Niu Valley Middle School

An International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme World School

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Posts from August 2012

August 25, 2012 | 9:00 am

A PB Swim it Was!

Bummed about the navigational error, and arms aching for stroking faster that I should, I was energized knowing that I was now bisecting the two finish buoys. Then, my body was being lifted by the high surf. So, suck it up and stroke fast! Got to body surf that wave for about 6 seconds! Yeeee haaaaa. Used Mr. Lileikis' exit strategy to perfection: swim through the shoreline until you grab sand and push up. There were at least 5 swimmers who were ahead of me and another 3 who along side. But they tried to run from the water. I swam by them and made it to the water's edge and timing pad before they did. Final result: 4 minutes, 25 seconds better than last year. 11 minutes, 13 seconds better than my first Duke's Ocean Mile in 2009. Woo hoo! A PB: Personal Best 31:14!

August 25, 2012 | 8:51 am

Navigational Error

The Duke's Ocean Mile Director said to keep the final Duke's buoy to your right shoulder. But I could not see that buoy after rounding the outermost buoy. So, I did my best for the next 200 meters or so to turn on the jets and chase the blazing female swimmers. All I got for that was to eat bubbles and backwash. The buoy became visible and once past, I needed to locate the orange end markers. Not seeing that, I looked for the Outrigger Waikiki Hotel. Easily done, but all swimmers were heading toward the Pink Royal Hawaiian Hotel. My bad: followed them for about 5 minutes, then realized they were not swimming dead center. I corrected my tact and headed toward the Outrigger.

August 25, 2012 | 8:40 am

Where Are the Female Swimmers?

In each of the past Duke's Mile Ocean swims, the female swimmers, who start 5 minutes after the male swimmers, catch me at the first turn, or shortly thereafter. They look like penguins flying through the water, relative to my speed. However, today, I had rounded the second and final turn to the finish when it happened. Wow! Zip, Bam, Pow! On the bright side of this: the lead female swimmers were wearing UH Swim Team caps. Go Wahine, win the Big West Title! Another plus:Am I swimming faster this year than in previous years? In spite of my AARP status?

August 25, 2012 | 8:29 am

Surf’s Up During Duke’s Ocean Mile Swim

With a record number of swimmers, the Duke's Ocean Mile started with a simple air horn. Usually, my strategy is to high step run until I can't touch bottom, and that amounted to two steps this morning. Mr. Lileikis, who is well over 6 feet tall, chose to run on the beach right then high step out. I encountered four swells. The first broke over my head (I submerged). While using the breaststroke to time the third wave, I heard a guy shout, "What am I doing swimming? I should be surfing!" On this wave, I rode it up and swam down the backside.

August 25, 2012 | 8:15 am

Athletics? Principal and Mr. Lileikis Enter the Duke’s Ocean Mile Swim

In a show of resilience, and triumph of Human Spirit, Humanities teacher Mr. Lileikis swam the Duke's Ocean Mile Swim this morning. During the summer, while pruning a tree at home, Mr. Lileikis fell out of that tree, falling at least 10 feet to the ground. 10 broken ribs, fractured clavicle and wrist did not stop him from recovering, training, teaching, coaching, and swimming! Yes, he coached me and gave swimming tips as well. At the start of the race, he was filled with anticipation and gave a few last words to his swimming student, Emily. It was her very first ocean race and Mr. Lileikis would meet her on the course and coach her along.

August 21, 2012 | 3:34 pm

Stop Flu at School Program: Consent Form Distribution Wed. Aug 22nd

Niu Valley Middle School will be a clinic site. Consent forms are being distributed school-wide tomorrow, August 22nd through your child's Advisory (Communications Envelope). Please look for it. Flu vaccinations at Stop Flu at School clinics are only available to enrolled students, faculty, and staff at the respective participating school on the day of the school’s scheduled clinic. There will be no make-up or additional clinic days scheduled, and students, faculty, and staff cannot present to another school for vaccination. Students who miss their scheduled clinic should contact their primary care provider for vaccination. The NVMS Clinic is set for Tuesday, November 13, 2012.

August 20, 2012 | 3:16 pm

Niu Valley Middle School VEX Robotics Team Advanced to Semi-Final Round in High School Meet!

What a way to begin the 2012-13 VEX Robotics Season! Advisor, Mrs. Gwen Lee, who is our English-Language Arts teacher reported that our VEX Robotics Team, on the strength of a 6th place ranking in the qualifying matches (4-2 record), we proceeded to win both quarter final matches. Our team selected Kalaheo High and Island Pacific Academy as our alliances. Congratulations, Lancer Robotics Engineers. Your summer practice and after-school sessions have paid off. Continue to compete with integrity, with class, with the IB Learner Profile a natural part of your being.

August 20, 2012 | 3:02 pm

NVMS Alumnus Sophie Bender a Semi-Finalist in National Competion;Her Teacher Mr. Kobashigawa Awarded

As a result of her fine showing at the 2012 Hawaii State Science and Engineering Fair, NVMS Alumnus Sophie Bender was named a semifinalist in the 2012 Broadcom MASTERS, which is a program of Society for Science and the Public. Only one of 300 middle school student-semifinalists, Sophie has advanced from more that 6,000 nominees nationwide! Broadcom MASTERS is recognizing Sophie's teacher, Mr. Clyde Kobashigawa with a $250 gift certificate for his classroom and a set of Astronaut Sally Ride Career books. Sophie has distinguished herself by her academic prowess and the only female semifinalist! Go Sophie! We are so proud of you. Good Luck and May the Force be with You.

August 20, 2012 | 2:52 pm

Dangling Message Explained

A parent approached me after the Open House last week with feedback on one of these blogs. I assured her that I'd put closure. Well, I searched past messages and failed! Unless: A summer posting related to The Friends of Hawaii Charities. Since Carmen was being performed that night, my blog mentioned, "More Later." While I believe that I did follow through, there may be another blog missed. The grant award from the Friends of Hawaii Charities was for a cool $5,000. Percussion Ensemble Director Mr. Zachary Morita did the IB Risk-Taker attribute and submitted a response to a call for proposals. We were the ONLY school landing a grant award. Funds were accepted by the Friends of Niu Valley and expenditures will be to purchase new percussion instruments.

August 20, 2012 | 2:42 pm

Summary of Closing Remarks at Open House For Grades 7 and 8

The Niu Valley Middle Support Staff were introduced: Three Vice Principals (one per grade level), Counselors, PCNC and Tech Coordinator. My remarks showed how our school has in place the "four pillars of a great school," in spite of our NCLB status. Data on student learning was shown, as well as a snapshot of excellence demonstrated. NVMS is allowed to "stay the course" with IB and will not be required to be taken over by vendor. Grade 8 Counselor Ms. Baldovi presented a sobering view of college costs and admissions for the Class of 2017. She encouraged students to focus on learning. I challenged students to represent our school in the Three A's: Academics, Arts and/or Athletics.

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