News & Events
What’s Happening in Our Elementary School?
Welcome back to our amazing students and parents! Wow, we have missed you! Elementary had a very eventful and busy first month! The students were eager to learn and participate in new activities. Elementary has been able to grow and expand this year, as we are starting to take part in cooking classes every Thursdays after silent reading time. The students have been so eager and engaged in learning how to cook healthy snacks. They have also learned how to become scientists and use the process of the scientific method when conducting an experiment. Elementary was able to do three big science experiments this month which included melting candy, observing how Orbeez grow, and also learning how to collect data with pennies. The students had a lot of fun this month! We want to give a HUGE shout out and welcome to Mr. Andrew, who has done an excellent job working with the kids! We are excited for the new school year!
What’s Happening in Our Middle School?
Middle school has had a busy start to the new year! Our first week of school, we worked on making sensory items for our self regulation techniques. The class really enjoyed using Orbeez! In history, we are learning about Arizona History and all the adaptations from our people and the land. We had a class project to bring in an item or photo describing our family histories. In science, our focus has been engineering. We have built many structures using limited items and focusing on how to work around ‘constraints’.
Aurora Day School Transitions Program is off to a great start this year! We’ve successfully integrated a P.O.S. (Point of Sale) System into our student coffee shop! Our students are taking orders using Android tablets and a small wireless receipt printer, similar to what you may see at small vendors and restaurants. The Transitions Program’s next project is the ADS Print Shop which will allow student employees to express their creative side through manufacturing custom print items such as Autism Walk t-shirts, custom mugs, banners, vinyl stickers, and much more!
What’s Happening in Our Elementary School?
The month of May has been fun and eventful. Our amazing students have been engaged in amazing projects for science and social studies for the last part of the year. In science, the students learned about how volcanoes erupt. They built a 3-D model of a volcano out of papier-mâché and named their very own volcano. Once their models were complete, they were able to see their volcanoes erupt by using vinegar and baking soda to produce a chemical reaction. As we closed up our volcano unit, Ms. Emmy prepared a very interesting social studies lesson. The students traveled back in time to learn about the history of Native Americans and the way they lived many years ago. Ms. Emmy and Ms. Joselin worked together to have the students construct a model of a Native American teepee. The students had a great time constructing their 3-D models, and it’s been a great way to end the school year. Ms. Joselin, Ms. Emmy, and Ms. Annessa want to wish everyone a wonderful summer! We will miss you all!
The R.I.S.E. Classroom: May 2017
May is a bittersweet month for as, as we’re excited for summer break, but sad to leave our friends and staff. Our students became scientists this month, experimenting with galaxy slime, rainbow bubble snakes, lemon suds eruptions, and how to make popcorn on a cob. We also participated in a school-wide STEM project with the theme of robotics, so we built robot hands!
Robot hands can be extremely useful. The group e-Nable uses 3-D printers to make custom-fitted plastic “RoboHands” for children who are missing fingers. These artificial hands work very much like the cardboard version we made (pictured here; see more pictures from our monthly activities in the Photos tab). Cables connect the fingers to the RoboHand’s wrist. When the wearer bends his or her wrist, the fingers close. Straighten the wrist and the fingers open.
Our version of a robotic hand was made from cardstock, tape, straws, and string. The completed version allowed us to pull strings that would curl the fingers inward!
Happy summer from the R.I.S.E. classroom to you!
Middle Schools News: May 2017
The middle school has been focusing on engineering with math and science this month. We have made robotic hands, levels, and pulleys. In math, we learned about geometric vocabulary and created a geometric start. We have also utilized our math skills to take a walk to a local gas station and purchase slushes.
Before the weather gets too hot, we will take a hiking trip to Thunderbird Conservation Park. As we progress to the end of the year, we’ve been focusing on some energy exercises. We complete yoga each morning, followed with breathing exercises. We imagine that all of our worries about the new school year are placed in a box. This box is attached to a red balloon that carries all our worries away. The students have responded very well to all these strategies and hands-on projects!
Our Special Olympics Team: Track & Field
The Aurora Day School Special Olympic team has done it again! Our athletes participated in track-and-field on Thursday, March 30, 2017, and what a memorable day it was, with both boys and girls competing in some amazing events.
The girls took home the gold in the 100-meter race, while the boys dominated the running long jump. Miranda won her first gold medal in a racing event and shared an awesome moment with her coach and other teammates. Hailey took home the gold in the women’s shot-put event, and Claire showed how far she could throw in the women’s softball throw competition.
Avery displayed his running skills by winning gold in his heat for the 100-meter relay, while Donovan and Aidan excelled in speed and height in the running long jump event. Isaiah and Andrew both were able to show us their amazing throwing skills, with each of them winning gold in the male softball throw.
The team really worked hard this year and will be back in the 2017–2018 school year to take on new sports and events! Ms. Joselin and Mr. James would like to thank all the staff, parents, and athletes for their amazing support this year!
See more pictures in the Photos tab.
Junior High News
In the junior high, we continued our lesson on adjective clauses and the kids wrote short stories, utilizing adjective clauses. In science, we are still centering our learning on the planet Mars, in particular the recent and future exploration thereof. The kids created a Curiosity rover poster, along with a corresponding report. In social studies, we are continuing to learn about the Civil War, creating dioramas depicting the deadliest day, when both armies suffered at least 23,00 casualties at the Battle of Antietam.
High School News
Middle School Happenings in March
R.I.S.E. in March
In March, we celebrated Dr. Seuss’s birthday by reading his great works all month long. We also participated in activities that corresponded with his books. Our favorites were The Lorax, because we got to wear funny mustaches, and Green Eggs and Ham, because we made green eggs and ham (with pretzels, white chocolate, and green M&Ms)! The R.I.S.E. classroom started a unit on plants, learning how they use light, water, and carbon dioxide from the air to make their own food through a process called “photosynthesis.” Plants give off oxygen during the process. The bubbles you see are actually filled with oxygen!
Monthly Elementary School Blog: Elementary Got Talent!
The Wonderful World of Animals
Our elementary students had a fantastic February learning about different species of animals and their adaptations. The students were able to complete their animal projects and draw their favorite animals to display at Open House. The students also were able to go to the Phoenix Zoo and learn about new and exciting animals that live in the Arizona desert!
Additionally, the students completed their egg drop experiments. They became young engineers as they learned how to create a “safe net” that would protect their egg from breaking after being dropped from the roof of the school.
Junior High News
For the month of February, our junior high learned and experienced numerous things. For one, we participated in the school egg drop contest and had four eggs that did not break! Great job!
Tony Sloat had this to say about the various academic activities in class this month:
“Our class created a punctuation poster that centered on independent/dependent clauses. We split up into groups and we taught each other how to form different sentences consisting of simple, compound, and complex formats. We also learned about the specific layers of the earth’s atmosphere: troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, and thermosphere. And the junior high also studied about the circumstances that led to the secession of the South that ultimately brought about the Civil War. We broke down the meaning/purpose of the Emancipation Proclamation and how it has impacted our country.”
The History of the Navajo Hogans
Our middle school classroom learned the history of Navajo hogans and created their own hogans and tepees for display. Great job!
Early on, when Navajo people lived in the northern part of North America (modern Canada), they lived in small houses they called “hogans.” You built a hogan by propping a few poles together and covering the surface with branches, leaves, and mud.
Students of the Month
Richard always does an excellent job staying on task. He is an extremely hard worker and is ahead of schedule earning his high school credits.
Jada is always willing to assist staff by volunteering around campus. She has an excellent attitude and is extremely helpful to teachers and administrators.
Alisdair is a steady and committed student, day in and day out. He is organized and follows through with his work. His positive and open attitude has helped him build his knowledge and investigate new ideas. He has the confidence to share connections he is making. He does an excellent job setting goals for himself and then works very hard to meet those goals.
Miranda was recognized as Student of the Month for her efforts in controlling her anger and working hard in all academics. She made gold level and is being able to maintain it. She is working hard on her math and language arts assignments. Miranda is a pleasure to work with!
Anna earned Student of the Month because she exemplifies gold-level behavior, being respectful to staff, peers, and herself. She also volunteers to help others, leading by example. She is enthusiastic about learning and loves to laugh!
High School News
February Happenings in the High School
High School 2 has been working with equations for math instruction. Along with some stressful moments, we have had some great successes and progress, giving the students plenty of time to practice in order to grasp new concepts.
In language arts, the students are working on the writing process. They are utilizing IXl to practice grammar and punctuation and are showing amazing progress!
One of our students, Carter M., is acting as our behavior coach, utilizing the phrase: “If you can’t be positive, then at least be quiet.”
Our culinary team made some delicious salsa to serve with chips in celebration of our middle school teacher, Ms. Dannessa, having a beautiful baby girl!
A Fantastic February for R.I.S.E.
In February, we celebrated national holidays and observance days, including Groundhog Day, Valentine’s Day, and Presidents’ Day, accompanied by educational activities that corresponded with them. The R.I.S.E. classroom also took a field trip to the Phoenix zoo with the elementary classroom! Students participated in various science experiments, such as dissolving candy hearts into different liquids (water, vinegar, and soda) and making thunderstorms in a cup. Wow, we had a lot of fun this month!
What’s Going on in February?
This month, the middle school has been preparing for our open house. We have been learning about animal adaptations. We participated in a project that allowed us to make our own form of camouflage. The students selected an area in the classroom and colored a moth to blend in with that area. The students walked around the classroom and tried to find all the camouflaged moths. In math, the students have been working hard on organizing data and utilizing charts and graphs.
R.I.S.E in January
Coming back from winter break, we did a lot of review work to make sure our skills were still sharp. We starting learning about waves of sound and how vibrations travel through the air. We made paper cup telephones to test the theory. The R.I.S.E classroom also participated in a school-wide egg drop. We celebrated the life of Martin Luther King Jr., and as a fun activity, made homemade play dough with cornstarch and conditioner! See more pictures of our classroom activities in the Photos tab!
Middle School January News
Our middle school students have been working hard on their creative writing. We set new goals for the year and monitor our progress weekly. We have also been learning about animal and plant classifications, as well as the life cycles of various plants and animals. Next up, the class will be participating in a school-wide egg-drop project. The students have developed their own experiments, in which they are to keep their egg from cracking when it drops from the school. They’re really looking forward to putting their theories into practice!
R.I.S.E. in December
December was quite a month! We participated in some exciting science experiments that developed ideas on how water is a powerful force that reshapes the earth’s surface. We also did our monthly iReady testing and decorated Christmas crafts. The R.I.S.E. classroom participated in its monthly horse therapy and got to try dog therapy. Lastly, as a special treat, we enjoyed pizza for Fun Friday! Happy Holidays from the R.I.S.E Classroom!
December Middle School Craze
This has been a very busy month for the middle school! We started studying forces and motion and liquids and gases in science and participated in a couple hands-on projects. For example, we conducted an experiment with Mentos and soda to see the reaction between the two components using various amounts and liquid types. We created a visual aid to help us remember what a solid, liquid, and gas are using magazine clippings. In math, we made geometric shapes and started classifying the shapes as either two-dimensional or three-dimensional. We made an example of each using toothpicks and marshmallows. We learned how many vertices, angles, and faces each shape has. To finish out the year, we’re holding many holiday activities and completing our Christmas Food Drive!
Ms. Joselin’s Elementary Class
Middle School News
November has been a busy month for our middle school! We did our best to get the community involved and collect food items for the Thanksgiving Food Drive. Students created flyers and walked around nearby neighborhoods to notify our community about ways they could assist us. As a result, our food drive turnout was spectacular. We supplied nine families with various canned goods, whole turkeys, fresh biscuits, stuffing, cranberry sauce, loaves of bread, and some holiday favorites. All the students played a big part in shopping, packing, and gathering these items for our families in need. We are continuing to work hard to prepare for our Christmas Food Drive.
In the area of academics, we have been staying on top of our basic skills, and some students have advanced into double-digit multiplication. We are also utilizing our Wonders curriculum for language arts.
In the R.I.S.E classroom during the month of November, we worked on various Thanksgiving activities. We made Thanksgiving paper bag books, played Thanksgiving bingo, and watched a Thanksgiving play. We also worked on our turkey arts and crafts! We participated in horseback riding therapy and had a canned food drive. We decorated our donation box in an outer-space theme and collected an assortment of nonperishable items. Overall, it was a great month, and we cannot wait to see what December has in store for us!
Annual Autism Walk
Open House Success!
Our fall open house was a wonderful success, with an amazing turnout from parents, guardians, and friends. Attendees were able to see students’ classwork and artwork, sign up for the PTA, and get an introduction to our new curriculum and transitions program. As refreshments, families enjoyed grilled hot dogs, catered BBQ sides, freshly popped popcorn, chips, and cookies. We look forward to our next open house on February 24, 2017!
Students of the Month
Connor is a third-grade student in Ms. Ortiz’s classroom. He has an amazing sense of humor and has shown a great deal of progress at Aurora!
Julian is a fourth-grade student in Ms. Ford’s classroom. He brings laughter and joy to any room he enters!
Aurora Day School Honored
Write Track Therapy (http://thewritecamp.com/therapy/), based in Arizona, provides contracted therapies to students in the Phoenix metropolitan area. The organization has been working with Aurora Day School students, staff, and families since 2007. Over that time period, we have seen our students attain significant academic and behavioral achievements. As a result, our school has been recognized by Write Track Therapy as the recipient of the Appreciation Hydration School Award for the fall of 2016.
Click here to read the entire feature on Aurora Day School!