“Stand up. Feet together. Hands by your side,” Dana Rossi, Education Associate of the Ballet West Education and Outreach Department, told a class of fifth-graders at the start of a recent I CAN DO class.
The students put their coats away and immediately stopped talking as their bodies began to stretch and sway to the disco sounds of Earth, Wind and Fire. Their regular classroom teacher, David Bettinson, moved right alongside them.
“The kids love it,” Bettinson said. “The program really focuses on confidence building, and the kids have all loved it.”
At first, some of the kids in his class were hesitant to participate in a dance program, but their attitudes changed from the first session, he says. I CAN DO, an acronym for Inspiring Children About Not Dropping Out, aims to teach students about dance and music, but it also teaches discipline, self-confidence and a love of school.
The students spend one hour a week in the program for about six months, learning about “moving, investigating, creating and connecting, as well as life skills” involved with preparing for and participating in a performance, according to the Ballet West’s description of the program. The idea is, students love the program so much it makes them look forward to coming to school to participate, and that good association carries over even after the class has concluded.
At the end of the program, all of the I CAN DO classes come together to perform a choreographed dance.
Ballet West’s program is in fifth-grade classrooms across the Wasatch Front, but this is the first year for the program to be in a Canyons District school. The program began at Midvalley Elementary in early November, and will conclude with the multi-school performance in April.
The Canyons Board of Education and Administration invite families and businesses in the community to join the District in a holiday donation drive for the Midvale overflow shelter of The Road Home.
Following a yuletide tradition established in the first year of the District’s operations, Canyons District Office employees are raising money and collecting goods for the shelter, which houses dozens of CSD students and their families. A handful of schools also are conducting drives to benefit the local shelter.
While new and gently used goods of all kinds are gladly accepted, this year the shelter especially needs socks, underwear and laundry detergent. Donations will be collected at the Canyons Administration Building, 9150 S. 500 West, and Canyons Support Services Center, 9361 S. 300 East, until Friday, Dec. 20.
“This will be the fifth year CSD employees have conducted a yuletide drive for the shelter, and I have been pleased with all that we have been able to accomplish for families who need a little extra help,” said Canyons Interim Superintendent Ginger Rhode. “Throughout the years, we’ve been able to provide clothing, food, toiletries, school supplies and winter holiday gifts to the students who are living, no matter how temporarily, at the shelter. Please consider yourself invited to participate in this worthy cause.”
Canyons District is building an army of "code talkers."
Canyons schools are participating this week, which is Computer Science Education Week, in the “Hour of Code,” a nationwide effort to increase the awareness of and interest in computer science.
The goal of Hour of Code activites, says Janet Goble, CSD’s Director of Career and Technical Education, “is to introduce students to the world of programming in hopes of encouraging” more participation in computer science courses.
Goble says students will be programming via tablet apps and introduced to other types of computer programming. They also will learn options available to them in the fields of computer science and programming.
One of the highlights of the week is Hillcrest High's invited participation in an event at Adobe System Inc.'s Lehi campus. The school's robotics team, which last year won the opportunity to compete in the world FIRST Robotics contest in St. Louis, was asked to have a booth and give a formal presentation on Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2013. Learning events also will be held this week at Alta, Brighton, Hillcrest and Jordan high schools.
Computer science is one of the highest paying career areas with more than a million jobs currently not being filled in the United States. In addition, fewer than 10 percent of schools offer computer science as an option for students.
Try the holiday poinsettias now on sale at the Canyons Technical Education Center, 825 W. 9085 South.
The sale lasts until all poinsettias are taken home for the holidays.
Don’t delay —there is a limited amount of plants, which come in colors with, well, colorful names. Buyers can choose among “Prestige Red,” Freedom Red,” and "Polar Cap White.” Call 801-826-6600 to pre-order the $7 plants.
The Canyons Education Foundation is extending its pre-sale of tickets to the Broadway smash. Tickets will go on sale — again — through the Foundation on Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013 and will be offered until 5 p.m. Friday, Dec. 13, 2013.
Prices range from $70.50 to $189.50, depending on the seat. The Foundation, the fund-raising arm of the District, is selling tickets to four nights of its July 9-Aug. 24 run at the Capitol Theatre in Salt Lake City.
A portion of every ticket sold through the CSD Foundation will benefit Canyons students and teachers.
The Foundation is selling orchestra- and balcony-seating tickets to four nights:
How to buy tickets?
Over the phone
- Call the Canyons Education Foundation at 801-826-5171
- Credit card payments will be required for all phone orders
- Stop by the Canyons Administration Building, 9150 S. 500 West
- Cash, checks, and credit cards will be accepted