JVES celebrates the first 100 days of school year
Quick, what does 100 pennies look like? How about 100 jellybeans? Rubber bands? Cupcakes?
On Monday, the 100th day of the school year, students at Jacks Valley Elementary School got the chance to find out about the number 100 from about every angle imaginable.
It was “Celebrate 100 Day,” which was initially started around 22 years ago by two 1st grade teachers as a result of a Math Their Way conference in another state, according to JVES 1st grade teacher Lynn Egan.
“Several teachers have done a 100th day celebration every year, but this is the first time we’ve done it as a whole school,” said Pam Gilmartin, in her second year as principal at JVES. “It actually came about as an idea from our community hallways committee. We wanted to start some new traditions and this was something they decided to do.”
n 100 minutes of 100. The first 100 minutes of Celebrate 100 Day were filled with school-wide activities. Students were issued colorful 100 glasses to be worn during school activities outside their classrooms.
To start off the day, Gilmartin read a 100-word speech over the intercom, followed by the entire school singing “Happy 100th day to you.” Students and staff then did a 100 day dance together, performed 100 exercises and came to the multipurpose room in groups of 100 to enjoy juice and a cupcake, donated by the Partners in Education parent teacher group. There, the paper glass-clad students got a chance to look at several jars with 100, or close to 100, items in them and try to guess which one(s) had exactly 100 items inside. Overhead, there were 100 colorful helium balloons
n Older students adapted. While Celebrate 100 Day is perfect for 1st and 2nd graders, 3rd grade teacher Kathie Cattanach, said her students were responsive to the centi-bration.
“The kids brought in bags of 100 snacks that we’re sharing, and we looked at sale flyers from the newspapers, and tried to see what they could buy for under $100,” she said. “In math, we’re looking for two-digit numbers that add up to 100, and we also discussed finding two people on the staff whose ages add up to 100. So far, 3rd grade thinks 100 day is great.”
Barb Jacobson, 1st grade teacher, said she has always done something on the 100th day in her classroom.
“This is a great tool for us, because by the time we’re done with 1st grade, these kids need to be able to count to 100 by ones, twos, fives and tens,” she said. “This really helps them to get an idea of what 100 actually looks like, because at this age, many of them still have no concept.”
At the guess-which-jar-has-100-items-in-it table, Jacobson’s class leaned toward the pennies during their turn, but there were scattered votes for other small items including rubber bands, jelly beans, barrettes, brads, tacks and more.
Buddy classes from two different grade levels combined to share 100 day activities. Neha Kumar, 6, from Jacobson’s class, thought that was one of the best things about the day.
“I liked getting together with our buddies from 4th grade to make hats,” she said. “That was fun.”
n No glasses, please. Third grade teacher Eric Egan led his class into the multi-purpose room for their cupcakes devoid of their 100 glasses.
“I have always run my class democratically, and they voted not to wear the glasses,” he said. “At this age, they’re starting to get self-conscious, and they thought they might look silly or childish, so this was their choice.”
Egan said his class, sans glasses, was still participating in Celebrate 100 Day.
“I saved my allowance and brought in a $100 bill and told them it is called a ‘C-note,’ and from that we went into learning about Roman numerals,” Egan said. “I asked the kids if they’d ever seen Roman numerals used, and even though yesterday was the SuperBowl, and they used XXXIV on TV for that, most said they hadn’t seen Roman numerals used before.”
Fourth grade teacher Steve Rosenbloom also found ways to make the 100 day celebration work into his class’s curriculum.
“We’re doing things like writing 100 cursive letters, and today we had sharing, which we always do on Monday, but they had to do it in 100 seconds,” he said.
One of his students, Danielle Kochen, 9, said she liked the day.
“It’s cool, because we get to wear these cool glasses,” she said. “We’re having fun guessing on the 100 jars, and I just love school.”
n Perfect attendance for 100 days. Four staff members and 45 students with perfect 100-day attendance were awarded green stars by Gilmartin, who wore 100 pins on her sweater, and the office staff, Lauren Young, who had Valentine candy hearts spelling “100” glued to her shirt, and Carol Patrick, who had a number 100 race sign on her shirt.
One of the tongue-in-cheek activities, “Guess which staff member is closest to 100,” was met with a strong objection by the self-confessed oldest staff member who shall remain nameless.
“I told them if they announce it, they’re dead,” said the staff elder with a laugh.
Needless to say, that winner was never announced.