Entries in Acorn April 2009 (12)


A note from the Woods...

With our fortieth anniversary on the horizon, Wood Acres is the epitome of oldschool meets new school. Our students have the best of both worlds, benefiting from the rich curriculum that Wood Acres has used over many decades while also being exposed to very modern instructional techniques. This combination is resulting in some wonderful things for our students and our school.

To begin with, we are extremely proud to announce that Wood Acres has been accredited by the Georgia Accrediting Commission. This only confirms for those new to Wood Acres what parents and faculty have always known. Wood Acres sets high expectations and then provides the instruction and encouragement for each student to soar. It’s an honor to have the credentials but the proof is in the pudding—Wood Acres’ students are recognized for their superb math & science skills,excellent creative writing, superior citizenship and much more wherever they go.

An additional nexus of the old and new is Wood Acres’ quest to become an International Spanish Academy. At the invitation of the Spanish consulate, Wood Acres will be applying for this official designation that will bring state-of-the-art resources to our Spanish program as well as allow our eighth grade graduates to tap into some phenomenal high school programs. As more details are available, we will keep you informed on this exciting opportunity for Wood Acres students. Please visit the website forfurther information on the International Spanish Academy concept.

The last forty years have been grand. The next forty years, along with your family and our spectacular teachers, will be an amazing adventure. Thank you for joining us on this wonderful journey where parents, teachers and school work collaboratively to give our children all the best of the last forty years along with the exciting new prospects for the next forty years.

Judy T. ThigpenHead of School


Rock with us at Wood Acres Summer Camp

Rock with us this summer at Wood Acres Camp Rock! It will be an incredible summer camp packed with great themes and terrific learning that will “rock” our campers’ worlds. Our terrific drama week with Allyson Nusear returns June 8-12 with Royal Family Rock. Other themes include Rock ‘n’ Run Field Day, Georgia Rocks and Wood Acres Rockin’ Magic.

Make sure to sign up your camper soon to take advantage of the same pricing as last summer!

Click here for registration information and available programs.


Grammar School Musical

Although we may not have the same dance numbers or spectacular costumes as other high dollar productions, you can be sure that the Fourth & Fifth Grade Musicals at Wood Acres will be quite wonderful on their own merits!

The entire family is invited to attend our student productions of Americans All by Fourth Graders and We Haz Jazz by Fifth Graders. Creativity abounds as the students assist in making the set, choosing costumes and making the characters their own.

Look for more details to come home in your student’s bookbag or folder soon.


Field Day

Field Day is culmination of the physical education program for students in First through Sixth Grades. Teams are created with students from every grade to compete in games from the very fun to the very funny! Students enjoy the camaraderie of cheering for each other and putting forth their best efforts.

The teachers are working very diligently with the students to prepare them for a day of fun, sun and physical activity. Parents are welcome to cheer for their students as well as join them for a picnic lunch!

Please visit the Parent site (login required) to see the date and details of the Field day event.


Fifth & Sixth Grade Band Concert April 27th

You are cordially invited to join the Fifth & Sixth Grades for a Band Concert at 6:30 on Monday, April 27 with Hollie Lawing conducting.

Also plan to visit our Spring Student Art Show in the Art Gallery on the second floor of Turner Hall to see the year’s compilation of art by our talented students!

The Arts are alive at The Wood Acres School!


Early School News

Terrific Twos

The Terrific Twos have learned the routines of the classroom and are in a lovely cadence of learning. Our youngest students have made great strides since the beginning of school and are practicing being good friends, using polite manners and sitting in circle time. The students also love playing with the teachers in physical education class and music class!

Awesome Threes

The Three Year Olds had a blast with their Winter Camp Out! They pretended to toast marshmallows, played flashlight tag and devoured delicious s’mores for snack and even learned all about hibernating animals! The students are also busy reviewing shapes, working with numbers and recognizing their own names. We’ll also continue to practice fine motor control with fun activities!

Fabulous Fours & K-Prep

The children in the Four Year Old Program and Kindergarten-Prep are fully immersed in the understanding of the consonant sounds of our language. With the terrific curriculum of Happily Ever After and Apples to Zucchini (in K-Prep), the students are mastering the building blocks of our language. These important early reading skills will set the students up for tremendous success in Kindergarten


Kindergarten through 2nd Grade


Students continue to practice their reading daily and practice their word decoding skills. Using the writing curriculum embedded in the Superkids program, the students are producing beautiful written work include vocabulary dictation and sentences. In math, the students are practicing with time and money. The children are also studying maps and continents to understand their place in the world as well as the world around them.

First Grade

First Graders have learned all of the “star rules” in reading. In math, students are taking timed tests to gain mastery in the their addition and subtraction facts. Skip counting, finding patterns in tables of numbers, place value and money are all touched on as these fabulous First Graders prepare for a challenging second grade year. The students also made and delivered beautiful Valentine vases for senior citizens at Sunrise Assisted Living Center.

Second Grade

Second Graders are rocking the world with great cursive writing! With their new writing skills, they are also taking on comparative writing using many descriptors as well as conjunctions. Math is being tackled with 2 digit additional and sub- traction with regrouping. There is also lots of practice with math facts. In history & geography, the students are learning about the Civil War and what life was like in the 19th century.


Third and Fourth Grade

Third Graders are learning about Native Americans and Early Explorers in history. They are tackling geometry and completing a novel study of The Tale of Despereaux. You, he, she, it are also the talk of Third Grade as the students learn about pronouns.

Fourth Graders are studying ecosystems in science and will experience the ecosystems of coastal Georgia firsthand during their field trip to Jekyll Island Environmental Center. All of the students’ skills in English, spelling and vocabulary are being put to the test in the writing of a research paper as well!


Fifth Grade & Sixth Grade

Beginning the process of writing research reports, Fifth Graders are researching, outlining and beginning to understand all the components of crafting a paper. They are exploring the Civil War as well as the western expansion in history & geography with a study of the elements in science.

Sixth Graders just returned from a fabulous field trip to Washington, D.C. where they saw democracy in action! In addition to tours of the White House, the Pentagon, and the Supreme Court, the students visited with representatives and senators from the great state of Georgia.


On the Road...Wood Acres Style!

Field trips expand children’s learning beyond the walls of the classroom with the rich resources of the local community and the discovery of new places. The Wood Acres faculty carefully plans field trips to reinforce and expand the learning happening in the classroom. Some of the recent and upcoming field trips include:

  • Center for Puppetry Arts for Kindergartners who are touched by the creative stories and magic of the theatre
  • Zoo Atlanta for First Graders to learn about the many different animals of the world and where they live naturally
  • William Harris Homestead for Second Grade who walk in the footsteps of 19th century boys & girls to learn about life in a log cabin, farming, food & clothing production and life before, during and after the Civil War
  • Chattanooga Aquarium for Third Grade who take the “River Journey”, learning about great rivers of the world from the Amazon to the Yangtze
  • Jekyll Island 4-H Environmental Center where Fourth Graders & Fifth Graders connect with the coastal environment of Georgia, focusing on marine science and coastal ecology
  • Renaissance Fair for Fifth Graders to explore the wonders of another age
  • Washington, D.C. for Sixth Graders who see our democracy in action with visits to the White House, the Supreme Court, the Pentagon and Capitol Hill including visits to congressional leaders

This list offers only a few of the intriguing field trips that grade level Wood Acres students participate in each year. Research indicates that field trips increase knowledge and understanding of our world for students. These experiences cannot be duplicated in the classroom and bring a depth of knowledge for children.

Wood Acres is dedicated to experiential learning, both inside and outside the classroom, that inspires students to think critically and creatively in all aspects of their lives


Everything you ever wanted to know about standardized testing... (but were afraid to ask!)

In the world of academia, “ratings sweeps” month is around the corner. Kindergartners through Sixth Graders at Wood Acres will demonstrate their academic prowess by taking the Stanford 10 Achievement Test and the Otis Lennon Ability test in late April. At Wood Acres, we are always pleased to say that test preparation for our students is done each and every day with quality teaching and monitoring of student progress.

Results are shared annually with parents and are also used in-house to fine tune curriculum, shape educational plans for students, and celebrate the corporate success of our unique learning environment. These standardized tests are just one of the many formal and informal assessment tools that Wood Acres faculty utilize to monitor student progress and develop and modify curriculum. Informal assessments are often qualitative in nature and typically provide the best snapshots of the young learner in progress. Wood Acres would never trade a trained mature, professional set of watchful teacher eyes for a #2 pencil and a bubbled-in test.

Parents often ask with great anxiety, “How can I help my child do well on standardized tests?” The best preparation is a student’s attendance at Wood Acres! During testing week, logistics such as a good night’s rest, a healthy, nutritious breakfast as well as smiles, hugs and encouragement from those at home provide a winning combination for a student to do his or her best!


Wood Acres Scholarship 2009-2010

The Wood Acres Scholarship was established in memory and celebration of Isabelle and Brian Young, Jr. Applications for the annual scholarships are available in the school office. The deadline to submit applications will be at 4PM on Friday, May 15. Recipients will be announced by July 15th.

Available only to current Wood Acres legacy families, this is a wonderful opportunity for families with rising Kindergarten through Seventh Grade students . Scholarship applications are reviewed by a panel of evaluators external to Wood Acres and awards are based on a combination of merit and need. This anonymously funded scholarship program will be celebrating its seventh year of assisting Wood Acres families to continue their child’s independent school education. Please call Jenny Tischer for additional information