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Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Mrs. Phelps: Teacher of the Month!


Mrs. Phelps makes a difference in the lives of Columbia Elementary students!  She said that she, “loves being a School Counselor because of the students, and the positive relationships I get to make with each of them.”  Her enthusiasm for helping students and supporting them both socially and academically benefits the children at Columbia Elementary School.  Mrs. Phelps commented that, “One of the most rewarding parts of my job is seeing students use the skills we have practiced to help them be more successful.”

She believes that being a school counselor is amazing.  She said that, “as a School Counselor, it is important to me to be able to help students understand their emotions.  She went on to add, that it is important to communicate to them that “it is ok feel all the things they feel, while giving them tools to best express them.”  She continued by saying, “I love being able to be a person to encourage and support students in both good times and also when they are in need of an advocate.”

When you see Mrs. Phelps, you know she enjoys working with students and counseling them on various skills.  She mentioned that she, “loves coming to school each day!  School is always a new adventure that I am grateful to be a part of.”  Her bright smile greets students as they walk down the hallway. 

Mrs. Phelps has a kind demeanor and focuses on the school motto: “Work Hard and Be Kind.”  She also works with teachers and students under the Columbia School District Mission: “Nurture Dreams.  Empower All. Create a Better World”.  Because Columbia has a positive academic environment, she said that it is especially important to communicate the Columbia Vision to our students, “Learning Today, Leading Tomorrow”.

Mrs. Phelps said one of the things she loves about being a school counselor is forming relationships with the students and the seeing them grow and mature throughout the school year.  She added, “Of course all the hugs and smiles each day are also a huge perk to being a School Counselor!”  This year Mrs. Phelps was recognized by her fellow teachers and staff members as a person at Columbia Elementary that has a huge impact on the lives of the students.  For her hard work and dedication to the children, she received the “You Make A Difference Award.”  Mrs. Phelps is deserving of recognition for all of her incredible focus and enthusiasm on providing a positive, caring, and welcoming counseling program.

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Mrs. Trudeau: Teacher of the Month!


Mrs. Trudeau is busy making a difference in the lives of students at Columbia Central High School!  She is focused on cultivating an environment of academic success.  She has always loved helping others.  As an elementary student Mrs. Trudeau loved helping grandmother, Alice Haystead, who was a teacher at Clarklake Elementary School.  As a high school student she would take every opportunity to assist her aunt who was also an elementary teacher in Napoleon.  Because of her love for helping others and experience helping in classrooms and tutoring struggling students, Mrs. Trudeau was determined to become a special education teacher.

This past year, she was voted “Teacher of the Year” by her fellow Columbia Central High School teachers.  Mrs. Trudeau is consistently working to advance her students to higher levels of academic achievement through careful planning and focusing on increasing her student’s educational excellence.  She works to motivate her students by encouraging them to exceed their expectations and their past academic performance.  Her caring and nurturing spirit supports her students both academically and socially.

Mrs. Trudeau achieved her dream of becoming a special education teacher at Columbia.  Her first year she worked with junior high students in the morning and taught kindergarten in the afternoon.  She said that she worked with the late Mary Neely and that she “learned so much from her as she was an amazing teacher and a wonderful human being.”  Although she loved the little ones, she took her dream job as a full time special education teacher at Columbia Central High School the next fall.

Mrs. Trudeau is currently in her 32nd year of teaching.  Mrs. Trudeau says she is so blessed to have a job in which every day is diverse, and is so privileged to work in the satisfying, life-changing career of teaching.  Mrs. Trudeau said that, “There is nothing like watching a student have that "Aha" moment or seeing their faces when they finally understand a concept or when they get a good grade on an assignment, quiz or test.”  

She continued by saying, “I love teaching, especially math.  There are a lot of students who struggle with math and I have tried, over the years, to make it fun.  I love being able to create projects around math concepts.”  Mrs. Trudeau also mentioned that, “I have been able to make treats for the veterans at Christmas, teaching students to read recipes, compare prices and calculate costs.  We have made gingerbread houses, learned cake decorating and even took a trip to Lowes to price the supplies it would take to decorate a room in a home. We made pies for Pi Day as a culminating activity when learning about circles.”  

Columbia teachers recognized Mrs. Trudeau for her leadership in the classroom and as an important part of the school improvement efforts.  Mrs. Trudeau’s enthusiasm for learning in various settings is illustrated by her ability to demonstrate creativity and innovation in her lesson plans and using teaching methods that inspire students to learn.  She has had an impact on students through her love of theater and the musicals.  She is excited to be directing this year's Jr. High musical, SCHOOLHOUSE ROCK LIVE! JR., which will take place on May 3rd and 4th at 7:00 pm, and May 5th at 2:00 pm at the Columbia Performing Arts Center.  The musical features many of the songs from the old cartoon series “Schoolhouse Rock.”  

Get Ready for a Summer of Experiences!


Columbia School District parents have the opportunity to partner with terrific teachers and administrators.   Our students learn today, so they may lead tomorrow!  Columbia students receive an excellent education filled with positive experiences and quality academic activities.  We welcome you to experience an amazing educational culture focused on student success.  We are committed to encouraging our students to grow and excel.  Recent examples of student leadership and success are the Hope Run, student mentors with the Buddies Reading Program, student led blood drives, Fill the Bus and our recycling program.

 Our teachers and staff members use their creativity and nurturing spirit to give our students the unique learning activities available during our summer programs and camps.  Infused with science, team building skills and literacy concepts your child will enjoy every minute of their academic experience.  Giving your child the gift of learning this summer in the comfort of air conditioning will enhance their creativity, whether they select art, robotics, science, sports or academic games.  Have your child join in the fabulous fun by choosing one or more of our camps!

In June, Columbia School District sponsors Basketball camp, Art Camp, Spanish, Theater Camp, Maker Space, Robotics, Cookie Making and Credit Recovery.  The summer programs in the end of July and August gives your child the opportunity to enjoy Art, Princess Camp, Electrifying Science Camp, Football Camp, Academic Games, Leadership, Underwater Robotics, and Explore!  In addition, Columbia Child Care and Latchkey program will have fabulous programs running all summer!

Each and every day the teachers and members of the Columbia School District family come together to provide educational activities and learning opportunities for our students to brighten our children’s day.  If you are interested in learning more about how your child could benefit from the awesome learning environment at the Columbia School District, would like a tour or to have your child shadow one of our terrific students please contact me by email at pamela.campbell@myeagles.org or call me at 5175926641.

Friday, February 1, 2019

Read With Your Children!

Research shows that children who read as little as 30 minutes per day will become good readers.  They may read magazines, newspapers, comic books, or books.  By paying attention and giving reading a prominent place in our lives, your child will benefit and that advantage will last a lifetime.  Being a good reader gives your child an opportunity to excel in school and at work.  Encourage your child to read each and every day.

Initially you may want to read aloud with your child.  You will want to begin reading to your child when they are an infant.  Your calm voice will soothe your child.  Many children enjoy having their parent read to them.  Begin by reading for as little as 10 minutes.  Children can listen to books that they are not able to read.  By listening, they will increase their vocabulary and benefit from various subject matters.  As they grow and mature, they may want to begin reading portions of the book. 



For most of us our television has a prominent place in our homes, but books are on out of the way shelves or hidden in cabinets or under end tables.  Help your child learn to appreciate reading by setting up an assigned reading time when the family may read together.  Give your child the gift of reading by setting up a personal book shelf for them.  The book shelf doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive, but it gives them an opportunity to select a book from their interesting collection during reading time.

Set a schedule to go to the library.  Setting aside time to visit the library and check out books will help your child develop a powerful reading habit.  While you are at the library with your child, make sure you choose a book for yourself.  This way you set a good example for your child!

Columbia School District teachers place an element of importance on reading.  Your child may bring home books or e-readers that they contain assigned reading.  Make sure they are working on their reading assignments, this will greatly benefit them both in life and in school.  If you are interested in learning more about Columbia Schools, call me at 5175926641 or email Pamela.Campbell@myeagles.org .

Monday, January 14, 2019

Teacher of the Month: Wendy Eastman!


“My daughter’s favorite teacher!” “She cultivates an environment of academic success.”  These statements are in praise of Wendy Eastman, a fabulous Columbia Central Junior High School math teacher.  This past year, she was nominated and voted “Teacher of the Year” by her fellow junior high school teachers.

Mrs. Eastman is consistently working to advance her students to higher levels of academic achievement through careful planning and focus on increasing her student’s educational excellence.  She works to motivate her students by encouraging them to exceed their expectations and their past mathematics performance.  Her caring and nurturing spirit supports her students both academically and socially.

Mrs. Eastman loves being a teacher because of the junior high school learners who walk into her classroom each day.  Each one of her students inspire her daily with their hard work, perseverance, and joy for learning. Mrs. Eastman’s students also encourage her with their curiosity, excitement for learning and passion for accomplishing difficult tasks.  Mrs. Eastman says she is so blessed to have a job in which every day is diverse, and is so privileged to work in the satisfying, life-changing career of teaching.

Columbia teachers recognize Mrs. Eastman for her leadership in the classroom and as an important part of the school improvement efforts.  For several years she coached the junior high school robotics teams and has served the district by teaching robotics during the summer to elementary students.  Her enthusiasm for learning in various settings is illustrated by her ability to demonstrate creativity and innovation in her lesson plans and using teaching methods that inspire students to learn.

The Columbia School District appreciates the hard work and excellence in education provided to our students in Mrs. Eastman’s classes.  The students benefit from her tenacity, educational enthusiasm, and positive ethical spirit.  Mrs. Eastman is an extraordinary dedicated teacher, blessed by her various teaching gifts. She is an exemplary teacher who fosters a collaborative environment for her students through her deep passion for learning.

Fun Ideas with Your Children!


Columbia School District parents and teachers often work collaboratively to support our young Golden Eagle students.  Here are some ideas to help show your children that you care by giving them attention while playing fun learning games at home.  You may want to establish a family fun time and try one of these creative activities. 

Play the thesaurus game.  Choose a word and let your child(ren) use their thesaurus, dictionary, or phone to look of the word.  The winner is the one who can find the most synonyms.  You could also go around the group of family or friends and have each person take turns adding a synonym that hasn’t been mentioned.  A slight twist on the game is to let your children take turns announcing the words.

Plan a scavenger hunt!  Make up your own list or download a scavenger hunt list from the internet and send your children on a scavenger hunt.  The list may be as intricate or as basic as need be for the ages of children playing the scavenger hunt game.  You could have them find something green, something square or other basic shape.  If it is nice outside you could broaden the list to search for to include leaves, bugs, or pine cones.

The observation game!  Look at a picture with your child(ren) and then put it aside.  Have your child(ren) write down all of the items they saw in the picture.


Play the newspaper match game!  After you are finished reading the newspaper, cut out the stories and separate them from the headlines.  Match the headlines to the stories.  A twist on this game: Take the headlines and try to write a short story to go with the headline.  Another option, write your own headlines.  If you want to talk to your children about the difference between facts and opinions, you could have them underline facts in one color and opinions in another color.  If you are interested in learning more about Columbia School District, call 5175926641 or email me at Pamela.Campbell@myeagles.org.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

STEM at Columbia School District!


It is time for us to celebrate a wonderful first four months of the 2018-19 school year!  Working closely together with our community has helped to offer our students improved learning opportunities at Columbia Schools.  Many of our positive improvements reside under the umbrella of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).  Teachers have increased their hands-on science teaching by using activities and strategies gained from work with the Battle Creek Math and Science Center curriculum. 

Our students from third through sixth grade have benefited by these STEM strategies and techniques.  One of the opportunities to engage students through innovative strategies is the Michigan League of Academic Games program (MLAG).  Columbia students have been working with Ms. Weidenbach and Miss Wing learning math games that focus on computation, problem solving and set theory.  During March some of the participants will represent Columbia in the annual MLAG State Tournament where they will gain positive experience competing against students from across the state!

Aligning with the STEM focus at Columbia School District, Columbia Elementary and Columbia Upper Elementary has Robotics Teams and our Junior and Senior High School has teams that provide our students with an opportunity to use the engineering and math concepts they learn in the classroom and apply it to building a functioning robot.  The students in robotics are given a challenge, so they build, program and operate their robot to complete the challenge.  In their technology class, students in Kindergarten through sixth grade have the opportunity to learn coding with Mr. Moore.  Students across the district have also enjoyed the STEM applications through our partnership with the Shop Rat Foundation and Consumers Energy. 

To support our students in this very important area of STEM, our teachers have participated in after school programs: Columbia Junior High School teachers tutor students across the curriculum in their after school program and Columbia Central High School teachers support  their students by providing expert assistance after school.  This past spring Ms. Samson received a grant from Lowes for two 3-D printers to assist in STEM.

This is an exciting time at Columbia School District!  Our terrific teachers and staff members have partnered with our parents and community to provide all of these and many more excellent educational opportunities for our students.  If you are interested in learning more about Columbia School District and our positive STEM programs, email me at pamela.campbell@myeagles.org or call 5175926641.