Newport News Public Schools – Update May 2022

Archers advance to national tournament

Across Newport News, students participate in archery through the National Archery in the Schools program (NASP). In a state tournament in Doswell in March, three Newport News Public Schools archery teams earned scores qualifying them for national competition.

Teams from Richneck Elementary, Gildersleeve Middle and Menchville High will travel to Louisville, KY to participate in the National Archery in the Schools Program National Tournament this month. 

Robotics teams successful in competition and character

Robotics teams from Crittenden, Booker T. Washington and Passage middle schools and from Katherine Johnson, Deer Park and Sedgefield elementary schools participated in LEGO League events sponsored by FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a nonprofit that promotes STEM education (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) through these competitions.

Students were evaluated not only on their coding skills, their final products and their presentations, but also on their cooperative attitudes and efforts to keep all team members involved. Students were also recognized for their politeness and attentiveness during other teams’ presentations.

Inclusion and flexibility are among the reasons for the success of STEM programs in engaging students who might be less inclined to participate in traditional science, math and engineering activities. 

Booker T. Washington’s team won the Core Values Award and Mary Passage’s team earned the Judges’ Choice award.

Books help students cope with challenges

A new Newport News Public Schools (NNPS) initiative extends beyond the classroom and helps students build resilience and deal with challenges in and out of school. 

NNPS has launched Building Character Book Clubs, a project that reinforces social/emotional learning with books students can keep and add to their home libraries. Each month, each student in kindergarten, first and second grade receives a book addressing a topic covered in class. Caregivers can scan a QR code to receive access to a newsletter that includes literacy and social/emotional activities for home use. 

Topics addressed include frustration and how to deal with it appropriately, self-regulation, how to treat others and handling fear and worry. 

Nathalie Rose, instructional specialist for elementary English, says, “We have seen the effects of the last two years on students’ academic and interpersonal skills and know these areas are important to students’ success. By addressing these social/emotional topics, we offer students a better opportunity to academically perform.” 

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