February 2017


Quick Calendar Notes

AZ Bonfire – Adults Only (Age 18 and up) – Saturday, March 4th @ 7:00 PM until…

Spirit Event – Friday, March 10th @ 2:05 PM

Career Week – Monday, March 13th – Friday, March 17th

No School – Professional Development – Friday, March 24th

Spring Break – Monday, March 27th – Friday, March 31st

Reading and Understanding

Ms. Chew’s ELA II and ELA IV classes have both started their new in-class books and have begun working on their keyboarding and typing skills. ELA II is now reading “The Witch of Blackbird Pond” by Elizabeth George Speare and “How Sugar Changed the World: A Story of Magic, Spice, Slavery, Freedom and Science ” by Marc Aronson and Marina Budhos. We are also continuing to work on mechanics, usage and grammar and have continued to solidify essay writing. Civics has been learning about the Constitution and dissecting the document. Geography has been learning mapping skills and is now learning about the world’s people and their cultures.

In the spirit of Read Across America, please find some pictures of ELA II reading with Ms. Lin’s Kindergarten class below.

Chew - pic 1 Chew - pic 2 Chew - pic 4Ms. Chew

The Fourth Grade Mini-Society

Things are moving along quickly in fourth grade.  ELA class is now working on expository writing.  Each student is researching a career they find interesting, and we are using the writing process to explain and describe those careers.  We are also looking at adjectives in grammar, and have begun reading a new book together entitled, The Kid Who Ran for President.  Math class finished up the geometry unit with a test, and has moved on to the fractions unit.  The projects turned in by the 5th grade Social Studies classes were very well done, and each student has presented their project to the class.  4th grade Social Studies mini-society was a huge hit on campus.  Most grade levels were able to visit and buy the goods and services provided by the students.  Congratulations to our top earner, Jenny Green, who brought in $255.  Great job!  We are looking at expanding the society next year to include both third and fifth grade.

Clark Mini Society 3 Clark Mini Society Clark Mini Society 2Mr. Clark

Let Love Rule

Ms. Huff’s Third Grade Crowther-DragonTales-Feb2017Classroom has been studying suffixing patterns, the doubling rule in particular. They discovered that when a one syllable word has one vowel followed by one consonant, you double that consonant before adding a suffix beginning with a vowel. A fun way to remember this rule is to start counting at the first vowel saying, “One, two, double I do; one, two, three, no double for me!” Word sums are a great way to visualize whether or not a final consonant should be doubled. For example, slip + ing → slipping, pup + y → puppy, and lug + age→ luggage. The students showed their love for the doubling rule by each writing a unique word sum on a heart. You can see the hearts on display in Ms. Huff’s classroom windows. So, in honor of this month and our love for the doubling rule, third grade hopes you had a Hap + y → Happy Valentine’s Day!

Ms. Crowther

English/Language Arts Happens Outside of the Classroom – True Story!

Last week, Ms. Eden’s ELA V/VI and Integrated Math II classes visited the Good Hope Country Day School Intel Science Fair. The purpose of the field trip was to discover that English/Language Arts and math does not just happen between 9:35-10:55 and 10:55-12:15 M-F! Students viewed science fair projects completed by GHCDS students and found evidence of how concepts they have learned in science, math, social studies, and English/language arts can come together in one project. They ventured on a treasure hunt and found the following concepts used within the science fair projects: base units for building words, three different sentence types, different citations, three types of triangles, and three different types of graphs. Students even found a speaker tag, an Oxford comma, and a cockroach picture?! And errors (*gasp*)! To reward their investigative efforts, they returned to school to enjoy ice cream sundaes. Their bonus findings earned the students whipped cream and a cherry on top.

CrowtherEden-DragonTales-Feb2017Ms. Eden and Ms. Crowther

Grade 1 and 2 Go Green

Melissa 4Grades 1 and 2 had an awesome visit to St. Croix Environmental Association. I take this opportunity to thank Jen for having us and to our wonderful parent volunteers. You Rock!! It was quite an adventure, learning about ways we can help our environment and keep the ocean life safe from things that can destroy them. We also pretended to be turtles laying eggs on the beach.

We are also learning about poetry; and grade 1 and 2 are excellent poets. Acrostics are the ones we enjoyed learning about the best. We also celebrated the 100th day of school. We made a 100th day quilt and crowns.

Yeah Grade 1 and 2!!

Mrs. Clarke- Charmon

Let’s Talk About It!

Mrs. Clarke and Ms. Harris have implemented a Social Skills group that will take place every Thursday afternoon with the first and second grade class.  The focus is to promote positive
social interactions in the classroom, during unstructured social time with friends,
and, ultimately, in life.  The lessons at this time are geared towards feelings and appropriate ways of dealing with those emotions.  We have spent time defining emotions, exploring facial expressions, and role playing to respond to particular scenarios.  The children are enjoying using puppets for their role-playing situations.  It is our goal to continue fostering the development of the whole child at AZ Academy!

Chelsy Pic 1 Chelsy Pic 2 Chelsy Pic 3 Chelsy Pic 4Ms. Harris

Third Grade Investigations

In Reading, we have been focusing on informational texts.  We are using text features as search tools to locate relevant information.   We are learning to read the text closely by paying attention to important words, asking questions about the text, and determining the relevance of information.  We are reading about Westward Expansion in America.  This is fun because we get to imagine we are pioneers and explorers!  The fun continues in Social Studies as we make connections to early settlements in America.

Math.  Wow, I have some smart mathematicians!  We have been finishing up our unit on addition and subtraction strategies and are having some great discussions in class about what strategies are the most efficient.  Our next module, or unit, will take us back to multiplication and division.  Students will need to learn how to fluently multiply and divide.  This will require some help at home.  You guessed it!  Helping students practice their multiplication facts daily will allow them to solve problems with less head scratching!

Our Black History Social Studies Projects were creative and thoughtful.  We enjoyed the presentations on these amazing Americans.

In Science students are learning what it means to be a scientist as they are collaborating on materials and procedures to conduct their own experiments in class.

Mrs. Huff

Experimenting and Volcanoes

Hodge - Experiment and Volcanoes1Hodge - Experiment and Volcanoes2AZ Academy’s Earth and Space Science Class paid a visit to UVI’s Chemistry Lab on Thursday February 16th to perform an experiment on volcanic eruptions. Students modeled volcanic eruptions in beakers using candle wax, sand and water to represent molten rock making its way through the Earth’s crust. On display below are pictures of various stages of their development throughout the experiment. Don’t they look studious?

Ms. Hodge



AZ Academy is proud to announce its entrance in the 16th Annual Junior Solar Sprint Competition taking place on March 24th, 2017. Participating students are required to design and build a solar powered race car to be entered in the race. Students are responsible for ensuring their vehicle not only functions, but is also fast, aerodynamic and aesthetically pleasant. The vehicle will be constructed by the 10 students of AZ’s Life Science Class. Two representatives of the class, (Kaya Steele and Nalik Merchant) will then represent the team’s effort as they attend the competition and battle for first place trophy.

Students were treated to a presentation and demonstration by the VI Energy Office on Tuesday February 21st, 2017 to provide tips and inspiration as they work enthusiastically towards their goal.

Ms. Hodge


Hodge - POL contestantsHodge - POL programSt. Croix, Virgin Islands — AZ Academy announces the winners of the school contest for Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest. The student winners are Leyla Idheileh who went home with the first place award, as well as Jesus Felix and Justin Charles who won second and third place respectively.

The competition, presented in partnership with the VI Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Poetry Foundation, is part of a national program that encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance, and competition. On February 7th, seven high school students from AZ Academy participated in the Poetry Out Loud school contest after months of preparation. Now our winner, Leyla, will battle for the title of BEST in the VI.

The State Championship will be held at the James C. Savage Performing Arts Center on March 11th at 6 pm sharp. Families are encouraged to come out to this free event to support our school’s courageous competitor.

Ms. Hodge

West Walk with the High School Band

The high school band was asked to be one of the acts performing at West Walk out in Frederiksted.  West Walk is similar to Art Thursday here in Christiansted.  The band is starting to get more comfortable on stage and we get better with each performance. We even took a few pictures that we might end up using as an album cover, once we decide to record an album of course. Let us know which picture is your favorite.
We are always learning new material so if there are any songs you want us to learn, we’ll take a look at all of your suggestions.
smith music8 smith music7 smith music6 smith music smith music3smith music4 smith music5 smith music2smith music1Mr. Smith

Mr. Renee and Supreme Court Justice Sotomayor

Undoubtedly the highlight of the month was the visit with Supreme Court Justice Sotomayor. The entire Economics class was invited to attend a lecture delivered by Judge Sotomayor when she visited St. Croix in early February as part of the Centennial celebrations. What a delight it was to listen to Justice Sotomayor as she described her humble beginnings in New York and her journey to the highest court in the land. The students were truly inspired. Some of our students were allowed to ask questions and Justice Sotomayor made sure she took a picture with everyone who asked a question. It was truly wonderful visit indeed.

Mr. Renee

Busy in February

February has been a very busy month for us! We celebrated Ground Hogs Day, Valentine’s Day, the 100th day of school President’s Day and Dental Health month.

For Ground Hogs Day, we read books, did finger plays and made predictions as to whether or not the ground hog would see his shadow or not. We all watched the actual event on our computer excited to see if our predictions were accurate.

We learned all about Presidents Lincoln and Washington. We looked at the coins and bills they are depicted on, sang songs about which number Presidents they were and what made them so special.  We shined pennies with vinegar and salt and made log cabins out of Popsicle sticks.

Valentine’s Day found us immersed in pink, purple and red artwork. We exchanged valentines with our classmates and teachers and had fun opening everything up together. We especially loved the surprise valentine that turned into a balloon when you smacked it on the table!

We celebrated the 100th day of school by counting from 1-100, counting by 5’s and 10s and lining up 100 bears and animals in one long row and 10 lines of 10. We sported 100th day hats and bracelets and received stickers and certificates to celebrate the day. We were quiet for 100 seconds, jumped 100 times and so many more activities. We ended our celebration by eating a delicious 100th day cake with the 1st and 2nd graders.

We also covered the letters “N”, “O” and “P” this month. I had to take a short trip last week, but the children were thrilled to see their friend and guest teacher, Mrs. Rothwell, come back to take over the class. They had a popcorn party, played with a parachute, Play-doh, puzzles and more!

Thomas Pic 1 Thomas Pic 2 Thomas Pic 3 Thomas Pic 4 Thomas Pic 5 Thomas Pic 6Mrs. Thomas

After School Activities Going Strong

With all of these great activities going on around us, what child wouldn’t be having fun after school?! Recently, we started Chess Club every Monday and Golf Club every Friday. There has been so much interest with these clubs that we had to tack on another couple of slots for each club!

If anyone has further ideas of after school activities, we would love to hear!

Golf - After SchoolMs. Drue

Spirit Event and Black History Month

Last month’s Spirit Event was focused around Black History Month with Quilt Codes. Quilt Codes were used by slaves during the Civil War, especially with the Underground Railroad movement. Historians are still trying to get written documentation to prove the use of these Quilt Codes. The only proof are the stories passed down through the generations.

With this theme, each buddy group was sent off with pieces of a complete quilt code to decorate and puzzle together. Once the code was put together, we came back together for each buddy group to present their code. Our Blue and Silver team Quilt Codes hang in the Pavilion rafters.

SpiritEvent2SpiritEvent1 SpiritEvent3Ms. Drue

Spelling Bee Results

Sophia L. represented AZ Academy in the St. Croix district spelling bee on Friday, February 24th at John H. Woodson Junior High School.  She successfully spelled words like “dracula”, “kona”, and “nosh”, but was tripped up in the 5th round with “fletcherism”, which I had never even heard of – look it up if you are curious! She was confident on stage and did a great job!  So let’s give Sophia 3 BIG CLAPS!!

IMG_3165Ms. Paula