Arbor Day 2014 was celebrated at the M. Joan Pearson School with the first grade students in Mrs. Santino’s class and Mrs. Fitzwater’s class learning why trees play such an important part in our environment. They learned about how J. Sterling Morton first proposed Arbor Day in Nebraska in 1872. This activity is one that helps the town of Delanco be a Tree City.
Anne Silverberg, a retired teacher and a member of the Delanco Shade Tree Commission, related to the students how trees are vital to our community in terms of the many products derived from trees, how trees add beauty and shade, and how they help control soil erosion and add oxygen to the atmosphere. In addition, the students played a game with products from trees and other sources.
Lastly, the two classes read a poem about trees and planted a dogwood outside in front of Pearson School. They then spread grass seed to aid in the growth of the grass to assist with the soil erosion.
The success of the M. Joan Pearson School is a result of many factors. Our school benefits from a dedicated professional and support staff, a strong curriculum tied to the NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards, a vital and active PTO and the support of the Delanco Board of Education.
We are on a five-year curriculum revision cycle, which ensures our academic programs are current, relevant and aligned with state standards. Our computer lab is equipped with PC computers and is networked for Internet access. Every classroom has at least one computer, which is used for enrichment, remediation and Internet access. Several classes also now have SmartBoards. In grades four and five, our special education programs are inclusion settings in which classified students receive extra help in their regular classrooms instead of being “pulled out” of class. We have enrichment programs available for academically and musically talented students.
Parental involvement also plays an important role. The PTO is very active and supports the school in a variety of ways. It pays for school assemblies, class trips and for various teaching supplies and equipment. Also, PTO and other parent volunteers are invaluable in planning and running special events and assisting school personnel with clerical and classroom work.
Our instructional program is aligned with NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards and we are making good progress in achieving the standards. Although it is not reported on the report card, our students’ scores on the Terra Nova Standardized Tests are well above national and state averages. We will continue to train our teachers and prepare our students for these tests.
Each year our teachers have specific academic objectives to accomplish. Along with working to accomplish these objectives, we also strive to provide an atmosphere in our school that is pleasant, safe and exciting. We do everything possible to develop a positive attitude towards school and learning.
The success of any school is a reflection of the commitment of students, parents and staff. Overall, we are pleased with the results of our report card and with the quality of programs we offer to students. We are proud of our students, parents and staff for their contributions to our school.