One of the things I am most impressed with at OQS is the way in which staff, students, and community members work together. There are so many examples of people pitching in when needed and working together to make our school a wonderful place to be. Recently, as part of our behavioral reward system, students at OQS worked together demonstrating expected behaviors to earn yet another school wide celebration. Each class earns 100 alphabits for exhibiting expected positive behaviors (small plastic chips with paws on them) and places them in a large jar. Once the jar is full we get to celebrate as a whole school. So far, this year we have filled the jar three times! Sometimes our celebrations are simply time to have fun together as a whole school by having a few more extra recess minutes or having a dance party in the gym or turning the parking lot into a giant piece of artwork using chalk. To celebrate our third time filling the school jar we had the children go outside with their buddy classes to plant flower bulbs for the spring. This was a great way to have fun with our buddy classes and do something nice for our school by helping to beautify the outside landscaping.
Another example of how people here work together for the benefit of our community is the work done with our own school garden. This garden provides us with not only an abundance of food but also an opportunity for students, staff members, and parents to work together doing something fun while learning valuable lessons. Those that work in our garden grow an appreciation for the environment; learn how to work together in groups; respect nature; increase their knowledge of science; try new foods that are nutritious; eat healthier. We are forever grateful to Paul Sadowski and the numerous parents who volunteer their time to make all of this possible!
I was once again blown away by a fantastic PTO sponsored fundraiser: the first (hopefully annual) crock-pot cook-off. This is yet another example of how people work together. Using produce from our school garden, families prepared crock-pot dishes to be entered into a contest. Many families came to school for a spaghetti dinner, with sauce made only from school garden produce and sampled over 18 crock-pot filled soups, chili’s and other recipes also containing school garden produce. I can honestly say no one left hungry!
At OQS we are fortunate to have such wonderful human resources that allow us to work together in ways that benefit us all!
If you were looking to add your talents to our pool of resources I would encourage you to stop in (or email me) to talk about ways you might volunteer either during the school day or after school. Some ideas might be; spending an hour in our library helping to shelve or check out books, spending some time between 7:45-8:00 in our cafeteria teaching students to play chess, volunteering to go hiking with wolves on the prowl, reading to students, playing an organized game at recess, starting a robotics club or some other idea!