Our Salk Elementary Bike Club is an extension of Tulsa Bike Club. Salk 5th Graders apply to join the club and must maintain a passing grade in all subjects. Bike Club kicks-off each year in late September and runs for approximately 20-25 weeks, finishing in early May. Each club is made up of roughly 15-20 fifth graders and five volunteers — including faculty members. The students are provided everything needed to participate in club activities, such as bicycles, helmets, safety vests, and lessons on bicycle safety and bicycle maintenance.
In the fall, students and adult volunteers meet weekly after school to ride bikes and work on cycling skills, STEM (engineering of a bicycle), life skills (confidence, respect, following rules, etc.) and other fun activities. Spring semester includes off-campus rides and experiences — for example, students may ride to a fire station, museum, park, or other nearby places of interest.
After school Bike Club experiences like ours leads to lifelong friendships, encourages healthy habits, and provides a sense of belonging. Some bikers may even go on to represent Tulsa Public Schools as competitive bike riders. Regardless of the reason a fifth graders joins Bike Club, it's a great place to be after school at Salk Elementary.
We have 10 officers from grades 4, 5 & 6 that help lead the two organizations. We do all events together. We have meetings as needed. Each of the upper level classes has a class representative -- one for each club to help out when we have big projects.
We have worked on a Mitten/Scarf/Glove Drive, a Food Drive, a Thanksgiving Feast (we all eat popcorn and draw/write about things we are thankful for on the brown paper carpet in the hallway as a school). We also do Candygrams for the holidays. We go caroling and thank our businesses that support our school in December and pass out cards that the kids create.
Safety Patrol is a group of students that are selected by teachers for having good grades, excellent attendance, and fabulous character.
They come to school early each day (6:45 - 7:00 a.m.) to be on their post when the doors open. They greet the bus riders at the front doors, open car doors in the back, help pre-K/kinders get to their spots, deliver mail to teachers, and any other needed jobs in the morning. Throughout the day they deliver snacks, notes to go home, etc. if needed. At the end of the day, they are in charge of getting groups to their designated areas and taking roll. The students are a fabulous bunch who work very hard and love helping others!
In elementary grade art classes, students will explore many different aspects of visual art. Students will let their creativity flow by engaging in activities such as drawing and painting with various materials. They also learn art vocabulary, explore the work of many different artists and art movements, and learn to appreciate art as it enhances our world.
In elementary grade music classes, students will learn and practice the basic fundamental elements of music such as sound, melody, harmony, rhythm, and expression (dynamics, tempo, articulation). Students will engage in singing, playing instruments, responding to music with movement, and connecting with various cultures through music. These classes will help students develop creativity, self-expression, and problem-solving while creating music together as a team. These classes will also provide students with performance opportunities, which will help them develop a sense of ensemble, tolerance, perseverance, and rigor—enabling them to be well-rounded citizens of our global society.
My goals for each student include:
- to have a love for music
- to learn to appreciate all styles of music
- to have a general understanding of the history and culture behind the various styles
- to engage each student in a variety of ways to enjoy music (singing, movement, speech, instruments, body percussion, etc.)
- to offer opportunities to attend performances to ignite a passion for the stage
- to help students understand the connections between English language arts, math, etc. and the fine arts.
Orff Schulwerk is a process of teaching that was developed by German Composer, Carl Orff. His idea of teaching children to speak, move, sing and play has swept the world over and been used in the United States for many years. We use instruments developed by Orff at Salk. As a level 2 certified teacher, I am constantly attending professional development to better my skills.
I have been involved from the beginning in two special programs offered to our scholars: Any Given Child (Kennedy Center) and Tulsa Symphony Orchestra. The Link Up field trip experience provides our third, fourth, and fifth graders with a unique opportunity to be both the audience and the performers.
Our district also has an annual All-District Elementary Music Festival at the Tulsa Community College PACE Van Trease Center (Performing Arts Center for Education). Music is learned throughout the school year, rehearsed at an all-day field trip with other Tulsa schools and performed that same evening for family members. Three hundred students from across the district perform in the annual festival. It is the highlight of the year for many students!