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Education briefs

Rachel’s Challenge comes to Gray Stone

On Oct. 1, Gray Stone Day School hosted Rachel’s Challenge. Rachel’s Challenge exists to equip and inspire individuals to replace acts of violence, bullying, and negativity with acts of respect, kindness and compassion.

Rachel’s Challenge speaker Dee Dee Cooper was introduced by Ann Sutlive of Gray Stone’s guidance department, who arranged to bring the program to the school.

Cooper delivered a message to the student body, followed by Friends of Rachel training with 100 students and teachers. Many students and faculty members were inspired to make changes that would make a positive impact in their school and community.

Students and faculty filled a Rachel’s Challenge banner with signatures signifying their commitment to promote kindness and respect.

Rachel’s Challenge is based on the life and writings of Rachel Joy Scott who was the first victim of the Columbine school shootings in 1999. Through her example, Rachel’s Challenge is making a positive impact in the lives of millions of people every year.

Woodleaf book fair

Woodleaf Elementary School is hosting a book fair this month from Oct. 28 to Oct. 31.

It will be open from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Oct. 28, from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Oct. 29 and 30 and from 8 a.m. until 12 p.m. on Oct. 31.

The book fair will be at Woodleaf Elementary School Media Center, 9055 School Street in Woodleaf.

For more information, call 704-278-2203.

Woodleaf media center hours extended

Woodleaf’s media center will offer extended hours for its students and the community on Mondays and Wednesdays. It will be open from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.

Smart Start Rowan hosts fall festival

Parents and children 5 and younger are invited to Smart Start Rowan’s annual fall festival Saturday 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.

Rowan-Cabarrus gets equipment for firefighter training

R. Wayne Bost Trucking Inc. recently donated a Mack conventional sleeper truck and a stainless steel tankard to the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Foundation for use in the college’s fire training programs.

“It is our pleasure to work with Rowan-Cabarrus Community College and to facilitate these donations,” said Bradley Bost, CEO of R. Wayne Bost Trucking Inc., an affiliate partner of Quality Distribution, Inc. “The college provides an invaluable training resource to our community.”

The new facility includes a 3,500-square-foot burn building and training pads for props like the truck and tankard.

“The donation of this truck and tankard are significant. It’ll put us in a much better place, enhancing our program dramatically,” said Roger McDaniel, director of emergency services for Rowan-Cabarrus.

These pieces represent thousands of dollars in savings to the college.

“Students need access to props like the tankard and truck for training purposes. They need to experience a response to a fire or a hazardous material emergency involving these popular modes of transporting materials,” said McDaniel.

NCRC scientist helps students visit STEM program

Students from Northwest Cabarrus High School’s biotechnology academy traveled to the main campus of North Carolina Central University in Durham to take part in BRITE Futures, a STEM – science, technology, engineering and math – program that gives students hands-on laboratory experiences.

Dr. TinChung Leung with the North Carolina Central University Nutrition Research Program at the North Carolina Research Campus, coordinated the trip. Leung researches cardiovascular disease and cancer using a zebrafish model.

“The students will load gels, use pipettes and try out other scientific equipment,” he explained “These are all very important parts of working in a lab and doing research.”

Last year, Leung took students from Kannapolis City Schools to take part in BRITE Futures, which is a program of North Carolina Central University’s Biomanufacturing Research Institute and Technology Enterprise. Over 5,000 students from throughout North Carolina have participated in BRITE Futures since it launched in 2008.

The Northwest Cabarrus High School students will also visit North Carolina Central University’s biology department.

“We hope this visit motivates these students who are already interested in biotechnology to continue their studies,” Leung said. “Experiences like this can be very powerful for children and inspire them to pursue a career in science.”

DCCC to host history of salsa presentation

The Davie campus of Davidson County Community College will come alive with the energy of Latin music and salsa dance during an interactive presentation, “Salsa: Its Roots and History,” set for Nov. 3, from 12:30 p.m. until 1:30 p.m.

The event, part of the college’s student life and international passport lineup for fall, is free and open to the public.

Eileen Torres, an accomplished salsa dancer and president of the Washington, D.C.-based Salsation Productions, will tell the story of how salsa began and evolved through lecture, video and music clips. She will trace salsa’s roots from 1930s Cuba to the emergence of the genre in other countries from the 1940s though the 1960s and continuing into the golden era of salsa in the 1970s.

Torres graduated from the University of Colorado with a minor in dance and has worked as a performer, instructor and choreographer. She began teaching salsa in 1975 and founded the Salseros Unlimited performing group in her home state of Ohio. She is currently preparing to produce and host a cable television show, SalsaCentro. She is a recipient of the Andy Award for her work as a historian and producer of salsa events.

“We’re pleased to offer this opportunity for our students and the community to engage in an entertaining and educational cultural experience,” says Lynne Watts, director of student life and leadership at DCCC.

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