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2014 Elementary School Winners


Performing Arts
Bugsy Busts the Bad Guys!
As part of the Agassiz Crew Club, students will produce the musical “Bugsy Malone Jr.” Students will create sets, costumes, props and be trained in sound and light design and operation.
Nicholas Hall - Jan Heyn-Cubacub
Armstrong, G
Fine Arts
Indian Sari Design
Students will learn how art elements play a role in the creation of fabric design in different cultures. They will create sari designs and display theirs in an Indian folk tale production at International Day.
Stephanie Katele - Denise Pellikan
Language Arts
Our Great Migrations
After learning about The Great Migration using primary sources and secondary sources, students will conduct research and create a scrapbook to illustrate how Chicago became their hometown.
Yolanda Lewis
Fine Arts
Tiny Pieces, Big Project!
Students will learn the process of creating mosaic artwork to add to an existing installation. They will teach this process to a parent/guardian in an after school workshop.
Suzanne Drake
Fine Arts
Keys to Reading
Students will research and learn about the history, composers, and songs of Classical, Blues, Jazz, Folk and Country. Then, the keyboards will be used to play simple songs from these genres.
Kristin Smith
Fine Arts
Drama: The Wizard of Oz
To celebrate our inaugural year for a drama program at Azuela, students will participate in an improvisational club as well as the classic, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
Sara Hritz
Service Learning
Lights! Camera ACTivism!
Students will use claymation and film techniques to spread awareness about social justice topics that are important to their social and emotional growth, such as bullying and pollution.
Sara Simon
Service Learning
Crafty Connections!
Azuela students will build meaningful relationships with our neighbors at an elderly care facility located next door to our school. Students will visit monthly and work with seniors to create crafts.
Sara Simon
Belmont Cragin
Connecting to Nature
Students will learn the parts of plants, the process to grow plants and how to care for them. They will learn how to work with others, to negotiate, how to design and build a planter. Parents will help through visits with designing, building, painting and stocking the planter.
Guadalupe A. Diaz - Tania V.-Sanchez
Belmont Cragin
Social Studies
Joy Around the World
Students of grades 2-8, will research and prepare a power point presentation of facts about a country of their choice. Classrooms will rehearse and perform music and song from their selected countries at an end of year assembly.
Albert Cordero - Cynthia Wolski, Mireya Muhlberger, Justin Pallante, Ruth Muhlberger, Soraya Ramos, Jannette Moya, Brenda Jimenez
Performing Arts
Destination Dance
Destination Dance immerses students in the study of dances from around the world and gives them the opportunity to develop original cultural choreography.
Gina Spears
Fine Arts
Garden Mosaics
Students will create individual mosaic tile stepping stones for the school garden and will decorate planters for the main entrance. The mosaics will depict the Boone five core values for behavior.
Gail Locke
Performing Arts - Music
Orff Ensemble
Students will learn to create and perform music using the Orff method.They will learn scales, ostinato, melody, harmony as well as ensemble, teamwork and community. Students will lead performances of student-based creations.
Arturo Fuerte
Performing Arts - Music
Orff Instruments
Students will be introduced to music during and after-school using the Orff method. They will learn to read music, play instruments and learn musical vocabulary. They will learn social skills such as sharing and taking responsibility and will perform occasionally at school events.
Stefanie Britton
Chicago Academy - Ele
Performing Arts - Music
Xylophones Keep Growing
Students will learn to read and perform musical notation and to add more chords and harmonies to what they currently play. They will learn through videotaping and using a rubric to self assess their learnings. Students will perform at school events throughout the year.
Carolyn Williams
CICS - W Belden
Performing Arts
An African Folk Tale
Students will study the genre of African folk tales and study the text of “Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People’s Ears.” To prepare for a performance, they will learn songs and musical skills, drama skills such as blocking mime and art skills such as set and costume design.
Anna Ausmann - Holly Gore, Doug Lyerly
Performing Arts
Clay Puppet Theatre
Students will write, perform and create their own puppets as a way to show comprehension and to perform their stories using a puppet theater.
Tom Brady - Suzanne Stepek, June Robles, Leslie Weems- Hannah
Fine Arts
Lights, Camera, Literacy!
Students will work in groups to compose melodic themes on Orff instruments for the characters in the book "Nathaniel Willy, Scared Silly". They will perform the story, bringing new life to its characters.
Jana Martin - Meghan Tokunaga-Scanlon
Come and Eat!
Students will plan, plant and care for a community garden so that they can learn about the environment and contribute to their community. They will work together to enhance our community garden.
Amani Abuhabsah - Julie Fitzpatrick
Fine Arts
Little Picassos
Students will focus on nature and the environment as they learn fine art skills, practice teamwork, build confidence to create finished pieces. Classes will discuss each others work which will be presented in a Gallery during Earth Week.
Patricia Fuentes Landeros
De Diego
Social Studies
Students will study world hunger as well as waste of food in schools and present possible solutions. Ideas will be generated to create wall murals around three doors to the school lunchroom. Work on the murals will develop skills for geometry, patterning/design and architecture.
Ruth Evermann - Juan Madrigal, Christiana Lee, Sendi Cantero, Erica Reisch
Agents of change
Students will create and develop inventions and solutions using the Makey Makey invention kit, lap top, and every day objects. They will demonstrate their findings for other students in the school.
Nicole Rosenthal
Math Mind Games
Students will create fun math activities using Mensa to enhance their use of logic.
Yollande Gottlieb
Disney II
Fine Arts
Fused Glass
Students will learn the process of fused glass, including coefficients, and create a permanent fused glass mural that integrates earth science as the subject matter.
Mary Haddad - Mr. Watkins
Fine Arts
Family Arts Night Series
Middle school students and parents will participate in an ongoing family arts creation series, in which each family will create prints and artist books, culminating in an arts exhibition.
Emma Ott - Maria Gaytan
Language Arts
We Learn Together
Students will create murals using primary sources from Chicago history and learn skills needed to analyze those sources. Students will also create murals on famous poems and soliloquies along with poetic devices.
Dolly Tovar - Martha Balcazar
Fine Arts
New Music at Fiske
Students will gain a deeper knowledge of music and cultural diversity. They will learn to read music and be introduced to various instruments.
Heidi Hilgenberg
Franklin Fine Arts
Fine Arts
How Art Works
Students will learn by teaching their school community how art works. Workshops will be designed by middle school students and the resulting projects will showcase the art of grades K - 8.
Margaret Koreman - Christian Meenaghan, Paula Clark, Amanda Olson, Anne Gray, Libby Robertson
Franklin Fine Arts
Performing Arts
Pirate Musical
Students will combine their skills in drama, music, dance, and art to stage, rehearse, design, and perform the musical "Captain Bree and Her Lady Pirates."
Elizabeth Williams - Margaret Koreman, Anne Gray, Amanda Olson
Performing Arts - Music
Concert Band
Students will learn to play an instrument both individually and in ensemble. Through this program, they will learn discipline, self-reflection, listening and critical thinking. Students will hold two concerts and be encouraged to enter City-wide competition.
Erik Juhl
Fine Arts
GSA Guitar Class
Students will learn how to perform folk songs on the acoustic guitar. They will perform for their parents, peers, and community members.
Elizabeth Wontor-Leach
Programming and Robotics
Students will learn to design and program functional, practical robots while developing and applying their critical/logical thinking, problem-solving, collaboration and communication skills.
Ricky Tang
Performing Arts - Music
Orff for Literacy
Students in Orff for Literacy will compose and improvise on Orff instruments. Taking Dr. Seuss stories, they will set the words to music, promoting the relationship between literacy and music.
Leah Stephens
Hanson Park
Social Studies
Welcome to the White City
The students will take on an in-depth look at the World's Fair of 1893 which transformed the city of Chicago. Through this interdisciplinary study based in art and including history, literacy, math and science, they will learn about the famous people, architecture and firsts of this amazing fair.
John Polhill - Shelley Eckerman, Ivan Calderon
Hawthorne Press
Student writers, artists and editors will continue publishing The Thorne, Hawthorne's literary magazine. All students in grades 5-8 will receive copies. Fifteen students will join the editing staff.
Susanna Lang
Performing Arts - Music
Orff Instruments
Students in grades 6-8 will improvise music and create song and text using Orff xylophones, metallophones and classroom instruments. The text and movement to songs will be based on poems.
Heidi Farrand
Fine Arts
Oh, Savanna not Georgia
A group of 23 top tier K-2 students will explore the climate, animals, plants and people of the Savanna. They will create volcanoes, 3D habitats, mini-books and a power point / video presentation.
Loujean Nelson - Rici Sultan
Fine Arts
Ceramics of the Americas
Students will study pottery both as a way to create with clay and to learn about the ceremonies, traditions and daily life of various cultures from the pre-Columbian Americas as they used clay.
Alex Mendez
Fine Arts
Street Art
Students will study ways that street art is used throughout the world to express ideas. Students will create their own works which will be displayed in the school where they will host several viewings.
Alex Mendez
Performing Arts
Tap Dance
Students will learn tap dance using math, rhythm and timing. They will showcase their new skills at a performance for the school community and perhaps for a National Tap Dance Day celebration in Chicago.
Amy Ahmed
Fine Arts
Sumi-e and Shi
Students will create Japanese paintings, or sumi-e, to accompany their Japanese poetry, or shi. Students' original tanka, renga, and haiku poems will be bound with their art in rice paper booklets.
Rosemary Barilla - Diane Franco
Seeds of Understanding
Special education students will be the creators of a garden that will become a focus of school education in plant life cycle and student involvement in outdoor gardening. Students will use yielded crops in a cultural fair in June.
Lauren Carlos
Fine Arts
Mural, Tapestry & Benches
Students will work cooperatively to accomplish several fine art projects - an outdoor mural, an indoor tapestry, and benches for a courtyard - aimed at beautifying the school campus inside and out.
Sean Brice - Rayshawn Nowlin
Fine Arts
Remixing Sculpture
Students will focus on the transformation, repurposing and utilization of materials discarded or normally perceived as trash into public works of art. They will participate in the creative planning, building and installing works of art.
Rayshawn Nowlin
Eighth Grade Engineers
Eighth grade students will complete engineering challenges and perform chemistry experiments, such as designing hot air balloons and creating prototypes of personal floatation devices.
Susan Nutter
Eco Citizens
Fifth grade students will assume roles of citizen scientists as they design and implement practical conservation efforts and awareness campaigns for biodiversity in our school and local community.
Amy Andrews
The Robots are Coming!
Students will explore the science of robotics, using math, engineering and logical, spacial and critical reasoning using Leo Mindstorms EV3 robotics kits. Students will meet challenges within the class, present to other classes and finally to parents and the community.
Ned Harkness
Family Fun and Games
In order to increase and observe parent involvement, students will learn new games and puzzles so that they become experts at playing a variety of them. Then, we will invite parents to play with them.
Angelica Aguilar
Fine Arts
Mascot Mosaics
Students will design and create individual mosaics of the school's mascot, the orca whale. The art will be permanently displayed in many locations throughout the school.
Lauren Klopack - Ivette Gonzalez
Robotics for Now & Later
Student teams will create robots that solve challenges to engage diverse learners in Technology and Language Arts. Students will work in teams to challenge one another. A demonstration will be held for peers and families.
Joan Mendelson - William Ferguson
Flower Power
Students will research specifics on how to design, install and maintain a school perennial garden. Students will learn about the care of a flower garden and the beautification of their community.
Casey Carlock - Marianne Galassini, Migdalia Chavez, Guadalup Reyes
Fine Arts
Follow the Alphabet Road
Follow the alphabet road is a lesson designed to engage students in service-learning pedagogy centered on authentic problem solving of community-based issues.
Casey Carlock - Dena Milano, Marianne Galassini
Madero Middle
Fine Arts
Tree of Life: Nature
Students will examine traditional works of Mexico and their vital connection to nature and storytelling. The study includes social studies, mathematics, language arts, nature conservation as students create an artwork of hand-made tiles and mosaic.
Rita Marquez
Performing Arts
Haiku in Pentatonic
Students will work in groups to compose xylophone accompaniments using pentatonic and extended pentatonic scales to match the form of haiku. Videos will be shown at the school's World's Fair in May.
Colleen Cetera
Growing Together
Growing Together is a year-round gardening project in which students learn to grow food, nurture plants and become vested in healthy food choices. There will be school and community harvest raffles.
Lisa Taylor - Yvette Thomas, Amanda Walker, Anna Khawam, Debora McKnuckles
Performing Arts
Cool Cats
Students in grades 3-8 will sing, dance and perform in a production of the Disney musical "The Aristocats," a jazz inspired story that will have our actors snappin' and our audience clappin'!
John Carroll - David Weeks, Katie Arbuckle
Furture Energy & Beyond
Students will be introduced to robotics. Through a series of challenges students will create a Green City using computer programming and robotics to design energy solutions.
Kendra Mallory - Rosalind Ali
Performing Arts - Music
The Ukulele Project II
The students will begin by constructing their own ukuleles, designing them and painting them. They will then learn how to play and will perform on their own ukuleles at the end of the year.
Rachel Atlas
Performing Arts
Fiddle Fundamentals
Fourth graders will learn basic violin skills with a classroom instrument. Students will learn to care for the violin and to apply rosin. They will learn proper posture, finger and bow.
Sandy Lucas
Performing Arts
Shakespeare in the Garden
Students will create an outdoor performance and adaptation of William Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" for the school's annual, interactive Fine Arts Festival.
Marion Victorson
Fine Arts
A Mermaid's Tale
Students will explore the many facets of live musical theater while discovering their true voices within the crowd and developing a better sense of who they are as persons.
Steven Rigik - Christina Jennings, Ginny Caponigro, Mary Ella Kelm-Palacios, Mary Ann Kennedy, Aisling Conroy
Ogden International
Social Studies
Who We Are Mosaics
Students will learn the art of designing and constructing mosaics when creating an art project in connection with their unit focused on how our personal experiences and relationships shape who we are.
Taneal Sanders - Ashley Gilski, Katrina Cabrera
Performing Arts
Medieval Feast: Recorder
Third grade music students will be introduced to the recorder and Orff instruments as used in Medieval and early Renaissance secular music. Students will explore medieval history, music and art.
Aldo Mazzotti - Arturo Barrera
Portage Park
Fine Arts
Music Moves Me
Students will enjoy exploring rhythms and melodies using diverse percussion instruments, learning folk dances of various countries and creating their own melodies, accompaniment and movement.
Mark Britt
Prieto Math / Sci
Students will have ten weeks to design, build, and successfully program a robot to accomplish a series of tasks. The project will culminate with a robotics competition.
Andrew Friesema
Fine Arts
The Reilly Players
Students will write and present a piece of performance art based on issues in their community and neighborhood.
Agnes Jasinski - Eduardo Pineda
Language Arts
We Are the Future
We are a global community, touching the corners of the Earth - from the beginning of time to the future. Students will build these connections through words, music, art and technology.
Bonnie Hoffman - Jennifer Gauss, Jennifer Gibson, Stephen Twardowski, Sue Casey
Fine Arts
Modern Twist on Old Art
Students will make artifacts for international week. The students will learn the significance of chosen artifacts and recreate a modern day version of the item. They will create their own gallery where they will be the docents.
Stephen Twardowski
Fine Arts
Our Community, Our Story
Students will create murals that explore and celebrate the history and contemporary life of the Back of the Yards neighborhood. This work will encourage collaboration and creative thinking.
Jessica Rosenbaum
Art and Literacy Magazine
Fifth - eighth grade students will launch a new publication to be given to all students in the school. Writers will study new genres to achieve new levels of self expression. Students will learn the process of soliciting, reading evaluating, editing, sorting and compiling the works.
Vivian Redwood - Jessica Johnson
Fine Arts
Mosaic Mural
Using mosaics, paint and objects, students will create a mix-media mural that displays our school's rich culture and how we harmonize beautifully with diversity.
Nicole Lombardi
Young Scientists
Special needs students will join all students in the school as they explore nature together to learn about butterflies.
Donna Hill - Juila Joehl, Maureen Richardson, Sheri Sampey
Performing Arts
The Leavitt St. Orphans
Our younger students will shine as actors, singers and dancers, ignite their creativity and imagination, and grow into seasoned musical theatre performers as they prepare a production of Annie, Jr.
William Marsland - Jamie Perry
Performing Arts
Kids, Guys, and Dolls
Students will perform the production of “Guys and Dolls Junior”. Students will be a part of every aspect of the production including stage crew, scenic art, sound, lights and performance.
Renee Holman - Marilyn Duff, Gordon McCall, Ben Rogers, Angela Maniaci, Sara Knox, Katie Loveland, Sandi Lerner, Samantha Gamble
Performing Arts
Twain's First Band
Students will have their first opportunity to play in an ensemble band. They will perform at the close of each semester at the school and perhaps at the elementary band and orchestra festival in May.
Melisa Rutkelis
Vick Early Childhood
The Train Project
Special needs PreK students in the inclusion classroom will study trains to create model trains and train stations from various objects after exploring sights and sounds of nearby trains.
Heather Garrett - HongBo Wang
Ward J
Performing Arts
The Art of Improvisation
Seventh grade students develop confidence in their own creativity as they explore rhythmic and melodic improvisation. Students design and teach an improvising workshop for fourth grade students and their families.
Laura Saunders
Quadratics and Catapults
Students will collaborate and construct a catapult to learn and discover quadratic motion. In line with the mathematics portion, they will create a business plan to sell their product to the staff.
Christopher McCabe - Denise Ayala