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Compass Program Activity - September 2017

       Friday, September 15: Fort Ontario Field Trip

  • Eighteen middle school students in Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES' Compass Program visited Fort Ontario as a kick off event for their upcoming human rights project. In the coming weeks, students will research significant events and people that led to the human rights movement in Central New York.  

  • Students were given a tour, educated on the history and construction of the fort, shown a rifle demonstration, and able to ask questions in regard to the fort being used as a safe haven for refugees.

  • “Visiting Fort Ontario was a great experience for our students. They were able to see a historic place in New York and see why it played such a significant role in the state. It was also great to see that students saw a local connection to the WWII effort with the fort being used as part of the safe haven refugee project.” Jim Keegan, social students teacher in the Compass Program

  • “I learned that most forts built around the same time as Fort Ontario were star shaped.” Gage Rosekrans, eighth grade.

  • “While touring Fort Ontario, I learned that you should never give up; keep fighting for what’s yours.” Sophie Ross, eighth grade. 

    Wednesday-Thursday, September 27-28: Schweinfurth Art Center Field Trip

  • Students in Mrs. Wall and Ms. Senn’s STEM class traveled to the Schweinfurth Art Center to see the artwork of Jonathon Wells, Geoffrey Booras, Laura Moriarty, and Lauren Rosenthal in the display titled “Bedrock Revealed.”

  • The students discussed what could be below the surface of the earth before traveling to the art center and were surprised to find more than just rocks below the surface in many of the photographs constructed by artist Jonathon Wells.

  • According to eighth-grader Austin Lusk, “The Schweinfurth exhibit was cool because it was filled with extraordinary art. You could learn about the earth and what is in the earth. It was a fun experience. I would definitely go back.”

  • Students were asked to choose one piece of art to describe in order to work on improving their observation skills for their science course. Their descriptions are currently on display in the Compass Program's hallway.  

    Friday, September 29: Orenda Springs Field Trip

  • Twenty-five middle school students traveled to Orenda Springs in Marcellus, NY to participate in team-building activities. The experience provided an opportunity to teach students how to have respectful interactions with each other. Students were asked to kiss a fish, work together to find compass directions based on the apparent angle of the sun in order to hike through the woods, and work together to raise their classmates high into the sky while partaking in a high ropes course.

  • “Students stepped out of their comfort zones and, through teamwork, learned about themselves,” said Jon Becker, science teacher.

  • “It was amazing to see students take chances and confront their discomfort with the high ropes activities, and even more amazing to see all of their classmates cheer them on," said Amy Senn, math teacher.

  • “At Orenda Springs, I learned that the best way to get over your fear is to face it -- so that's what I did when I went on the Falcon. I faced my fear of heights,” said eighth-grader Railyn Smith. 

  • “Teamwork is important while doing something that could endanger other people around you,” said eighth-grader Gage Rosekrans.





Brian K. Hartwell, Ed.D.
District Superintendent of Schools

1879 West Genesee Street Rd.
Auburn, NY 13021
Phone: (315) 253-0361

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