William H. Barton Intermediate School honored local business leaders for their community support of Spartatude during a school tour and lunch with fourth- and fifth-graders on Friday, June 8. Joining students in the classroom were nine representatives from AAA Northway, Columbia Cabinets, Fun Spot, Queensbury Parks and Recreation, Red Lobster, Sports Page Ski and Patio, and Target.
Up first for the special guests was a tour of fifth-grade teacher Karen Bailey’s classroom during a Project Lead the Way activity. All four Queensbury schools offer PLTW courses or units of curriculum, and at the fifth-grade level, the concentration is on robotics. The WHBI visitors watched as Bailey’s students snapped on plastic hardware and wheels, maneuvered robots to scoop up objects and adjusted their designs to overcome challenges.
Zack Mazza, the executive team leader of Human Resources at Target in Queensbury, was fascinated by the creativity on display.
“Show me what you guys are building because I’ve never seen anything like this before,” he told students. “That’s awesome. That’s great.”
Guests also observed a writing activity in fourth-grade teacher Melissa Cruz’s classroom.
“They all had these amazing, different plots going on with their stories. I was really impressed,” said Alyssa Park, owner and operator of the Fun Spot.
During the tour, she noticed that the Spartatude philosophy of respectful, responsible behavior was fully on display.
“We heard it a bunch of times that day,” said Park afterwards. “If they’re hearing it in school all the time, that they need to be respectful and responsible, that’s going to make a big difference when they’re out in the community and throughout their whole lives.”
This year, 20 local businesses demonstrated their support for Spartatude by meeting with groups of intermediate students at the business location and then displaying a special window decal in a prominent location visible to customers.
Angela Pfeiffer (pictured at right), a designer with Columbia Cabinets and the parent of three Queensbury students, is one of the Spartatude Supporters who was able to tour WHBI in June.
“I think what you are trying to do for students should be applied to any real life situation,” she said. “I think it is something that everybody should work towards. It’s great that they’re going out to the community.”
“When students see our Spartatude Supporter logo in the window of local businesses, they know those businesses believe in what the WHBI believes,” said Cosh. “We truly appreciate the time they set aside to listen to our students talk about Spartatude and to explain to our students how Spartatude is used in their roles in the outside world.”