•The Chelsea REACH Program ended 2020 by collecting over 200 toys to donate for Chelsea families and collaborated with La Colaborativa to distribute them. We also had our last open mic for the 2020 year. We look forward to starting 2021 again with our writing workshops and monthly open mics! On behalf of REACH we wish you a Happy New Year.
•Ms. Lindsay and Mr. Jose’s class had fun before the break making fake snow, reindeer shapes, and receiving special gifts on a snowy day! Happy Holiday and Happy New Year to our Busy Bees at the ELC.
Kelly School Updates
•The Kelly School staff made the most of the two welcome-back professional development days, working to grow self-awareness of how personal identities affect interactions at school, and to add to the repertoire of teaching moves that grow students’ expressive language and empower them as “expert learners.”
•The Caminos Program has GROWN up into 5th and 6th grades — and those kids have grown too. The Kelly School thanks the CPS Finance and Facilities teams for investing in new “right-size” furniture for 5th and 6th grade classrooms. There’s no more crowding tall pre-teen knees under an elementary-sized table.
Sokolowski School Updates
•Every year, the first grade team organizes a Gingerbread Day during the holiday season. Students usually engage in holiday crafts, read alouds, sing alongs, and play games together. This year, the school was proud to host the 1st Virtual Gingerbread Day. All first graders spent time in 5 different centers: a movement center, engineering a gingerbread man trap, how to draw a gingerbread man, how to write steps to catch a gingerbread man, and building a gingerbread house with math shapes. The school ended its day with Mr. Meyers and Mr. Machado reading aloud The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School.
•Is there a better way to ring in the year than singing and dancing together? Well, that’s exactly what happened on Monday, Jan 4. The Sokolowski invited Veronica Robles to help start the New Year on the right foot. Veronica is a female Mariachi singer and a cultural icon for Latinos in Boston. She is also the co-founder and director of the Veronica Robles Cultural Center, a non-profit organization that supports community action offering Latin American arts and culture programs while also providing jobs for youth. With her roots in Chelsea, Veronica was able to enlighten all of us about the importance of celebrating differences! She also led us in sing-alongs and got everyone up and dancing.
•Mr. F’s third grade class had two special guests this week – Jayde and Kyle Umemba. Jayde and Kyle are activists from Chelsea who are working to make Chelsea better for everyone. They talked to students about why they love Chelsea and told them about their work organizing protests for Black Lives Matter. Students also got to share MLK Jr.-inspired poems with them. It was great having Jayde and Kyle on Zoom. Special thanks to Cesar Castro for helping set this up.
Chelsea Opportunity Academy Updates
•Prior to vacation, students and staff members from the Chelsea Opportunity Academy participated in an outdoor, socially distanced holiday event. The COA family got together and enjoyed some hot chocolate and other holiday treats, discussed holiday traditions, and made plans for a great new year. Students left with smiles and new COA sweatshirts. After vacation, COA welcomed four grant-funded Dropout Prevention Specialists to the COA family. These new staff members – JJ, Andy, Juliana, and Francisco – are all COA alumni who are returning to school to help with outreach to students and supervision of remote learning support centers. This Wednesday, Specialists worked with COA administration to learn the ins and outs of the staff side of COA.