February Message from Dr. Bonn

2018 is off to a great start at Elgin School! Our teachers and students returned from the Winter Break ready to work hard and continue our tradition of excellence. Students in grades 5-8 recently participated in the annual Science Fair, and the work they have done is quite impressive! Ms. Koweek and Ms. Swift have dedicated many hours to preparing our students to compete with students throughout the region, and we are excited to see how well Elgin is represented at SARSEF this year. Good work, and good luck to all of our participants.

This month, the teachers in our S.T.E.A.M. committee completed the Elgin School “S.T.E.A.M. Machine”. S.T.E.A.M. stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art. and Mathematics; the S.T.E.A.M. Machine is an elementary school science lab and maker space where our students can conduct experiments and investigations, and demonstrate their creativity and innovation. This area features a hydroponic tower, science lab equipment, and our newest resources – a 3D printer and a set of programmable robots purchased with funds from our recently awarded science grants! We invite families and community members to visit our campus and explore this new and unique learning space for our students. Our students and teachers have already begun using this space to dissect owl pellets, study footprint patterns, and complete PBL projects. In other science news, Mrs. Koweek has begun an after-school robotics club, where 4th and 5th grade students are learning to design and program their very own robots! Special thanks to Ms. Daffern, whose work with students has prepared them with basic coding skills necessary to design computer programming. Elgin is a 21st century school, and we are preparing our students for the jobs of tomorrow. We are excited to see what our young engineers are able to do, and we are eagerly looking forward to the results of their efforts.

This month, we once again welcomed the Phoenix Zoo Mobile to our campus. Representatives from the Phoenix Zoo spoke to students about the importance of protecting animal habitats and developing an appreciation for biodiversity and ecological awareness. Through another unique learning opportunity, our 5th grade students were invited to visit the Sierra Vista Symphony where they were delighted to see Ms. Rankin, one of our favorite guest teachers, perform music from some of their favorite films as a member of the symphony. This was an amazing cultural experience for our students, and a wonderful learning opportunity. Other unique opportunities at Elgin School this month included Student Government’s recent trip to the University of Arizona to learn about leadership, and our school-wide National Geographic Geography Bee. Wyatt Patterson was our school champion, and he will represent Elgin at the next level of competition. We wish him good luck, and congratulate him for his achievement.

Lastly, we are pleased to announce that Elgin School has been recognized as one of the finalists for the Arizona Education Foundation’s A+ award, and we are now moving on to the next phase of the selection process. We will welcome the panel to our campus for a site visit on March 8. The visit will consist of a campus tour, class visits, and interviews of students, faculty, and staff to get an idea of who we are as a learning community and what makes us special. We are also looking for 15 parents, community members, and/or business partners interested in participating in a 30-45 minute meeting with members of the award panel to discuss their contributions and experiences at Elgin School. If you would like to participate, please contact Lorinda Pierce at 520-455-5514 ext. 105. As always, your support and commitment to Elgin School is the biggest reason for our success. I hope you will participate in this exciting effort to validate our school programs and accomplishments by recognizing our school as one of the best in the state!  Eagles Rock On!