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Articles in Meeker Elementary

Fifth grade students tout benefit of Invention Convention

AMES–Fifth grade inventors in the Ames Community School District, like Payton Stewart, Grace Schmitt and Kayley Birkland, are honing life skills that will last well beyond the Invention Convention on January 25.

Payton said the inspiration for her invention, for example, came from wanting to solve the problem of her family’s increasing water bill.

“We were using too much water brushing teeth and would leave water going,” she said. “It’s been fun taking our own journey through all this cool inventing process to solve problems.”

Grace said she learned not to give up even when it was hard to get her project-mates together and to manage her time to  complete her invention.

“At school, we are learning what it means to persist when things are hard,” she said. “Persistence was helpful. We didn’t get together for a long time and I thought maybe we’d have to give up.  My plate was too full, but then we got together and we made a plan and got straight to work and we accomplished a lot.”

Kayley said she learned the value of taking the risk to try ideas that might fail.

“We weren’t sure if we should use plastic, cardboard or metal (for our materials). We knew whichever we chose, there was risk involved. If we chose metal, we didn’t know if we had time to send it to my grandpa to weld it,” she said.  “So I talked to my dad, and he helped us make a plan, so then I had confidence that it would turn out great.”

Extended Learning Program teacher Ariane Schmidt said the event is open to all district fifth graders.

“Inventors will be judged on inventiveness, the diagram, the model or prototype, the log and the oral presentation,” Schmidt said.

The young inventors will put their projects on display beginning at 4:15 p.m., Monday, Jan. 25, at Edwards Elementary School, 820 Miller Ave., for parents and friends to view and experts to judge.

At around 4:50 p.m., inventors and visitors will move to the Gymnasium for a science presentation while the judges continue to deliberate in the display area. Judges will present awards around 5:45 p.m. in the Gymnasium.

UPDATE: Student received medals for the following inventions:

Snoozeless Pillow, Alicia Nicolas
The Nail Catcher, Samuel Vis.
Dugout Doctor, Ali Frandsen and Piper Kirsch
Seed Saucer, Karin Grevstad-Nordbrock.

S.E.W.S., Mia O’Connor-Walker.

Adjusta Tub, Ryan Maland and Connor Johnson

The Coop Collector, Jackson Hufford.
Tunes Tie, Allie Enyart and Mia Vogel.
No Slip Hanger, Lauren Powers and Maddie Swartz.
EZ-Pour, Adam Lee and Owais Samman.

Photo gallery

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Enrollment dates announced for kindergarten and preschool

  • Kindergarten Enrollment is Wednesday, Jan. 20 from 8:30 a.m.-noon and Thursday, Jan. 21 from 2-7 p.m. at Northwood Preschool Center
  • Preschool Enrollment is Wednesday, Jan. 27 from 8:30 a.m.-noon and Thursday, Jan. 28 from 2-7 p.m. at Northwood Preschool Center.

AMES–The youngest learners in the Ames Community School District will get a head start on enrollment with on-site events at Northwood Preschool Center this month.

Kindergarten enrollment sessions have long been a tradition for Ames Schools, and this year, Northwood Principal Brandon Schrauth is providing similar sessions for preschool enrollment.

“We want to reach as many families as possible because early childhood education is so important,” Schrauth said.

It’s important for families to attend the sessions to provide the documentation the District needs to plan for programming and to form a connection with the District before school starts in August, Schrauth said.

“Gathering paperwork and completing online forms is a necessary step in getting enrolled in kindergarten or preschool,” he said, “but it’s just as important to meet families and answer any questions they have.”

What to expect at Preschool Registration

  • Parents and guardians may enroll children in preschool who will be 4 years old by Sept. 15, 2016.
  • Parents and guardians who meet certain income guidelines may enroll children in the Early Success 3-Year-Old Preschool Program who will be 3 years old by Sept. 15, 2016.
  • Parents and guardians will complete an information form online, a Home Language Survey, a Health History form and an “Ages and Stages” questionnaire.
  • Parents and guardians should bring the child’s original birth certificate, or duplicate with raised seal; student physical report and immunization records; and adoption or guardianship papers, if applicable.

Learn more.

What to expect at Kindergarten Registration

  • Parents and guardians may enroll children in kindergarten who will be 5 years old by Sept. 15, 2016.
  • Parents and guardians will complete an information form online, a Home Language Survey, and a Health History form.
  • Parents and guardians should bring the child’s original birth certificate, or duplicate with raised seal; student physical report and immunization records; proof of residency (lease, mortgage, house title, or utility bill with current address); and adoption or guardianship papers, if applicable.
  • If the student did not attend Northwood Preschool or one of its Statewide Voluntary Preschool Partners, parents will be asked to complete an “Ages and Stages” questionnaire.

Learn more.

The Ames Public Library will provide story time, and representatives from busing and school meal services will be available to provide information. Other community organizations with early childhood services will be onhand. District Family Ambassadors, who are parents of current students, will be available to give support and supervise a playroom for children aged 2 and over.

Northwood Preschool Center is at 3012 Duff Avenue.

For both preschool and kindergarten, the District will provide information later in the spring giving details of classroom placement and events to welcome families.


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You’re invited to Meeker’s Ribbon Cutting and Open House

AMES–Meeker Elementary School will celebrate the official opening of its new building with a ribbon cutting at 4:30 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 20.

Meeker’s celebration marks the completion of the second of three elementary school buildings targeted for new construction as part of a facilities plan funded by a $55 million bond referendum in 2012.

Meeker Principal Steve Flynn said the ribbon cutting is especially significant for the community.

“Our students and staff have had a few weeks to settle into the new building and gain from the space and features it provides for our learning environment,” he said. “We’re eager for our community members to see it, too.”

Following the ribbon cutting, Parent Teacher Organization members and Family Ambassadors will provide guided tours for families and community members until 6:30 p.m.. Staff and district administrators will explain how the building’s features support education strategies and enhance safety and security.

Meeker Elementary School is located at 300  20th St.  in Ames.

More about the elementary school facilities plan:

  • Sawyer Elementary School, also undergoing renovation, is slated to open August 2016.
  • Fellows Elementary School, which is being rebuilt on its current campus, is also scheduled to open August 2016.
  • Edwards Elementary School, rebuilt at 820 Miller Avenue, opened August 2014.
  • Mitchell Elementary School was renovated over the course of two years and opened August 2015. Mitchell held  a ribbon cutting Tuesday, Oct.6
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Demolition begins on Meeker building

Crews will demolish the former Meeker building over the course of a four-week period that began the week of June 8. Facilities Maintenance and Planning Director Gerry Peters said work will proceed as quickly as possible so paving and landscaping can begin around the new building.

Although heavy rain, lightning and thunderstorms could cause delays, some rain can be an advantage, Peters said.

“Light rain actually provides favorable conditions for demolition because it reduces dust,” he said.

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Good-bye to Old Meeker is May 2

Meekergoodbye1AMES–The Meeker Elementary School building may be made of bricks and mortar, but it holds memories of formative events that extend for several generations. Meeker students, staff, alumni and friends will gather at 2 p.m., Saturday, May 2, to celebrate and honor the old building before its last school year ends.

Principal Steve Flynn said the building drew strong loyalty long before it was designated as a Blue Ribbon School in 2013.

“The school has always created a close community where students have thrived and launched a solid foundation for learning for the rest of their lives,” Flynn said.

The “Good-bye to Old Meeker” celebration is an open-house styled event and the public is encouraged to attend.

The building will be demolished during the summer of 2015. In August, staff and students will move into its new replacement, which has been built on the same campus.

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