Hi, my name is Paul McCarthy and this is my 5th year working for Kieve-Wavus and my first winter working as an EIR. Everyone at the school calls me Pablo and this has been a long running nickname given to me by a former Kieve employee (Forrest). This winter I have spent my EIR time at Loranger Middle School in Old Orchard Beach. Loranger Middle School ranges from 4th to 8th grade and I primarily work with the 6th and 8th graders. Last fall, the 6th graders went to Kieve for a week to learn and practice the values and lessons of the Leadership School. The 7th and 8th graders went to Kieve last spring for 3 days each. The current 5th graders will be taking a field trip to Kieve this spring to check out the campus and get an idea of how things work for their upcoming week at Kieve next fall. Loranger is one of our most loyal schools and they do a great job integrating Kieve as much as possible.
Loranger has a Learning Lab time that students can use to catch up on work. I spend one of these blocks with a group of 6th graders each day and we play games and do activities that help guide them to be better leaders in the school. The games are meant to get them moving and break up the school day a bit. Our activities highlight communication, taking positive risks and building healthy relationships.
During the 6th – 8th lunches, I open up the gym for some students each day to blow off some steam and get a mini-recess in before going back to classes. One day a week I try to go over to Old Orchard Beach High School to reunite with some of my former students and try to come up with new ideas for each of the schools.
I observe and participate in many of the gym classes for the 6th – 8th grades also. We have done floor hockey and volleyball units with the students. It is amazing to watch them progress through the units and see the improvement and confidence building. Sometimes, I have played in the volleyball and floor hockey games to help out and dish out some friendly smack-talk with the students.
After school is over, we have basketball and floor hockey leagues. The basketball league gives the students a chance to practice their skills and have some fun. The floor hockey league is very competitive and the faculty even has a team. I play on this faculty team and we will complete the season undefeated. I have found that being around a lot after school has been key to me reaching a lot of students. After school, students are more relaxed and we are able to chat and hang out. I also help out 8th graders after school sometimes to help them get their grades up or to finish homework.
A big part of the EIR mission at Loranger is the preparation and completion of Star Week.
S = Safe
T = Tolerant of others
A = Aware of Responsibility
R = Respectful
Each grade at Loranger had a day dedicated to them during the week:
4th = Friday was spent making bicycles out of pipe cleaners for our guest, Chris Poulos.
5th = Thursday was spent with some of our Kieve staff as an introduction to how we roll at the Leadership School. During our assembly, they taught the 4th grade about LEADSTAR, which is important for clear communication.
6th = Monday was spent with some of our Kieve staff to reinforce what they learned at Kieve in the fall and how to make it last forever. They told the 5th graders not to worry about their upcoming time at the Leadership School and that they will learn a lot and have a great time.
7th = Tuesday, we had two guest speakers who lived through and witnessed the Holocaust and they described their unique experiences and answered questions for the students. During the assembly, the students presented what they learned from the Holocaust unit and from the visiting Holocaust survivors.
8th = Wednesday was spent with some of our Kieve staff to practice leadership and give positive advice about leadership to the younger students in the school. They described how to be a positive leader to the 7th grade at the assembly and also described what they learned through their time with our TLS educators.
I would like to give a big shout out to Matt Michaud for his hard work and dedication getting ready for this huge week. He was always prepared for my questions and helped me get ready and make this winter and Star Week a great experience for our students and teachers.
Chris Poulos was our guest of honor at the Star Week assembly. Chris is a former World Champion in Flatland Biking. He came to school to not only show us his stunts and bikes, but to talk to the students about how to act and grow. He talked about respect, how we treat people, taking chances and learning from our mistakes. These all relate to the Kieve learning model as well as what the students did all week to practice being a Star. Chris really reinforced everything we are striving for at Kieve as well as Loranger Middle School. Thank you Chris and thank you to all of the visiting Kieve staff and Loranger staff who helped make this a great Star Week!