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Woodhull’s Vibrant Art Show

Woodhull’s Vibrant Art Show 2017

Woodhull Elementary School’s gymnasium was transformed into an art gallery as art teacher Bianca Hansen presented the annual exhibition of prekindergarten through grade six students’ inspiring work.

The projects drew on multiple inspirations including studies of artists such as Andy Warhol, Claude Monet and Romare Bearden. Other works were interdisciplinary in nature, including tessellations made using math, drawings of fictitious animal adaptations, and large paintings of ancient Egyptian gods. Also featured was a live demonstration of 3-D printing along with works designed by students using computer software and the school’s 3-D printer on loan from BOCES.

Family and friends toured the show led by their very creative student-artists.

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Feeding a Local Need

Feeding a Local Need Photo
Fire Island School District students gave back to the community by helping prepare bag lunches for the Bethany Hospitality INN soup kitchen. 

The organization provides meals to homeless adults and children through their facility in the basement of the Hope Missionary Baptist Church in Central Islip. Volunteers from the INN, an islandwide not-for-profit organization, educated students not only about their tasks but the larger meaning and context of their efforts. 

"It was just the most wonderful, beautiful experience – a life lesson in kindness, volunteerism, and giving back" said Nurse Janet LaViolette, Fire Island's health services director who helped chaperone the trip. 

The arrangements for the inaugural school and INN's collaboration were made through Woodhull PTA member and past-president Janet Oviedo-Torres and Superintendent of Schools Loretta Ferraro.

Keeping Shorelines Clean

Keeping Shorelines Clean Image
Members of the Woodhull Elementary School community helped to beautify the Robert Moses Field 5 as they participated in an island-wide cleanup project of the Fire Island National Seashore.

The students were given supplies by FINS Assistant Superintendent Kelly Fellner and collected debris and refuse along Burma Road up to the National Parks Service checkpoint. On the return trip the group split up and cleared the bay and ocean shores.

The cleanup project was a collaborative effort of the parks service, the Fire Island Association, and the Fire Island Year Round Resident Association. The school’s efforts coincided with the annual national celebration of Earth Day.

2017-18 Budget Presentation


2017 Budget Newsletter


Hands-on Learning

Hands-on Learning Photo
Woodhull Elementary School students in Shannon Rickard's elementary class engaged in hands-on learning about simple and complex machines during a recent visit to the Science Museum of Long Island in Plandome.

Using LEGO Dacta Technics Kits and assisted by a museum instructor, students built their own simple machines and joined them together to produce a complex machine. In the process they observed the workings of the machines, collected data and predicted how they would operate together.

District Wins National Music Award

NAMM Music Award Pic 1
NAMM Music Award Pic 2

For the fourth time in five years, Woodhull has been honored with the Support Music Merit Award from the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation. This award is part of NAMM’s “Best Communities for Music Education” survey, which this year recognized 92 schools and 527 school districts across America for providing outstanding music education for students.

The criteria for the award is determined through a district-certified survey addressing every aspect of school music programs, including funding, scheduling, resources, programming, enrollment, staffing, community participation and opportunities. In all of these areas, Fire Island shines brightly thanks to the continued support and cooperation of teachers, administration, the school board, parents and the community.

This is the 17th year of the NAMM survey, and the fifth year that the Support Music Merit Award has been given to individual schools.

Going Far With Reading

Going Far With Reading Photo
The annual "Pick A Reading Partner" program is in full swing at Woodhull Elementary School, with students reading at home nightly with parents, relatives, and siblings and participating in celebrations of reading at school. This year's theme "Oh The Places You'll Go" draws from the celebrated work of Dr. Seuss.

The PTA-organized event kicked off in March with a schoolwide breakfast. During the event, students received a goodie bag including pencils, reading stickers, and bookmarks. As part of the program, students and staff will participate in a number of reading themed activities, including T-shirt Tuesdays (readable T-shirts), lunchtime karaoke, "PARPcorn" snacks, and a book fair held in the children's section of Barnes & Noble in Bay Shore.

PARP is locally organized by the Woodhull PTA and is part of a statewide PTA campaign to promote reading. Woodhull received an award from the state PTA in 2012 for the quality of its PARP involvement and programming.

Positive Change Makers

Positive Change Makers Photo 1
Positive Change Makers Photo 2
As part of the district’s ongoing commitment to character education, Woodhull Elementary School students recently worked with performer and teaching artist Lyle Cogen during interactive workshops focused on standing up for oneself and others when confronted with social pressures and bullying.

In classrooms, the students spoke candidly among their peers about their experiences and thoughts on the treatment of others. In the exploration of the topic they created short plays and role-play performances to practice positive social skills and responses in a variety of situations.
The program built upon the lessons the students learned last year from Ms. Cogen, when she presented her interactive one-woman show "Sticks and Stones" to great acclaim. The performance used music, drama, and student role-play to illustrate the topics.

Celebrating Dedication

Celebrating Dedication Photo
Four members of the Fire Island School District learning community were honored by SCOPE Education Services for their dedication in helping to make Fire Island the vibrant district that it is.

During the organization’s 16th Annual School District Awards Dinner in March, veteran teacher Karen McNulty received the Teacher Service Award, veteran paraprofessional Dawn Lippert received the Support Service Award, veteran Woodhull PTA member and past president Tara Heslin received the Community Service Award, and veteran Board of Education member and current Board vice president Vernon Henriksen received the Board Service Award. The award recipients' combined service to the Fire Island School District exceeds 80 years, with all four recipients working concurrently for over 14 years, but more importantly the effect of their service on the lives of students has been immeasurable.

SCOPE Education Services is a Board of Regents chartered organization that has provided services to Long Island schools since 1964. The SCOPE awards dinner is an annual event honoring members of school districts across Long Island who have been selected by their respective superintendents for recognition.

A Musical Night

A Musical Night

Although the holiday season had already passed, the spirit of it was alive and well this January as Woodhull Elementary School students performed the musical “Elf,” which had been postponed from its original date of Dec. 20.

The schoolwide musical, based on the 2003 film and the 2010 Broadway musical of the same name, featured all students in every class and delighted the full-house audience. Sixth-grader Jason Philie gave a dynamic performance as Buddy, a human accidentally orphaned and raised in the North Pole as an elf who journeys to New York City in search of his father. Throughout the play, Buddy's charming naiveté made for moments of humor and pathos alike as he tries to fit in with his new family and especially his father Walter, a serious and busy executive played by sixth grader Thomas Brennan.

The students in the primary and early elementary grades cheerily played elves in the North Pole, and employees of Macy's dressed as elves, singing the carol "Deck the Halls" and the pop hit "Jingle Bell Rock." Other lead roles included Aidan Oviedo-Torres as Santa Claus, Malia Wendt as Walter's wife Emily, Jack Brennan as Walter's son Michael, and Joey Coleman as Walter's overbearing boss Mr. Greenway.

After the performance, the school held a ceremony for peace. A large wire sculpture of a dove made by nurse Janet Laviolette was unveiled on the stage and each student in the school placed a written "wish for peace" into it as they read their wish aloud to the audience.

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