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SHS environmental science students

SHS environmental science students take learning to the river in Wells.

Photo: The Spartan Times

Compiled by Carolyn Cadigan

Just add water: On May 20, two Sanford High School environmental science classes took their learning outside to Wells Reserve at Laudholm, kayaking on the Little and Maryland Rivers. Two teachers accompanied 13 students who spent the day learning about coastal Maine ecosystems during their two-hour kayak ride. For some of the students, this was their first time using a kayak. Students also observed some wildlife up close, including crabs, fish, and even a red house finch bird’s nest in one of the kayaks. For the full story, go here.

Yellow Tulip Project spreads kindness and positivity at SMS: The cheerful, yellow tulips that have brightened the front of Sanford Middle School (SMS) this spring are the result of an idea developed last year by Gianna Garneau, Grade 8 student and Jobs for Maine Graduates (JMG) program participant. While in Grade 7, Garneau collaborated with the Yellow Tulip Project from Portland, a nationally recognized mental health awareness initiative, and became the program’s ambassador in Maine. In October, the school counseling team and SMS Sources of Strength peer leaders planted about 40 tulip bulbs when it was dark and cold outside, signifying people’s struggles with mental health. The idea was to hold out hope through the hard winter, knowing things can improve with a hopeful outlook and help from others. On May 24, as part of Mental Health Awareness Month, the counseling team gathered the SMS student helping groups, including Sources of Strength, Student Leadership Team, Civil Rights Team, JMG and You Are Not Alone, a Grade 5 club, along with the SMS band and chorus. The event celebrated all that SMS students do to support one another through the ups and downs of middle school.

A positively uplifting break in the school day: A group of dedicated Grade 4 girls at Margaret Chase Smith Elementary School recently completed a heartwarming positivity project by decorating the school bathrooms with uplifting messages and colorful artwork. These inspiring students took it upon themselves to transform these everyday spaces into sources of encouragement and joy for their peers. Armed with vinyl and a lot of enthusiasm, they adorned the walls with positive phrases such as “You are amazing,” “Believe in yourself” and “Spread kindness.”

St. Thomas School and Trafton Senior Center pen pals gathered at the end of the school year.

St. Thomas School and Trafton Senior Center pen pals gathered at the end of the school year.

Photo: St. Thomas School

Who said the art of letter writing has disappeared? St. Thomas School partnered with the YMCA Trafton Senior Center on a written correspondence program that spanned the entire school year. The school’s Grade 7 and 8 students connected with their adult pen pals for the final time this year in person. Not only did they enjoy each other’s company and reflect on their letter writing, they played the “Five Second Rule Game” one more time. Both young and old were grateful for the experience.

Free summer meals for kids and teens are right around the corner: Sanford’s Summer Meals for Kids & Teens Program will run weekdays beginning June 17 through Aug. 2. Children aged 18 and under can drop in to one of the summer meal sites for food, friends and fun. The schedule is: Carl J. Lamb School, Sanford Middle School, Sanford Pride Elementary School and Sanford High School: breakfast 7:30 – 8:30 am, lunch 11 am – noon; Curtis Lake Church: breakfast 7:30 – 8:30 am, lunch 11:45 am – 12:30 pm; Sanford-Springvale YMCA: breakfast 7:30 – 8:30 am, lunch 11 – 11:45 am; Springvale Playground: breakfast 8:45 – 9:15 am, lunch 11:30 am – 12:15 pm; and Carpentier Park: lunch 11:15 – 11:45 am. Registration is not required. FMI, call the Sanford School Nutrition Program office at 207-608-8762.

Youth travel baseball tryout schedule: Maine Lightning Baseball has posted a reminder about the tryout schedule for the 2025 spring season. Tryouts for 8U to 12U will take place June 9 (alternate date, June 12), 13U to 14U will be June 25 (alternate date, June 26), and for 15U to 18U will be Aug. 11 (alternate date, Aug. 14). FMI on the schedule and to register, go here.

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