Woodbury second graders host poetry reading

Dozens of Woodbury Elementary School second grade students took part in a “Hot Chocolate Poetry Hour” on Dec. 19 at the school.

The students selected poems and practiced their public speaking skills by reading the poems in front of a group of fellow students, staff members and parents. After the poetry reading, everyone enjoyed a cup of hot chocolate.

Woodbury teacher Becky Jacobson said this was a perfect way to wrap up their poetry genre and foster a love of reading and enjoying poetry. She said it also was a chance for students to build language fluency and gain confidence in front of a group.

The students read the poems in both Spanish and English on the last day of school before the holiday break. Jacobson’s class and two other classes taught by Olivia Romero and Claudia Jaramillo Mendoza took part in the event.

Classes resume in Marshalltown Schools on Jan. 5.


Woodbury Elementary School second graders hosted “Hot Chocolate Poetry Hour” on Dec. 19.

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Miller Middle School collects 3,000 food items

Students and staff from Miller Middle School collected more than 3,000 food items for the less fortunate during the school’s holiday food drive this year.

It is nearly double the amount of items they collected last year.

Students delivered the food to The Salvation Army in Marshalltown on Friday, Dec. 19.

“It’s outstanding,” said Miller counselor John Augustine. “They definitely learned it’s the season of giving.”

The Salvation Army will give out the food in their Christmas packs as well as use some to help stock its food pantry.

“It feels good to help others,” said Miller seventh grader Hunter Youngblood, who helped deliver the food Friday, which filled three trucks.

Miller students competed in teams against each other to see which team could collect the most food. The winning teams were awarded with a pizza party Friday.


Pictured with some of the food being delivered are Miller Middle School seventh graders, from left, Hunter Youngblood, Abbileni Rodriguez, Justice See and Carolina Cervantes.

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MHS student repeats as Poetry Out Loud winner

Marshalltown High School hosted its seventh annual Poetry Out Loud competition among students on Dec. 18 in the MHS/Community Auditorium.

Taking first place and advancing to the state contest was senior Ellen Podhajsky.

In the contest, students recite two poems that test them on memorization and recitation.

Other top five placewinners from MHS Thursday were junior Mitchell Schwandt (second place), senior Libby Crawford (third place), sophomore Michelle Ankrum (fourth place) and freshman Luke Pedersen (fifth place).

Podhajsky recited “A Noiseless Patient Spider” by Walt Whitman and “The Woman at the Washington Zoo” by Randall Jarrell.

Podhajsky will compete in the state contest on March 1 in Des Moines. She also won the MHS contest last year and placed fifth at state.

Poetry Out Loud contests are held in every state in the country with more than 150,000 students participating.

Students are judged on the following criteria: physical presence, voice and articulation, appropriateness of dramatization, level of complexity of the poem they read, evidence of understanding, accuracy and overall performance.

Ellen Podhajsky, right, won the MHS Poetry Out Loud contest Dec. 18.

Mitchell Schwandt

Mitchell Schwandt took second place.

Libby Crawford placed third.

A group of MHS students take part in the Poetry Out Loud contest Dec. 18.

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MHS presents holiday concert

The Marshalltown High School fine arts department presented its holiday concert on Dec. 14 in the MHS/Community Auditorium.

The treble choir, concert choir and holiday singers, under the direction of Amy Ose and accompanied by Annie Grieshop, performed.

The symphonic band, under the direction of Brett Umthun, and the wind symphony, under the direction of Bret Lee, also performed.

Hundreds of students performed many holiday favorites at the event to a full crowd at the auditorium.

Band Choir IMG_0142 IMG_0108 IMG_0134

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MHS student designs next yearbook cover

MHS Student

Marshalltown High School senior Stefan Jackson utilized his graphic design skills to win a school contest, which means his work will become part of MHS history.

Jackson designed the cover for the 2014-15 Post Script, the annual yearbook at the school that will be published next year.

MHS art teacher Kirk Niehouse teaches Jackson in a graphic design class and called this winning design simple and sophisticated.

The contest helped students apply skills they would need if they were designers in the real world.

“One of the goals of this class is to get real world experience and this contest is great for that,” Niehouse said.

Following the theme of “Locked in the Memories,” Jackson used the computer program Adobe Illustrator to create the design.

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Families enjoy gingerbread house night at Rogers

A total of 42 families including 60 students attended Rogers Elementary School’s Family Learning Center gingerbread house night on Dec. 4.

Families constructed gingerbread houses from milk cartons, graham crackers and frosting and decorated them with candy.

Many families stayed at the school for other activities on the night including reading books, playing board games and coloring pictures.

Organizers deemed it a successful night for all involved. Rogers hosts Family Learning Center twice a month during the school year.

Rogers Rogers2 Rogers 3 Rogers4

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Veterans to be honored at MHS basketball games Dec. 9 at MCC

Marshalltown High School athletics will hold a veterans tribute night on Tuesday, Dec. 9 during the MHS varsity basketball games vs. Waukee in the Student Activity Center at Marshalltown Community College. The tribute will be held between the girls and boys varsity games, which will be at approximately 7:30 p.m.

All former and current military members will receive free admission for themselves and a guest to the games. The MHS pep band will play patriotic songs during the varsity games.

Following the varsity girls basketball game, there will be a color guard presentation, the presentation of the game ball to a selected veteran and the MHS chorus will perform a patriotic medley.

The girls varsity game will begin at 6:15 p.m., with the boys game to follow after the tribute.

For more details contact the MHS athletic office at 641-752-1142.

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