. In addition, a speech/language therapist provides augmentative communication evaluations and services.
Autism Staff Development/Parent Training The number of students with autism moving from the elementary level to the secondary level has increased. Special education teachers, general education teachers, psychologists, related service providers, and paraprofessionals who work with children on the autism spectrum, and parents of students on the spectrum all received ongoing training. Special education paraprofessionals are provided with in-service training on a series of topics relating to their roles in the classroom.
CSE (Committee on Special Education) Workshop CPSE (Committee on Preschool Special Education) Workshop These workshops were held for parents and staff members of the CSE/CPSE to understand IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), the CSE/CPSE process and their role on this multidisciplinary team.
Bimonthly intensive training sessions were available for parents with children on the autism spectrum. Evening workshops are presented by District behavioral consultants. Topics were varied and parent requests were instrumental in topic selection. Childspecific parent training which is mandated by a child’s IEP is also provided regularly and is quite successful. There is additional comprehensive training for general education teachers planning to have a child with an Autism Spectrum Disorder in their class.
Special Education Resource Center Supporting the needs of today’s students and families, the HHH Resource Library houses print and audiovisual resources. Library staff responds to requests from staff, students, parents and the community. The collection is presently online and can be accessed through the District’s website (www.hhh.k12.ny.us). Services include assistance with resource selection, program planning, information and referral. The collection contains books, curricula, pamphlets, instructional guides, activity books, videos, games, audio cassettes, articles, hand-outs, program models, resource catalogs, professional journals, newsletters, magazines and directories. New materials are being acquired on an ongoing basis. Materials may be borrowed for a two-week period.
Transition Workshops are held for staff to assist students in making transitions. Students gain an understanding of their disability, identify their strengths and weaknesses, and learn to selfadvocate. Person Centered Planning is a major focus in working with students with disabilities. In addition, several work opportunities were offered to the special education students entering ninth grade. Students work on pre-vocational skills in the classroom, go on community field trips and participate in an internship at Applebees, Walmart and Marshalls. The Department of Labor Program offers students summer paid work experience with vocational counselor support. During the school year, students have participated in groups facilitated by a social worker. Group activity includes social skills, work-appropriate behavior, and transitioning to high school and adulthood.
Clinical Sports, Recreational Sports, and Adaptive Swim Program Clinical sports (grades K-2) and recreational sports (grades 3-5) are after-school adaptive sports programs focusing on skill acquisition in gross motor, social, and behavioral development. Adaptive physical education teachers, physical education teachers and paraprofessionals provide positive learning experiences for students with disabilities. The adaptive swim program, held weekly at High School West, is available for our students who receive adaptive physical education as part of their special education program.
Two parent meetings are conducted during each school year, “Getting Ready for High School” and “Getting Ready for Middle School.” These meetings offered the opportunity for 23
Half Hollow Hills Summer Program
Primary Elementary Summer School
The 2010 Primary Summer School for students in pre-K through grade two was held at Chestnut Hill Elementary School from July 6 through July 30. Classes were in session Tuesdays through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. The summer school curriculum was aligned with the New York State Standards. English language arts lessons were specifically designed to target reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. Students explored literature through thematic activities that included journal writing, read-alouds, buddy reading, independent reading and creative writing. Reading comprehension strategies, phonemic awareness and the fundamentals of grammar were also reviewed and reinforced. Hands-on mathematics activities, which incorporated the use of manipulatives, fostered the development of computation and problem-solving skills.
Intermediate Summer School The Half Hollow Hills Intermediate Summer School program held at Candlewood Middle School offers students in grades 3-8 the opportunity to enhance their skills in the areas of reading, writing and mathematics. A dynamic staff, composed of general
education, special education and related service providers from around the Half Hollow Hills District, join together to create a learning community that is Half Hollow Hills. While the primary focus for the program is centered on enhancing reading, writing and mathematics, these disciplines are approached from a cross curricula framework that includes social studies, current events, science, technology and the arts through literature. Students are immersed in a variety reading concepts that cover comprehension skills through modeled texts in fiction and nonfiction. The teachers skillfully plan lessons in writing that enable students to strengthen skills in the areas of organization, story development and response to literature. The math curriculum is taught with foundational skills in mind. The teachers take a multisensory approach to problem solving through the use of manipulatives to answer math questions that are based in real-world concepts. As an extension to the learning taking place each day in the classroom, the students are exposed to a variety of informative assemblies presented by community members that reflect the summer curriculum while addressing summer safety and fun. This educational program functions within a four-day week cycle, which begins on July 6 and ends July 30 operating from 8:45 a.m. to 12:15 p.m., Tuesday through Friday.
If you are interested in registering for a fall 2010 course, please call the continuing education office at (631) 592-3125.
Course Listing ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■
Aerobics/Power Walking Adults in Transition Beginners’ Ballroom Dancing Beginners’ Acrylic or Watercolor Painting Boating Skills and Seamanship Complete Financial Management Workshop Crochet for Beginners Debt-Free Lifestyle Defensive Driving Exploring the Fall Skies Exploring the Power of the Mind Exploring the Winter Skies Fitness First How to Manage Your 401k or 403b Money in Today’s Market ■ How to Pay for College Without Going Broke ■ How to Sell using eBay
■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■
Intermediate Acrylic or Watercolor Painting Intermediate Ballroom Dancing Introduction to Exchange-Traded Funds Introduction to Stocks and Bonds Notary Public Training Course Notary Signing Agent Course NYS Young Boaters’ Course Open-Gym Basketball Preserving Your Wealth in Retirement Spanish II Spanish III Tai Chi/Health Guidance Vinyasa Yoga Weathering the Market Volatility What Should I Do with My Money? Yoga Yuanji Energy Music Therapeutic Dance
The Half Hollow Hills Central School District offers educational, vocational, nonacademic and extracurricular opportunities without regard to gender, race/ethnicity or disability. The individual designated to coordinate Section 504 and Title IX compliance activities is: Dr. Patrick Harrigan, Assistant Superintendent Half Hollow Hills Central School District 525 Half Hollow Road, Dix Hills, New York 11746 (631) 592-3045