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Foundation Gives $100,000 to Honey Creek!

The Honey Creek Community School Foundation is a non-profit group seeking to serve one purpose: to raise funds, both from within and outside the Honey Creek community, to directly benefit our school.

In 2015, we did just that.  Due to the generous support from the Honey Creek community, the Foundation was able to gift $100,000 to our school (in 2 installations).  Because the Foundation supports Honey Creek directly, these gifts will enable changes such as improved technology, increases to staff compensation and professional development opportunities.  In 2015, 58 families made one-time contributions to the Foundation.  37 families made monthly contributions, which ultimately provide sustainable gifts for the Foundation and predictable revenue for our school.

The all-volunteer board, comprised of current student and alumni parents as well as HCCS teachers and staff, is committed to not only help Honey Creek weather times of decreased funding to education, but to provide sustained financial support to ensure a vibrant future for our school.  It is our goal to reach 100% participation from Honey Creek families in 2016!

One Reason Why Honey Creek Is at the Top

STEM Fair 2013The Education Trust-Midwest (ETM) -a nonpartisan, independent educational research, analysis, policy, and advocacy group- has highlighted Honey Creek and its authorizer, the Washtenaw Intermediate School District, as one of the top charter schools and authorizers in the state of Michigan. The ETM praises the efficacy with which Honey Creek and the WISD work together– in particular, their ability both to use data to drive decision-making and to maintain the flexibility to select and implement the most effective, highest quality teaching and learning practices. The ETM identifies mutual respect and “a laser-like focus” as significant contributors to Honey Creek’s status as a leader in setting state-wide performance standards.

For more information, read the EDMT analysis.


Honey Creek Rocks!

Image created at http://www.tagxedo.com/

Image created at http://www.tagxedo.com/

At the spring concert in 2014, Honey Creek Community School families were asked to share their stories. Why did they originally bring their child(ren) to Honey Creek, and what do they love about Honey Creek now? Families were enthusiastic about their commitment to Honey Creek. The most mentioned response was the small class size, followed closely by Honey Creek’s dedicated teachers. One family wrote, “We were drawn to Honey Creek by the small class sizes.  What we cherish is the attention to each child individually and focus on how each child learns.”  Another family wrote, “We send our son to Honey Creek because we love the teachers and the care they take in their teaching.”  Honey Creek families praised the project-based learning and multi-age classrooms.  One family highlighted the “project-based learning so more ‘real life’ (on-the-job) experiences with critical thinking, cooperative collaboration and decision making.”   Another family stated, “We came for a school with the freedom to try new, proven ideas like more play, hands-on learning and teaching social skills.”   Honey Creek families were also delighted with the strong sense of community and high parental involvement.  One family praised the “close community with lots of parental involvement and opportunities.”  Several families were also drawn to Honey Creek’s emphasis on diversity.  Families identified the “many different types of families,” described Honey Creek as “an inclusive, welcoming and safe school for families of all types” and praised “the great value placed on multiculturalism.”  Honey Creek families had great stories, including: “Before we came here, our boys would cry each and every day–not wanting to go to their other school.  Today they look forward to coming and are thriving!” and “We came to Honey Creek as refugees from our neighborhood school. Honey Creek really feeds our whole kid–emotionally, academically, socially.” As evidenced, Honey Creek families are very happy with their choice.  One family summed it up simply, “Honey Creek rocks!”

Honey Creek is Proud to Introduce the New Non-Fiction Leveled Reading Library

Research and practice have shown that providing the opportunity for children to read books at their reading level is one of the most effective ways to increase their reading skills. While our school library collection is fabulous and growing, the Common Core State Standards are placing a much bigger emphasis on nonfiction text.

Over the past year, Honey Creek students, teachers, and families have come together to raise funds for a K-8 non-fiction leveled reading library. This community effort has resulted in our school acquiring more than 1,000 new non-fiction titles. All students, in all grades, at all reading levels, will have access to these books.

We are honored and privileged both to host this collection and to have the support of such an active, engaged community.

March 6th: Join us for Honey Creek Day at California Pizza Kitchen

On Wednesday, March 6th, California Pizza Kitchen is hosting an all-day fundraising event for Honey Creek. You can:

  • Dine-In
  • Take-Out
  • Order Online
  • Cater an Event
  • Use Curbside Service

When you bring in this flyer, California Pizza Kitchen will donate 20% of your purchase to our school.

Have lunch out with friends or co-workers. Take a night off, and take the family to dinner. Pick up a pizza for later in the week. Pick up an order for everyone to bring back to the office. And please, pass the word.

Honey Creek Teams Up for Science

Honey Creek elementary and middle school students have taken part in both the country’s largest Science Olympiad and in NASA’s Space Settlement Contest.

Twenty-four Honey Creek students, from grades 2 – 5, created 15 teams to participate in the 2012 Washtenaw Elementary Science Olympiad (WESO). This was Honey Creek’s second season participating in WESO. This year, 25 schools and 1,621 students from across Washtenaw County were a part of the Olympiad. Two Honey Creek student teams won medals: 2nd grade “Sink or Float,” and 3td grade “Rock Hunters.”

The Phoenix Eclipse Space Settlement, created by a team of Honey Creek middle school students, was awarded an Honorable Mention in the NASA Ames Research Center  and National Space Society’s annual  Space Settlement Design Contest. This year, NASA and the NSS received 474 submissions from students in 19 countries. Following the award, the Honey Creek team traveled to Washington, D.C., to informally present their proposal at the International Space Development Conference.

Academic Service-Learning update for January, 2012

This is a time of year when many people are feeling thankful for what they have and looking for ways to share their time, talents and material belongings with others. So many great deeds go unseen at Honey Creek, but I want to bring attention to the fact that, though many in our community are quiet helpers, we have an inordinate amount of generous souls. Many thanks to all who made donations this month! Between Food Gatherers, a drive to help a school in Tanzania and the time and effort that went into both the winter performance and craft sale, the collaborative effort of our community is astounding. Especially at this time, it is beyond impressive that our small community is able to do so much!

Honey Creek hosted a blood drive on January 10th, 2012. The hours were 11 a.m.-5 p.m. and the WISD is kindly allowing us to use their seminar rooms 1 & 2 for a comfortable location! Honey Creek students greeted donors and helped with recovery, food and juice. We went way past our goal last year so they upped our target this year (to 60 participants!). It would be great to see them need to increase the target again next year. I would like to send out a BIG thank you to all family, friends, and community members who were able to come by the blood drive! Thank you, as well, to all students who volunteered their time.

Also, Martin Luther King Jr. Day is coming up January 16. We are having a school-wide assembly on Friday, January 13 to honor the work done by Martin Luther King Jr. and the many others who have worked toward creating a better world.

We have Monday off of school in honor of King’s legacy. One way we encourage our community to celebrate this day and give back is by committing themselves to some act of service on this day. This day of service is quickly approaching. Start thinking about what your family can do and how you’ll reflect on that activity. There are always many free community events at Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti libraries as well as throughout our county.

Monday, January 16, 2012 at 10:00 AM the University of Michigan Detroit Center will be hosting events in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

Thank you sincerely for all you do to foster our culture of service at Honey Creek.

Technology update for January, 2012

The 2/3 technology classes have been working on a project called “The Engineer’s Notebook”, combining design and building with using the iPads. In this project, students have been working on designing a simple idea using DoodleBuddy (an iPad app), then gathering the pieces for their project (either Lego or K’Nex), and documenting their building process using the iPad’s camera. Once the building process is complete, they are creating a notebook documenting their experience using Pages on the iPad. This has been a great project and I’m excited to show this work during January’s Curriculum Celebration.

After finishing work on their Scratch projects, the 4/5 technology classes were introduced to our newest technology asset, the iPad cart! We’ve had several sessions for students to learn how to use various apps, including iMovie on the iPad (which is a great tool for quickly putting together a video with multiple clips, music, and easy
transitions between segments).

The Middle School technology classes are currently wrapping up a project called “Analyzing Technology”. In this unit, students are given the hypothetical situation that the school must replace all the computer mice in use, and are given 3 options. Students are required to research the 3 choices, and write a convincing argument for one of the 3 choices, based on 4 points of data (including cost, student preferences gathered from classmates, and other data of their choosing).

The Middle School technology elective, Programming with Processing, is wrapping up, as the semester winds to a close. Their final work for this class is to choose their 3 favorite pieces of work to assemble into a digital portfolio, which will be shown during January’s Curriculum Celebration.

Media Center update for January, 2012

We’ve been busy here, keeping up with Middle School students’ research projects, voracious readers, and cataloging new books! The collection continues to grow with items needed to support our curriculum, and with pleasure reading for students across the grade levels.

We now have six computers available for research, and they are very well used. Students are finding the Media Center’s home page helpful as they do projects; books, databases of articles and eBooks, and web site advice get them started in a one-stop-shop fashion. We continue to add web sites both to our home page and in our catalog, where they can be looked up by subject, just like books.

Since we have more students eager to work on research projects and homework during recess, we have slightly changed our procedure for that time. Students who intend to read or do work are asked to get a pass in the morning from their base class teacher. Passes are given to Marion when they come in. Our talkers and hangers-out now have their space in the cafeteria, where noise and distraction don’t matter.

Please remember that the Media Center is grateful for donations of books. We keep a wish-list on Amazon.com for those items we could especially use for curriculum support. To make finding this list easy, we’ve included a link on the Media Center’s home page to it, found near the bottom of the page.

Thanks to everyone who supports the Honey Creek Media Center! We appreciate you! Here’s to a happy New Year! -Marion

Music update for January, 2012

Thank you to everyone who came to our Winter Performance. The students did a fantastic job and had a lot of fun performing for everyone. In the music classes we will now move on from our concert music and begin new units. The K-1 students will be learning how to read music and recognize simple rhythms. 2-3 and 4-5 classes will be learning to play recorders. Band students are going to be studying our lesson books and learning new notes so we can play more challenging music. Choir has many new songs, so they will be working on how to sing as a group.

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