SALTSBURG — As December started, so did many new things on the Saltsburg campus. On Dec. 3, the Thanksgiving break sadly ended. This meant it was time for the Keystone exams to finally start. Also, it was time to explore in the elementary school along with planning and preparing for Battle of the Classes.
The month of December is a busy time at Saltsburg Middle/High School with the winter window of Algebra 1, English literature and biology Keystone exams. Each Keystone exam is comprised of two modules or sections. The district has traditionally tested both modules of a given exam on the same day.
In an effort to allow more opportunities for our students to experience success on the Keystone exams, the school district administered one module per day for each of the Keystone exams. The Algebra I Keystones took place on Dec. 4-5; English literature took place Monday and Tuesday; and biology took place on Wednesday and Thursday.
In the elementary school, the fifth-graders have been raising trout they received. The fifth-graders got them when they were eggs and just recently the eggs hatched. When they hatch they cannot swim very well and just lay in the bottom of the tank. However, they will soon start swimming to the top to get their food.
Unfortunately, most of the trout will not survive because they can’t make it to the top to eat. The fifth-grade teachers hope that out of the 310 eggs they received that they will end up with at least 25 fish. The fifth-grade’s participation in the Trout in the Classroom program was made possible through a unique partnership between Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission and Pennsylvania Council of Trout Unlimited.
This partnership, coupled with assistance from the Blackleggs Watershed Association, was created to introduce Pennsylvania students to Cold Water Resources and their importance to communities. The partnership also provided brook trout eggs, trout food, technical assistance, curriculum connections and teacher workshops each year.
On Dec. 20, the last day before Christmas break begins, we will host our annual event called Battle of the Classes, sponsored by student council and adviser Melissa Milanak. Battle of the Classes has been taking place in our school for more than 17 years. On this day, the different grade levels compete in several different games including relay races, pop the balloons, dribbling, a handstand contest, run the volleyballs and many more. Each class signs up for the event and out of the contestants, six girls and six boys are picked to compete as a team against the other grades and teachers. This day is one everyone looks forward to at the end of every calendar year.
The month of December is a busy one here at Saltsburg Middle/High School. From the Keystones to the battle of the classes to the fifth-grade’s trout project, Saltsburg always has something going on in December. The Christmas break is quickly catching up with us as we try to accomplish many things before 2013 is over.
[PHOTO: Fifth-grade students at Saltsburg Elementary School are participating in the Trout in the Classroom program. (Submitted photo/Saltsburg Elementary School)