Schools: Master Teachers at Half Hollow Hills, Huntington Plans ‘Harvey’

The Half Hollow Hills Central School District said that five of the district’s teachers are among 228 educators statewide joining the New York State Master Teacher Program this year.

The recipients are:

  • Zoe Chiam, 5th grade teacher, Paumanok Elementary School
  • Amanda Kavner, science teacher, Half Hollow Hills High School East
  • KimMarie Lennon, 2nd grade teacher, Paumanok Elementary School
  • Christopher Regini, science teacher, West Hollow Middle School
  • Mitchel Troise, science teacher, Half Hollow Hills High School West

These 228 new Master Teachers join a  network of over 1,200 outstanding public school teachers throughout the state who share a passion for their own STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) learning and for collaborating with colleagues to inspire the next generation of STEM leaders.

“I salute these brilliant and dedicated teachers who have made an incredible, lasting impact on New York’s future leaders,” Gov. Cuomo said. “These 228 new members of the Master Teacher Program will join the ranks of the state’s top educators, a group who strive every day to enrich and expand the horizons of countless students in every corner of the Empire State.”

Throughout their four-year participation in the program, Master Teachers receive an annual stipend while engaging in peer mentoring and intensive content-oriented professional development opportunities throughout the academic year. Master Teachers also work closely with pre-service and early career teachers to foster a supportive environment for the next generation of STEM teachers, and participate in and lead several professional development sessions each year.

Here’s what the district said about its teachers:

Zoe Chiam challenges her fifth graders to be creative in their problem solving, persevering through failures to find solutions. She facilitates the creation of student websites that serve as both digital portfolios of their progress and accomplishments, and as a platform for students to voice their questions and ideas with peers and the community.

Amanda Kavner spent years as a bench chemist before going back to school to become a high school biology and chemistry teacher. Her main interest is in using technology in the creation of authentic learning experiences for her students, and she is an international speaker and doctoral candidate focusing on using artificial intelligence to understand and predict learning outcomes.

KimMarie Lennon cultivates an environment of active participants in her second grade class, who are willing to take risks and work collaboratively. She bridges the gap between elementary and high school by working with classes from High School East on coding and economics projects.

Chris Regini incorporates physical computing, robotics, and 3D printing into his middle school science classes.  He takes a learning-by-making approach that allows his students to creatively express their knowledge of content while establishing a digital portfolio. Regini carries out yearlong sustainability and alternative agriculture projects with his students using a Farmbot automated community garden and MarsFarm vertical hydroponic system.

Mitchel Troise is a Project Lead the Way certified teacher who teaches high school engineering classes and is the adviser for the district’s FIRST Tech Challenge Robotics teams. He lives by the motto of the character Shifu from the movie Kung Fu Panda, “If you only do what you can, you’ll never be more then you are now,” encouraging his students to step out of their comfort zones so that they can better themselves as learners and individuals.

“In Half Hollow Hills we work hard to equip our students with the STEM skills that will help them be leaders in the 21st century workforce, and that starts with having talented STEM teachers,” said Dr. Patrick Harrigan, superintendent of schools in Half Hollow Hills. “We are so excited to have five of our teachers be selected for the Master Teacher Program, representing our elementary, middle and high schools. We look forward to the many new ideas and programs they will bring back to share with our students and faculty.”

Huntington Students Prepare for ‘Harvey’

The Huntington High School drama club will bring Mary Chase’s award-winning 1944 play “Harvey” to the stage this fall. 

 Performances are set for Friday, Nov. 22 at 7:30 p.m. and again on Saturday, November 23 at 2 p.m. and at 7:30 p.m. all in the high school auditorium. Huntington English teacher Michael Schwendemann is the drama club’s longtime faculty adviser.

The cast includes Sarah Biernacki (Myrtle Mae Simmons)e, Abby Semelsberger (Veta Louise Simmons), Keenan Lyons (Elwood P. Dowd), Aria Hannah (Miss Johnson), Katherine Eichenberger (Mrs. Ethel Chavenet), Natalie Ciccone (Ruth Kelly, RN), Brendan Garcia (Duane Wilson), Josh Avidor (Lyman Sanderson, MD), Robert Jean-Gilles (William R. Chumley, MD), Charlotte Simon (Betty Chumley), Ryan Aguirre (Judge Omar Gaffney), Dylan Brinn (EJ Lofgren) and Cobin Black as Harvey.

Northport Students Get Boo..ked

Fourth graders at Ocean Avenue Elementary School had a special visitor on Oct. 10 to kick off a new shared reading initiative for the month of October. 

State Sen. James Gaughran visited a fourth-grade class at Ocean Avenue Elementary School this week to observe the morning meeting, during which he learned about the students’ favorite places to visit in Northport. Then, the students sat back and enjoyed a book, How I Met My Monster by Amanda Noll, read aloud by Gaughran.

Throughout the month of October, every K-5 class will have a special guest visit their rooms to read them a Halloween-themed book. To Ms. Fargnoli and Ms. Armbruster’s class, “You’ve been Boo…ked!”

Cold Spring Schools Set Bond Vote for Nov. 19

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