End of Summer Strategies for Middle Schoolers

Posted on August 22nd, 2014 by tduver

tina post.021For some middle school students, going back to school brings the same excitement and anticipation as the release of a new One Direction album.

There are some easy pre-school preparations that tweens can tackle on their own for heading back to school – gathering their own supplies, getting summer reading finished up, and having sports forms ready to hand in. Other school-ready concepts may not be as easy to tackle solo for middle school students. To help early adolescents head back to school in top form, here are a few recommendations:

Sleep on it:  For some students, summer becomes a time of shifting bed times, staying up late and sleeping in. Making the sleep transition back to normal school hours can be a tricky one. According to the CDC, school aged teens need between 9 and 10 hours of sleep a night. With school right around the corner, try to encourage your middle schooler to head to bed closer to the time of their normal schedule during the school year. With modified sports, homework, and a different start time than the summer months, their physical and mental demands will require more sleep.

Food for thought: For some households, the kitchen is open 24-7, and tweens find themselves in the fridge and pantry looking for snacks whenever their growing appetite demands. If you are a home that allows for free-range children, transitioning back to three meals a day may be an adjustment for kids. Having good conversations around food choices, healthy snacks, and eating in general can be a great way to get them back to big and early breakfasts, school lunches, and later dinners.

Dog days of summer: Hair brushing, deodorant, and overall physical appearance may not be on the top priority list for tweens during the summer. Getting them back in the swing of things when it comes to hygiene will ease early morning battles that might occur over showers and wardrobe. Getting into a morning or evening shower routine, laying clothes out the night before, and keeping the deodorant and toothbrush in an easily accessible place can make the mornings go much more smoothly when headed back to school.

If the shoe fits: According to Teens Health, a major growth spurt occurs at the time of puberty, which is usually between age 8 to 13 years in girls and 10 to 15 years in boys. With your luck, this probably happened over the summer, and recently purchased school shoes and clothes no longer fit your growing and stretching tween. To avoid blisters and foot pain, check your child’s shoes before they head off to walk the hallways of school. Buying new school clothes seems to be a ritual for some households, and shoes are one thing that is often neglected. If buying a new wardrobe was not in your economic summer plans, have your tween try on their clothes so they can find those that best fit for heading back to school.

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Posted in: Eighth Grade, Highlights, Middle School, Seventh Grade, Sixth Grade

Opening Days of School at AC!

Posted on September 13th, 2013 by Tony Tepedino

Allendale Columbia School celebrated a remarkable start to the 2013-14 school year.  We welcomed 70 new students and a talented N-12 student body of 375 students from over 15 different countries and 27 school districts.

AC seniors welcomed everyone by teaching the student body how to say “good morning” and “welcome back” in more than 5 different languages at our opening day assembly.  Lower School students are already greeting one another in a different language each day at our family-style lunch. Our Nursery students are right at home in their classroom already after their summer camp experience at AC.    First and second graders are designing their classrooms from scratch.  Seventh graders are getting ready for their Pathfinder Trip to Canada next week.  Ninth graders enjoyed a weekend retreat trip to Camp Stella Maris.  Upper School student leaders had the annual Club Fair with over 30 clubs represented.  Campus is buzzing with activity.  Stay tuned for a great year!

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Posted in: Highlights, Lower School, Middle School, Pre-Primary School, Upper School

Summer Camp Wraps Up Record Year!

Posted on August 22nd, 2013 by kvella

As summer draws to a close, Allendale Columbia is looking forward to opening the 2013-14 school year with increased enrollment and new programs on the heels the extraordinary Summer of 2013.

This summer our 33-acre campus at AC was buzzing all summer long as more than 630 campers from 3 different countries (US, Japan, China), 5 different states, and over 50 different schools participated in 34 different camps.  Altogether, Allendale Columbia’s Summer Program had over 1100 registrants for camp, setting a camp record! Campers enjoyed a new lunch option making it easier to participate in morning and afternoon camps that are often an extension of what happens at AC during the school year!

Camps this summer ranged from programming and robotics through Vista Teach’s LEGO Robotics, to Art, Nature Exploration, Puppet Workshop, and Music through camps such as the ADIOS Music Theatre Program.

For the second year in a row, the  Rochester Fencing Club hosted fencing classes throughout the summer while our youngest campers, getting ready for nursery school, were introduced to the classroom setting in the Step Into School camp run by our nursery teacher.

AC’s Sports Camp for children between 6 and 12 years old was a huge hit with record registration again this year.  Campers participated in all different types of sports from ping pong to swimming and had fun toured and watched a Rochester Red Wings baseball game.  AC attracts talented athletes who also seek  to benefit from instruction for more specific sports like baseball, basketball, and volleyball from our HAC varsity coaches.

Thank you to all our summer camp families and campers who made this summer remarkable.  Kudos to our camp leaders, 70% of whom are part of our talented Allendale Columbia’s faculty. We look forward to another great summer in 2014!

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Posted in: Lower School, Middle School, Pre-Primary School

AC Summer Program: Step Into School

Posted on July 3rd, 2013 by Tony Tepedino

As we move into our second week of camp, the campus is alive with over 200 campers and 11 different camps already. From music theatre, to weird science, Allendale Columbia continues to buzz with exciting and unique summer programs.


One of the camps offered during the first week of camp each year is Step Into School camp by nursery school teacher, Donna Kwiatkowski’s. Throughout the week, incoming Allendale Columbia nursery school students Declan, Taylor, Keegan and Rocco were all introduced to the nursery classroom through arts, shared playtime, music activities, group games and hands-on activities.

“The goal of the Step Into School camp is to help get each student ready for school,” said Kwiatkowski. “Before their first school experience in the fall, they’ll already have an understanding of the routine of a school day and have a familiarity with their environment and Allendale Columbia campus.”

The Step Into School camp week is both a positive experience for each student, to get used to being away from home for the first time, and a week that Kwiatkowski very much looks forward to each year.

“One of the best parts of camp is seeing the increased confidence that each student gains day-by-day as they feel more and more at home.”

As the students get more and more acclimated to Allendale Columbia, they not only grow as individuals, but they also bond together as a class.  At AC, we believe we offer a different school of thought in part because from the earliest ages, our students are part of something larger than themselves and character development goes hand in hand with their intellectual development in a very personal way.

When nursery school then starts in the fall, the classroom experience becomes even more enriched and these students surely have an easy time joining the AC community as our youngest learners.

Want to see more nursery activity at Allendale Columbia? Check out the following photo galleries from the 2012-2013 school year.

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Posted in: Highlights, Nursery, Pre-Primary School

Kindergarten play "Clean Up Your Earth" in honor of Earth Day!

Posted on April 22nd, 2013 by Tony Tepedino
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Posted in: Lower School