Chagrin Falls School News | Geauga County Maple Leaf

The September meeting of the Chagrin Falls School Board had an international flavor as eighth grade students from Spain presented their work at Chagrin Falls Middle School…

Spanish students present their travels

The Chagrin Falls School Board meeting in September had an international flavor as eighth grade students from Spain presented their work at Chagrin Falls Middle School.

Principal Laila Discenza began the presentation by outlining the school’s goals for education and student development.

“Global awareness and international collaboration during the formative years results in well-rounded individuals,” Discenza said. “The activities shared today encourage our students to see things from different perspectives and help them make informed decisions while learning transferable skills for life.”

Kathleen Aranavage, Spanish teacher, started the presentation by stating that Spanish is the fourth most spoken language in the world. Students in her class then learned where Spanish-speaking countries are located in the world using an online geography game.

“I hope the students will be inspired to travel the world, explore new cultures, experience unfamiliar places, and connect with people in new ways, understanding different languages, norms, and ideas,” Aranavage said.

As part of this objective, the students chose a country to metaphorically travel and create a video blog. In the video, they create GIFs of themselves looking like they are visiting tourist attractions and narrating their trip in Spanish. Jude Bidar rode alpacas in Chile, Brigitte Edwards toured Spain, Colin Struk-Marn visited glaciers in Argentina, Katie Rosner ziplined in Costa Rica, and Josh Vasko swam Cuban waters.

The students gave a short presentation at the showcase in Spanish and had to send their entire completed video to their parents to improve parent/child communication. The students’ interpersonal communication skills were also strengthened by pairing with an eighth-grade student from the Liceo Villa Fontana school outside Madrid, Spain.

Josh Vasko said, “A very important part of learning a language is listening to and/or interacting with a native speaker. Chagrin has a program with a school in Spain called “Intercambios”, where Chagrin and LVF will do projects together to interact with each other, like slideshows, Flipgrid videos, and even Zoom calls.

Some of Flipgrid’s videos included Spanish students speaking in English and Spanish about their school life and interests outside of the classroom. Chagrin’s students would then respond in English and Spanish.

“Being able to speak with native speakers gives us a huge advantage in letting us hear how it’s supposed to be said. Another thing I love about this program is being able to listen to my Intercambio speaking English,” said Colin Struk-Marn.

Some of the conversations started with names and ages, and went on to cover tastes, hobbies and families.

“The opportunities are endless when you know how to communicate with others,” Aranavage said. “Communication is the key to academic, professional and personal success.”

Philanthropy Day

On October 12, members of the senior class at Chagrin Falls High School volunteered at various nearby organizations for the school’s annual Philanthropy Day. Service opportunities included helping clean up the gardens at the Holden Arboretum and Botanical Gardens as well as reading and interacting with students at Gurney Elementary and Middle School. Other places to volunteer included Meals on Wheels, South Russell Park and In Step With Horses. Every elder volunteered and many decided to go beyond the day to make a difference.

On October 9, many students volunteered at Life Act’s Into the Light Walk at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo to shine a light on depression awareness. The week before, in their free time, the students enjoyed helping out at the Cleveland Kids’ Book Bank.

“When I became vice-principal, I wanted to take this opportunity to engage students in meaningful community service and to strengthen the school’s relationships with community partners,” said vice-principal Amanda Rassi, who organizes the day. every year. “We believe that service work is a social responsibility and that one person performing an act of kindness has the power to make a difference. Our students are certainly writing their story and making a significant impact on our community. »

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