Crazy Year For Maple Sugaring

Posted on March 17th, 2017 by bguzzetta

It sure has been a crazy start to the maple sugaring year! The weather was up and down, but never up or down long enough to get the sap moving, so we put off tapping but the students were getting antsy. They finally convinced Mrs. Guzzetta to tap one tree to monitor the week before February break.

Needless to say, we barely collected any sap that week, but the weather forecast for break was drastically different and we knew that we were in for a good week so we tapped a few more. Once the vacation week began, the weather got balmy, and the sap started flowing fast and furious. Two eighth grade club leaders came in one day to help tap more trees for a total of about thirty taps. A third club leader, a veteran of three years, was a big help as he came in twice, once with his cousins, to collect the sap that was flowing.

Even with their help, Mrs. Guzzetta was kept busy collecting once or twice a day in order to stay on top of the flow as it appeared that the season was going to be short. By the end of the week we had about 80 gallons in storage and another 15 or so lost to accidental spills or ants.

When the students came back from break, their collecting started back up on a more regular basis. A couple of students were able to help out during their Citizen Science project time as their project pertained to our maple sugaring project, and others stopped in to collect when they could. One of Mrs. Guzzetta’s sixth grade advisees organized the other advisees and collected during advocacy. During this time, the students had their first encounter with a sugar hungry chipmunk who was found patiently sitting in a bucket of sap waiting for the students to rescue him.

Mike Wheeler, whose son is a leader in the maple sugaring club, coordinated with Mrs. Guzzetta and happily volunteered his time, resources, and knowledge to work with some of the club members to build a sugar shack. He oversaw the club members as they sawed, drilled, hammered, and constructed their very first sugar shack that they will reconstruct each year during the sugaring season. This is a huge upgrade from their pop up shelter with no walls that provided minimal protection from the elements. More on this exciting project coming soon.

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Posted in: Highlights, Kid Kudos, Middle School

AC in the News – Winter 2017

Posted on February 2nd, 2017 by klapa

Check out AC’s recent media coverage below!

Please note that the clips below will display best on desktop or laptop computers as opposed to mobile devices.

LLE Research Lands Local Teens in Semifinals
for National Science Competition
January 23rd, 2017

Two local teens have earned recognition in the prestigious Regeneron Science Talent Search (formerly the Intel Science Talent Search) for research projects they carried out last summer at the University of Rochester’s Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE). AC senior Nathan Morse is among the 300 semifinalists nationwide chosen from more than 1,700 who entered the competition. Click here to read more!

TEDx Rochester Returns to Illuminate
January 12th, 2017

TEDxAllendaleColumbiaSchool is mentioned as one of the TEDx events taking place in the Rochester area in this Democrat and Chronicle article about the return of TEDxRochester. Click here to read the full story!

Victor Resident Joins Allendale Columbia School
January 12th, 2017

This article announces John Palomaki’s appointment as Allendale Columbia School’s development and communications associate. In this role, John is responsible for managing the donor database, gift processing, research, reports, and the development and implementation of a social media plan to extend AC’s reach and engagement online. Click here to read more!

Allendale Columbia Robotics Team Competes in Tournament
December 27th, 2016

AC’s Robotics Team, the Chrononauts, competed in the Finger Lakes FIRST Tech Challenge Tournament at St. John Fisher College. The team placed 15th overall and was awarded the Rockwell Collins Innovate Award, advancing them to the Excelsior NY Regional Championship in February. The Rockwell Collins Innovate Award is given to one team per tournament that thinks outside the box and has the most innovative and creative robot design. Click here to see the full article!

No Bologna: Lunch Ladies and a Meal Man
Share their Favorite Holiday Recipes
Winter 2017

This article is a reprint of the feature story that appeared in 585 Magazine and highlights Laura Reynolds-Gorsuch, AC’s Food Service Director. In the article, Laura shares her recipe for AC Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies, a favorite among AC faculty, staff, and students. Click here to see!

High School Athlete of the Week – Addy Flood
December 1st, 2016

This High School Athlete of the Week article and video feature AC junior Adelaide “Addy” Flood. She states that, “This year as a captain, I hope to encourage my team like the seniors last year and the year before encouraged me.” Click here to see!

Local Teen Performs in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade
November 24th, 2016

Several news outlets featured AC tenth grader John Phillips as he performed in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Click the following links to see the coverage from 13WHAM, Time Warner Cable News, and

Allendale Columbia School’s Production of “Cinderella”
November 15th, 2016

AC students Phelan Conheady and Catherine Kennedy, and ASL Interpreter Steph Regan, appeared on Good Day Rochester to talk about AC’s production of “Cinderella” and the use of sign language during the show. Click here to see the interview!

Allendale Columbia School to Host Book Event Series
November 11th, 2016

This Brighton-Pittsford Post article highlights AC’s Book Event Series. Throughout the year, AC will host events so that members of the community can discuss the best-selling book about transforming education, Most Likely to Succeed: Preparing Our Kids for the Innovation Era, by Tony Wagner and Ted Dintersmith. Click here to learn more!

New Hires
November 11th, 2016

This Rochester Business Journal article announces three individuals who joined the AC team this year: Margarita Chaves as a World Language Teacher, John Curatalo as a Physical Education Teacher, and Angie Burch as an Accounting Specialist. Click here to see!

Author Charles Benoit Visits Allendale Columbia School
November 2nd, 2016

The Brighton-Pittsford Post highlighted AC’s recent author visit by publishing a photo of AC ninth grader Roxana “Roxy” Reisch introducing Greece author Charles Benoit before he presented a talk called “Stuck in High School: Why I Write Young Adult Fiction (and Why You Should Read It)”. Click here to see!

Allendale Columbia School to Host Open House
November 2nd, 2016

The Brighton-Pittsford Post highlighted AC’s fall open house, at which attendees had the opportunity to meet teachers, students, and administrators and tour the campus. Click here to see!

Local High Schooler to Perform in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade
October 30th, 2016

This television news story highlights AC tenth grader John Phillips as he prepared to perform in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. As part of this experience, his trumpet skills were seen by an estimated 53 million people. Click here to see the story!

What You Need to Know About the Current State of Rochester’s Kids, Teaching Election 2016 and More
October 27th, 2016

AC’s Summer LEAP Program is mentioned at the 10:43 mark of this television show, which discusses the ongoing effort to improve outcomes for Rochester-area children. Click here to see!

We’re doing so many exciting and interesting things here at AC and look forward to sharing more media coverage with you in the future!

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Posted in: AC in the News, Alumni News, Highlights, Kid Kudos, Lower School, Middle School, Pre-Primary School, Upper School

Sixth Grade Students Work for NASA

Posted on May 27th, 2016 by tparsons

This March, Allendale Columbia became a certified GLOBE* school. This is an international science and education program that provides access to participate in science experiments and projects to better understand the the global environment. Sixth grade students in Mrs. Parsons’s science class collected soil samples and measured the moisture content for NASA this spring. NASA launched its SMAP satellite in January 2015 to measure soil moisture to improve weather and climate prediction models, as well as better understand processes linking water, carbon, and energy cycles. The students’ data is used to calibrate and validate the measurements being taken from space.

20160422_085046MaryAdianLauren Jose

* The acronym GLOBE stands for Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment. GLOBE is jointly sponsored by NASA and the National Science Foundation (NSF), with support from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Department of State.

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Posted in: Middle School, Sixth Grade

AC Teams Find Success at FIRST LEGO League Championships!

Posted on December 29th, 2015 by klapa

On December 6th, two teams of AC Middle School students competed at the Finger Lakes region FIRST LEGO League Championships, held in the Goergen Field House at the University of Rochester.

Teams that had advanced from qualifying competitions throughout Western NY and Northern PA competed by explaining their robot design, presenting their “Trash Trek”-themed project, and running their robot in a series of timed games.
After a long day of competition, both AC teams were awarded coveted yellow trophies.  The “Winged Incinerators” received the Presentation Award and the “trash hACkers” received the Second Place Champions Award. Please join us in congratulating both teams!
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Posted in: Eighth Grade, Highlights, Middle School, Seventh Grade, Sixth Grade

AC’s Liza Cotter Named as a 2015 Broadcom MASTERS® Semifinalist

Posted on August 24th, 2015 by klapa

Please join us in congratulating AC 8th grader Liza Cotter on her recognition as a semifinalist in the 2015 Broadcom MASTERS®, a program of Society for Science & the Public. This honor places Liza among the top 300 middle school science and engineering projects in the United States from over 6,000 nominees.

The next step in the Broadcom MASTERS takes place on September 2nd, 2015 when 30 finalists will be selected from the 300 semifinalists. Finalists and one parent or guardian will receive an all-expense paid trip to Silicon Valley, California to attend the Broadcom MASTERS Finals Week competition from October 1st-7th.  Finalists will present their research and compete in hands-on challenges for top prizes, including funds to attend a S.T.E.M. summer camp, iPads, and the Samueli Prize of $25,000.

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Posted in: Highlights, Kid Kudos

Announcing 2015 End-of-Year Award Winners

Posted on July 6th, 2015 by klapa

At the end of the school year, our Middle and Upper Schools held awards ceremonies to recognize students for a variety of achievements. Below please find a list of this year’s award winners and join us in congratulating all our students on their accomplishments this school year!


Columbia Class of 1957 Forum Award – Class of 2015

Cum Laude Induction –
Alyssa Broberg
Grace Guo
Noah Meyers
Anne Pinkney
Aaron Jones
Ricky Yates
Yiwei Xiong
Heather Barber
Eva Martin

Tucker Gosnell ’77 Prize in English – Sam Ryckaert

World Languages
Ménendès-La Flèche Award – Alison Zell

The National French Contest 2015
Local Winners
Level 2
17th Nathan Yax
18th Phelan Conheady

Level 3
14th Madeline Shanley
15th (Joint) Danielle Fuller and James Bourtis
19th Thomas Cylke

Level 4
6th Danielle Chuprun
13th Savanna Atwal

Level 5
9th Carly Baker
10th Dita Munzova

National Winners
Level 2    9th locally, 14th nationally – Emily Atieh

Level 3    11th locally, 17th nationally – Danielle Chuprun

Level 4
6th locally, 20th nationally – Alena Ragan
4th locally, 16th nationally – Lucien Nicosia

Level 5
4th locally, 16th nationally – Alison Zell

Société d’Honneur 2015
Emily Atieh
Danielle Chuprun
Ryann Greene
Nathan Yax
Alison Zell

Pablo Neurda – Sam Ryckaert

National Spanish Exam Awards
Level 1 – Honorable Mention
Alyssa Lewis
Catherine Pappas

Level 2 – Honorable Mention
Andrew Drago
Aditi Seshadri
Anjana Seshadri

Level 3 – Bronze Award Winner – Thalia Delvalle
Honorable Mention
Juliana Bruno
Nadia Linton

Level 4 –
Silver Award Winner
Guy Marino
Haley Glazer

Bronze Award Winner
Emily Paszko

Honorable Mention
Noah Meyers

Level 5 –
Silver Award Winner
Chung Eun Kim Armijos

Honorable Mention
Abigael Long

National Latin Exam Winners:
Danielle Chuprun
Joel Cerone
Mukuundo Luhiso
Leeore Intrator
Olivia Bono
Nathan Morse
James Brimlow
Sam Ryckaert

Churchill-Yager – Maria Rainero

Bausch & Lomb – Alyssa Broberg
Class of 1978 Science Prize – Ryan Dens

Catherine Nevius – Rudolph Rodriguez Quamina
Edwin “Ted” Atwood Prize in History – Rick Yates

Kevin Stein Class of 1982 Art Prize– Abigail Lindsey

Bob Stata Instrumental Music Award–Evan Bourtis
Vocal Music Award – Maria Rainero

NYSSMA Solo and All State Awards
Catherine Kennedy
Rebecca McQuilken
Emily Atieh
Danielle Fuller
Nathan Yax
Danielle Chuprun
Nadia Linton
Rudolph Quamina
Abigail Lindsey

Dramatic Arts Award – Sage Melcher and Ricky Yates
2015 National Young Arts Foundation Award – Sage Melcher

National Merit Scholarship Recognitions
National Merit Scholarship Program Commended Scholars:
Haley Glazer
Maria Rainero
Lilah Shrier
Emily Yax

National Achievement Scholarship Program Outstanding Participant
Xavier Francis

Jeff Huff ’84 Memorial Award – Kathryn Bjorklund

Sherman Farnham, Jr., ’62 & Anne Morris Farnham, ’64 Community Service Award – Alex Carioty

Della E. Simpson Memorial Prize – Gavin Flood

University of Rochester Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony Award – Alex Carioty

Rensselaer Medal – Noah Meyers

Bowdoin College Book Award – Alena Ragan

Brown University Book Award – Olivia Bono

Dartmouth College Book Award – Anne Pinkney

Williams College Book Award – Kate Bjorklund

Williams Cup – Abigael Long

Community Service Award – Emily Paszko

Ray Hickok, Jr. Award – Xavier Francis

Athletic Association Sportsmanship Award – Savanna Atwal

Gannett Cup – Sarah Scheinman

Headmaster’s Prize in Memory of Peter Schwartz by the Class of ’54 – Carly Baker

John Harrison Alumni Award – Ricky Yates

Chris Hickock Award:  Mhanna Mahmoud
Nicholas Milella Award:  Liza Cotter
Cygnet Award:  Tristan Nicosia and Naomi Taggart
Helen Monroe Award:  Maneet Angra
8th Grade Merit Award:  Maeve Gleeson

6th Grade Writing Award: Middy Vela
7th Grade Writing Award: Roxana “Roxy” Reisch
8th Grade Writing Award: Tristan Nicosia

Spanish Exam:
Thalia Delvalle
Henry Grasman
Riley Leibeck
Elizabeth “Liza” Cotter
Madeleine Gee

National French Exam:
Ellie Coleman
Jessica Matrachisia
Andrew Ragan

AMC 8 Awards:
First place –
Nathaniel Pifer
Annabelle Blake
Riley Leibeck
Henry Nicosia
Adrian Fuller
Second Place –
James Morrell
Caden Kacprzynski
Elizabeth “Liza” Cotter
Benjamin Smoker
Maneet Angra
Third Place –
John Karis
Thalia Delvalle
Gifford Campbell
Dylan Reece
Chinara Dorancy
Myles Wilson
Ciarra Franz

National Geographic Bee Award:  Garrett Wilson

National Latin Exam
Emilia Granat
Nathaniel Pifer

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Posted in: Eighth Grade, Eleventh Grade, Highlights, Kid Kudos, Middle School, Ninth Grade, Seventh Grade, Sixth Grade, Tenth Grade, Twelfth Grade, Upper School