Dear Panther Families,
I love to see the changing of the seasons, especially in Florida. The new season usually means the change from super-hot, to the most beautiful weather known to humankind, occurring mid-October. We kicked off the season with our VCS Cambridge Crow at the Viera Voice Scarecrow Stroll & Harvest Festival at The Avenue Viera to promote our amazing middle school curriculum for Language Arts & Global Perspectives, which gets students prepared to succeed at Cambridge high schools like Rockledge. A great big thank-you goes to our PTSO for hosting a fantastic trick-or-treat activity with decorated booths in the gymnasium, and more great activities in the cafeteria and courtyard. Of course, that doesn’t stop us from using the seasonal imagery enjoyed in many other parts of the country, from the changing colors of the leaves, to the winter wonderland that will be displayed on the decorated classroom doors across campus in the coming weeks.
Our annual Character Parade was held on Halloween. It is one of the most anticipated events of the year. Kindergarten, first grade, and second grade students and teachers dressed in the costume of a favorite book character and held up the book as they paraded past proud parents and classrooms for older students to enjoy and make a fuss over.
Another highly anticipated event was our Red Ribbon Week, where we had many fun dress-down days to promote the theme of saying no to drugs. My favorite was Wear Crazy Socks: Knock the Socks out of Drugs. I hope everyone is enjoying the fall season that kicks off the holiday season. Before we know it, will be capped with shouts of Happy New Year! I want to slow it down and just enjoy every second with the precious little ones that you have entrusted to our loving care! I hope you have an opportunity to enjoy the articles and pictures in this newsletter.
Warmest regards for a wonderful Thanksgiving break,
Dr. Julie Cady
Our annual Red Ribbon week kicked off with a dress down day Oct. 23, wear red to say no to drugs and pledge, "We're RED-dy to make a difference." This year’s theme is “Be Kind to Your Mind. Live Drug Free.” Ms. Martin's seventh-grade Global Perspectives class watched a video with a testimonial from a famous athlete who almost threw it all away to drugs and alcohol but turned his young life around in time to shine, and shine a light for others. Get a natural high by pursuing your life's passions was the message. Students also did bell ringers and other reading and writing activities on the perils of illegal drugs and the abuse of prescription drugs, as did all students in the school with grade-level appropriate activities all week. Other dress down days included Wear Bright Colors: My future is too bright for drugs; Wear Mismatched Clothes: Don't let drugs mix you up; Wear Crazy Socks: Knock the socks out of drugs; Wear Western Gear: Give drugs the boot!
The Viera Voice Scarecrow Stroll and Harvest Festival was Saturday, Oct. 21. Our schoolcrow featured our Cambridge Language Arts teacher Mr. Lott as Mr. Scare-a-lott, and his student as Hannah Crow. Thank you to our registrar Mrs. Cooper for designing and building the ‘crow creation, along with her daughter Hannah, and to her assistant Mrs. Lorvick for helping coordinate the project.
Rather than having children dress as ghouls and goblins for Halloween, VCS takes the desire to dress up and turns it into a teaching moment. Students from kindergarten to second grade research a favorite character from a book and dress up as that character, and then each teacher and class forms a parade that goes past parents and many classrooms of older students so they can ooh and ahh at all the clever costumes and characters. "It's a great way to share favorite books and inspire other students to enjoy a book they might not have thought about," said Dr. Cady, whose pre-administrative background as a teacher included language arts and media specialist.
Elementary Art teacher, Mrs. Burley, and her teaching partner, Mrs. Hirsche, strive to teach the proper elements of art, but foremost it must be fun, something students can get excited about. “Wire sculptures with 5th grade was by far the most popular art project,” Mrs. Burley said. “We worked on drawing bodies in proportion to show how you can take basic shapes and transform it into a basic body form then into a body in motion. The wire sculpture gave them a hands-on project to show how the body moves and bring their drawing to life." Fourth grade has been assembling their agamographs, a folded art form that uses optical illusion that changes when you look at it from different angles, for their Veteran’s music program Nov. 2. “I was pleased to see that the illusion actually worked!,” Burley added. Kindergarten and first grade made “smash” bugs by mixing two primary colors together and smashing the paper together. “The joy in their faces when they saw their end result was priceless,” she added. Second and Third grade just finished their Kandinsky circles using oil pastels and blending them with baby oil. “Overall, the students are excited for art and using different mediums,” Mrs. Hirsche said. Students love Art with Mrs. Burley so much, she extended her workday two times a week to offer Art Club to all who wanted it. “We originally were going to only do one day of Art Club, but there was so much interest that I didn’t have the heart to turn down anyone. We took as many students as we could, based on the allowed teacher-to-student ratio. My goal for art this year is to focus on the art elements in many different ways and to make it fun!”
Kindergarten students get the experience of a lifetime when it is their turn for a visit from a Brevard County Fire Rescue unit. Students get to climb aboard a fire engine and explore all the controls and levers from the inside, they are able to see an empty uniform and gear and imagine themselves in it one day. They were able to climb aboard the ladder bucket that enables rescuers to rise hundreds of feet in the air. And just before some of the teachers were going to climb aboard and be hoisted into the air at the end of the visit, the Station 48 ladder truck was called away to an emergency, capping the visit with exciting lights, sirens, and rousting horn honking. It's something that we do every year to acquaint children with real life superheroes.
The VCS PTSO went above and beyond to create a wonderful experience for families at the Fall Festival. Thank you also to generous families who donated bags of candy to our hungry ghouls in the front office so that students could Trick or Treat at about 20 elaborately decorated and themed booths winding through the gymnasium. Families also enjoyed indoor activities in the cafeteria, including a very popular wind machine in which up to four students at a time could grab at fun flying objects. The fun and games continued in the courtyard, where Domino's Pizza provided food for our National Honor Society fundraiser, and food trucks topped off the menu.
Every year, schools take part in the National Walk to School Day to promote small steps to improving health, such as walking to school. While VCS is a STEAM-focused (Science, Technology, Education, Art, and Mathematics) school, we also value physical education greatly. Our sports teams routinely take the top prizes in district competitions. So, when it comes to the Walk to School event, our families turn out in force. Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey, who has been a champion of VCS since before he pulled the first winning ticket from the lottery to determine who could attend here the first year, walked with us from among the 70 public schools he could have chosen. We are proud of this and the fact that he and his canine partner, Junny the bloodhound, joined him to add smiles on faces big and small.
Per F.S.S. 1022.33(9)(p)2. Each charter school’s governing board must appoint a representative to facilitate parental involvement, provide access to information, assist parents and others with questions and concerns, and resolve disputes. Viera Charter School, Inc., the governing board for Viera Charter School has appointed Steve Muzzy as the representative for your student’s school. The governing board representative for Viera Charter School may be reached at Liaison@vieracharterschool.com.
Visit the Viera Charter School PTSO website where you can sign up for their monthly newsletter, shop for spirit gear, find their calendar of events, volunteer information and much more. Scan the QR code below to view the latest issue of the PTSO Paw Print Newsletter.