Tuesday, May 17, 2016


The Lester Prairie kindergarten children had a field trip on Tuesday. May 10th. The weather started out being rainy and cool but the excited learners warmed the day with their happy hearts and curious minds. The children were enthusiastic learners, and the tour guides and chaperones were truly inspiring.

The outing enhanced all Kindergarten themes! The children saw examples of plants, animals, seasonal changes, habitats, transportation vehicles, and daily happenings in both rural and city communities.

The first stop on the field trip was at RAM Building in Winsted. The children were excited to “get there” so fast as it was a very short bus ride from Lester Prairie. Craig Jackson facilitated the tour which included: distribution of hard hats to all kindergarten workers; a lesson on wood and what is/is not made of wood; the opportunity to honk the horn while in the driver’s seat of a semi. (THANK YOU TO CRAIG AND RAM BUILDING!) The next day the children drew designs of buildings they thought RAM should build in the future.

The next stop on the trip was a visit to the Bell Museum of Natural History at the University of Minnesota. This experience acquainted the children with many different types of animals that were and are living in the state of Minnesota. The children learned about mammals, birds, and also had the opportunity to visit the Touch and See Room.

Como Park Zoo was busy and exciting. The boys and girls walked around the zoo where they saw lions, tigers, seals, a snow leopard, bison, giraffes, a zebra, gorillas, orangutans, penguins and several other animals.

In class the boys and girls have written stories, made pictures, created a zoo with toy animals and blocks, sang songs, moved like the animals they saw, and made zoo animal sculptures. These hands-on learners are eager to continue to learn more about animals, the community and work done by workers in the

Monday, May 16, 2016


Race Relations Exhibit. National Parks’ Imax Movie. Hands on Science Labs.  These were just some of the activities Lester Prairie high school students participated in during their field trip to the Minnesota Science Museum.  Thanks in part to the Lester Prairie Booster Club who helped fund the trip, students in grades 10-12 Anatomy, Biology, and Big History classes were fortunate enough to spend a day at the museum.  

The lessons that these students have learned in the classroom became alive through the many exhibits and activities that the Minnesota Science Museum could provide. When students returned from the trip, their teachers asked them what they learned from the trip. A recurring response from students: “Field trips let me experience the things I have learned in the classroom firsthand. They allow me to see these things come alive.”  A day of discovery indeed; time well spent outside of the classroom.

 Lester Prairie students from L to R: Senior; Harley Hentges, Sophomore; Leighton Burr, and Sophomore; Rileigh Shackleton. 

 Race Relations Exhibit 

Band Goes to St.Louis on Trip

The Lester Prairie Band program recently returned from a trip to St. Louis, Missouri from May 12-15th. While on the trip they participated in a master class with Dr. Joel Vanderheyden at Jefferson College, toured Fox Theatre, viewed a performance by the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, spent time at the St. Louis Zoo and toured Busch Stadium among other events. Thirty-six students from grades 9-12 participated in the trip.

 Students posing in front of Busch Stadium-the home of the St. Louis Cardinals.

 Students gathered together at the St. Louis Museum of Art

Friday, May 6, 2016

Some suggested for summer Math Resources for 6th – 8th grade students.

             by Amy Smith, 6th, 7th, and 8th grade math teacher at Lester Prairie Schools

First of all….math in the summer?  Yes!  Just a little bit of work will help boost your child’s learning for the fall.  There are many skills to learn.  However, even just keeping up on your basic facts will be a plus.  6th graders should have their math facts polished.  7th graders have learned operations with negative numbers so keeping these skills fresh in their mind would be helpful.  8th graders need to be comfortable with fraction operations. 

Lots of math facts sites or apps are available to solidify your child’s basic math facts.  Some suggestions are the flash cards at aplusmath.com, some of the games at funbrain.com, or just regular old-fashioned flash cards. The Dollar Store has lots of them. 

If you are interested in other math practice check out TenMarks.com – it is free.  There are many lessons available for your child to practice over the summer. 

All 6th, 7th, and 8th graders (and many elementary students) have a SumDog.com account and can use this over the summer.  A variety of math games are available.  These will include some basic fact exercises, but will also go into other exercises as well. 

Khan Academy has informative instructional videos on many math topics.  This is a good resource to use both in the summer and throughout the year if your child needs math help. 

In case you are going camping or someplace where there will be no cell service a good non-technology option is to purchase a workbook.  Many books stores have a variety of good workbooks with 6th grade, PreAlgebra, and Algebra topics.  Purchase one and take your child away from their electronic device to work on their math skills.  They will be so happy!   J  

Whatever you decide, just helping your child keep their math skills over the summer will give their learning a boost for classes in the fall.  Looking forward to another great year!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Lester Prairie REACH Students Attend First Ever REACH Conference

On Tuesday May 3rd, the Lester Prairie REACH program had the opportunity to join hundreds of other REACH students from a dozen schools across the state in the first ever REACH conference.  Students from as far away as Austin, Ashby, and Alexandria joined students from local schools including Hutchinson, Delano, Litchfield, and Lester Prairie to share their success stories and hear messages of inspiration from prominent speakers. 
The day’s events were highlighted by Ken Barlow, of KSTP Channel 5, who spoke about his struggles with Bipolar Disorder. Former Minnesota Viking EJ Henderson spoke about hard work, education and perseverance.  Current Viking Chad Greenway spoke about resiliency and surrounding yourself with positive role models.  Former Michigan State football player Bobby Jones, shared his struggles with alcohol addiction and the negative effect it had on his life.  Miss Minnesota candidate Melissa Paakh, shared her message about “The Authentic You”, encouraging student to be themselves.
These speakers plus many more helped spread the message of overcoming adversity, making positive decisions, hard work, and dedication to all students in attendance.   These speakers also helped educate students and educators on the importance of mental health and being aware of the effects mental health diseases can have on students.
Being able to attend this event was a great experience for our students.  They were able to hear inspirational messages that promote positive life decisions.  The Lester Prairie REACH program has seen many positive results, and events like this one help to provide inspiration to students to continue to overcome their struggles.

.J. Henderson, former All-Pro Linebacker for the Minnesota Vikings

Ken Barlow, KSTP Channel 5 Meteorologist

Chad Harlander, Hutchinson High School REACH Teacher

Marketing Class goes on Field Trip

The Marketing class at LPHS went to downtown Minneapolis on Monday, May 2, to study promotional activities used by retailers.   Each student had a worksheet to complete relating to their observations of marketing techniques they have been studying .  Points of interest included: the Skyway system, IDS court, Capella Tower with the accounting firm of BakerTilly, and Target Center. 

On the way, the class stopped at Lunds & Byerly’s Ridgedale.  Chris Bonk, the store manager, showed us around.  He pointing out displays of interest, and how they tried to make their store a one stop shopping experience.

Once downtown, the class went to the skyway system, which attracts 9000 to 10000 people who pass through daily. 

Students were given a couple hours to complete the worksheet.  They were able to observe displays, promotions, and merchandising.  They also had to shop and price various merchandise items.  One of the tougher choices was deciding where to eat lunch. 

After lunch we went to the accounting firm of Baker Tilly International, the 12 largest firm in the US.  A CPA explained what an accountant does and we also were able to speak with the marketing director.  She explained how she and her team were working on an upcoming community event the firm was sponsoring.  We were given a tour of the 23rd and 22nd floors of the Capella Tower.

The day ended at Target Center where we were escorted to the offices and told about how to get a job in marketing from the marketing director.  Working with a variety of tours, acts, and shows keeps Anna Barbario very busy.  Target center had just hosted the Who and was in the process of getting ready for Paul McCartney.  We were given a tour back stage to see some of the preparations.  Work ethic, attitude and common sense were stressed as important qualities employers look for in perspective employees. 

Picture ID:  Becca McKinnon, Taylor Kriz, Kendra Ziermann, Andrew Gebhardt, Tyler Norman, Tori Trenttin, Logan Aargaard, Travis Bayerl, Blair Jilek, Beth Bettcher, Kala Hecksel, Valeria Lopez, Cara Maynard.