Roscoe School Scene 2015

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Sullivan County's smallest school district is big in heart and ambition, and our latest School Scene gives you the scoop on how Roscoe Central School's faculty and staff are making a difference in every student's life.

Text of Roscoe School Scene 2015

  • SCHOOLA S p e c i a l S u p p l e m e n t t o t h e S u l l i v a n C o u n t y D e m o c r a t


    A look atactivities in theRoscoe CentralSchool District


  • 20996

    Finding dual paths to ensure all students are welcomed, respected

    The high school student wasnew, shy and quiet and hewas being harassed by anotherstudent in the school gymnasium.

    Suddenly, from out of nowhere athird student told the bully in nouncertain terms, You need to stop.

    Roscoe school social worker DawnDorcas relates the story and itsaftermath with delight and empa-thy.

    The bullying stopped, she said,and over time, the victim becamemuch more outgoing, gettinginvolved in sports and even per-forming in the school play. The fact

    Creating a school climate where all studentsmay flourish individually and collectively isthe goal of Roscoes PATHS and Olweus pro-grams. At right, Roscoe sixth graders ZenaVandermark, Collin Garofolo and AaronSteele collaborate enthusiastically andrespectfully on an English project aboutApple mogul Steve Jobs.



    that someone stood up for himserved to empower him to reach hispotential in Roscoe.

    Today, supporting students socialand emotional wellbeing is a bigpursuit in schools, which work hardon creating safe, welcoming,respectful and nurturing environ-ments.

    If a child is getting picked on orteased, Dorcas said, if a child isworried about when theyll get theirnext meal or that theyre cold, or willsomebody be home when they getoff the bus those are the thoughtsthat can distract them during theschool day.

    Roscoe students benefit from tworesearch-based programs that fosterpositive student behavior.

    From pre-kindergarten to sixthgrade, students learn in PATHS (Pro-moting Alternative Thinking Strate-

    gies) how to change behavior andattitudes that contribute to violenceand bullying, how to express andcontrol their emotions, and ways todevelop conflict-resolution strate-gies.

    Each week in their classroom, Dor-cas gives students a 42-minute les-son that, depending on the grade,help students learn about readiness

    and control (Pre-K);feelings, relationshipsand manners (firstthrough fourthgrade); problem solv-ing (fifth grade); andkindness and civility(sixth grade).

    The Olweus BullyingPrevention Program,which Roscoelaunched in October,is designed for pre-kthrough 12th grade.The nationally recog-nized programencourages a whole-school approach toreducing and prevent-ing bullying. The goalis to involve class-rooms, teachers, par-ents and communityin reducing antisocialbehavior.

    Students learn whatbullying is an imbal-ance of power orstrength in which oneperson wants to inflictinjury, discomfort orhumiliation on anoth-er. They learn to dis-tinguish between bul-

    lying and rough-and-tumble play orreal fighting, both of which involve arelatively equal balance of power.

    All students participate in mostaspects of Olweus, said Dorcas,who co-directs the program alongwith Kelly Bullis, the schoolsinstrumental/band teacher.

    At class meetings, conducted byclassroom teachers, and at monthly

    meetings, students and staff learnthe rules to stop bullying: Dont doit, help anyone being bullied,include students who are left out,and report to an adult at school andan adult at home any time bullyingis taking place.

    Eleventh and twelfth gradersengage in ways to involve the widerRoscoe community in the anti-bul-lying efforts, such as asking mer-chants to display informationalsigns in their storefronts. The Stu-dent Conflict Action Team works onthese outreach projects.

    Less than five months old, RoscoesOlweus project is already reapingrewards.

    Its created a common languageamong students and staff aboutwhat bullying is and how to reportit, said Kelly Bullis.

    The other day in class, Dorcasadded, a student stood up firmly foranother, saying to an antagonizer,Thats not how we treat people here.

    Olweus can really make a differ-ence, Dorcas said, and it has madea difference.Bullying, which includes anything from gossiping and threats to

    hitting and kicking, can make children fearful of school or hesi-tant to ride the school bus. They may have trouble concentrat-ing and often do poorly academically as a result of the abuse.

    Published byCatskill-Delaware Publications, Inc.

    Publishers of the

    (845) 887-5200 Callicoon, NY 12723

    March 3, 2015 Vol. CXXIV, No. 74

    School SceneA Look at Activities in the

    Roscoe Central School District

    Publisher: Fred W. Stabbert III Senior Editor: Dan Hust Editor: Frank Rizzo Sports Editor: Ken Cohen Editorial Assistants: Jeanne Sager, Kaitlin Carney, Kathy Daley, Guy Harriton, Allison Ruef, Alex Rau, Matt Shortall

    Advertising Director: Liz Tucker Advertising Coordinator: Sandy Schrader Advertising Representatives: Cecilia Lamy, Barbara Matos Marketing Director: Tera Luty Business Manager: Susan Owens Business Department: Patricia Biedinger, Joanna Blanchard Telemarketing Coordinator: Michelle Reynolds Classified Manager: Janet Will Production Associates: Ruth Huggler, Tracy Swendsen, Rosalie Mycka, Elizabeth Finnegan, Petra Duffy, Nyssa Calkin Distribution: Bill Holmes, Thomas Duffy

    Credits:All photographs and stories for this

    special School Scene are by Sul livan

    County Demo crat Photo grapher/

    Reporter Kathy Daley.

    The Democrat would also like to thank

    the Roscoe Central School District for all

    its cooperation in this project.

    If a child is getting picked onor teased, if a child is worriedabout when theyll get their nextmeal or that theyre cold, or willsomebody be home when they getoff the bus those are thethoughts that can distract themduring the school day.

    Dawn DorcasRoscoe Central School Social Worker |

  • Teach the youngest through interaction, movement and modeling

    Thirty years from now, stu-dents who graduated fromthe Roscoe Central Schoolare likely to remember the teacherswho gave them their start: RebeccaAckerly, Cathy Griebel andBrenda Dahlman.

    The three teach first grade,kindergarten and pre-kinder-garten, respectively and they taketo heart the task of jump startingstudents academically and sociallyso that they succeed in school, col-lege, work and adult life.

    The three of us have lunchtogether every day, said Dahlman.We also meet throughout the dayif we have questions about some-thing, or need extra support, orwant to share ideas with eachother.

    It is very important that certainskills are developed at an earlyage, Griebel pointed out.

    In the lower grades in schools,students gradually become profi-cient in reading, writing, listening,

    speaking and math. For example, they start out in

    Pre-K learning to understand spo-ken language and vocabulary, tohear the sounds that make upwords and to comprehend.

    In kindergarten they work on rec-ognizing and identifying 25 wordsby the time school is over in June,and they learn to make predictionsand form questions when they readstories.

    In first grade, the focus is ondeveloping phonics, decoding, flu-ency, comprehension and writingskills, said Ackerly.

    But the youngest students alsoengage in activities that fostersocial and emotional develop-ment expressing ones self effec-tively, listening attentively andrespectfully to peers and adults,and participating in class andgroup discussions, said Ackerly.

    For example in think-pair-share, students learn a story or alesson, and then the teacher poses

    a question to get them thinking.They first have to think about it,

    then they are paired up and theyshare their thoughts with theirpartner, Griebel said. This is agreat way for students to listen aswell as give their thoughts toanother student.

    As adults, say the teachers, theirstudents will be able to communi-cate ideas and figure out ways todeal with difficult situations allbecause of the communicationskills they are learning now.

    Strategies for keeping the chil-dren energized and engagedinclude brain breaks, dancing tomusic and doing basic exercises.

    When I see the class is getting a

    little chatty or having difficulty sit-ting on the carpet during a lesson,I use a movement strategy, saidDahlman.

    Being social and playing is partof the kindergarten day, addsGriebel. We have center timewhere students can play in a sand-box, at a dollhouse, in a kitchen.They can do puzzles, play withblocks, and play games. This givesthem the opportunity to be socialand learn how to interact withtheir peers.

    Always, the teachers are model-ing for their students revealingto children the proper way to doeverything from using classroommaterials to interacting politely

    Roscoe teachers Cathy Griebel, Brenda Dahlman and Rebecca Ackerly teach, respectively,kindergarten, pre-k and first grade, teaching social and communication skills along withearly academics.


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