Thursday, July 31, 2014

Scooping for a Great Cause

Read the Pottstown Mercury article here
Everyone loves ice cream, but no one wants to see a child hungry.  

Owen J. School District administration and staff helped along with area officials and community leaders at a Celebrity Scoop Event held at the Coventry Ice Cream Parlor at Laurelocks to support the the Coventry Food Pantry Weekend Backpack Food program! 

Ice cream was served to a nice, steady crowd with so many folks dropping off food and backpack supplies. Last school year the food pantry spent approximately $10.00 per child/ $320 or more in food costs each week for almost every week of the school year. The food was supplied by a county grant that is being cut by 50% this year.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Football Camp

The 2014 Wildcat Football Camp was held July 14-17.  It was attended by Owen J. Roberts students entering grades 4-9.  The Owen J. Roberts High School Senior Football Players volunteered their time to work the camp.  Campers learned many skills and had a great time!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Fine Arts Exploration

Students enrolled in summer enrichment opportunities at Owen J Roberts School District really do play, learn, and grow together!

Owen J. Roberts 3-D Fine Arts Summer Camp students created impressive works of art this week and learned skills they can use for a lifetime. They experimented with many traditional and contemporary textile materials. Blending traditional art and 21st Century skills, students took digital photos in the gardens and used prints to inspire felted 3-dimensional works. The digital prints and felt work were then matted for display and may be framed.

In Photoshop, students mastered one-of-a-kind graphics which were applied to tie-dyed t-shirts they created the day before.

Puppet making was part of the fun!

Who says a comfortable t-shirt cannot be stylish as well. With a little bit of tape and bleach water, students took graphics created on the computer and transferred to amazing custom  t-shirts.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Science Experiments are Fun!

Students were intrigued with crazy dry ice science today in Ms. Shane Neiffer's science camp.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Making a Difference in Biodiversity

Taking the project far beyond the boundaries of what his horticulture class requires, Eric Hughes is working with other students to plan a butterfly garden of nectar-producing plants that are native to our area. Eric is passionate about biodiversity, explaining, “The plant and bird relationship is so intertwined.” He is helping his classmates and teacher, Mrs. Tinder, in the selection of plant life which butterflies and birds will use as food and that will help to serve reproductive needs of the attracted species.

In elementary school, Eric Hughes was often referred to as “that bird kid” and had a website of the same name, logging bird species in his spare time. He will be rising to grade 10 this fall and has already been featured in the national Birds & Blooms magazine two times, once spotlighting a bird feeder which he created to attract various species of feathered fauna with different types of food.

Eric regularly participates in the annual “great backyard bird count (BBBC)” joining bird counters from all over the globe. He has done a tremendous amount of work for Ellis Woods Park and goes to the East Coventry Township Parks and Recreation meetings to discuss bio diverse environments. He has personally led clean-ups of invasive and non-native plants at Ellis Woods to help re-establish the native growth and keep the bird populations flourishing. He happily reported that he recently saw the 100th bird species in that park, which he informed to be roughly one-eighth to one-ninth the total bird species in North America. At community days, he hands out brochures to advocate for native plantings and birds.

Eric works to help people understand how birds, insects, and plants are closely interlinked. A butterfly garden can have a profound effect on biodiversity. Many people plan gardens with a visual element in mind and do not know to consider food value and habitat needs of the life that will be attracted to the garden—an ecosystem palette. Natives also tend to survive best in the growing conditions of which they evolved, making them a more economic choice than non-natives as well.

Look for the new butterfly garden in the front courtyard near the greenhouse at the high school in 2014-15.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Service Thrives in Leos and Lions Cubs

Since 2008, Coventry Lions of Pennsylvania has supported service groups in the Owen J. Roberts School District. Students in each of the five elementary centers may join Lions Cubs service clubs and the middle and high schools have growing Leos Clubs. 

Student -run Battle of the Bands 2014 raised nearly $1,000

The five clubs completed over twenty service projects during the year. Highlights include East Coventry’s participation in the “safe trick or treat” event in October for the elementary students in our district.  North Coventry cubs made food drive collection boxes for each grade and went caroling at Manatawny Manor nursing home. East Vincent Lion Cubs sent supplies to our troops in Afghanistan and created cards and games for a cousin of a student who is battling a long term illness.  West Vincent Cubs sorted collected clothing for the clothing drive that was sent to the Vietnam Veterans of America.  They distributed boxes and instructions for the “Pennies for Patients” drive raising over $1,700.00 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. French Creek Lion Cubs offered a babysitting activity for the children of parents who attended the school’s PTA meeting entertaining the children with games and activities they had planned, like hot potato and finger painting and creation of a yummy snack. The Middle School Leo Club took part in a campus clean-up project, orchestrated a successful “Pennies for Patients” campaign, and volunteered at the Animal Rescue League.

The High School Leo Club is the largest in school history (144) and completed a very rewarding year of service. According to High School Advisor, John McCormick, “One person can make a difference in the world. Obviously, 114 should make a HUGE difference!” Members helped make district events such as “Make a Difference Day”, “Safe Trick or Treat”, and Relay for Life a smooth running success.  They planned, paid for, and prepared a “Hope on the Hill” dinner at a local church for families in the community who needed a lift nutritionally and spiritually. Throughout the school year Leo volunteers would go to a local daycare center and read to the pre-school children.  The big activity of the year was the Battle of the Bands with proceeds earmarked to support next year’s Leo service activities including a ‘Challenge Day’, that will involve 200 students working together to eliminate hate and bullying in schools.  The program is a day of social and emotional growth for all participants that has been very successful in other schools.