Education briefs

Published 12:00 am Thursday, October 9, 2014

Parents and children 5 and younger are invited to Smart Start Rowan’s annual fall festival on Oct. 25 from 10 a.m. to noon.
Children are invited to wear costumes and will have the opportunity to play games such as ring toss, fish bowl plop, harvest stew, rain gutter boat race, glowing pumpkins, fishing and face painting, as well as have the chance to decorate their own pumpkin. Prizes and healthy snacks will be available.
The Rodney W. Queen Early Learning Resource Center, which includes a lending library and a parent-teacher workroom, will be open for parents and children to explore. The library is filled with books, music, puzzles and developmentally appropriate toys. Staff will be on hand to answer questions about Smart Start Rowan’s programs, such as Parents As Teachers, Circle of Parents and N.C. Pre-kindergarten.
Smart Start Rowan is located at 1329 S. Jake Alexander Blvd. in Salisbury. For more information call 704-630-9085.
The A.L. Brown marching band and color guard won multiple awards at a regional competition held Sept. 27.
In their division, the A.L. Brown band earned first place for color gaurd, percussion and visual and marching performance. The band’s color guard also earned second place overall out of all bands performing in all divisions, and the marching band won third place overall.
The A.L. Brown marching band also was singled out to receive the Charles D. Simpson Panther Pride Award. That honor is given to the band that exhibits the highest standards in six areas: discipline, professionalism, spirit, punctuality, appearance, and cooperativeness.
The competition was held at Ledford High School in Thomasville and included more than a dozen bands from the region.
Sacred Heart Catholic School had a special visitor last week. Johnny Appleseed stopped by to visit with Sacred Heart’s pre-kindertarten, kindergarten and first-grade classes.
The students had lots of questions about why he wore a “cooking pot” on his head, was barefoot and how he got his name — his real name was John Chapman.
Johnny told the students that when he was little, he had many brothers and sisters around, so he would spend time in the apple orchard where it was quiet and peaceful. He could watch the birds make nests in the trees and watch the deer walk around. He also liked to eat apples, and since apples were so good for you, he just never got sick. As Johnny Appleseed grew up, he was inspired to plant apple trees and apple orchards so that others could have a peaceful place to rest and healthy apples to eat.
When it was time for Johnny Appleseed to leave, he taught the students his special blessing song. His birthday was Sept. 26, so he brought apples for the all students to share. Sacred Heart teachers showed the students how to make homemade applesauce with all the apples he shared.
Members of the Catawba men’s basketball team prepared and served a meal to approximately 100 homeless people at Rowan Helping Ministries Sept. 14.
Head Coach Rob Perron, a new addition to Catawba this year, said the experience helped his players fully develop a social consciousness and sense of their responsibility as citizens in community.
“We are committed to becoming active members in the community,” Perron said. “This was our first of several community outreach projects.”
“Our trip to Rowan Helping Ministries was a really valuable experience for our guys. It’s one of those activities where you go to help someone and then realize they are actually helping you. It was a truly humbling experience in every sense of the word. We are looking forward to returning in the future to assist in any way we can,” he added.
The players who participated in the team’s day of service at Rowan Helping Ministries said the experience gave them new insights into those less fortunate.
While at Rowan Helping Ministries, the team toured both the old and new facilities available to assist those less fortunate in the Rowan-Salisbury community.
Students, faculty, family and friends gathered at the school’s flagpole in observance of See You at the Pole, a national day of student prayer.
See You at the Pole has grown from a small gathering of teenagers from Burleson, Texas, in 1990 to a worldwide event with more than 3 million participants each year.
Led by Principal David Case, those present recited the pledges to the American and Christian flags, as well as to the Bible. Students listened to Bible verses, prayed and closed the ceremony by singing “God Bless America.”
On Sept. 26, Head of School Matt Gossage led the dedication ceremony for Cannon School’s new Randy Marion Family Field House prior to the kick-off of the school’s homecoming game. The Randy Marion Family Field House now serves as a permanent welcome center with a press box, restrooms and a concession stand for sports fans and visitors to Cannon’s 65-acre campus on Poplar Tent Road.
Betty and Randy Marion Sr. and their family gave the school a gift of $500,000 in honor of their six grandchildren who attend Cannon to name the new Randy Marion Family Field House as part of Cannon School’s $7 million Building Bright Futures Capital Campaign.
Randy Marion Sr. explained, “Athletics are a big part of any school, and student-athletes learn so many lessons through competition. Whether we’re on or off the field, all of us in the Cannon School family — students, parents and grandparents — play a role in showing our Cannon pride at sporting events. We hope that everyone will have an even better experience at sporting events now that the new field house is a reality.”
Betty Marion added, “We feel excited to play our part and to give this gift in honor of our grandchildren.”
This dedication ceremony was the first for the school’s newest facilities that also include the newly constructed Cannon Performing Arts Center, Strength Training and Conditioning Center and Central Green, enhanced coaches’ offices and locker spaces and plans for a renovated Middle School. Chaired by NASCAR driver Jeff Burton and his wife Kim Burton, the Building Bright Futures Capital Campaign met its fundraising goal in January.
The 2014-15 West Rowan FFA Chapter kicked off the new school year Sept. 8 — literally. The chapter’s 42 members played a game of kickball, participated in a period of collaborative activities and the chapter officers participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
The officers opted for a tractor loader of ice cold water, rather than a bucket, however, and nominated the FFA chapter officers of Madison and Sun Valley high schools, as well as the Southwest Regional FFA officers.
Just a few weeks later, the chapter’s officers volunteered to help park cars at the Patterson Farm Freightliner corporate event.
Several FFA members competed in the cow, sheep and goat shows during the Rowan County Fair, and came home with many ribbons and proceeds.
Also, Sept. 22-27, West Rowan FFA members participated in the Rowan County Cow, Sheep, Goat, and Chicken show. West Rowan once again swept the rankings, bringing home several awards. The West Rowan FFA Booth was also run with the help of the school’s FFA members.
The next West Rowan FFA meeting will be held on Oct. 6.
The Elizabeth Maxwell Steele Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution invites students in the fifth through 12th grades to participate in the national society’s annual American History Essay contest.
Local essay winners and their parents will be honored during the local February Daughters of the American Revolution meeting. The winning essays will be forwarded to the regional competition and regional winners will compete at the national level. All students who participate will receive a certificate from the local Daughters of the American Revolution chapter.
Students in the fifth through eighth grades will write an imaginative essay about a child’s experiences on Ellis Island, and high school students will write about Christopher Columbus’ voyage to the New World. Each essay will be judged by two qualified scorers and will be evaluated with a rubric that was developed for the National Daughters of the American Revolution Society.
Each student essay should have the DAR Essay Contest header sheet completed and attached to the student’s entry. Entry header sheets have been delivered to each school office. The entry forms can also be downloaded from the Daughters of the American Revolution web site which is
The deadline for essays is Oct. 17. Essays should be placed in a folder and left at the school’s main office. A Daughters of the American Revolution representative will come to the school and pick up the entries.
Participation in this event will encourage students to learn and to reflect on the development of our great nation.
If you have questions or special needs, please contact Karen C. Lilly-Bowyer at 704-213-4232 or by email at
Cannon School’s Head Basketball Coach Ché Roth offers his third annual basketball clinic for boys and girls ages 6 through 12. Beginners to experienced players will learn fundamental basketball skills and enhance their existing skills through drills and games while practicing teamwork and having fun. This unique Holiday Basketball Clinic will be offered on Dec. 20 from 9 a.m. until noon and is perfect for parents who want to run last-minute holiday errands.
Roth will run the clinic with assistance from his coaching staff and varsity and junior varsity players. Roth has more than 15 years of experience coaching on the collegiate level and scouting for the NBA, and is in his third season at Cannon.
The cost of the clinic is $40. A flyer and online registration can be found at
Cannon School competes in the Charlotte Independent Schools Athletic Association with Charlotte Country Day School, Charlotte Latin School, Providence Day School and Charlotte Christian School, and in the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association.