Oakwood Preschool through High School Educators have been resilience personified. They quickly organized classrooms within their homes and adapted their teaching styles to fit the new Oakwood Zoom Class platform, learning new technology and applications along the way. They understand that learning online can be challenging and have worked to present the information clearly, giving students the tools and knowledge needed so they can be successful during their independent learning time. Upper School faculty are even using zoom technology in their classes to provide breakout discussion groups.
On Wednesday, March 18, all Oakwood students, preschool through high school seniors, powered up their devices and joined teachers and peers online for the first day of Oakwood Zoom classes. Our passionate faculty and support staff have worked furiously behind the scenes to transform and organize the current curriculum to facilitate an "Oakwood away from Oakwood" education. This time of unease has tested the resilience of our community. We have all responded quickly to ensure that our students are now back to learning from their teachers and engaging with their peers.
The South Valley Science and Engineering Fair took place on February 8-9, at Christopher High School, in Gilroy. In addition to the eighteen Oakwood students that received top awards in the competition, sweeping all categories in the High School division, Oakwood School won the Best School award! Read more to view winners list.
Oakwood's 4th, 5th, and 6th grade robotics team, Techie Pizza, continues to make progress in preparing for regional championships that will occur March 7th at the Northern California FIRST LEGO League Innovation Expo.
During the regular season, the team was challenged to identify a problem with a building or public space in their community and chose the problem of rental scooters ridden illegally on sidewalks. While scooters are environmentally friendly and convenient, pedestrians are being injured and even killed. The team employed an accelerometer and demonstrated that scooters operated on streets and sidewalks produced different vibration patterns.
Now, the team has modified an electric scooter to prototype and prove their solution. They adapted the scooter's drive electronics and used CAD to design an enclosure into which they have installed a small computer and sensors. They have written software to gather accelerometer data and are training machine learning models to automatically tell the difference between sidewalks and streets. They hope to produce software that can be installed onto existing rental scooters that will slow down and sound alarms to encourage users to avoid riding on the sidewalk.
Oakwood 4th and 5th grade students met after school yesterday to make signs and learn cheers (while enjoying a yummy snack) in preparation for the Boys' Varsity Basketball game last night. Our mascot Thunder even made an appearance for a special photo opp before the game. Thank you to the high school students and their advisors who came out to teach the students cheers and to the parents who donated food for their snack. And congrats to the Boys' Varsity Basketball team on their win!
Thanks and Giving is Oakwood's school-wide community service project which encompasses our educational goal of being Community Contributors through Respect, Service, Cooperation and Good Citizenship. This year everyone pitched in and made it possible for our school to donate 177 feast bins to Community Solutions, and 1,513 books for the El Toro Club House in Morgan Hill. Thank you to everyone that continually contributes their time, talents, and generosity to make our community flourish.
On Monday, November 18, Oakwood School's newest campus addition, the Athletic Center, officially opened with a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony and All-School Spirit Rally! Michelle Helvey greeted the eager community in the Athletic Center Quad to cut the ribbon for another jewel of our campus. Students, staff, and guests proceeded inside and marveled at the size of the new gymnasium before making their way to their class' assigned seating areas. Athletic Director Kort Jensen welcomed the crowd, and explained to them that this newest facility is so much more than a gym, but a true athletic center where they will enjoy locker rooms, team rooms for game strategy, weight and cardio rooms, and a concessions stand! Oakwood's new mascot finally made its debut and Mrs. Helvey announced its name--Thunder! Kort Jensen then asked all middle and high school athletes for the 2019-2020 school year to please stand in the bleachers for our community to honor them and their hard work and dedication to their various sports! Students were able to participate in a shoot-around on the court with thunderous cheers from the entire student body and our new Mascot! High school student-athletes then led students from kindergarten through 12th Grade on tours of the facility, pointing out the various spaces and answering questions from inquisitive minds. The morning ended with high fives and hugs from Thunder and each student taking home a brand new Oakwood Hawks pennant flag!
In the spirit of compassionate citizenship, Oakwood third grade students learned about the "White Table" tradition of setting a small table with a white cloth and one chair in a common dining area to honor our veterans – especially MIAs and POWs – to remind us of their sacrifices and the impact on their families. They respectfully set a "white table" on campus to serve as a visual reminder to our student body. Students were invited to add the name and photo of a military family or friend who has served, or is presently serving, to their display. To learn more about this tradition and the meaning of each item on the table, you can visit the website of Margot Raven, author of children's book, America's White Table, which the third-grade students read in class.
Congratulations to Oakwood's three rookie FIRST LEGO League teams on their successful participation in Regional Qualifying Tournaments on November 9, 2019! Oakwood's after-school FIRST LEGO League team of 4th, 5th, and 6th graders, also known as Techie Pizza, participated in a qualifying tournament at Intel, won the Judges' Award, and were one of two teams invited to participate in the Northern California Innovation Expo. The two Oakwood Middle School teams (8th grade team Big Brain and 7th grade team Poison Oak) traveled to Amazon Labs in Sunnyvale, where Big Brain finished fourth overall in Robot Game performance and Poison Oak was selected to advance to the Regional Championship in Mountain View on December 15.
Congratulations to all of the Cross Country athletes who competed in the PCAL Championship last Saturday. The Boys Varsity team raced to a second-place finish in the Santa Lucia division, led by Ellis Richardson, who finished as Santa Lucia division champion. Ellis Richardson and Kate Marcotullio both earned recognition as all-league athletes and both qualified to run in the CCS Meet later this month. We are proud of all that the Cross Country team accomplished this season - Go Hawks!