Parents and interested friends are invited to attend "A Winter Music Program" being presented on Tuesday, December 5, at 7:00 students in Pre-School through grade 3 under the direction of teacher, Michele Hayes.  Students should arrive at 6:45 and go directly to their classrooms.  The show occurs in our gym.
     Additional parking is available next door at the Athens Church of Christ.
     Santa's Workshop arrives at Morrison onDecember 7.  Students will view the various gifts available for purchase on that day and then return onFriday, December 8, to make their purchases.  A price list will be sent home to parents on Thursday.
     Directing this P.T.O. fund raising activity are Susan Williford and  and Una Gilfert
     The Morrison "Kids Next Door" will perform their holiday show at the University Mall on Monday, December 11, at 6:15.  We invite all Morrison families and friends to attend and hear the melodic sounds of these young singers under the direction of Michele Hayes.  Their performance is guaranteed to entertain and brighten your holiday spirits.
     A new and improved Morrison Web Page is now online.  The revised page was a collaborative effort between teacher, Heather Sammons and principal, John Gordon.  Included on the site is information pertaining to: Calendar of Events, Mission Statement, History of Morrison, Honors, Curriculum, Technology, Land Lab, Library, School Improvements, Special Events, Annual Report, Student Organizations, Parent/P.T.O., and more.  Also, we are pleased to announce that this edition of the Morrison Message can be found on our web page. Later, various grade levels will be linked to our web page under the heading Classroom News. The web site address is listed near the top of this page.  You are invited to visit our web site often.
     Student council members were elected by our voters and took their oaths of office on November 10.  Oaths were administered by Athens Mayor Ric Abel.
     Council members are: President, Emily Thatcher; Vice President, Emily Climer; Secretary, Madison Cooley; Treasurer Rebekah Grippa; Sergeant at Arms, Matthew Witten; Room Representatives - 4th Megan McCoy, Bethany Miller, Daniel Rankin; 5th-Doug Chiki, Mary Jane Giesey, Christina Wince; 6th- Kirk Harper, Erin Herpy, and Olivia Sole.
     We commend our newly elected council members and wish them a good year.
     Serving as advisors to council are teachers, Lesley Michigan and Heidi Mullins.
     Student council will sponsor a SNOWFLAKE SHAKE dance on Wednesday, December 6, from 6:30 - 8:00.  All current Morrison students are invited to attend Morrison's first dance of the school year.  Admission is only .50 per student.  Refreshments will be sold by student council while Rockin Reggie spins the tunes.   Parents should pick their sons or daughters up promptly at 8:00 in the gym.  For the protection of students, we do not permit students to wait outside or to leave the school without being accompanied by a parent.
     We look forward to seeing your child at the SNOWFLAKE SHAKE on Wednesday, December 6, from 6:30-8:00 p.m.
    A big THANK YOU goes to all of our Morrison families. The Box Tops for Education Program has already raised687.00 for our school.  Way to go!    For those unfamiliar, this program works by families simply clipping the box top logos from General Mills cereals and sending them to school.
    We appreciate everyone's support with this fund raising project.  If you have questions, contact chairperson, Margie Innis at 594-4193.
     A Veterans' Day Observance was held at Morrison on November 10, to honor all American veterans because "freedom isn't free." The program featured our "Kids Next Door" who sang two versions of America and the National Anthem.  Guest speaker was Mr. John Montgomery, a former Staff Sergeant in the U.S. Air Force during Vietnam.  The Morrison Flag Patrol demonstrated how to properly fold a flag and then ran the colors up the school's flag pole as the entire student body watched in a respectful manner.
     We thank Judy Barrows for inviting our speaker, Michele Hayes for directing the Kids Next Door, and Sabrina Kotts for organizing the Veterans' Day program and  directing the flag patrol.
     A total of 162 students had perfectattendance during the first grading period.  We commend these young people and their families for their interest in education.
     To receive a perfect attendance award, students need to be at school every day.  Children who have medical or dental appointments must bring a note from the doctor or dentist stating that they had an appointment that day.
      We thank parent, Kathryn Bolin for her fine work in preparing attendance awards and collecting prizes from supportive local businesses including: Taco John, KFC, Burger King, Ponderosa, and O.U. Athletics.
     Unless precipitation is falling, students WILL GO OUTSIDE FOR RECESS when the temperature is 20 degrees or above, and the wind chill factor is acceptable.  We do go outside when snow is on the ground.  Healthy children need outdoor physical activity and a break from classroom routine.  Thus, please make sure that your child comes to school with the proper clothing for recess including: a winter coat, gloves/mittens, attire for the head, and boots when it snows.
     Picture re-takes will occur on Tuesday, December 12, between the hours of 11:15 - 2:15 for those students who were absent or dissatisfied with their original pictures.  To participate in this re-take session, students need to return their original picture packages to the school office.
     Our annual day to recognize grandparents and very special friends occurs on THURSDAY, APRIL 12, beginning at 9:15 and concluding at about 12:45. There is no school on Friday, April 13, so grandparents may enjoy their grandchildren for an additional day if that fits our families' schedules.
     Yearly, we have about 250-270 grandparents from a  dozen or more states  that attend this event  at Morrison.  Thus,  we wanted to  announce the date  early so that  reservations could be  made. We request that parents communicate this information to grandparents and very special friends.
Flag patrol members have been busy learning flag decorum as they raise and lower the American and Ohio flags daily in front of Morrison.  Under the direction of teacher, Sabrina Kotts, flag patrol members for 2000-01 are: Team Red-Ellie Andrews, Shane Bugeja, Ilona Carlson, Ben Innis, Bethany Miller and Jordan Scali, alternate; TeamWhite -Alissa Hyde, Megan McCoy, Andera Pierson, John Siemer, Michelle Wiggens, and Christopher Ipacs, alternate; Team Blue - Jesse Adams, Kara Endick, Andriana Lein, Catherine Meyer, Kasie Sweeney, and Rochelle Withem, alternate.
     Parents are the first line of supervision for children.  Thus, we encourage all of you to carefully monitor the behavior of your sons and daughters, to keep the lines of communication open with them, and to know who your children's friends happen to be at any particular time.
     In addition, students at Morrison and their parents are encouraged to report concerns they have regarding overheard conversations, threats made, suspicious activity, or any items being brought to school that should not be in the building.  Please let teachers, the principal, and law enforcement authorities know of your concerns and observations as quickly as possible.
     Asthma is a medical condition that affects some of our students. House Bill 121, which became effective last year permits a student to carry his/her inhaler at school.  The law states that the student must have written permission of a parent and written instructions from the prescribing physician.  The doctor's statement must include all the information regarding prescription medication to be administered at school PLUS any adverse reaction that might occur for unauthorized use.  Call the school office if you are interested in an authorization form.
     Parents are reminded that we will NOT  administer medication of any kind to students unless the proper forms have been signed by a physician and/or parents and the forms are on file in the school office.  With the colds and flu season upon us, it is recommended that parents complete the proper paperwork so that their children may receive the required medication.
    The Morrison Mustang Yearbook staff consisting of sixth graders is hard at work preparing the 2000-01 yearbook.  Staff members meet weekly to prepare this year's edition which will again feature a hard cover and contain 56 fantastic pages of memories suitable for autographing.
     Our P.T.O. is currently considering participation in a Script Program.  This involves parents and interested friends buying gift certificates, gift cards, or using cards provided by participating stores to claim store donations for Morrison.  Participating stores sell the Script to the Morrison P.T.O. for a reduced rate.  The P.T.O. then sells the  certificates for face  value (i.e. you pay  25.00 for 25.00  worth of script.) When you use the Script at a store, our P.T.O. receives a certain percentage of the sale. The school earns money and you finish your Christmas shopping.  Thus, if you are going to spend money anyway, it may be a good idea to use script so that your child's school can also benefit.  Everyone wins!   The Script program is not just limited to the holiday season.  The certificates or cards are honored at stores throughout the year.
     If you believe that your family might use the Script Program, please be sure to complete the survey sent home on Thursday, November 30, and return itquickly to Morrison.
     Members of the Script Steering Committee are parents: Traci Lawrence, Betty Sindelar, Liz Luehrman, Cathy Bruggeman, and Janis Schriner.
     Morrison custodian, Paul Cline repeated as a champion motorcycle rider in 2000.  Riding a Yamaha bike, he was senior champion in the District 11 Hare Scramble, Champion in the AMA-FMF National Enduro Series Senior B, and Champion in the District 11 Enduro Senior B.
     Paul plans to ride in the Grand National Cross Country Series in 2001.
     Congratulations, Paul on your championship rides and best of luck next year.

     Mrs. Brooks' first graders have been busy studying the important life skill of respect.  The children have been learning that it is not only important to show respect for themselves but also for others.  They have discovered that sharing, listening, and good manners are excellent ways to be respectful of others.
     The first graders in Mrs. Stork's class participated in National Children's Book Week, November 13-17.  Some of the activities included showing a favorite book, swapping books, reading a favorite poem and wearing a shirt with words on it.
     Mrs. Porterfield's class just completed a unit on citizenship in their study of character development.  Discussions included what it means to be a good citizen, rights and responsibilities of citizens including the right to vote, and how cooperation is important to making a community work.  Students extended these discussions with writing "How I can be a good citizen at school," conducting a vote for class mascot, and retelling the story of The Little Red Hen.  All first graders will travel to Stuart's Opera House in Nelsonville, Ohio on Thursday, December 14th.  They will be enjoying a heartwarming musical performance of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas.

How does one measure the circumference of a pumpkin? Does the thickness of a pumpkin's skin have a correlation to the number of seeds it has?  Can one find information about pumpkins on the Internet?
     These questions and many more were explored and examined by the fourth graders during the week of November 6-10, 2000.  Under the direction of teachers Kelly Fork,Sabrina Kotts, and Heather Sammons, the fourth graders used pumpkins for everything from physical education games, to topics for literature and word studies, writing of pumpkin poetry and pumpkin journals, pumpkin math, and pumpkin science.
     The week ended with a feast of pumpkin pie which was made by the students.  Students did everything from learning to double a recipe, to how to measure and mix the ingredients, and finally making the mathematical decisions as to how to best use fractions to divide the pies so that everyone got the largest piece possible without wasting any of their delicious, culinary creations.
     The week turned out to be a perfectly, pleasant, and plentiful pumpkin experience for all!

     What a fantastic feast we had in Mrs. Williford's preschool class!  Parents, siblings, and friends joined the preschoolers on Tuesday, November 21, for a fabulous Fall Harvest Feast.  Each family contributed one of their favorite traditional foods for the celebration and a variety of different nationalities and traditions were represented.  The array of goodies was truly awesome, and a yummy time was had by all.
     The students are now turning their attention to their musical debut in Morrison's music program on Dec. 5, at 7:00 p.m.  Parents are invited to attend this winter musical event.

Mrs. Conroy's class created "Incredible Invertebrate" projects!  They were displayed for the entire school to view at the bottom of the center stairs.  Each student chose an invertebrate to research and then prepared three hands-on projects to "share" in interesting ways all that they had learned.  Topics included the butterfly, the sea cucumber, the scorpion, the grasshopper, the earthworm, the tick, the starfish, the giant squid, the praying mantis, and the black widow spider.  Examples of student projects prepared were 3-D models, board games based on facts, information-filled books in the shape of the animal, and detailed and labeled drawings.   Many compliments were received from students and teachers throughout the school.  Well done!
     Mrs. VanDyke's class completed vertebrate research reports.  Students used MLA standards which included note cards, source cards, outline, and works cited.  Following are some of the interesting excerpts from the reports:
     "I am a really good game bird, which can provide a lot of sporting activities, and I am not bad to eat either!  But you better be on your toes if you think you are going to get me." (Turkeys, by Shay Brooks.)
     "I also use my snout for sniffing out food and nuzzle-kissing my friends". (Walruses, by Elizabeth Stein.)
     "Giraffes usually give birth to one baby called a calf.  Sometimes two calves will be born.  Luckily, I am an only calf."  (Giraffes, by Erin Mazzocca.)
     "You just stab my family and friends with a really sharp needle-like device and feed me to the fish!  How would  you like it if I did that to you!  I'll let you off the hook this time!  Ha! Ha!" (Earthworms, by Christina Wince)
"As you can see I am a mean, green, fighting machine.  That might be why crocodiles have lasted since the days of the dinosaurs." (Crocodiles, by Stephen Bartone).
     "We can even live about one week without our heads.  Then the only reason we die is because we have lost our mouth and can't drink water.  Humans will never get rid of us!" (Cockroach, by Rebekah Grippa).
     "I recently met a very old monarch butterfly and he told me some very interesting facts."  (Butterfly, by Katherine Chen).
     We have several upcoming field trips.  On Tuesday, December 12, we will be doing our community service project and visiting Hickory Creek Nursing Home.  Students will be delivering their handmade craft gifts to the residents. We will also be sharing the gift of song as we sing the traditional carols with them.
     On Thursday, December 14, we will again be traveling to the historic Stuart Opera House in Nelsonville to see a live performance of the play "Twas the Night Before Christmas".  Both classes write poetry in December and this will be one of our culminating activities. On October 26, we enjoyed the live performance of "The Ugly Duckling".  This was the culminating activity for the fifth grade October unit on Fairy Tales.
     Please watch for permission slips  coming home.  They will need to be signed and returned as soon as possible.  Parents are reminded, at the request of the teachers, that instead of buying Christmas gifts for the teachers, kids may donate hats or mittens that will be distributed to the needy. These hats or mittens can be given to Mrs. VanDyke or Mrs. Conroy at any time.
     Grade 5 has been privileged to have many guest speakers in science and math so far this year!  In science,  Dr. Scott Moody and Dr. Larry Witmer visited to share their expertise on animals with vertebrates.  In math, Dr. Lee (Sophia Chen's mother), shared her skills using an abacus.
     A great web site is now available for students needing additional practice or enrichment for math skills that is tied together with science and social studies.  It is maintained by the publisher of our math series, Scott Foresman-Addison Wesley.  The site URL is: (or whatever math chapter for which you desire extra work).  Keep in mind that workbook pages can also be used for extra practice.
     Fifth graders had a wonderful time learning to speak French!  We were pleased with the efforts and results of the two O.U. students who worked with our students on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  These students were Justin Hill and Annie Cusack!  We will miss them!  Merci beaucoup!
     Just a reminder!  Our three full-day outdoor education classes will be in Peebles, Ohio, on May 23-25, at Camp Woodland Altars.  The price for the seven meals and two nights lodging is $90.00 per child.  Payment dates and more details will be sent home as the time draws nearer.

In the mood for politics?  We were.  A special thanks to Kat Carpenter for arranging Lisa Eliason's visit regarding her campaign for state representative.  The students learned how to run a "grass roots" campaign.
A profitable cupcake sale...thank you to sixth grade parents for donating cupcakes for our Sixth Grade Spirit fundraiser.  The money earned will contribute to part of the class gift sixth will purchase for Morrison.
Sharpen your spelling skills...the written spelling bee qualifier will be given Monday, December 4th.  The top 30 students will participate in the Spelling Bee in February.  Good luck.l
Think globally, act locally by sending in canned goods with your children for the Sixth Grade canned food drive.  We will happily accept canned goods through December 18th.
It's electrifying!  On Tuesday, Dec. 5,  sixth grade will tour AEP Mountaineer electric power plant.  This will kick off our science unit on energy.  Thanks to Mr. Patrick Hale for arranging this trip.

     Every week Kindergarten students study a different letter.  During the week we studied the letter "P", students had fun with the word pizza.  Children read fictional and non-fictional books about pizza. They clustered the word pizza by naming words that had to do with pizza. Students made paper pizzas and completed a math paper that had them count the different toppings on  pizza.  Each child made his/her own pizza and ate it for snack.  At the close of the unit, we did "I am a pizza."  The children pretended they were a pizza and told what they heard, saw, felt, and wanted.
     The week of "I" we talked about Indians .  We read books and clustered the word Indian.  Each child made his/her own headdress and vest with Indian writings.  The children completed the  sentences "I am an Indian."  and "I can ____."(Fill in  the blank with a word from the cluster).
     To have a better  understanding of  Thanksgiving, we brain  stormed what each child was  thankful for and wrote them on  a large paper turkey.  Each  child completed, "I am  thankful for ________ ." We read a book, The First Thanksgiving,and made Pilgrim hats, butter, pudding, popcorn, and ate cornbread.  We all ate together with our Pilgrim hats on and enjoyed our first Kindergarten feast.  It was a fun time!

Last updated on December 6, 2000