Friday, June 29, 2018

Summer STEM Camp at Aquinas College

Diocese of Grand Rapids, AQ & ND 


25 students from around Grand Rapids including many students from ASA, Our Lady of Consolation, Corpus Christi, Holy Spirit and some local home school communities gathered at Aquinas College June 18-29 for a STEM camp facilitated by a Notre Dame STEM Ed instructor, Sr Damien of Aquinas College, and our very own Mr. Fillman.

Campers created a model of a helmet to protect the brain and tested their models on a styrofoam figure head. This activity was then followed up with a sheep brain dissection to learn more about brain structures and functions.
Next participants designed a prosthetic device for an elephant leg, and tested the leg for comfort, durability, and ease of attachment. One student in each group had to walk on their designed leg. With the learning students gained from the elephant leg tests they moved onto dissecting a chicken wing and then creating a prosthetic beak for an eagle and one for a dolphin tail.

Students also designed a quarantine box for a germ outbreak. Part of this project included designing and creating a viral structure and follow that up with an anti-viral structure. Both were tested by "tossing" their design at a large cell to see if it would "stick." After testing their structure students created a PSA about a virus outbreak.

On the last day of camp parents were invited to campus to see everything the students have created and designed.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Newest Saints Entering the Middle School

3rd Grade Visits the Middle School

One of the best traditions at All Saints Academy takes place at the end of the year.  Did graduation pop in your mind? If it did, you are on the right track! But instead of talking about our 8th graders graduating from ASA we are talking about our 3rd graders “graduating” from the Elementary Campus. 

Each spring the 3rd grade spends an entire day at the Middle School Campus meeting new people, catching up with old friends, checking out the lay of land, and calming any nerves they might have as they head to a new campus in the fall.

The first experience they have is Mass at St. Jude Church. While it’s not the first time they’ve been in that particular space before it is the first time they celebrated Mass with just the Middle School students.  It was a little different but they enjoyed the praise band, something that isn’t present at the Elementary Campus. 

Part of their day is a tour with Miss Giroux.  Here they are able to ask questions about what it is like to be an ASA middle schooler.  “When do you go out for recess?”  “When can we be in band?”  “Is there a lot of homework?” 

Another great aspect of the day is being able to ask questions to the current 4th graders.  What’s amazing is that just a year ago, these current 4th graders were asking the same kinds of questions and had some of the same fears and anxiety.  They have grown so much! 

Mr. Debri was able to take the students down to Lake St. Jude.  Many of them didn’t realize the size of the lake and were surprised when it was much bigger than the pond they imagined in their minds. 

Best quote of the day…

“Can we just skip summer and start at the Middle School?”

Patience 3rd grade friends. Patience. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Graduation 2018 Core Values Speeches

Faith. Learning. Loving. Serving

June 4, 2018

FAITH at All Saints Academy - Aiden McGavin 

Faith at All Saints Academy; arguably the most important core value. The one that connects all of the other of our core values.  Faith also is something at ASA we practice directly, and confidently with passion and pride every single day. Every day at All Saints Academy, since 2008, when ASA opened its doors, faith has been the center of each day. Even before ASA was a thought, the four schools were founded on the principal of faith, and to spread it on to further generations. Since the four schools combined, the faith we have, has grown stronger than ever. Together, as one, we have, and will continue to grow our faith together.

Of course, to practice, and profess our faith, we have to get it from somewhere, right? And that faith could have come from anywhere. But our faith, or at least some aspect of it comes from school. Whether it be from the people we interact with throughout the day, religion class, or any other of our many activities, faith plays a significant role; it may be obvious and it may subtle, but it will always come to play a role in our daily lives. But what exactly do I mean when I say “faith”? Trust in God. That’s what I’m talking about here. And before I continue, I should say that faith is a complete and utter trust in someone or something. We are taught that at ASA. We’re taught that everyday with examples from fellow students and from teachers. But faith might mean that we have to trust God, or have faith in God to try our best, trust a friend, have courage to do something, whatever it is, we have faith in God, with it. And at ASA, faith is profoundly promoted, and the center of our lives, now and forever, thanks to ASA. 

LEARNING At All Saints Academy - Owen Leese 

I think we can all agree that learning isn’t always the most glamorous thing, but we can also agree that teachers at this school sure do help to make it less agonizing. They make it fun. They make it easier. They make learning an experience to remember. I have a story on how Mr. Fillman, one of our wonderful teachers, made learning fun that I would like to share with you all tonight. Mr. Fillman was not expecting us for class this particular day, because we were supposed to have M.A.P.S testing during his class. At this point in the year we were learning about Newton’s Laws of Motion. So, we came up with a VERY educational game called Newton’s Laws of Motion Game. I am not going to lie…  It was basically kickball, but Mr. Fillman definitely made it a learning experience to remember. He made a rule that after every play, we would have to name the laws of motion in that were involved in the play. In one forty minute class, Mr. Fillman made learning not only fun, but also an experience that I know I will remember for some time to come. 

At any other school you will learn what two plus two is. We can all agree that the answer to that math problem is four, but at All Saints Academy I have learned much more than any other school teaches you. I have learned how to love. I have learned how to care. Hopefully everyone in this church tonight can all agree that these are all very important values to have in life. In these past ten years at All Saints Academy I have learned what I believe are the most necessary values to succeed in life.  

As many of you may know I play basketball and I love basketball very much. This year almost all of the boys in the 8th grade joined to play together for our last year to all play together. For about half of the boys that joined this was their first or second year. I thought to myself this is not what I imagined for my last season. I did not have the highest hopes for our team, but i quickly learned that this season wasn’t about winning it was about everyone coming together to bond and to know each other better outside of school. When Caleb scored 6 points in one of our games he came to school the next day telling everyone he was going to get ten points the next game. He told everyone to come to the game so they could see him score 10 points. When Tommy scored for the first time ever,  he got fouled when he was shooting so he got to shoot two free throws. He made the first one and his face lit up with joy. He was so happy he forgot he had to shoot a second free throw. He got back to the free throw line and made the second as well. By far the best moment of the season. The coaches of that basketball team (Mr Debri, Mr. Matlak, and Mr Fillman) taught me that playing sports isn’t about winning it is about the experience that comes with it with your teammates. That is a season I will remember forever. Thank you.

LOVING at All Saints Academy - Emily Morrin

One of our Core Values here at ASA is Love. Here are just a few of the many ways I have seen ASA  teach students how to build from this very important Core Value: showing someone kindness to hanging out with someone new. We all show our loving side at one point or another. In my ten years at ASA I have seen how my classmates and I have grown in our relationships. We all have a mutual understanding of each other. I still find it hard to believe that I will no longer be seeing them almost everyday. I will miss the strong bonds that we all have and our trust for one another. I will remember that if it weren't for the school that push me towards loving I may have never gotten those close bonds I cherish so much.

SERVING at All Saints Academy - Jonathan Jensen

Here at ASA, we the students have many different opportunities to volunteer, and to serve. Every year the various Fish Fries draw tens if not hundreds of Volunteers and almost every student at ASA has altar served at least once. Every year, we have our required amount of service hours that pushes and challenges us, not only to meet the requirement, but to go beyond.

I love all of the various ways that ASA challenges us to continue Volunteering, even if we don’t have. The service corp projects, that each Eighth grader did, is an amazing example of this. We were required to go out, into the community, and volunteer for six hours. Some people went above and beyond, volunteering not just on that day, but on the days after.

ASA pushes us to our best in all aspects of life, but especially in service to others. Thank you.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Invention Convention

Creativity and Innovation Promote Success

The very first ASA Invention Convention was held on Thursday, May 17 in the Brophy Center. There were approximately 100 inventions on display, all of which were designed, created and built by our Middle School students as part of the Middle School STEM classes.

Students have been working on their inventions since the start of school back in September.
The focus of the Invention Convention was for students to find a way to solve a problem or just another way to do something. This was an exciting and challenging assignment because students could not go and look in a book or online to find an answer, they just had to keep an open mind (and eyes) throughout their daily life and find a way to solve the problem and build the invention.
Students were to stay at their invention throughout the night and promote it to the guests, as well as answer any questions.

There was a great turn out of support from the parents and other guests to see all the students hard work, determination and final invention.

A sample of the 100 inventions that were on display was an easier way to get peanut butter out of a jar, a trailer built to haul around a lawn mower, a quicker way to dry out water bottles, an easy way to get grease off of bacon, and a way to feed a cat from an outdoor deck.
Debriefing took place with the students after the Invention Convention to gather their thoughts and here are some that were shared:

Aiden McGavin, “I liked the critical thinking of how we needed to solve a problem, and how to do it”.

Cassie Sisk, “One thing I liked about the Invention Convention was that it was a great learning experience about entrepreneurship”.

Gavin McKinney, “People liked my invention and felt like buying it”.

Caitlin Mitchell, “I liked how creative the inventions were”.

Dave Frey, “I loved how everyone just walked around and stopped and took a look at our inventions”.

Grace Ellis, “I liked how we got compliments”.

Stephanie Ball, “ There were a lot of good inventions and the parents really enjoyed walking around and seeing the inventions”.

Andrew Bajdek, “I really like that everyone had to dig deep and think hard to come up with an invention”.

Mr. Fillman is planning on an Invention Convention next year, but with a different twist. Stay tuned for details in the Fall.

Friday, June 1, 2018

ASA Parents' Top Ten List 2018


ASA Parents Top 10 List 2017-2018

10) Daddy-Daughter Dance and Talent Shows
9) Preschool & 8th Grade Fun Days
8) Weekly School Masses and All School Masses
7) Ice Cream Social and Preschool Picnic
6) Via Dolorosa
5) Pastries with Pals
4) Music Programs, and Band Concerts
3) Whitecaps Game
2) Eat. Pray. Run.
1) Eaglefest!