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 2013-14 District Activities Calendar. The Activities Pass is available to residents of the White Bear Lake Area School District who are age 65 and older.
- Community Resources - The White Bear Lake Area offers many resources for older adults in the community. Click
here to view a comprehensive list of programs and services.
In Every Issue:
- BearPower - Interested in attending a March Madness free throw shooting contest at the YMCA? Click here for more details. Check out the newest edition of Bear Press here! Stay up to date on all BearPower events on the BearPower Facebook page.
- White Bear Lake Area Educational Foundation - The White Bear Lake Area Educational Foundation, Inc. (WBLAEF) is an independent, non-profit corporation promoting excellence in education in White Bear Lake Area School District 624 schools.
- Student Activities Scholarship - The Jim Honsa, Sr. Memorial Student Activities Endowment provides access to co-curricular activities for students who may not otherwise have access due to financial need. The scholarship, administered by the White Bear Lake Area Educational Foundation, provides up to $200 per applicant and is available for students in grades 9-12.
- Attention 6th - 12th Grade Teachers - The Eugene & Kathleen Johnson Student Enrichment Scholarship is available for any WBLAS 6th - 12th student who would like to participate in enrichment activities such as writing, speaking, journalism, musical performance, and composition. The purpose of this scholarship is to provide opportunities for students that extend beyond the classroom and encourage higher level thinking skills. If you would like a flier to post in your classroom, please contact Lisa Lindvall and she will send you one! Students will be awarded up to $1,000 per individual, with a total amount of $2,000 in grants to be awarded per year. The application is on line for your students to apply at www.wblaef.org. Completed Grant Applications should be sent to WBLAEF at the District Office, 4855 Bloom Ave. Once the $2,000 amount has been reached for the 2013-2014 school year, I will send a note to teachers through the e-newsletter that we are no longer taking applications.
- Visit our website - Visit our website to see all of the grants the White Bear Lake Area Educational Foundation has available for teachers.
- Bleed Orange and Black - Foundation board members also handed out team spirit shirts reading, "Bleed Orange and Black". To find out how to get a team spirit shirt contact the Foundation office at www.wblaef.org. Check out the WBL U-12A girls' hockey team sporting these shirts here!
- Energy Efficiency Program - The Schools for Energy Efficiency® (SEE) is a comprehensive program for K-12 schools to save energy and money by changing behavior throughout the district. Find an info sheet about efficient lighting here.
Support WBLAS Students
- Billy Bonkers and the Chocolate Factory - Students from WBLAS will be participating in this year's Lion's Club Show set to go on Central Middle School's stage March 6-8. For more information click here and to purchase tickets click here.
- Donatelli's take-over experience - Stop by Donatelli's for lunch on February 25 or March 4 and experience the Willow Lane Elementary Fifth-Grader Takeover Experience! Find photos of the experience here. Find a video "commercial" for the experience at the District's Facebook video page.
- Huy Nguyen, social studies teacher at Sunrise Park Middle School, has been named 2014 Minnesota Council for Social Studies (MCSS) Middle School Teacher of the Year. He will be honored at the annual MCSS gala on March 2 at the Bloomington Sheraton. Click here for more event details.
- And the nominees are... - Click here for a full list of nominees for White Bear Lake Teacher of the Year.
- WBLAHS performance of "Once Upon a Mattress" will be honored at this year's SpotLight Showcase on June 8th. Click here for more information or purchase tickets online here.
- We just recently celebrated School Board Recognition Week. Send a "thank you" email to our School Board members for their work on behalf of our students and families here!
Please contact the Communications Department
(651-407-7578) to submit District News, General Information, Opportunities or Awards & Honors for inclusion in future publications.
Winter fun, past and present
In July, 1980 graduate of White Bear Mariner, Jeff Ryan, completed a chronology of the school's 11-year hockey program history. Now, he has distributed over 150 copies of the book as it has been well-received throughout the community.
"I never thought the interest would be as high as it was," said Ryan. Among the copies he has distributed, over 35 have been to coaches and players. Tom Simpson, former head coach of the White Bear Mariner hockey program, contributed to the book by offering team statistics and general comments about the program.
If you are a graduate of White Bear Mariner, have a family member who participated in the program, or simply have an interest in the hockey team's history and would like a copy, please contact Jeff Ryan
In addition to the fascinating history of winter sports at White Bear Lake, our schools offer a wide variety of extracurricular winter activities. For example, on Feb. 9, WBLAHS science teacher, Jacob Montgomery, took a group of students ice fishing on Bellaire Beach on White Bear Lake.
More than 30 people participated in the activity, including some students who volunteered to assist because of their ice fishing experience. This unique winter learning experience was made possible by the support of IMnFishing.com and Eco-Jig Fishing Lures.
A world of culture
Throughout the White Bear Lake Area School District, students are exposed to a world of cultural knowledge, highlighted in the past few weeks by special cultural performances and activities.
For Chinese New Year, two events, China Night hosted by Sunrise Park Middle School and WBLAHS and a New Year celebration hosted by Lincoln Elementary, showcased students' language skills and knowledge of Chinese culture. Both events included students who are taking Chinese lessons performing songs, dancing, and demonstrating Kung Fu. Click here
to view photo albums from the nights celebrating the new year of the horse.
Our students also explored the culture of Germany, a country roughly 4,000 miles from China, in recent events. First, sixth grade German students at Central and Sunrise Park Middle Schools participated in St. Martin's Day activities. The holiday is named after Martin of Tours - a soldier known for his kindness. It is said that he cut his coat in half and shared it with a beggar on an extremely cold and snowy winter night (We know how those can be!). In celebration, students made lanterns and sang about St. Martin and how the lanterns show him the way.
At the high school , German students participated in German Day at the Minnesota Zoo. Students from all over the state interpreted exhibitions of 40 animals. Two groups of students from WBLAHS - South Campus used their advanced German language skills to create a display and creatively present on sea stars and sea otters. The students who presented at the sea star station even received an honorable mention from University of Minnesota German professors.
In addition to the ten students who presented on German Day, 24 students in German classes from North Campus attended the event and enjoyed watching the variety of presentations throughout the zoo.
Unique learning experiences
Willow Lane Elementary School's "takeover" of Donatelli's is continuing to teach groups of fifth-graders valuable life skills. Over the past four Tuesdays, students have been working hands-on as hosts, servers, and cooks at Donatelli's from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. If you would like to witness these young workers experience their first restaurant jobs, the takeover will continue Feb. 25 and March 4 during lunch. Watch a video here
to see the highlights from the first week of students working at the White Bear Lake Italian food restaurant.
As Willow Lane fifth-graders cooked a hearty lunch of life skills, students involved in the robotics team recently completed building their robot for the regional competition on March 27-29 at Mariucci Arena. After six weeks of building, their project is officially hands-off until the competition takes place. This year, the team has two new alumni mentors - Joey Viavattine (2013) and Erik Weigel (2008). Also, thanks to Medtronic's involvement in White Bear Lake's robotics team, students will have the opportunity to get training and certification in robotics in order to strengthen their team and give them a leg up when applying for scholarships and university admittance.
Dancing like a bear
Two events, the 35th Annual Night Club Event and Hugo/Oneka Elementary Schools' Daddy Daughter Dance, proved that WBLAS students, parents, and community members can really cut a rug!
The long-standing tradition of Jazz Night Club at South Campus continued on Feb. 8, with featured guest trombonist Jeff Renier, jazz ensemble director at the University of St. Thomas. The event also offered a silent auction including creative lamps made from old (unusable) WBLAHS band instruments, a dessert table, and of course a night of toe-tapping jazz favorites played by our 9-12 graders and alumni band.
Our youngest dance-enthusiasts had the opportunity to participate in the Daddy Daughter Dance on Feb. 7 at Oneka Elementary School. With about 370 participants, the night was a huge success. The dance, one of the many activities offered by the district's Community Services and Recreation Department, is a favorite "look-up" activity when the Community Education course catalog is published! As a fun twist, the dance was also BearPowered - encouraging dancing with a healthy amount of exercise.
The significance of February
With February being "I Love to Read" month and Black History Month, students have been engaging in a wide range of activities and lessons focused on these topics.
At the high school, the social studies department has focused many lessons on the history of the Civil Rights movement in the US in order to highlight this important facet of history during Black History Month. Although the social studies department incorporates Black History lessons throughout the year-long curriculum, they place a particular importance on teaching in-depth lessons and assigning projects so students have a greater understanding of this major strand of history during the month of February.
At Lakeaires Elementary, students have been going for the gold in their Reading Olympics.
Each class at Lakeaires represents a different country and strives to read for enough minutes each day to receive a bronze, silver, or gold medal. If the school as a whole reaches 190 gold medals by the end of the month, they will be rewarded with a trip to the Vadnais Sports Dome. View the photo album here
Also in February Olympic news, Hugo and Oneka Elementary Schools are having a school-wide passing of the Olympic torch. When the torch arrives in each classroom, the students discuss and decided on one main accomplishment their class has had during the school year.
After the torch has been in each classroom, there will be a school assembly where students will celebrate minutes they have read, books they brought for the Cheer on Reading Book Drive, and food they brought for a food drive. Finally, classes will have their accomplishments read to the entire school.
The White Bear Lake girls basketball team
is currently ranked fourth in the Class 4A division with a record of 21-2. The White Bear Lake High School JV boys swim and dive team
finished its season on Saturday by getting third-place at the Suburban East JV Conference Championship meet. Allison Ternes finished in eighth place at the state meet for Nordic Skiing
. The WBL boys hockey team
won the East Suburban Conference Championship 4-2 over Cretin-Durham Hall.
White Bear Lake Area High School Athletics schedules can be found here.
Please contact the Communications Department
(651-407-7695) to submit Student News for inclusion in future publications.