WBL Newsletter

Student News
  • In photos: Lincoln Elementary Receives Visit from Minnesota Wild
  • Exploring the future
  • Inspiring minds
  • Winter fun
  • Growing and giving
  • The Week in 62.4 Seconds
  • Activities updates

School Board News
  • School Board Meetings

District News

  • General Information
  • Awards and Honors











School Board Regular Meeting

7 p.m.
December 11
District Center

School Board Regular Meeting
7 p.m.
January 8
District Center

School Board Work-Study Meeting
5:30 p.m.
January 22
District Center


Find the 2016-17 Activities Calendar here. 2016-17 Parent Academic Calendar here. Find the recently-approved 2017-18 Parent Academic Calendar here.


December 10, 2017


In photos: Lincoln Elementary Receives Visit from Minnesota Wild

Student News
Exploring the future
Students practiced their welding skills and connected with professional industry experts at the Manufacturing and Engineering Showcase event at WBLAHS - South Campus. Parents, students and community members were invited to learn about virtual welding, 3D printing and laser cutting. The experience was recently captured in last week's The Week in 62.4 Seconds video. Industry and post-secondary booths filled the hallways allowing families to inquire more about future opportunities. There was also a short presentation about the Manufacturing Pathway. Recently, Industrial Technology Teacher Delroy Nyren wrote an article that was featured on the Advanced Manufacturing website. Delroy explains how two years ago he was tasked to start the new Manufacturing Career Pathway program at White Bear Lake Area High School, and has learned about the many sources necessary to help schools tool up for the future.

High school students enjoyed other opportunities to think about their futures at the Career event. It is a common question many children are asked and one students at WBLAHS - South Campus explored - "what do you want to be when you are older?" Students were able to participate in the annual event to help inform their answers and learn about fields they may be interested in pursuing and post-secondary options. There were roughly 70 speakers who came in to talk with students about a variety of career opportunities. Speakers represented and talked to students about careers such as being a physical therapist, pilot, film and video editor, pharmacist, dentist, special education teacher and chef. The professionals were asked to address a variety of topics including their schooling and training, helpful high school courses, skills and abilities, and what they enjoyed most about their job. The experience was recently captured in this Friday's The Week in 62.4 Seconds video.

Inspiring minds
Give me an "s" leaders shouted with the crowd chanting back "s" in their excitement to spell the word "service." Video after video, students and staff were aiming to inspire others to learn more about how they can make a positive difference in the world. The Willow Lane Elementary community gathered in the gymnasium for the Youth Summit, which takes place once every two weeks and is centered around the district's core values of respect, responsibility, integrity, compassion and service. They have also added gratitude and perseverance to their monthly themes. The Youth Summits are student-led. The experience was recently captured in last week's The Week in 62.4 Seconds video. In this Youth Summit, they discussed the variety of different ways students can make the world a better place.

At Lincoln Elementary, students learned how they can make a difference in their own lives by being active. The elementary students enjoyed a visit and an assembly to get excited about health and fitness with representatives of the Minnesota Wild, which included Nordy and Wild player Gustav Olofsson among others. Two students participated in a hockey drill, with Nordy in the net. At the end of the hockey drill, the students learned Lincoln Elementary gets to keep the floor hockey set to continue to engage in activities to be active. The fun will continue at Lincoln Elementary, as fifth grade students are gearing up to travel to the Vikings' training facility this upcoming week for some exciting STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) lessons. Students will be participating in a program collaborated by 3M and the Vikings to engage in activities around the concept of force and STEM.

Winter fun
The song "Deck the Halls" could be heard in empty hallways after school, as the Holiday Ensemble had their first rehearsal at Sunrise Park Middle School. The experience was recently captured in last week's The Week in 62.4 Seconds video. For the last 10 years at Sunrise Park Middle School, there has been a tradition of offering seventh and eighth grade band students the opportunity to come together to rehearse and perform winter music. There are about 40 kids performing this year as part of the Holiday Ensemble. During this time, they play winter music together and spend time practicing their parts to prepare to show their families and friends. Students look forward to this opportunity every year and are excited for their performance on Thursday, Dec. 21. While teachers are conducting students involved with the Holiday Ensemble, Digital Learning Specialist Troy Strand recently wrote an article that was published in EdSurge about four keys to conducting personalized learning.

It was cookies galore at the White Bear Area Senior Center with the inter-generational Cookie Decorating event. Students from the Early Childhood program and their parents, grandparents and loved ones were invited to join the seniors in the community to decorate cookies. The experience was recently captured in this Friday's The Week in 62.4 Seconds video. Each participant was able to put a special twist on their cookies by either adding frosting or sprinkles to their delicious masterpieces. Families were able to take home their treats, although some participants were too excited to wait to get home and taste the cookies so they indulged at the event. There are other fun events happening at Normandy Park Education Center including Open Gyms Nights where families with children six months to five years can enjoy activities. There will not be class on Wednesday, Dec. 27. Learn more about this opportunity.

Growing and giving
Hugo Elementary has had a "Minnesota DNR School Forest" for a number of years, but some areas are difficult to access because of buckthorn (invasive species) and other trees growing too close together. With funding from the Minnesota DNR, Tim Carroll from Cedar River Horse Logging visited Hugo Elementary to remove several "problem trees." Check out this video to see the tree removal in action. Recently, Tim was able to remove trees that were too close together as well as older, sick, and dead trees. It is important to do this because it promotes a healthier, more diverse ecosystem, allowing more and different kinds of trees to grow. It is also great because it gives students more access to other parts of the school's forest. One Hugo Elementary teacher explained how they look forward to more opportunities for outdoor education.

Second grade students at Oneka Elementary are thrilled to enjoy opportunities indoors where they are preparing to showcase their reading skills for a live audience on Wednesday, Dec. 20 after practicing fluency, pacing, rereading and stage presence. The experience was recently captured in this Friday's The Week in 62.4 Seconds video. They have been given the opportunity to work as a team to decorate a set, plan out costumes and help brainstorm actions to accompany their reading lines. It has been especially fun for the students to work with third grade Teacher Elizabeth Ulmer's dog, Macy, who has been a star of the show. Second grade students also have an opportunity to practice giving by collecting items to be placed in decorated birthday boxes (party supplies, cake mix, small presents, art supplies, wrapping paper and more). On Dec. 20, the students will assemble "birthday parties in a box" to be donated to the Closet in White Bear Lake. These classroom contributions will be used for fifteen plus families around the White Bear community who could use the resources to help throw their own child a birthday party. Oneka Elementary second grade teachers say they are excited to see the process come full circle, as they immerse the students in a fun literature opportunity and dedicate time to help children in their own community.

The Week in 62.4 Seconds
Enjoy The Week in 62.4 Seconds videos highlighting weekly district activities throughout the school year.



Activities Updates
The WBLAHS girls' hockey team was featured in the White Bear Press. Minnesota Wild's mascot Nordy, player Gustav Olofsson and other team reps visited Lincoln Elementary last week to celebrate being active and eating well. Go Bears!

Find a complete list of all WBLAHS Activities, Athletics and Fine Arts here.

Please contact the Communications Department (651-407-7695) to submit Student News for inclusion in future publications.


School Board News

School Board Meetings
School Board meeting agendas, packets, minutes highlights and videos/audio files can be found here.

Date
Type Time
Location
December 11
Regular
7 p.m.
District Center
January 8
Regular
7 p.m. District Center
January 22
Work-Study
5:30 p.m.
District Center


For highlights from the most recent Board meeting, click here.


District News

General Information

Community Services

The WBLAS Community Services and Recreation Department provides a wide range of services and opportunities that enhance the quality of life for all members of ISD 624.
Parent Notices
  • Facebook Engagement Survey - Based on feedback you provided earlier this year, we've tried some new things on social media these last few months - and we'd appreciate it if you'd take some time to respond to this anonymous follow-up survey by Dec. 15. Thank you in advance!
  • WBLTA Teacher of the Year Nomination Form - Please consider nominating an educator who will represent all of the dedicated teachers throughout White Bear Lake Area Schools and compete in the Minnesota Teacher of the Year Program. You may use this form to nominate a teacher. Nominations are due by 4 p.m. on January 8, 2018.
  • Chaperones Needed for Thursday Night Ski - Those interested in chaperoning for the Thursday Night Ski program can receive free ski rental, lift ticket and transportation. Sign up today.
  • White Bear Lake Library Children's Events - Families are invited to the White Bear Lake Library to enjoy exciting opportunities during a Make Your Own Gingerbread House event on Wednesday, Dec. 27 and an Explore Static Electricity event on Friday, Dec. 29. Stay up-to-date regarding offerings and learn more about these events on their website.
  • White Bear Center for the Arts (WBCA) Sponsored Contests - All high school students in grades 9-12 are invited to participate in two annual contests sponsored by White Bear Center for the Arts. Complete information on the WriteNow! High School Writing Contest and the High School Visual Arts Contest and Exhibition are on the WBCA website. Contest deadlines are later this winter, with awards receptions in the spring.
  • Family-to-Family - On Wednesdays, starting on February 7, 2018, community members are invited to attend Family-to-family from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at WBLAHS - South Campus, which is a free 12-week class for family members and friends of individuals with a serious mental illness taught by trained family members. Learn more.
  • 10% Discount - Use promo code HOLIDAY2017 for 10% off your next order of Purchasing White Bear Gear! Sweatshirts, sweatpants, hats and more are available to buy from The Official Shop of White Bear Area Schools.
  • We Are Hiring! - The district is now hiring substitute teachers, Extended Day staff, nutrition services staff, bus drivers, paras and more. Find the online application page here.
  • Stay connected! - Join White Bear Lake Area Schools' social media circles - Facebook and Twitter.
  • Calling all baby models - We're looking for "Born to be a Bear" photos! Email photos to us here and you may find your little one featured in District publications!
Senior Program Updates:

The White Bear Area Senior Center is a program of the White Bear Lake Area Schools Community Services & Recreation Department.

  • FREE Activity Pass for Senior Community Members (age 65+) - White Bear Lake Area Schools offer a variety of activities - home athletic contests, concerts, and theater productions to name a few. Join us! Call the Superintendent's Office at 651-407-7563 to request a FREE Activity Pass for home athletics events and a District Activities Calendar. Find the application here. The Activities Pass is available to residents of the White Bear Lake Area School District who are age 65 and older.
  • Be a Bear! The district currently has many staff openings available! See additional information here, and find the online application page here.

Partnership Updates:

  • BearPower is a community-wide movement helping White Bear Lake area families eat well and be active. For more on this community partner and its upcoming events, click here.
  • The White Bear Lake Area Educational Foundation (WBLAEF) is an independent, non-profit corporation promoting excellence in education in White Bear Area School District 624 schools.
    • Be Someone's Angel this Holiday - The White Bear Lake Area Educational Foundation launched a campaign to fill the shelves at their 'Closet' to help keep children warm this winter. Drop off new winter wear at White Bear Lake City Hall, Vadnais Heights Elementary or Oneka Elementary through Jan. 1. Items of greatest need are sizes 5-18 of the following: coats, boots, socks, girls' leggings, boys' cuffed jogger sweatpants/khakis, long-sleeved shirts, sweaters and sweatshirts or make a tax-deductible donation to WBLAEF's Holiday Angel Program online on WBLAEF's website and they'll purchase needed items. All funds raised support families in need in White Bear Lake Area Schools. Learn more about donating to the Angel Fund and see a flyer.

Support WBLAS Students:

  • Junior Avid Trip Fundraiser - Visit Chipotle in Maplewood between 4-8 p.m. this Wednesday, Dec. 13 to help raise money for the WBLAHS - South Campus Junior Avid Trip. See the flyer here.
  • Be a Bear! The district currently has many staff openings available! See additional information here, and find the online application page here.
  • Bundle Up Bears - Families and community members are invited to the free Bundle Up Bears event on Saturday, Jan. 27 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at WBLAHS - North Campus. Participants will have the opportunity to enjoy music, hay rides, ice skating and food options. Register today

Awards and Honors

  • WBLAHS - North Campus Media Specialist Amy Carney has been presenting about how to most effectively foster 21st Century learning with flexible spaces. Amy has shared the "Creating Future Ready Media Centers" presentation at the Information Technology Educators of Minnesota Conference, twice through a national webinar for Steelcase and just found out she will get to present for the Library Technology Conference at Macalester College in March. Go Bears!
  • Congratulations to WBLAHS - South Campus Chemistry Teacher Cassandra Knutson! Cassandra's collaboration and hard work was recognized because of Cassandra's contributions to the Green & Sustainable Chemistry Workshop for High School Teachers, which was selected for the 2017 ACS-CEI Award for Incorporation of Sustainability into Chemical Education. In March, there will be an Awards Symposium at the New Orleans National ACS meeting.
  • Congratulations to Kristine Abrahamson from Otter Lake Elementary, who was nominated by Lee McGrath, and Huy Nguyen from Sunrise Park Middle School, who was nominated by Steve Asper, for receiving recognition and $100 for their classrooms for their hard work as part of the WBLAEF's Staff Appeal Excellent Educator program.
  • December Recognitions:
    • December 22 through January 1 - Winter Break
Please contact the Communications Department (651-407-7578) to submit District News, General Information, Opportunities or Awards & Honors for inclusion in future publications.