A successful and impressive ‘Healthy Challenge’ at CVE

  • Written by Leanne Christensen, RSD

Fifth grade students Andrea Pitts and Jenna Holt practice flossing. Courtesy photo.
Every year during the month of October, Cedarcrest High School health teacher Peggy Filer promotes a “Healthy Challenge” program, in which she encourages all Riverview staff, students and families to set healthy goals and track their progress on the road to better health.

This year one of the first groups to accept this challenge were 5th graders at Cherry Valley Elementary.  In all (it was a voluntary program) 85 5th graders were eager to participate and encouraged their families to as well. Their floss their teeth each and every day from October 3rd through October 28th.

Teacher Jennifer Santamaria was proud to report that the students kept track of their success on a daily graph and were thrilled with their accomplishment.Students also completed some basic research about flossing, and learned that it not only helps to prevent cavities, but gum disease too.  All of the needed dental floss was donated by local dentist, Dr. Sam Castillo of the Duvall Dental Center.

Students reported that before their flossing challenge, they had completed a survey and found that on average 23 (out of 85) 5th graders flossed their teeth daily, which is only 27 percent. However, during the challenge when the stats came in,  an average of 65 students flossed their teeth each day, increasing the average to 76 percent of students.

Here are a few comments/testimonials from the Cherry Valley participants:

“I think that I am going to floss more now because my gums stopped bleeding when I floss,” said Jage Spear from Mr. Nakagami’s class.

“I think that it (the flossing challenge) got most people to floss and it gave me more graphing experience too, and I flossed more than I used to. I also noticed that my breath smelled better,” shared Megan Reid from Mrs. Santamaria’s class.

Diana Chalakova, also from Mrs. Santamaria’s class, added, “My little brother has been flossing too!”

Needless to say the Healthy Challenge program was a complete and healthy success at Cherry Valley.

Mrs. Santamaria will be working with the students checking in once a month to see if the flossing habit is holding on.

After hearing the outcome of the “flossing challenge” from Cherry Valley, CHS health teacher Peggy Filer commented, “Learning of the 5th graders’ results from Mrs. Santamaria makes my heart sing! It is wonderful that the students are starting this important habit while they are still so young.  People of all ages can change their behavior with planning and support. Watching kids realize they have a lot of control over their health is the best part of my job.”

Eagle Rock Multi-Age receives 2011 School of Distinction award

  • Written by Leanne Christensen, RSD

Riverview’s  Eagle Rock Multi-Age program is a 2011 recipient of one of Washington State Educational Service District’s highest honors, a “School of Distinction.”

This impressive award is given to honor schools which exemplify outstanding improvement in student achievement.

Eagle Rock is one of 99 schools in Washington state to have received this award in 2011. Each regional Educational Service District will be hosting an award ceremony to recognize all School of Distinction award winners.

Eagle Rock Program Manager Judy Kay Harris says, “Eagle Rock is proud to receive recognition as a School of Distinction. Our staff and students have worked very hard, and it is gratifying to be recognized for dedication toward excellence in education. As a small school, our test scores can be volatile; one student not feeling well on test day can impact the scores of the whole school, so it is especially gratifying that each and every student dedicates themselves daily to giving their best effort. Achieving this award is wonderful; our task now is to continue setting and meeting high standards in order to prepare students for the future. I know this is something we are eager to get on with!”

In the Puget Sound Educational Service District (PSESD) region, which services King and Pierce counties, it was confirmed that 38 schools in 18 school districts are award winners.

Dr. Monte Bridges, PSESD superintendent states, “The PSESD is pleased to be a partner in honoring schools within our region that set a high standard in realizing dramatic achievement gains for students. We recognize the difficult and important work that this takes. We salute the students, families, educators and communities for their successes and for setting a high bar for us all.”

Riverview School District Superintendent Conrad Robertson stated, “I am so proud of the hardworking students and dedicated staff at the Eagle Rock Multi-Age program. This is a total team effort of students, parents and staff working together to achieve this recognition. We are especially proud that this is the fourth time in five years that a Riverview school has earned the distinction of being in the top 5 percent of Washington schools in improving math and reading scores over a five year period.”

Wine tasting dinner and concert in Carnation

  • Written by Valley View Staff

CARNATION–On December 11, from 4-8 p.m., Sliders Cafe, a hip new retro café known for their meatballs, home cooked food, and live music events, will transform from a café to an intimate holiday dinner club.

Sliders Café chef Marty Lepore is cooking a delicious five course Italian meal paired with six wines from award winning Carnation winery, Pleasant Hill Cellars. While guests enjoy the evening finale of port wine with dessert and coffee, nationally known recording artist Orville Johnson will take the stage.  With a maximum of 40 place settings, guests will love the intimacy and friendliness of this holiday event. Tickets are $75 per person for this four hour, five course, six wines, live music evening. Purchase at Sliders Café in Carnation.

Sliders Café is a bit of Route 66 on Route 203. Built inside Carnation’s historic landmark 1938 Gilmore gas station, with authentic vintage gas pumps out front, you will find Sliders Café, an Italian sandwich eatery, retro diner and weekend breakfast stop.  Sliders Café serves their signature meatball sliders, ethnic Italian grinders and other classic menu items Wednesday through Sunday since opening in the spring of 2011.

Along with the retro diner experience inside this repurposed, original two bay garage building, Sliders Café hosts Bluegrass and Americana music concerts on the Marcia Lee Stage and operates Cowgirls Western Wear in what was the original gas station office.

What’s in a name? ‘Sliders’ for steel guitar ‘Café’ for home cooked food.

Sliders Café is the entrepreneurial dream of Marty Lepore and Phyllis Ann Lee, residents of East King County.

Marty Lepore, a long time Northwest Folklife performer, is known as drslide, master of the steel guitar or slide guitar.

Combined with Marty’s east coast Italian family recipes and Phyllis’ western farm heritage, they have created a popular hip café offering wholesome food and live family music in a resurrected piece of Americana history in the beautiful Snoqualmie Valley.

Mmmm ... fried chicken!

  • Written by Lisa Allen

Photo by Christy Allen

Jake the border collie eyes a clump of what the Puget Sound Mycological Society identified from the above photo as “probably but not 100 percent positive” Lyophyllum decastes “Fried Chicken” mushrooms.

The fungi are sharing a Snoqualmie Valley field with many other varieties of mushroom including the ones on the right which are Coprinus comatus (shaggy manes).

Says Marian Maxwell, PSMS president, “The shaggy manes are beautiful...their gills or lamellae are deliquescent (becomes a liquid after maturity)....This is how they spread their spores.”

An ink can made from the liquid of these mushrooms that artists have used in paintings.

Riverview highlights Karen Hough

  • Written by Leanne Christensen, RSD

After teaching for years in the Riverview School District, Karen Hough is currently Riverview Informational Technology Integration Specialist for the Secondary Level. Courtesy photo.
Karen Hough has worked in the Riverview School District since1982. She began her career  as an in- home tutor for a student at Tolt Jr/Sr High School.  She was later hired at Cherry Valley Elementary as a classroom music specialist.  Karen taught classroom and choral music at Cherry Valley for 10 years.  She commented that  she carries very special memories with her of the staff and students from her years spent at Cherry Valley.

Mrs. Hough began teaching at Tolt Middle School  (TMS) when the Tolt Jr/Sr High transitioned and became Tolt Middle School, as a classroom teacher from 1992-2008.

Over the years, Karen  taught the core subjects of 6th and 7th grade language arts/social studies, as well as a variety of elective classes including 6th, 7th, 8th grade technology. During that time, she  earned her master’s degree in educational technology, which led her to her  current position as Riverview Informational Technology Integration Specialist for the Secondary Level.

Karen says, “What a fun and invigorating position this is! I absolutely love my job!”

As a child, Karen always wanted to be a nurse or a teacher. When she played “school,” (which was a lot), she was always the “teacher.”  She adds, “I practiced my skills on my poor brothers and all of the neighborhood children.”

Both of Karen’s parents instilled in her a love of reading and a love for  learning new things. She also had several teachers in her life who made a HUGE impact... her 3rd and 5th grade teachers, and her high school band and Spanish teachers as well.

“Each spoke into my life and caused me to want to emulate them, and as a result, I too became a teacher,” she adds proudly.

When asked about thefavorite part of her current job, Karen says, “It is seeing the “Ah, ha!” moments that each individual has (adult or child) once they “get” a concept or process related to what they are learning/working on.”

She also loves learning new things, and her present position pushes her to continually learn something new every day.

Karen has been teaching for such a long time, that she has  MANY cherished/funny memories that have occurred, but one she says stands out above all others … As a newly graduated, unmarried, brand new, 21-year-old teacher, she was shocked the first few times her kindergarten students would slip and call her “Mom.” Since that time however, she has  been called “mom” and “grandma” more times than she can count.  She adds, “I consider it a compliment that my students are secure enough with me to let “mom” slip out from time to time.”

Karen proudly adds, “ I’ve been married to the same wonderful man (Vern) for 33 years. We have lived in Carnation for the last 30 of our total years together. Both of our grown children, Jody, now an elementary teacher (teaching in Brazil), and Casey (an EMT) are products of the Riverview School District. We have always considered ourselves blessed to live in such an awesome and beautiful place.”