Welcome to Chickering, new Fifth Graders!

Being a new student can be challenging. We decided to check in with four of our six new fifth grade students to see how they were getting along. (We tried to interview all six new students, but were unable to sync our schedules with two of the new students.) We wondered what was difficult about moving to a new school.

The first student we interviewed was Rebekka. Before living in Dover she lived in Helsinki, Finland. She probably received a good education there, seeing as Finland has the best schools in the world. Two of the new students, Max and Remi, come from Needham, and Jack comes from Dedham, both are neighboring towns to Dover. By far, Rebekka wins for coming from the farthest away.

Moving is tough and we wondered what obstacles our new students faced. Max said that setting up all the technology in his new house was difficult. Jack and Remi miss their old house and friends. Rebekka by far had the hardest move. She moved to a completely new country. She had to learn a new language and make new friends; leaving her friends and extended family behind.

Not all schools are the same so we were curious about whatPicture of luggage which is part of the sculpture at the Sacramento CA Airport. was different from their school and our school. Jack answered there was not that much of a difference. Remi said she, “attended a private school.” Max felt, his old school had mean teachers and also that he could go to a better school, moving to a town with larger houses.  Rebekka said, lunch/recess is 45-minutes two times a week and three times a week it’s 30-minutes and the students can choose how much of the 30 minutes is for eating and for recess. Students can choose to learn academics in Finnish, or English, or French. Another difference is Physical Education runs once a week instead of twice like Chickering but sometimes for 2 hours, not 40 minutes. In addition to recess at lunch time, there are two more 15-minute recesses each day, usually following an academic subject. Vacations are more prevalent in Finland, for example, they begin school for a month and then have a week off; around Christmas time they have three weeks off; in February they have a week vacation to ski; and in the Spring they have a week vacation for Easter. It is interesting how the United States and Finnish schools are so different.

We queried what activities and/or hobbies they do outside of school. Both Remi and Rebekka take part in horseback riding and Remi does boxing while Rebekka does jazz and hip-hop dancing. Hockey and Lacrosse are Max’s favorite activities and Jack participates in soccer.

Don’t underestimate the challenges of moving to a new school. Making new friends and learning new routines are difficult. It surprised us that in Finland they have a skiing holiday. We wish we could also have a longer vacation and a 2-hour Physical Education session! And soon enough, the chances are high that you will begin to get used to a new school.

Reported by: Abby, Beck, Calden, Cyrus, Matthew, Rebekka

Image: “luggage6.jpg” Pics4Learning.com 16 December 2014 <http://www.pics4learning.com/details.php?img=luggage6.jpg>.

Destination: Dover Days!

Girl playing catch the duck with a fishing net.Excitement fills the air upon arrival. Laughter was heard all around and the aroma of mouth watering food was wafting throughout the town. Can you guess where we are? No? We’re not at a fair, we’re at Dover Days, September 13, 2014! What goes on at Dover Days you ask? Only Dover residents know but we are about to tell you all about the food, the games & prizes, and how we prepare!

What is that heaven-like smell? Is it hot dogs being roasted on the grill, or greasy hamburgers being topped with gooey, melted cheese. Trick question . . . its both! Dover Days always has a lovely assortment of delicious food. If you would rather eat healthy, try out the salad bar or the make-your-own-trail mix booth. You could smell the grills cooking for miles around! When you went to order your food, you could hear the mouth watering sizzle of food being heated on the hot grill.  At this event, you’ll never go hungry!

The thing that attracts most of the audience here, on this fantabulous day, is the games. You’ll have no trouble finding one, because there are lots of them! Enough so everybody leaves with at least a prize or two. There are games like spin the wheel where you spin a wheel to win tokens. Sam, a fifth grader from Chickering School ran a game, with the help of Ryan.  They ran the Marshmallow Toss, a game where you try to get a marshmallow in a basket, if you do … you win tokens! They said they loved watching all the customers that came to play. They loved working and plan to be back next year to bring joy to little children. Then, there is plinko, a crowd favorite, where you drop what appears to be a giant connect four piece into a wall of spikes, and whichever slot it falls into at the bottom you win the amount of tokens listed on it. You have to pay real money to get tickets, but they’re worth it! With tickets you can play games and win tokens. With tokens you can buy prizes. But don’t feel like they’re ripping you off by charging a dollar a ticket. Dover Days is a non-profit fair, and all the money they make goes to the Dover PTO and the town of Dover. The prizes are much better than any prizes you would find at an arcade. They have everything from alien slime, to inflatable baseball bats, to super huge whoopie cushions. You name it, they had it! Well, maybe not a pet dragon, but they have almost everything. What’s not fun about getting to dunk a unfortunate man/woman into a tank of cold, smelly, filmy water? We’d definitely want to do it! The victims change every year. Once it was Mr. Wadness, a fifth grade teacher and Dr. Reinemann the Vice Principal, once it was even Officer Harry, a D.A.R.E. instructor and police man. Who knows? Maybe it could be you next time!

But if you want to get your body working and still have fun, definitely check out the bouncy houses. There are tons of them, Inflatable bouncy house - called racing course.increasing by number every year. It’s located on the Dover Library lawn, right across from the main section. There are racing courses where you try to race your friends through inflatable obstacles, and there are mile high slides that send you plummeting down a slippery surface at what feels like 100 mph!

Boy, all these games and prizes are making me tired. Why not take a ride on the world famous hay ride? The hay ride comes and you get in the oversized tractor full of hay, and ride around town on a voyage you won’t soon forget.

In order to make all this happen, you need to prepare quite a bit. We interviewed Sam, a fifth grade student that witnessed the set up of Dover Days. He even helped! When asked how he helped he elaborated on constantly having to create new signs to make sure people don’t get lost at this extraordinary event. He also described how many volunteers they had to hire in order to put Dover Days in Farm tractor pulling hey wagon with people.motion. They needed one person at each of the booths and at least 2 people at the prize table. Oh, he also had to help brain storm prizes for token winners. Even the adults played games too. That would take a lot of knowing what kids like to encourage them to play the games and get the prizes.

Dover Days was a big success this year, and sure, maybe the Cupcake Booth wasn’t there. But  hey, nobody is perfect, right? No matter how anyone puts it, Dover Day will ALWAYS be with us, here in our hearts.

Reported by Lauren, Audrey, and Ryan

Reported by Lauren, Audrey, and Ryan