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CAS Douglas Students Attend Youth Leadership Conference March 13, 14

Group photo CAS Douglas school Center for Academic SuccessSeveral students from CAS High School attended the Youth Leadership Conference in Somerton, AZ on March 13 and 14th.  Students from Cocopah, San Luis, and Somerton attended the conference which was themed “The Courage to Speak.”

Students and chaperones from CAS Douglas pose for a group photo at leadership conference.

Students and chaperones from CAS Douglas pose for a group photo at leadership conference.

The theme centered around helping students become encouraged to speak their opinions and to exercise leadership within their schools and local communities.  There was a reception and dinner on the first night.  Main speakers and breakout sessions continued on Saturday with a Comic Festival at the end of the day. The students learned a lot about student leadership and activism and had a great time.

CAS Celebrates STEM Learning with Baseball Connection

CAS Students practice fielding and hitting after learning physics of baseball.

CAS Students practice fielding and hitting after learning physics of baseball.

The Center for Academic Success was excited to host the Arizona Diamondbacks street team on February 27th for its second-annual Science of Baseball spring training event.

Students in Kindergarten through eighth grades rotated through a series of teacher and baseball player led stations which combined the fun of America’s favorite pastime with hands-on physics and bio-mechanical study. Some stations included face painting, where students could get a baseball painted on their cheek, trajectory of flight, where students used blocks and rubber bands to send projectiles through the air with the goal of landing on paper plates worth varying amounts of points, and elasticity ball drop, where students predicted which of four different types of ball would bounce the highest based on its elasticity.

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Students launch small balls off wooden platforms cut a differing angles to envision trajectory.

Students also enjoyed testing trajectory of flight by launching rubber baseballs into the air with a large slingshot. This allowed students to field test how “pop-flies” and “line drives” result from a bat hitting a ball at differing angles. Further, they tested their base-running skills and the idea that a curved arch provides a faster route from home base to second than two straight lines would otherwise.

Earlier that week, students and teachers had reviewed the scientific topics of: trajectory of flight, elasticity, and angular momentum all within the context of baseball in motion. This culminating, hands-on activity provided a three-dimensional physics and mathematics lesson all while having a great time in the Arizona sunshine. The middle school dance team kicked-off the event with its first-ever performance to keep the mood celebratory.

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Face painting lends a fun atmosphere to the baseball-themed event.

The Science of Baseball is a year-long program for which CAS schools has partnered with the Arizona Diamondbacks to provide excellence in education coupled with fun, kinetic activities. Students in CAS middle school perform a series of baseball-related physics experiments as part of Friday electives to envision science and math learning in a new environment. For more information about this program, visit its website at: http://arizona.diamondbacks.mlb.com/ari/community/scienceofbaseball.jsp

Arizona Diamondbacks Come to CAS for Science of Baseball Spring Training

CAS, Science of Baseball, Arizona Diamondbacks, Center for Academic SuccessCAS Sierra Vista is excited to host the Arizona Diamondbacks street team on Friday, February 27th from 3-5pm for our second-annual Science of Baseball spring training event. k-8 students will rotate through a series of teacher and baseball player led stations which combine the fun of America’s favorite pastime with hands-on physics and bio-mechanical study.  Topics covered will include: trajectory of flight, elasticity, and angular momentum all within the context of baseball in motion. To allow for maximum participation, middle school students will be released at 3:00 with elementary students. While parents are welcome at any time and may join their students in the fun, parents should allow for some extra time during after CARE pick up due to the high volume and traffic for this event. Parents on a very tight timeline are encouraged to pick up their students at 3:00 release or wait until the activity has concluded at 5pm. Students are highly encouraged to wear jeans or shorts and sneakers/athletic shoes for the event. We hope to see you there!

CAS Celebrates Christmas and Winter Holidays with Polar Parties, 4th Grade Play, & Christmas Around the World

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“Magic” indoor snow provides messy fun at the Polar Party.

The Center for Academic Success celebrated the Christmas season with plenty of fun surrounding the holiday in addition to high-quality learning activities. Students in the k-4 elementary held a Polar Party blowout in which students decorated sugar cookies, played pin the ornament on the tree (similar to pin the tail on the donkey), and molded indoor snowmen from “magic” Arizona snow [see photo left].

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Kinder students enjoy Donut Dangle game.

Students also raced to eat sugared donuts off a string and worked with art teacher Ms. Marshall to create reindeer clothespin ornaments. At the culmination, students selected three different reindeer snack mixes to take along to view the classic cartoon — The Grinch.

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Santa and elves review the “nice” list in 4th grade musical.

Fourth grade classes also performed a winter musical in which Santa decided that kids no longer found him “hip.” Santa then decides to transform into “The Clause” as he proclaims the entire north pole to change into a 1950’s-style workshop. Dual Santas, Mrs. Clauses, and elves set the fun stage for this drama as Santa learns that children still love their holiday traditions. In addition to memorizing all their lines, fourth graders also sang and danced to classic Christmas carols such as “Jingle Bells,” and “Here Comes Santa Clause” in addition to 1950’s classics like “Blue Suede Shoes” and “Rock Around the Clock.”

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Fourth Grade cast poses before their performance.

Many thanks to both the fourth grade class and Music Teacher Ms. Dokken who made this ambitious musical possible.

CAS also involved family and world-heritage traditions in its holiday celebrations with many classrooms decorating gingerbread houses, researching Christmas around the world, and explaining family food and gift traditions. Classes learned the stories of Father Christmas, Saint Nicolas, and the story of The Magi which have transformed over the years into holiday gift-giving. Although not every CAS family celebrates Christmas, those with differing traditions were able to explain holidays like Winter Solstice, Hanukkah, and Kwanza to their classmates. Several students who do not observe holidays also shared their family traditions and beliefs for this time of year.

Whatever your family traditions, CAS offers you and yours a very Merry Christmas and time of joy this holiday season as we reflect on the year. CAS will observe a half-day with a 12:00 release on Friday, December 19th and will be closed for the holidays for two weeks. Classes will resume on Monday, January 5th, 2015.