Schools

Around Farfield Schools: Yee Ha! Virtual Gym, COVID-19 Grading, High Schoolers Help With PPE

Yee Ha!  Nobody can sit still for the "Cotton Eyed Joe," especially when you see Fairfield County teachers do their lively version of the line dance in a virtual physical education workout video they made for their K to fifth-grade students to do at home.

Northeast Elementary School physical education teachers Jim Bradley and Laurie Doyle Lubowitz created this dance workout video for their distance learning students.

Laurie Lubowitz

Stamford's Northeast Elementary School teachers Jim Bradley and Laurie Doyle Lubowitz, in masks and socially distancing from one another, also dance the Cha-Cha Slide, Chicken Dance, Mexican Hat Dance and a variation of 70s-style disco in their repertoire seen in an April 18  video posted on the school's YouTube page.

In a segment of the video following an energetic Charlie Brown, a.k.a. Cha Cha Slide, the pair pause briefly to talk to their students.

"Dance like there's nobody watching," Lubowitz said in the video. 

"We had a good time putting this together," Lubowitz told Daily Voice Plus. 

In school, the children usually have four to six dance lessons in physical education class.

"We try to introduce basic line dances and at the elementary ages we keep it easy and light," she said.

COVID-19 Grading Policy On Board's Agenda At Upcoming Zoom Meeting

The COVID-19 grading policy will be covered at a Greenwich Board of Education Thursday, April 23 at 7 p.m. on Zoom. This "Special Meeting" will also include minutes, superintendent update, Julian Curtiss School educational specifications, Greenwich High School entryway educational specifications and Wrestling mat gift request.  

Click GreenwichSchools.org/VirtualMeetings for details on accessing the meeting and direct questions to Michael Antonaccio at michael_antonaccio@greenwich.k12.ct.us 

School Shares PPE With Assisted Living

The special protective gear of nitrile gloves and eye goggles used in science classes and labs by New Canaan High School students are being used by staff at Waveny Care Center during the pandemic.

Last month, shortly after the district implemented its distance-learning program, New Canaan High School Life Science Instructional Aide and Lab Technician,  Alison Minor was messaging a friend, who is an emergency medical technician. The friend indicated that much needed personal protective equipment of all kinds were in short supply. 

Nitrile gloves and protective eye goggles were delivered to Waveny Care Center from New Canaan High School for use by the staff there. NCHS students are shown wearing nitrile gloves during a biology lab session.

Courtesy of New Canaan Public Schools

Minor knew of several boxes of nitrile gloves used in classes and labs stored in the building’s science department classrooms, so she checked with the principal’s office about the glove inventory, to see if they could be used during the outbreak.

“Administration was quick to react,” said Minor, “and Superintendent of Schools Dr. Bryan Luizzi reached out to me to coordinate collecting the boxes. I don’t have an exact number, but I suspect there were about 30 boxes of nitrile gloves from Science. Dr. Luizzi mentioned that they were collecting gloves from other departments in the high school as well, so I’m sure the total number was much higher.”

At about the same time, NCHS biology teacher Jessica Zych also reached out to Minor. “Ali had already been in touch with the NCHS administration regarding the gloves, but they had not discussed the goggles,” said Zych, who teaches honors and AP biology and science.

The protective goggles, which are similar to ski goggles only with more shielding, are used in biology and chemistry classes and labs. 

Nitrile gloves are the same kind of disposable gloves used in doctors’ offices and hospitals and protect students and faculty from bacteria, chemicals, dyes and stains used in various experiments. 

“I sent an email to Principal Bill Egan and Dr. Luizzi indicating there were safety goggles and safety glasses in the science labs,” said Zych. “I offered to send out a shared Google spreadsheet to science department members so they could list their room number, number of goggles/glasses and location within their room.”

Zych soon followed up with the completed spreadsheet, and school administrators arranged for and delivered the PPE to Waveny.

Most of the 300 pairs of eye-protective goggles from the Science Department were delivered, as were all of the approximately 3,000 pairs of nitrile gloves. 

“Knowing that materials which would otherwise be sitting on a shelf are going to help those in need is gratifying,” said Zych. “Ali and I just connected the dots. The people actually using this equipment deserve all of the credit.”

"There are so many ways we can all help the medical professionals, first responders, and even the grocery store employees and other community members, who are out there keeping us safe and fed. We are all in this together," said Minor.