In May, Mrs. Ann Mehlbaum, grandmother of Meghan, came to visit the 7th grade French class. Mrs. Mehlbaum began her library career working for the government in Washington DC. Later, she spent many years as a school librarian in Bethesda, Maryland before moving to Cazenovia. A true Francophile, she has traveled extensively throughout France and Quebec. She regularly volunteers on Wednesday in the Cazenovia Middle School Library. Merci, Madame Mehlbaum, for sharing your love of French, learning and people. We hope many students will ask her about her experiences and benefit from her wide array of knowledge.
Four 7th Graders were named “Lauréats Nationals” and three 6th graders earned “Mention Honorable” in the National French Competition sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of French. This annual competitive online test allows students to benchmark their skills against peers all over the U.S. and abroad. This year over 16,000 students participated. Pictured here from left to right: 7th graders: Ethan Camp (Silver Medal – top 15%), Iris Casey (Bronze Medal – top 25%), Bess Johnson (Silver Medal – top 15%) and Olivia Wong (Silver Medal – top 15%); and 6th graders: Sofie Reger, Ava Galton and Sharon Sozen (Honorable Mention). Félicitations! Congratulations!
The Cazenovia Odyssey, the High School’s creative writing & art book, is for sale this Friday 6/14 and Monday 6/10 outside of the cafeteria during lunch periods for $5.00. The book features 50 talented writers and artists. If you would like to purchase a book directly, please email Christie Brenneck at email@example.com and she will hold one for you to pick up in the office.
This is an honor awarded to a student who displays good manners, a positive attitude, a consideration for others, cooperative behavior and a responsibility toward self and school in an exemplary manner. The students are nominated by their teachers who use specific examples to explain why they feel their nominee has earned this honor. It emphasizes attributes that are not easily measured by grade reports.
Congratulations to: Alyssa Wardell, Logan Gillis, Fern Corona, Eleanor Mongeau, Wyatt Smith, Maddie Caraher, Quinn Holdren, Kennedy Marchbanks, Edith Rodriguez, Janessa Santiago, Arha Lewis, Sophia Min, Aevlyn Wallace, Rhys Kelly, Rayne Devine, Mimi Uzcategui, Hannah Marshall, Traian Cherciu, Anthony Quill and Emerson Blin.
At last week’s Board of Education meeting, a group of senior French and Spanish students were recognized and awarded the Seal of Biliteracy.
The New York State Seal of Biliteracy recognizes high school seniors who have attained a high level of proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing in one or more languages, in addition to English and acknowledges the importance of being bilingual in today’s global society. It highlights the years of hard work and achievement of students, and encourages them to pursue language study while in school. The distinction of attaining biliteracy is noted on their high school transcript, a NYS seal is affixed on their diploma, and the students wear their medal with their graduation robes.
To earn the seal, students must meet the initial ELA and World Language requirements then declare their intent to participate in the process. In order to demonstrate proficiency in the second language, students choose a research topic and prepare an extensive portfolio with aspects of the target culture embedded throughout, and then present and defend their portfolio in front of a panel of evaluators in the target language.
The presentation day this year was held at the OCC campus on April 9th.
Here are the research topics our students chose to explore this year:
• Asylum & Refugees
• Witch Trials
• Fourth French Republic
• Urban Renewal
• Linguistic differences in dialects
• Cultural Identity
• Health Care
Congratulations to our 2019 recipients:
• Liam Flannery
• Tatum Kelly
• Taylor Mapstone
• Meg Seeley
• Emma Wardell
• Mackenzie Yates
• Abby Burrell
• Laura Connor
• Maddy Gavitt
• Justin Gagnon
• Skyler Grimes
• Ian Melvin
• Clara Rowles
• Jonathan Streeter
At the May 21st Board of Education meeting, ten students from Cazenovia High School presented on their experience representing New York at the United States Academic Decathlon National Competition in Bloomington, Minnesota.
Seniors Riley O’Brien and Ian Melvin won individual medals, while junior Kate Martellock was voted team MVP and received a scholarship for leading the team in scoring.
“It was an eye opening experience for just how strong our schools’ academics are” says team president Ronan DeFanti. “It is an experience that one can never forget”
Academic Decathlon is a scholastic competition consisting of tests in ten subjects: art, music, literature, math, economics, science, social science, essay, speech, and interview. Each test revolves around a common theme. This year’s theme was the 1960s.”
Preparation for Academic Decathlon requires balance. Each team member must participate in every test. Furthermore, teams must include 2-3 students with an “A” average, 2-3 with a “B” average, and 2-3 with a “C” average.
“It’s always frustrating when someone says they’re too dumb to join AD, when really it’s that perception that’s holding them back,” says Martellock, “It’s really about the effort you put in. It’s taught me how to work hard and study, which more often than not kids don’t know how to do for college.”
“Students just have to enjoy learning.” agrees coach Ben Wightman, “This competition isn’t solely about facts; it’s about discovering learning methods that work for each individual. It’s about communicating knowledge to teammates. It’s about creating fun opportunities to engage with the curriculum. We often make up our own review games. With so many different learning styles represented, we need to experiment.”
Between tests, students had opportunities for enrichment at the National Competition. They visited the Mall of America, and mingled with their “twin team” from Nanjing, China.
Meeting the Chinese students was a highlight of the trip for sophomore Alyson Woolbert, who reflects “It was great getting to know our “twin team” because we got to experience a little bit of a different culture without traveling across the world.”
Despite their success, the students are not resting on their laurels. “Overall, we placed 8th in the small schools division” explains Riley O’Brien. “We plan to continue improving our overall team score, fundraise diligently, and, with a little luck, we hope to represent New York at nationals again next year in Anchorage, Alaska.” The students will not have to wait long to get started. Materials for the coming year are expected to begin shipping this week.
Special thanks to Mr. Ben Wightman for authoring this article.
Proposition #1, Budget Yes-400 No-83
Proposition #2, Buses Yes-415 No-66
Proposition #3 Dissolve Reserve Yes-375 No-102
Proposition #4 Library Yes-402 No-80
Board Members (top two win seats on the Board of Education)
Jennifer Parmalee-287, Kathy Hahn-282, Kathleen Benedict-267
In April, the 7th grade French class enjoyed a visit from Chef Stephen Franks, one of the owners of the Brewster Inn. He provided “escargots” for students to taste, and helped the students prepare “crème brûlée” and “crêpes Suzette” as desserts. He spoke to the students about the importance of French in culinary science, both historically and currently. Per Chef Franks, the French were the first to write down recipes and cooking techniques. Consequently, culinary science uses a lot of French even today, and he had to learn 300 French cooking terms in three short weeks in order to graduate from culinary school! Students enjoyed Chef Franks’ visit, and we hope that you will stop by and see him at the Brewster!
Pictures (left to right): (1) Chef Franks with his daughter Olivia, a 7th grade student, (2) Students sample escargots with fresh French bread and butter, (3) (4) and (5) Students prepare some crêpes, (6) “Crême brûlée” is finished off, (7) (8) more crêpe fun…oh là là!