Mt. Bethel Elementary 28th Annual Fun Run

Mt. Bethel Elementary School is proud to announce the 28th Annual Mt. Bethel Fun Run.  The Fun Run is a 5K event dedicated to promoting health and fitness for people of all ages, especially children.  Everyone is invited to participate, particularly the people of the East Cobb Community.  The Fun Run Team hopes to make 2014 the most successful Fun Run ever! Please make plans to register and participate!!

Date: Saturday, November 8, 2014
Location: Mt. Bethel Elementary School
Registration Begins: September 5, 2014

Registration forms and other information can be found at

Proceeds from the Fun Run benefit the Mt. Bethel Elementary School PTA.

Baker Elementary Celebrates Exceptional Children’s Week with School Carnival

Baker Elementary School celebrated Exceptional Children’s Week March 10-14 with a carnival for students with special needs organized by the Baker student council. See below for a slide show from the event!

Submitted by Emily Brown, Media Specialist at Baker Elementary

Riverside Primary Raises More Than $3,200 For American Heart Association

Students and staff at Riverside Primary School raised more than $3,200 for the American Heart Association during its Hoops for Heart event!  In early February, students learned about how important their hearts are and how to keep them healthy. P.E. coaches Ms. Pietrangelo and Mr. Shields talked to students about the benefit of having a healthy heart and asked students, “If your heart was not so healthy would you want someone to help you?” The unanimous answer was, “YES!” The school set a goal to raise $2,000, with a school-wide costume party on the line.

Staff and students worked together to decorate the school hallways and classroom doors, participated in hat days with a donation of 50 cents, and raised as much money as they could online and with take-home envelopes. Riverside shattered the $2,000 goal by more than $1,200! Since the date for the costume party fell near Read Across America day, Riverside staff encouraged students to come dressed as their favorite storybook characters.  The school enjoyed celebrating its charity efforts by dressing in an array of fantastic colors and outfits.

Submitted by Alecia P. Carter, Media Specialist, Riverside Primary

Kincaid Elementary Student Projects On Display During STEM Expo

Kincaid Elementary School held two big events focused on Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math during the past month. Through various activities, students and families learned that STEM activities are all around us, are used every day, and can be fun.
Day took place on February 20, with the STEM Night Expo occurring on March 6.

For STEM Day on February 20, every grade at Kincaid participated in special lesson and programs, including a STEM Career Fair for fourth and fifth graders. Kindergarten got a head start by journeying through the Solar System in the STAR Lab the previous week.

  • 1st Grade demonstrated sound energy by designing Native American drums!
  • 2nd Grade designed and programmed robots!
  • 3rd Grade learned all about earth science with edible soil!
  • 4th Grade learned about exciting STEM jobs at the Career Fair and constructed spaghetti bridges (sponsored by IBM)!
  • 5th Grade learned about exciting STEM jobs at the Career Fair and played Jeopardy against IBM’s super computer, Watson (sponsored by IBM).

Kincaid families came to the school March 6 for STEM Night to learn about how the school is moving toward a fully-integrated STEM curriculum. They watched a presentation by principal Cheryl Mauldin and learned about plans for a new lab. The night was capped with the STEM Expo featuring STEM projects Kincaid students worked on in classrooms and the science lab:

  • Kindergarten – Stuffed Animal Day
  • 1st Grade – Native American Style Drums
  • 2nd Grade – Puff Mobiles Challenge
  • 3rd Grade – Mining Tools Challenge
  • 4th Grade – Rain Gauges
  • 5th Grade – Glubber, Jitterbug, Straw Tower and Water Passages

Keheley Elementary Celebrates Diversity During Inaugural International Night Feb. 27

More than 300 Keheley Elementary School students and their family members attended the school’s first ever International Night on Thursday, Feb. 27. Students wore traditional clothing representative of their respective cultural backgrounds and ‘traveled’ to nearly 30 different booths representing nations across the globe. Each booth featured artifacts, food samples, literature, clothing and games unique to each family’s heritage. Two dance troupes – a clogging group and a Bollywood outfit - also performed for the families in attendance.

Submitted by Nesverie Gondek, ESOL teacher at Keheley Elementary

Cobb Students, Families Invited To Meet With College Representatives At College Credit Now Summit March 4

Cobb County students and families can learn how to earn college credit while enrolled in Cobb high schools at the College Credit Now Summit March 4 at Campbell High School. Representatives from Chattahoochee Technical College, Georgia Highlands College, Kennesaw State University, Southern Polytechnic State University and the Georgia Department of Education will be on hand to provide information and answer questions in a small group setting.

College Credit Now Summit

Tuesday, March 4, 2014, 6:30—8:30 p.m.

Campbell High School (opening session meets in theater)
5265 Ward Street Smyrna, GA 30080

  • Meet College Representatives
  • Learn about college credit options available while in high school
  • Ask questions in small groups
  • Hear about Move on When Ready, Accel, Joint & Dual Enrollment
  • Learn about 100% Paid Tuition Options
  • Discuss Georgia Student Finance Commission information

Download and print an event flyer with a map of the CTC campus. For more information, contact Angela Kovachi with the CCSD Transitional Career Partnership Program at 770-426-3559.

Outstanding Readers Test Their Knowledge During 2014 Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl

Students from 53 Cobb schools competed to be recognized as the best readers and fastest buzzers at the eighth annual Cobb County Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl Jan. 18 at Awtrey Middle School. Shallowford Falls is the first place winner for the elementary level, with Still and Birney taking the runner-up positions. At the middle school level, the International Academy of Smyrna earned first place honors, Cooper Middle captured second and Pine Mountain third. Walton High School won its second consecutive first place spot for the high school category, followed by teams from Kennesaw Mountain and Campbell. The top two teams for each academic level advance to the West Regional competition Saturday, Feb. 1 at the University of West Georgia.

Cobb County schools have been very successful in the advanced stages of previous HRRB competitions. In 2013, Birney Elementary won the state title and Campbell Middle captured its second consecutive state HRRB title. In previous years, Lovinggood Middle and McEachern High Schools have won the state competition.

The Bowl was started by Helen Ruffin, a now retired DeKalb County media specialist. In an effort to motivate the students at her school to read more, she decided to capitalize on their competitive natures. Thus, the idea for an academic competition was formed. High school students read the nominated books for the Georgia Teen Peach Book Award. Middle and elementary students read the nominated books for the Georgia Book Awards. In six rounds of competition teams compete against each other. Factual questions about the books are asked. To respond to a question, competitors use a game show style buzzer system. The first student to buzz, responds. If he/she answers the question correctly their team earns 10 points. Thus, speed and accuracy is the name of the game! Winning teams are those that earn the most cumulative points. Due to the round robin nature of the competition, it is impossible to know who will win until the closing ceremony. The Cobb County Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl is organized by a volunteer committee of Cobb County Media Specialists.

Submitted by Barbara Powell-Schager, Library Media Specialist, Big Shanty Elementary

Rigorous Readers Face Off During Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl Jan. 18

Teams of students from 53 Cobb County schools will face off in a challenge of reading prowess during the seventh annual Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl next Saturday, Jan. 18 at Awtrey Middle School in Kennesaw. The Reading Bowl is an academic competition in which students from all three academic levels test their knowledge of books from the Georgia Book/Peach Teen lists.

The Cobb County bowl will begin with a parade of schools, followed by six rounds of competition. During each round, two teams compete in a fast-paced, 10 question match, using a quiz show-style system to ‘buzz in’ with the correct answers. Winning teams advance to the regional bowl Feb. 1, heading towards the ultimate challenge of the state final in March at the University of Georgia.

The Reading Bowl was initiated by its namesake Helen Ruffin, a now-retired DeKalb County media specialist, who was looking for a way to motivate the students at her school to read more. When she noticed that the students at her school were extremely enthusiastic about competitive events she decided to capitalize on this energy. Thus the idea for an academic competition was formed.

Cobb schools with teams participating in the 2014 Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl include:


Acworth Kemp Awtrey Campbell
Austell Kincaid Campbell Hillgrove
Big Shanty Lewis Cooper Kennesaw
Birney Mableton Dodgen McEachern
Brumby Mt. Bethel East Cobb North Cobb
Clarkdale Norton Park Griffin Osborne
Davis Riverside Int. Hightower Trail Sprayberry
Dowell Sedalia Park Int’l Acad. of Smyrna South Cobb
Eastvalley Shallowford Falls Lovinggood Walton
Ford Smyrna Lost Mountain
Garrison Mill Still Mabry
Hayes Teasley McCleskey
Hendricks Tritt McClure
Hollydale Pine Mountain
Int’l Acad. of Smyrna Smitha

For more information about the Cobb County Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl, contact Barbara Powell-Schager at (678) 516-6756.

Barber Middle School Hosts 2nd Annual Health and Wellness Fair


Barber Middle School held its 2nd annual health and wellness fair October 26th, featuring more than 35 exhibitors. Families and community members joined together to celebrate and discover about healthy decisions. There were giveaways and entertainment for all ages. The entire event was free to the public.

The highlight of the day included the Georgia CHIP Program which provided free child i.d. kits that included fingerprints, pictures, DNA samples and voice samples. Activities were available for all ages from the Alzheimer’s Association and Dogwood Forest a senior retirement facility to the YMCA and the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta. The crowds were entertained by Barber’s 8th grade dance team and a martial arts demonstration from Atlanta Budokan. Participants were also able to get their flu shots, have their blood pressure checked, vision checked receive pedestrian Halloween tips from Safe Kids Cobb!

Additional exhibitors included the Acworth Police, Cobb County Police, Cobb County Library System, Cobb County Alcohol Task Force, Rite Aide, Walgreens, Depew Orthodontists, Foot Solutions, Comforting Arms, Georgia Department of Human Resources Right From the Start Outreach Program, Acworth Family Eye Care, Play it Again Sports, Atlanta Allergy and Asthma and much more.

Submitted by Lara Salzman, Barber Middle School

South Cobb High Students Attend STEM Symposium at Kennesaw State University


South Cobb High School students were invited to attend the 2013 LSAMP STEM conference by Kennesaw State University on Friday, October 11 at the Hilton Head Marietta Hotel & Conference Center. Students were able to listen to keynote speaker Dr. Jimmy Davis, Jr., who spoke about the importance of science, technology, engineering and mathematics in our everyday lives. His speech further delved into the importance of highlighting STEM education in order fill gaps in our new, developing industries.

Breakout sessions followed the keynote speech and SCHS students participated in the high school workshop, focused on engineering of underwater robots. This provided an environment for students to use problem-based learning in order solve a real-world problem. Students identified a problem, took inventory of actual equipment and supplies, and designed a prototype using equipment provided. This was a great opportunity for students to work together in collaborative groups while applying previous and new knowledge to real-world scenarios. Each individual person had to design their own robot and then present it to the rest of his or her group. Once all students presented, the group voted for the best most practical design to share with the entire workshop.

The conference fieldtrip concluded with a luncheon at which Dr. Cheryl Davenport Dozier, president of Savannah State University, spoke about the importance of STEM as it relates to our economy. Our students heard her speak about marketability in all areas and the importance of acquiring and practicing proper oral and writing skills in addition to STEM fields in order to be successful in any career. Dr. Dozier also spoke on the importance of being able to be critical thinkers and problem solvers rather than simply having “book knowledge.”

The Peach State LSAMP is a collaborative effort to significantly increase the number of underrepresented minority students statewide who complete undergraduate degrees in the STEM fields.

Student Reflections:

“I felt empowered to by the words of those who spoke. They pushed the message of innovation, self – expression, and the ideology that the true rock stars are not those in the entertainment industry but those who become doctors, scientists and engineers.” - Daniella Krakue, 12th Grade

“This conference reinforced and encouraged students like myself to continue studies in the STEM field because we are the future and the future is now.” - Omar Benjamin, 11th Grade

“We had the chance to design our own underwater robot called Sea Perch, which gave us the chance to be creative and let our imaginations run wild. We were also presented the opportunity to ask college representatives about any questions we might have had about their college. Overall, the fieldtrip was a great experience and I gained a lot of motivation and information from it.” - Jazmin Lucio, 10th Grade

submitted by Juan Mora, science teacher, South Cobb High School

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