Famously, Fantastic Mr. Fraser

Image of Mr. Fraser instructing his students in the gym.Mr. Fraser is one of our Physical Education [P.E] teachers at Chickering School. We thought it would be a great experience to interview him. He has been teaching for 3 years, so this would be his 4th year.

We were curious to know why Mr. Fraser wanted to teach Phys. Ed. He relayed that he asked himself what he enjoyed. He said he likes to be active and always loved P.E. He tries to make fun activities like the March Madness tournament (as in basketball) so that we can have fun and love Physical Education as much as he does.

We inquired of Mr. Fraser, “Do you think Physical Education is an important part of the school curriculum, if so why?” He replied, he thought it was. He said “more and more kids are staying inside and not moving as much.” It’s also a way to get more active and get exposed to new activities such as sports that some people may not understand. This way, if we want to play a certain sport on our own time, we know all the rules of how to play.

Most kids have a favorite activity to play in the gym. We quizzed Mr. Fraser on his favorite activities to do with students. He stated that he enjoyed Cone Knockdown for all ages. Cone Knockdown is a game in which you have a cone and you try to defend it and knock down other peoples’ cones at the same time. If your cone is knocked over you are out and have to wait in line until someone else’s cone gets knocked over. Another game he liked to play with older kids is Wonderball. It is a special game that he made up with one class that he was teaching. He and another teacher didn’t have much equipment for that class. He only had 3 balls and 2 basketball hoops. Wonderball is played with three balls that you throw or kick. When the game starts, you kick the ball so someone catches it in their hands or they can drop it and dribble it. There are goals, basketball hoops or a taped space on a wall where you try to shoot the ball. Usually there’s a goalie and people try to block the other team’s shot. If the ball makes it past the goalie or the defenders then they get a point. Mr. Fraser has many great activities for us to play.

We were interested to know what Mr. Fraser wanted to change or add to his classes.  Mr. Fraser and Ms Riordan talking to their classes.He replied that he would like to have more time with his older classes because every other week we have two gym classes and every other week we have one class. Also, with regard to time, he wishes he could have a full hour with his classes instead of just 40 minutes.  Mr. Fraser also believes that the P.E. teachers need more time between classes to set up. We agree with Mr. Fraser and we should have hour-long Phys. Ed. classes.

We investigated why we don’t have more gym classes outdoors. Our P.E. teacher said, we don’t do as many  P.E. classes outside because of Mr. Fraser’s allergies. Also, because we can’t use the playgrounds that are just outside the school, due to recess. If we wanted to go outside, we have to use the lower Chickering Fields and if someone got hurt we would have to carry the injured person all the way to the nurse’s office, which would be a challenge.

We asked our teacher if he liked working in two schools. He replied only saying that he liked seeing “his students continue to grow”, and looking forward to seeing the new sixth graders next year and his first class become 8th graders. Also that he gets to see them almost every day, which is great.

We invited Mr. Fraser to share with us why he thinks a Sqord is beneficial for students. Sqords are a fitness watch for kids that we use in our school to get active. He replied, it helps kids track their movement and you can see what kind of sports get your fitness level up the most. You get lots of points for moving and get ranked by how many “activity points” you have in your class. This fitness watch works for both Mr. Fraser, and the third, fourth, and fifth graders who have the option to purchase this watch available to them. This fitness watch excites kids (and teachers) to get active.

We solicited of Mr. Fraser what he enjoyed to do in his free time.  He remarked he loved all kinds of sports and watches all sports videos. He excels at lacrosse, and enjoys playing too. He chills out by playing some video games at home.

We understand after hearing his answers why he likes P.E. We also love Wonderball as well as he does. We agree with Mr. Fraser with his wish that classes could be an hour long. It’s clear, we love Phys. Ed. as much as Mr. Fraser.

Reported by Alia, Ollie and Thanos

The Incredible 4 Critters and Plants Company

Brown colored anole with green eyes, poking its head over a bundle of leaves.
We looked closely inside the glass tank, which is located in the upstairs hallway. Inside the tank we saw lots of live plants and some not alive. We saw branches, some thick and twisted, and one that looked like it came from someone’s backyard. A small, round, dish containing mealworms was sitting on a brown substance covering the bottom of the tank. We looked closely into all the green leaves looking for the three anoles. Finally, we walked around the tank and spied all three in a clump of leaves on the back wall. We saw one large green anole and a large and small one that were brown.

We were curious to know why we had a Critter Corner and why anoles were our new neighbors. Dr. Reinemann, our Assistant Principal, established the Critter Corner. View of the entire body of an anole from his nose to his tail.We interviewed her to learn more. She said, “it’s a way to learn about a critter that doesn’t live outside” [in the Northeast region of the United States of America]. Anoles are easy to take care of, she shared. They don’t need to be fed everyday. The anoles live in tropical environments; you might see them climbing on screens in Florida. One died over the summer and she bought another anole at the beginning of school, this year.

We heard there might be a new critter living upstairs. She explained, “Something that’s not an anole.” She’s considering a turtle because they live on land and in water and are different from anoles. They are also vegetarians; the anoles are carnivores. She’s still thinking of having something different from anoles. Dr. Reinemann can’t choose an animal with fur or feathers because of people’s allergies. She’s still open to suggestions.

Most people name their pets, so we could have a naming contest? She remarked, “we need to see him or her first before we name it”. We didn’t name the anoles because it is to hard to tell them apart. Maybe we could have a contest to name the new critter.

Finally, we wondered what other plans she has for the Critter Corner. Dr. Reinemann informed us that she would like to have posters to tell people about the animals. Convincing more kids to be involved with the Critter Corner would be a great thing.

Glass shapped open donunt housing an air fern plant which doesn't require any soil.
Since we last spoke with Dr. Reinemann, there is no new animal but there are changes in the Critter Corner. She has added some plants to the corner. These plants require different amounts of water; a plant that lives in water with a Betta fish to keep it company, there’s also some desert plants that only need to be misted once a week, to an air fern which requires no water or soil to grow. Please check back in and we will let you know wPlant that lives underwater with a friendly Betta Fish for company.hat the new resident, in the Critter Corner, will be.

Reported by Abigail, Jenna, and Samuel