November 16, 2012

Student News

Stocking up


This year's White Bear Lake Area High School Student Council set a new record, collecting 15,496 pounds of food during their annual food drive. Weighing in at more than 2,000 pounds heavier than last year's total, the nearly 7.75 tons of food will be donated to the White Bear Lake Area Emergency Food Shelf and Second Harvest Heartland. An additional $2,401.66 (the equivalent of another 13,000 pounds) also was collected during the fundraising endeavor.


Student Council members engaged in a variety of fun activities to collect supplies including special themed days during the week of October 29th - Meaty Monday, Two-Can Tuesday, Wash-Up Wednesday, Thrifty Thursday, and Fruits and Veggies Friday. Lunchtime activities also were on the agenda, including a can stacking contest, lunchtime karaoke and a saltine eating contest - all in the name of raising awareness of hunger in our community. Students also participated in the White Bear tradition of the Halloween Trick-or-Can activity, going house-to-house to collect donated canned goods rather than candy traditionally collected on the evening.


When all was said and done, Student Council members went to the White Bear Lake Area Emergency Food Shelf on November 9th, waking up early on their day off, to unpack the boxes and stock the shelves. Liz Bridgman, South Campus' Vice President said, "The Food Drive is a great way to challenge students to think about the problems in our community, actively do something to change them, and help people."


Honoring our veterans

Hugo and Oneka Elementary School students celebrated Veterans Day this year by preparing care packages for active soldiers. Students and volunteer members of the Hugo Yellow Ribbon Network worked to create care packages for the 250 soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 257th Military Policy Company deployed to Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan.


The boxes were filled with treats listed on soldiers' wish lists. Food items included popcorn, beef jerky, cookies, nuts, chips, coffee, power bars, drink mixes. Items that fell into the category of "necessity" included toiletries and socks, while novelty items included books, magazines, games. Very special, handmade fillers were the cozy handmade scarfs knitted by the Soaring Eagles Chapter of Blue Star Mothers of America. 


Of the more than 1,500 pounds of supplies shipped, perhaps the most meaningful pieces come directly from the students. Included in each package is a metal box adorned with art and handwritten messages of appreciation from the students of Hugo and Oneka Elementary Schools. Their messages of thanks are sure to put smiles on the faces of many troops.



Walking for a cure


Students from Central Middle School laced up their shoes, pulled on layers of pink clothing and participated in a Walk for the Cure on November 2. Currently in its sixth year, the event was sponsored by the National Junior Honor Society to increase awareness for cancer and raise money to support future research. Students and staff members worked together to raise $1,166.



Many individuals helped make the event special, including members of the community who generously provided cookies, pastries and stickers to participants. To keep the beat, the White Bear Drum Line made an entertaining appearance. This was the second year the high school band members have participated in the event.


The numbers involved with the event are impressive. Members of the NJHS created pink ribbon-and-bead bracelets for each of the students and staff members who participated in the walk, with the boys and girls tying 1,500 bracelets for the event. The event's history is a successful one, as the students have raised more than $1,000 every year of the walk.


Technology initiatives

Otter Lake Elementary School recently played host to many exciting projects to boost Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education in the classroom. Earlier this month, Otter Lake students explored the newly created Environmental Trail to participate in the third annual Tech or Treat - formally known as The Tech Trek, to raise funds for innovative student technology. In past years, the event has helped support the purchase of mobile laptop carts, iPads, and SMART Boards in every classroom. This year's Tech or Treat will help fuel continued advances in student access to technology.


Technology is no stranger in the classrooms of Otter Lake. The intermediate wing, including students in grades 3-5, has been experimenting with Google Chromebook laptops as a new tool to promote STEM education. The laptops are currently used almost every hour of the day and are in such high demand that an additional set  will soon be on its way.


Another creative STEM activity took place on Halloween as 3rd and 4th grade students participated in a Vocabulary parade. Students worked to craft their costumes based on a STEM-related word. Batteries, fire, computers, and scientists were all apart of the lineup that crossed the stage as teachers read off the definition for each costume.


Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

White Bear Lake Area Schools recently played host to 16 students and two teachers from Leipzig, Germany. The District's partnership with Brockhaus Gymnasium is part of the German-American Partnership Program (GAPP). 

A favorite activity of the group was a "homegrown" one. Students enjoyed a tour of the White Bear Lake Police Department, given in German by a current WBLPD sergeant who participated in the GAPP program as a WBLAHS student in 1996. The students were able to check out a holding cell, observe the dispatch area, witness a few "take-down" methods, and see the squad cars "up close and personal." After their time at the police department, the students toured the Fire Department, where they had additional hands-on experiences that included climbing in and around the fire trucks and checking out the specialized equipment. A City Hall tour, with Mayor Jo Emerson providing a welcome and an overview of the American voting process, capped off the entertaining morning.

The group visited other Minnesota sites as well, including the Mall of America, Duluth, the Capitol, and museums and the "usual" sights. Because of the time of year they visited, the German students enjoyed the unique opportunity of experiencing Halloween - even trying a corn maze - and the American election season. 

The German visitors commented that American teachers were very friendly and approachable, and that they seemed to make learning fun. The variety and freshness of school lunch options also was noticed and appreciated by the guests. On the homefront, the students reported they were pleasantly surprised at the overall friendliness and hospitality of their American families, most of whom were families of WBLAHS students who are studying Germanin, which was in contrast to the impressions they had gathered previously when watching American movies and TV shows. They also were amazed that so many Americans paid attention to and participated in the elections. Political yard signs were new to them.  

Next summer, the White Bear German students accompanied by Frau Kotilinek and Frau Booth will visit Leipzig and experience Germany firsthand.


Activities Updates

Girls' Cross Country runner Bethany Kozak, junior, competed in her 3rd State Cross Country Meet, finishing 8th with a time of 14:21 and earning All-State Honors. Junior Allison Ternes competed in her 4th State Cross Country Meet and finished 95th with a time of 15:29. Fourteen Girls Swim and Dive team members -  the most in three years - participated in section finals. Bears Bowlers won the conference competition. The Mountain Biking Teamcompeted in the state championships and finished seventh in the state. After a great run at the section meet, the Boys' Cross Country team placed 11th in the state meet. 



White Bear Lake Area High School Athletics schedules can be found here.

A comprehensive 2012-13 District Activities schedule can be found here.

Please contact the Communications Department (651-407-7578) to submit Student News for inclusion in future publications.

School Board News

School Board Student Recognition

Before the November 12, 2012 Regular Meeting, the White Bear Lake Area School Board Recognized the following students:






To see larger versions of the photos, "like" the District on Facebook.


School Board Meetings

Upcoming meetings

Date Type Time Location
Monday, November 26 Work-Study 5:30 p.m. District Center Room 201
Monday, December 10 Regular 7 p.m. District Center Community Room 112
Monday, January 14 Regular 7 p.m. District Center Community Room 112
Monday, January 28 Work-Study 5:30 p.m. District Center Room 201

District News

  • Turning Seasons
  • General Information
  • Opportunities
  • Awards and Honors

Student News

  • Stocking up
  • Honoring our veterans
  • Walking for a cure
  • Technology initiatives
  • Sprechen Sie Deutsch?
  • Activities updates

School Board News

  • School Board Student Recognition
  • School Board Meetings


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