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Madrigal Dinner

Come enjoy this holiday season at the 6th annual Madrigal Dinner featuring a four course meal by a professional chef and performances by both RA Long and Mark Morris Choirs. Come be transported into a medieval world full of song, food, and joyous holiday cheer. Start your holiday season off right and support the Mark Morris and RA Long Choir Programs!

Friday, November 30, at 7:30 PM
Saturday, December 1, at 7:30 PM

Tickets are $30 and can be purchased online and in person at either Mark Morris or RA Long ASB offices, starting November 13.

Online by going to:
https://wa-longview.intouchreceipting.com

Create a new account, click to shop items.

We hope to see you!

 

2018-11-19T23:24:01+00:00November 19th, 2018|

Longview teachers have class

We’re proud of our educators and are taking this opportunity to introduce you to two of them, in their own words. They have different interests but share a passion for preparing Longview students for successful futures!

This is a supplement to the Longview Public Schools annual report. Both Gail Wells and Sam Kell are featured in the printed version of the annual report.  

Gail Wells, math teacher, Monticello Middle School.

Gail Wells believes everyone can do math. She works the room and uses technology to gauge how much each student understands, even those who never raise their hands.

Where did you grow up and go to school? I was born in North Dakota and grew up in Federal Way, Washington. I was in the first graduating class at Thomas Jefferson High School in Auburn and went to Western Washington University for a degree in home economics.

How did you get from home economics to math? My passion was food and nutrition, but math is completely entrenched in home economics—measuring food, finance, sewing …

Why do people think math is so hard? Society doesn’t allow people not to be “readers,” but for some reason it’s OK to not be good at math. The mindset should be that “I can do it,” because everyone can.

How long have you been teaching? Twenty-six or 27 years—10 years at St. Helens and 10 years at Robert Gray, with four years as a math coach at Kessler and Robert Gray. Now I’m finishing at Monticello Middle School.

How has teaching math changed? When I was in school, it was, “Here is how you do it. Now copy what I do.” We don’t do that anymore. Instead of just handing students an algorithm or a way to do something, we do a lot of concrete building of understanding before moving to the abstract.

What is the best thing about being a teacher? That look on a student’s face when they “get it”—it’s priceless.

What are some of the keys to being a good teacher? Number one is understanding what the goal is. For me it’s the state standards—I have to know what the students need to know. Also …

  • Making sure the students get the needed feedback so they can self-evaluate.
  • Being ready when they walk through the door—knowing where you’re going and how to get there, not just turning the page on the book and teaching them what’s on the next page.
  • Adjusting if the students are not getting it.

The big thing here at Monticello is I have an amazing teaching partner, Phil Hartley. We collaborate, do assessments, reflect on student work, talk about the goals and are transparent about our work. Today we are going to share kids and do some interventions, so we can get them where they need to be right now.

To be a good teacher, it’s everything, including a great administration that supports you. It’s not just one thing.

What advice do you have for new teachers? Don’t think you already know everything. I’ve been teaching for 26 or 27 years, and every year I learn something new. Every year I get better. So listen to your colleagues, listen to your students, and be willing to adapt. Be a part of the team.

What’s something people might not know about you? I’ve been making gingerbread houses for 30 years. I have two sons who were in the armed service—one still is. I send gingerbread houses to Afghanistan and Bosnia. My daughter taught English in South Korea, so I sent one to her.

What would you tell the community about what life is like in school? When those kids come up the stairs and say hi to me, it’s wonderful. It’s the best place in the world to work.

What are students like today? Students are considerate of each other. They want to do their best—they want to succeed.

Anything else? This is my last year of teaching. I want to have more time with my family and visit my grandchildren—I have six. My career as a teacher has been an amazing journey. I feel deeply blessed by every student I’ve ever had.

 

 

Sam Kell, industrial arts teacher, Mark Morris High School

Sam Kell practices what he teaches. At school, he introduces pre-apprenticeship students (pg. 3) to technical skills like carpentry. In his spare time, he works on his own fixer-upper house.

Where did you grow up and go to school? I spent my childhood in Kelso and Longview, and went to Catlin Elementary, Columbia Heights Elementary, Cascade Middle School and Mark Morris High School. I spent one year at Lower Columbia College and finished my final three years at Central Washington University in the industrial arts program.

Why did you get into teaching? I always liked working with people and going through the learning process. My mom is a pre-school teacher.

Who introduced you to industrial arts? My dad is a self-employed residential contractor. He flips houses and owns rentals. I started working with my dad when I was 10 or 11 years old. I was just a helping hand with sheetrock and roofs. In school I excelled in shop classes and was happiest in project-based learning.

What’s the best part about being a teacher? Building relationships with the students. Teaching is all about the relationships and the growth.

What are the students of today like? They are hard-working and task driven. People may assume students never get off their smartphone or think, “It’s not like when we were in school.” But I still see the drive in students to get things done. Sometimes it takes different teaching styles to motivate different students.

What is one thing you want to teach every student? One thing I’d like to teach every student is lifelong learning and self-evaluation. To be able to reflect on the job you just completed is a very important skill no matter what you do. I learned a long time ago, “reflect and do better.”

What would you like people to know about school? School is about learning, and failure is okay.

 Do you have hobbies? I love hunting, fishing and hiking, and I share season tickets to the Trailblazers. I’ve been a Blazers fan since elementary school. I watched Michael Jordan and Clyde Drexler play. I also own a house in Kelso—it’s a fixer upper.

 Anything else? It’s important for young people in our community to recognize their own skills and recognize what Longview has to offer. Longview is a great place.

2018-11-07T22:28:49+00:00November 6th, 2018|

MM students plan grand opening for Pearl’s Closet

Jennifer Johnson and a committee of students took on a project to create and now relocate Pearl’s Closet. The new home for Pearl’s Closet will be the student center at Mark Morris High School.

After all the work from Jennifer and her teammates in the leadership class, a team of DECA students has taken on the marketing and promotion of the grand opening event.

Shelby Hayden and Kolbea Mumma are students in Mr. McCormick’s class at Mark Morris. They have banded together to take on a project for DECA – the grand opening of Pearl’s Closet.

While Cowlitz County enjoys the lowest unemployment rate in decades at 4.9 percent some families with high school students are still struggling to find jobs and a steady place to live – this is where Pearl’s Closet comes in.

Pearl’s Closet takes donations of fashionable, clean clothing that teenagers would wear. Students who don’t have the resources to buy clothes can visit Pearl’s Closet and get clothes for free. This can include something to wear every day or for a job interview.

Shelby and Kolbea want to accomplish some noteworthy goals with their marketing plan for Pearl’s Closet.

They want to take any stigma from getting clothes for free away from Pearl’s Closet. To help with this the duo will get clothes from Pearl’s to wear and show off.

The two students also hope to get the message to parents and area residents that even though the economy has improved there are teenagers in need of good clothes – so please donate teenager-centric items.

Finally, they hope the community recognizes Mark Morris High School as not just being a great school, but a contributor to the community.

The grand opening is November 1 at 11:30 a.m. To donate contact Mark Morris High School at 360-575-7663 or email Mr. McCormick.

 

2018-10-26T23:48:11+00:00October 25th, 2018|

Pre-Apprenticeship Program Grand Opening

State Representative Brian Blake and Jill Diehl, Director of Career Readiness for Longview Public Schools

The goal of graduating seniors is to have a bright future.

Longview Public Schools took a big leap forward in providing high school students with great career options with the grand opening of the new pre-apprenticeship program at Mark Morris High School.

The program, developed in partnership with the local trades including IBEW 48 and UA 26, and with generous funding from JH Kelly, will serve students from across the district for years to come.

The new skill center will give students the chance to be hands on and learn the trades, and upon graduation be prepared to enter a union apprenticeship program.

The grand opening event brought supporters together from the community, labor unions, JH Kelly, state government, city government, Longview School Board, numerous community leaders, and school district personnel.

19th District State Representative Brian Blake said, “This is a fantastic program and it’s great to see the school district partner with business and the trades to prepare young people for rewarding careers.”

Students from all Longview high schools will be able to enroll in the pre-apprenticeship program.

2018-10-10T21:30:26+00:00October 4th, 2018|

Three Longview schools named “Healthiest in Nation”

According to the Alliance for a Healthier Generation three schools in the state of Washington created a culture of health for students: R. A. Long High School, Mark Morris High School and Olympic Elementary.

Creating a culture of health in schools is more than serving nutritious food. A healthy culture means healthy food, exercise, community involvement and a focus on both students and staff members.

The result of a healthy school culture is students performing better on tests, getting better grades, attending school more often and behaving better in class.

A spokesperson for the Alliance of a Healthier Generation, Megan Walcek, said this is the second time Mark Morris made the national list and the first time for Olympic and R.A. Long.

“Achieving recognition of any level is quite prestigious, as the framework criteria is rigorous and detailed. Since 2007, the year we started giving awards, only 2,880 schools nationwide have received this honor,” Walcek said.

A healthy culture supports achievement. Preliminary graduation rates for 2018 show 96.3 percent of R. A. Long seniors graduated, 89.3 percent at Mark Morris High School and 61 percent at Discovery High School.

Overall, Longview Public Schools preliminary graduation rate for 2018 finished at 88.1 percent.

2018-10-24T20:52:04+00:00September 18th, 2018|
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