This is not my father’s classroom teacher by DAN WARREN Principal, East Rockford Middle School Certainly, many baby boomers can remember the days at school when you could convince that certain teacher to spend nearly an entire class period talking about any topic of interest other than the subject matter. Go ahead and admit it—you had at least one or maybe two of these teachers. My favorite was an eighth-grade history teacher who served on a Navy ship during WWII. He was a good citizen and great guy, but certainly his memory was questionable, as he prefaced his stories with, “Did I ever tell you about this time back in the Navy?” Of course, being the budding leader that I was back in those days, I made sure all my classmates never admitted we had already heard him tell the story several times. We learned a lot about life on a Navy ship from a very caring and interesting educator, but we probably could not have been successful on a state social studies curriculum assessment similar to what is required of secondary students today. Some 40 years later, I fondly remember the Navy stories with much more detail than, let’s say, the political causes of the Civil War. Although I have many wonderful memories of my eighth-grade history teacher, I’ve grown to realize that he would have struggled in today’s classroom. Current classroom teachers, unlike my eighth-grade history teacher years ago, have many more responsibilities sitting on their teaching plate. We can start with the existence of state curriculum standards. In Michigan, just like most states, grade-level content standards exist for all core teaching areas. Teachers spend many hours working collaboratively with their colleagues to map their subject area curriculum, ensuring these content standards are present and taught. Often this is similar to throwing a dart at a moving target, as the state continues to change and modify these standards. Nevertheless, it is imperative that every teacher teach the standards, and we are mandated to give our students state assessments over these very standards. These state mandated assessments are given each year at identified grade levels and at identified times of the year. Since we have multiple buildings in our district that include many teachers […]
June 10 2010
Bargain Hunter Outfitters offers new, used, and consignment on hunting, fishing, camping equipment A new family-run store with Rockford roots owes its identity to the time-honored tradition of deer camp. Jeff Winkler, a long-time Rockford resident, has enjoyed the childhood ritual of deer camp with his dad, brothers and uncles, and still loves to be in the woods hunting, fishing and camping. Winkler believes sportsmen and women would appreciate the chance to shop for new or serviceable gear at lower prices, the chance to sell their own equipment after upgrading, and a knowledgeable source of advice on what to purchase. Bargain Hunter Outfitters offers all that and more. “Consignment is a big part of our business,” said Winkler. “We currently have taxidermy, wood carvings, leatherwork, custom fishing poles and baits, hunting clothes and even firewood on consignment,” said Winkler. “We encourage our customers to bring in their quality used equipment. It’s a great way to clear out the closet and make some extra cash. Our products include a good sampling from our core lines, hunting, fishing and camping gear. We do have plans to sell firearms and carry a line of archery equipment. We’re waiting to see what our customers are looking for, and will tailor the business to their needs and requests.” Winkler opened his business on May 8 of this year. He chose the location at 3720 West River Drive in Comstock Park because he believes it is very accessible to people from many locations, including Rockford. Winkler offers his years in outdoor recreation as a source of expertise for someone just starting out or looking to improve. In addition to Winkler’s own background of a life-long love of the outdoors, other members of the family help with the business and bring their own talents to the table. Troy Winkler, Jeff’s brother, is also extremely knowledgeable in all things outdoors. Amy Winkler, a corporate financial advisor, is involved with Bargain Hunter Outfitters’ organizational requirements. Their children, Chad and Jessie, work in the store as their school hours allow. Chad is a student at James Madison University in Virginia and handles tech and online support. Jessie has just finished her senior year at Rockford High School and works as a clerk and cashier. Laurie […]
Allecia R. Avery Brandi T. Barresi Christopher J. Barrentine Ronald J. Brow Ryan R. Card Britney C. Combs Timothy J. Daly Casey R. Elston Alisa J. Felty Andrew C. Johnson Stephen A. Johnson Stephanie M. Kilmer Tyler M. Ly Daniel K. McGovern Keller M. McInerney Nicholas A. Miles Chelsea E. Newman Cheyanne C. Prominski Amanda L. Rinvelt David T. Schmidt Jordan L. Sherwin Jayna C. Smith Sas M. Sova Jeremy D. Stevens Gianna M. Swanson Jeffery R. Turner Nicholas H. VanBlooys • • •
New RPS Hall of Fame accepting nominations through June 15 Time is running out to nominate an outstanding Rockford graduate for the new Rockford Public Schools Hall of Fame. Nominations are being accepted for the inaugural class of the Hall of Fame through June 15 using forms available at www.rockfordschools.org. The Hall of Fame, sponsored by the Rockford Public Schools (RPS) and Rockford Education Foundation (REF), will recognize those who have demonstrated exceptional achievements in their chosen field or who have made significant contributions to RPS or the Rockford community. Rockford alumni who graduated in the year 2000 or earlier will be honored for achievements in categories for Cultural/Performing Arts, Academic/Career Accomplishments, and Service to RPS/Community. In addition, the Hall of Fame will include a category for honorary achievement and contribution to RPS. The honorary achievement award may be given to a non-Rockford graduate. The Hall of Fame honorees will be selected by an advisory committee composed of school, community and business leaders. Those selected for the Hall of Fame will be honored at a special induction ceremony and dinner on October 2, and their names will be engraved on a permanent monument that will be installed on the grounds of Rockford High School. “Our goal is to inspire today’s students with vision and encouragement from the examples set by the inductees,” said Lisa Jacobs, executive director of community services for RPS. “We plan to have the inductees meet with our students so they can learn from the examples of these role models.” The Hall of Fame dinner will also serve as a fundraiser for the REF, which awards grants that enrich the educational experience in Rockford public and private schools. Event chairs are Jon and Carol Muth and Pete and Amy Kruer. Information about the event and tickets will be available at www.rockfordschools.org/ref. “The Hall of Fame is a celebration of the exceptional educational opportunities we have in Rockford schools,” said Jill Ericksen, a trustee of the REF. “We’re not only honoring the outstanding achievements of our inductees, but also the rich educational experiences created for every student in our community.”
The Department of Natural Resources and Environment recently announced that a three-mile section of the Fred Meijer White Pine Trail in Kent County is closed due to mud slides and washouts from the recent storms. The closed area extends from Belmont Avenue east of Belmont to House Street, which is southwest of the City of Rockford in Plainfield Township. The 92-mile trail extends from Grand Rapids to Cadillac and at this time there is no alternate route on the linear state park trail. All visitors, including mountain bikers, pedestrians and rollerbladers are asked to plan their routes accordingly to avoid this section of the trail. This segment of the trail will remain closed until repairs are complete. Updates and additional information can be obtained by contacting the Mitchell State Park and White Pine Trail Supervisor Larry Solce at (231) 775-7911.