News & Events
November Waffle Breakfast
Sierra Academy does a monthly waffle breakfast to celebrate our Student of the Month winners. Monthly themes that students work on include items such as: integrity, respect, empathy, kindness, determination, self-advocacy, leadership, etc. Sierra Academy also honors our students monthly for Perfect Attendance for the entire school year. Students have been working hard to be here when they can! Winners for this get a monthly ice cream sundae party! Students get a chance to show off their accomplishments in a monthly school wide award assembly.
2017 Turkey Trot
This years annual Turkey Trot was accompanied by the inaugural Turkey Bowl at Sierra Academy. The students completed a one mile trot through the school. All of the students gave their best effort and had fun breaking the tape at the finish line. The third place finisher this year was Nick, second place was Jake, and our first place finisher this year was Julio. All participants worked very hard and it was great to see everyone have so much fun first thing in the morning. The afternoon was the setting for the inaugural Turkey Bowl. It was a closely contested game between all the football players. The game ended in a tie, 13-13. The suspense will surely carry over into next years Turkey Bowl.
This year the Act team in room 301 hosted a Thanksgiving feast and invited the rest of the transition program to join in for all the fun! Our students were asked to set the table for 27, serve the food, and do the dishes. Our guests enjoyed turkey with all the fixings, pumpkin pie served after the performances that afternoon, and great friends. Our students used their best manners during the meal and lively conversations could be heard around the table. Awards were given for the student with the best manners and even an award for the fanciest use of etiquette. We want to thank all our students and staff for doing such a great job with the organization and planning of our transition Thanksgiving Feast.
Sierra Academy Wolves
This season the Sierra Academy football team faced adversity and growth. The team played in a 5 on 5 league, and had to completely change the way they played the game. The students who participated all made great adjustments to the new rules, and the team made the playoffs again this year. The Sierra Wolves were led by captains Tony, Alex N., and Nick. We are looking forward to basketball season!
2017 Harvest Festival
This year our school celebrated the 2nd annual Sierra Academy Harvest Festival Cook Off and Costume Contest! Each class prepared a festive dish that celebrated the joys of Halloween and the autumn season. Awards were given out to classes for creativity, presentation, taste, and effort! We want to thank all students for doing such a great job coming up with unique and interesting cooking projects. Following the cook off, students participated in a school-wide costume contest! We saw a plethora of different costume ideas ranging from scary to funny to ironic. Again, thanks to all students, staff, and parents who helped make this year’s 2nd annual Sierra Academy Harvest Festival Cook Off and Costume Contest such a fun event!
Red Ribbon Week at Sierra Academy
Sierra students celebrated National Red Ribbon Week by focusing on healthy choices. This is an exciting, high-energy week which allows us to draw attention to the importance of living a healthy lifestyle. We discussed topics such as: getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet, exercising on a regular basis, stress-reduction strategies, having good hygiene, and engaging in positive social relationships. We also talked about ways to include these things into our daily lives that were both healthy AND enjoyable! After all, making healthy choices should be fun!! Speaking of fun…perhaps the best part of Red Ribbon Week for the students was getting the chance to dress up in attire related to the daily themes (i.e. sports, crazy socks, tie dye) and participate in a variety of heart-pumping activities during Sierra Strong. It was a very upbeat, positive week dedicated to being healthy and happy!
Sierra Academy Presents A Fall Visual Arts Production
Our Sierra Production of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving was a huge success! The students worked hard memorizing their parts, building props and making costumes. The production also included a wax museum where students presented a famous figure and dressed the part. Additionally, our dance squad performed a choreographed number! Thank you to our cast and crew for all their efforts!
Can Food Drive: November 1–17
It is that time of year again for the. food drive! Each class will be participating to collect cans for the San Diego Food Bank. We will have collection bins in each classroom from November 1–17th. There will be incentives for each student who brings in cans as well as one winner per class for bringing in the most cans. Your donations are greatly appreciated!
Can Drive Rewards:
1–10 Cans = One day free snack shop
10–20 Cans = One day homework pass
20+ Cans = School pizza party
New School Blogs!
Sierra Academy is delighted to announce the launch of two new blogs for our community:
“Sierra’s Food Corner” contains cooking information from our speech and occupational therapy groups. The blog is set up for parents and students to have access to our wonderful recipes. We will be posting weekly recipes of dishes that were made, along with pictures of the final dishes class opinions on them.
Check out the blog at: sierrafoodcorner.blogspot.com
“Sierra’s Peer to Peer” is a monthly blog containing information on the Program for the Education and Enrichment of Relational Skills (PEERS) groups. The blog contains monthly postings about PEERS and handouts that students were given.
Check out the blog at: sierrasp2p.blogspot.com
Sierra Academy: Student Government
Sierra Academy’s 2017-2018 student government election week was a success! October 9 -13th the candidates had the opportunity to make posters and verbally spread the word to their peers about voting. During the week they also had the chance to practice their speeches, which they wrote during previous student government meetings. On Friday, October 13th all eighteen candidates entered the auditorium early in order to practice their speeches one last time before giving their electoral speeches in front of the all students and staff of Sierra Academy. Speeches were a success! Not only did the candidates speak beautifully, but the rest of their peers cheered everyone on. It was a very positive environment. Throughout the day, the students of Sierra Academy had time to think about who they wanted to vote for. At 1:15pm the voting booths opened and each student voted for their peers in student government. It was heartwarming to see how serious each and every student took the voting process. With that, came the results!
Vice President: Alex
Technology Representative: Michael
Rally Commissioner: Jake and Caleb
Mr. Webb: Sonny
Mrs. Bassett: Andrew
Ms. L: Andres
Mr. Brooks: Serena and Josiah
Mr. Storniolo: Kianna
Career Day 2017
Sierra Academy’s 2017 Career Day was a huge success! We had six speakers this year, including a mortgage banker, a cabinetmaker, an FBI agent, a librarian, a Navy boatswain’s mate, and a representative from the Regional Center. Students rotated from room to room to hear the different speakers and were asked to fill out a fact sheet on the three careers they were most interested in. Our students proved to be great listeners who posed insightful questions, and everyone had a great day!
Sierra Theater: Peter Pan!
Sierra Academy’s spring theater production was Peter Pan. Staff and students spent months rehearsing and making scenery for the play. Almost the entire student body elected to participate, and everyone worked hard to memorize their parts! Our Tap Dance Club opened the play with a dance to “Do You Believe in Magic,” which was a lot of fun. Sierra families enjoyed the live performance, and everyone had a great time! Check out pictures from the event in the Photos tab.
February 8, 2016
Transition Field Trip
Sierra Academy’s ACT program took a field trip to Belmont Park to play laser tag. All of the students participated and really enjoyed their day learning different strategies to help their team win. Many of our students discovered that working as a team would help them win, while working individually proved to be more difficult. The students also enjoyed playing against the staff, especially when the students won almost every time. The students also received a card with money to play arcade games to earn tickets that they traded for prizes. This was a great way to practice our money-handling skills, even though it was with tickets. Overall, this field trip was a great way to spend a Thursday and a great event for our students!
February 18, 2016
Tap Dancing Club
The Sierra Academy has started a new club that meets once a week to provide students with the opportunity to be physically active while staying focused and having fun. The Tap Dancing Club also promotes positive social interactions, confidence, dance technique, body awareness, and personal expression.
Staff member Rebecca Frazier leads this club. She holds a bachelor’s degree in dance from the University of California, Santa Barbara, as well as experience teaching multiple forms of dance. Previously owned tap shoes have being donated for each student who participates in the club. So far, the club has been a huge success!
Track and Field Club
Sierra’s Track and Field Club hit the ground running! The club began in March 2016 by breaking down three to four different events over the month for which to train. As club activities progress, students learn various techniques needed for each event. The club also focuses on what muscle groups are used for each event and teaches ways to work those muscle groups in order to improve student performance. Students are very excited about this opportunity!
The Sierra Academy started a Fashion Club in 2016. The club has been researching and discussing different possibilities for attire during our famous Spirit Week. They have been supporting one another by providing ideas and assisting in costume-making. Participants in the Fashion Club will also learn about the history of fashion, with a focus on various decades. Students will have the opportunity to dress up to align with the decade they are studying.
March 29, 2016
Sierra Strong Competition
Recently, our students put their physical skills to test during our Sierra Strong Competition. The level of participation was amazing as Sierra created a simulated theme of traveling to Brazil in preparation for the Summer Olympics. Our students competed in various activities such as the high jump, long jump, a core strength challenge, a side-to-side cone hop, and finally a soccer kickoff! The sportsmanship and positive energy of our students were truly inspiring. We are looking forward to our next competition at the end of the school year, when we can continue to show the progress we have gained through our daily Sierra Strong sensory morning exercise program!
Sierra Academy’s 2017 car wash was a huge success! Students worked hard washing and waxing more than 20 cars. As a result of their efforts, over $425 was raised to help with purchasing new sports and physical education equipment.
That 70s School
Student government organized “That 70s School” dance on February 10 from 1:30 to 2:30, with a 70s disco theme. Student government had each class make decorations for the dance, including colorful handmade 3D flowers, painted posters, lights, and a disco ball. Student government also made a large poster for song requests, which DJ Mike played throughout the dance along with 70s-themed music. There was a photo booth where the students were able to dress up using 70s props and have a Polaroid photo taken of them. The students also had the option to play board games and eat a snack of cookies and lemonade throughout the dance. Aside from the other activities, Sierra Academy danced like it was the 1970s! Student government even held a dance competition, during which everyone formed a dance circle and students took turns showing off their best moves. Along with the dance competition, there was also a best-dressed competition. While everyone was showing their school spirit, we added a most spirited dancer award, which was given to Alex from Mr. Brook’s class for encouraging everyone to be involved and dance. Sierra Academy had a blast dancing and playing games together on this very special afternoon!
Production of Toy Story
Students did an amazing job this semester with their performance of Toy Story! They studied their lines, practiced where to stand on stage, learned the mannerisms of their character, and created props. The students were very proud of their hard work and were excited to share their performance with other students, staff, and parents. We look forward to performing The Wizard of Ahhs this spring.
Sierra Academy Food Drive for San Diego Families!
Once again, the Sierra Academy Food Drive was a huge success! We were able to donate a total of 613 pounds of food that will allow the food bank to provide 511 meals to those in need.
Each classroom was given a food barrel, and awards were given for the most food brought in and the best decorated barrel. This year, everyone went above and beyond. The award for most food brought in went to Ms. L’s class, whose donations filled not only their barrel but most of their room as well. The best decorated barrel was a bit more difficult to decide as each class did such an outstanding job! All classrooms received an award.
A great big “thank you” goes out to all the students, parents, and staff who helped make the 2016 Sierra Academy Food Drive a huge success and a fun way to celebrate the beginning of the holiday season.
Click here to read a thank-you letter from the Jacobs & Cushman Food Bank.
November 8, 2016
The students of Sierra Academy participated in the 2016–2017 Student Government elections on the afternoon of Tuesday, November 8. During this time, 11 Sierra students presented their electoral speeches on stage in front of their peers and staff members. The positions for which they could run included: Student Body President, Student Body Vice President, Student Body Secretary, Student Body Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, Rally Commissioner, and Classroom Representative. Each student running for office took to the podium one by one according to the position they were running for, starting off with Classroom Representatives and ending with President. Following each of the speeches, the audience applauded and cheered for their candidates. Once all of the speeches were finished, it was up to the student body to vote for their chosen candidates!
Along with voting for Student Government, we also held a mock presidential election. Room 302 was set up with four voting booths where students took turns standing in the booth to fill out their votes, just like a real voting experience. Once all the votes were collected, the results were announced. For the mock presidential election, Hillary Clinton won. Staff and students all enjoyed themselves as they supported each other in the 2016–2017 Student Government elections, as evidenced by some of the comments exchanged between students and staff: “I really enjoyed your speech!” “I feel like this was a real election,” and “That was really fun!” As for the new 2016–2017 Sierra Academy Student Government, we are looking forward to a successful year having fun and practicing leadership roles and skills!
Congratulations to the 2016–2017 Student Government!
- Student Body President: Derek
- Student Body Vice President: Kianna
- Student Body Secretary: Dailey
- Student Body Treasurer: Brandon
- Assistant Treasurer: Sonny
- Rally Commissioner: Jake
- Classroom Representatives:
1st Annual Harvest Fest Cook-Off
This year, the Sierra Academy was happy to kick off the autumn season with our first annual 2016 Sierra Academy Halloween Costume Contest and Harvest Fest Cook-Off Competition! Festivities began with students displaying their costumes to the school and judges. Awards were given for most creative, most original, funniest, scariest, and cutest costumes. For the cook-off portion of our event, students from each classroom created their own cooking dish, which was judged by our own panel of culinary experts. Dishes were awarded points for effort, theme, taste, creativity, and originality. We are proud to say that each class did an excellent job representing the Halloween and autumn spirit! Dishes ranged from “Teachers’ Brains” to “Dia de los Muertos Skulls.” Thanks goes out to all the students, parents, and staff who helped make this first annual competition a huge success and a fun way to celebrate the season!
October 24–28, 2016
Red Ribbon Week
At the end of October, Sierra Academy celebrated National Red Ribbon Week. The students learned about the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle and discussed a variety of things they could incorporate into their days to feel their best, including getting regular exercise, spending time with friends, going to bed earlier, eating more nutritious foods, and thinking positively! The students worked up a sweat during the Red Ribbon competitions and got plenty of vitamin A and C during the applesauce-eating contest. Everyone did a great job interacting with friends and practicing social skills while making towers out of marshmallows and toothpicks. We have some very creative students! Finally, Sierra really gave unhealthy choices “the boot” on Cowboy Day. The staff and students dressed up in Western gear and participated in cowboy games such as lassoing, target practice, and wheelbarrow races. Making healthy choices sure can be a lot of fun!
September 26, 2016
Back to School Day
On Monday, September 26, Sierra Academy hosted Back to School Day. Students were excited to welcome their parents into their classrooms and to show them what they’ve been working on so far this school year. In addition, each class had a special activity planned. Some students gave “All About Me” presentations, which were focused on their backgrounds as well as their goals for the next five years. Other students led their parents on scavenger hunts to show them around the campus. In one classroom, parents were included in a “Liquids to Solids” science lesson where each parent-child team made butter! Some students wrapped up the event with a game of Headbands; even our therapy dog, Barley, joined in the fun! We enjoyed spending time with our wonderful Sierra families.
May 26, 2016
1st Annual Sierra Jog-a-Thon
The first annual Sierra Jog-a-Thon was a huge success! All together, 48 students ran 130 miles and raised over $2,600 to support the sports and physical education department. The energy on the field was contagious. Music was playing, students were encouraging one another, staff participation kept students motivated, and most of all, everyone had fun! A huge thank you to all the students, families, and friends who helped us make this event such a success. We could not have done this without all your support.
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April 5, 2016
ACT Goes to Disneyland!
The students in Sierra’s ACT (Adult Career Transitions) Program recently went on an industry tour to Disneyland! The day began with a guided, interactive tour of the park, during which students learned about social media marketing, photography for publicity, and teamwork. Students then split up into teams and took pictures around the park, focusing on various aspects of publicity, photography, and design. During the tour, students went on a few rides and were asked to look for things they were learning about, such as how color can express moods and how different images can tell a story. After the tour, students spent the rest of the day enjoying the theme park. The educational outing provided opportunities for students to practice patience during long ride lines, flexibility when plans changed, and positive social interaction skills with peers and the community. It was a wonderful day and a fun trip for our ACT students!