Feb. 15, 2019
Runnels has always been the school for all races, religions, and national origins.

In Focus this week: All 4 Runnels National Merit Semifinalists Advance to Finalist Standing; Can We Build a Waterproof Roof? Yes, We Can!; Freshman Places in Regional Shakespeare Contest; Make a Difference by Making an Online Donation to "Pasta for Pennies"; Making Hearts Happy; Spring ACT Prep Workshops Coming Up at Runnels; Student Art Inspires Baton Rouge Garden Club Tablescapes; A Song They'll Remember; Kudos and Notable Events; We Sincerely Thank; Weekly Photo Album; Athletic Corner; Friendly Reminders.

National Merit Finalists Announced

All four of our National Merit Semifinalists have met the requirements to advance to Finalist standing in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Competition. Congratulations to seniors Kayla Evans, Anna Kadi, Daniel Mayeaux, and Emma Tooraen! As Finalists, they are eligible for National Merit Scholarships to be awarded in the spring.

"The academic achievements of these students are truly special,” said Jr./Sr. High Assistant Principal Dana Schlotterer. “Being selected as a National Merit Finalist opens up an enormous number of additional scholarship opportunities for them in addition to those they've already been offered. Watching these students work toward this milestone over the last four years has been a privilege for all of us. These students could not be more deserving of this honor. We cannot wait to see what they accomplish in college." 

So far, only Kayla has decided on a particular college. In the fall, she'll be heading to Waco, TX where she'll attend Baylor College to major in biochemistry on a pre-med track. Her plans are to become a maternal-fetal surgeon. Anna still hasn't decided where she'll go but there are four current contenders: Texas Christian University, LSU, Alabama, and Baylor. Daniel said he is not sure about "any of that stuff yet," and Emma is also on the fence, though Mrs. Schlotterer said she has narrowed it down to ULL and Tulane. "They've all got a lot going on," she added. ( Photo: Runnels National Merit Finalists, from left, Anna Kadi, Daniel Mayeaux, Kayla Evans, and Emma Tooraen.)
Can We Build a Waterproof Roof? Yes, We Can!
( Above photo: Putting their waterproof roofs to the ultimate test are, from left, Eyden Castaneda, Karam Sheikha, Jimbo Sandefur, and Nicholas Harper.)
Students in Candice Ortlieb's 3rd-grade science classes launched their studies of weather and climate with an exciting STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) project this week. They took on an authentic engineering challenge by designing and constructing roofs to keep small-scale cardboard houses from getting wet.

They "built" the houses by taping cardboard pieces together to form a 3" x 3" cube, explained Mrs. Ortlieb. Their roofing materials were limited to fabric scraps, 100 aluminum foil squares, 100 straws, 100 craft sticks, several rolls of tape, string, plastic and foam cups and scraps, rope, rubber bands, and one Sunday newspaper.

The project yielded plenty of fun and several successful designs, including one engineered by Jimbo Sandefur. "Jimbo constructed a roof using small plastic cups," said Mrs. Ortlieb. "He made a hole in the side of each cup using a hole punch into which he inserted a straw to drain the water away." Another success came from Nathan D'Gerolamo, who used scraps of foam to make an umbrella inspired canopy roof. "It worked so well," said Mrs. Ortlieb, "that it even kept the house's decorative 'granny curtains' dry." ( Photo: Nicholas D'Geraloma finds that rain on the roof is no challenge for his design.)
Freshman Places at Regional Shakespeare Competition at Tulane in New Orleans

Runnels freshman Emily Schacht placed third in the New Orleans regional round of the 2019 English-Speaking Union’s (ESU) National Shakespeare Competition held at Tulane Feb. 10.

Competing against top winners from nine other Baton Rouge and New Orleans area high schools, Emily performed a monologue from Shakespeare’s King Lear and a sonnet. For her third-place win, she received a certificate of accomplishment and a book on Shakespeare.

Emily, who is active in the drama department at Runnels and other theater programs around town, is in rehearsal for CYT's Mulan, Jr.  coming to the LSU Shaver Theater Feb. 28-Mar. 3. She is the understudy for Mulan and also portrays Zhang, the Strength Ancestor. ( Photo: Emily Schacht.)
Make a Difference by Donating Online to Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's "Pasta for Pennies" Fundraiser

Runnels Elementary is helping the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) cure blood cancers by collecting donations for "Pasta for Pennies" through Feb. 22.

With the final days of the campaign just around the corner, please consider making an online donation if you haven't gotten around to it yet. "Pasta for Pennies" sponsor Renee' Miller reports that in our friendly competition, three lunch classes have raised $150 each for the charity and will be treated to an ice cream party.

Thanks to LLS funded research and the fundraising efforts of schools like Runnels, survival rates for some blood cancer patients have doubled, tripled, and even quadrupled. Any amount you can contribute will make a difference. TO DONATE ONLINE, CLICK HERE.
Making Hearts Happy on Valentine's Day

All over campus, love was in the air this week as we celebrated Valentine's Day in traditional and creative ways.

Members of the Student Ambassadors Club "covered" the junior and senior high campus with colorful paper and foam conversation hearts bearing uplifting and kind-hearted messages. At lunchtime on Thursday, they also passed out stickers and candy.

In keeping with tradition, the cheer squad offered carnations for sale, which they delivered to recipients on Valentine's Day. The Sr. Beta Club took orders for Valagrams, which were delivered to classrooms by members imaginatively dressed as winged "cupids." Proceeds from Valagram sales will go to the American Cancer Society. ( Photo: Cheerleaders Reide Walker, Ava McCann, and Emma Felton with a special delivery on Valentine's Day. See more photos in Weekly Album. )
Spring ACT Prep Workshops Coming up at Runnels

Runnels is offering a series of faculty-led after-school workshops in March to help high school students prepare for the April 13 ACT Exam. The non-refundable fee for each workshop is $15 to be billed to Smart Tuition. Students can also sign up for a full-length diagnostic test to be administered free of charge at Runnels on Feb. 23 and scored by The Princeton Review . Space is limited .

Important dates: Feb. 6-20 - Register for free diagnostic test. / Feb. 23 - Diagnostic test administered at Runnels. / Feb. 6 - Mar. 1 - Register for after-school workshops. / Mar. 12 - English and Reading Workshop, Instructor: Wendy Herumin, Princeton certified facilitator. / Mar. 14 - Math Workshop, Instructor: Amy Guillory, Runnels faculty, Physics, Math 6-12 certified educator. / Mar. 19 - Science Workshop, Instructor: Amy Guillory.

Runnels Artwork Inspires Garden Club Tablescapes

Original art created by Runnels students will set the tone for table settings at the Baton Rouge Garden Club's annual Tablescapes Flower Show for the second year running. The show will be held Feb. 16-17 from 1:00 - 4:00 p.m. at the Botanic Garden at Independence Park. Winners will be announced Feb. 16. Admission is $5.00 per person.

Congratulations to "tablescape" artists Birdie Ward, K; Bryce Ritter and Evan Lee, 2A; Lila Brumfield, 4A; Bryant Aucoin, 5B; Chloe Hall and Ashlynn Harper, 6C; Brynn Myles, Ava McCann, Gavin Oram, Alyssa Oubre, Hope Oubre, Wilks Pittman, Megan Shaneyfelt, and Megan Shaneyfelt, grade 7; Sadie Alello, Ella Brigman, Katie Brigman, Chelsea Holden, and Phoebe Koontz, grade 8; Jensen Holliday, grade 9; and Kate Oehrle and Brooke Sandefur, grade 10. ( File photo from last year's Tablescapes Flower Show. Art by Hudson Hillman.)
A Song They'll Remember

Algebra teacher Missy Day has a unique way of helping her students learn the quadratic equation. As she plays "Pop Goes the Weasel" on the accordion, her students use their best singing voices to recite the quadratic formula: "X equals negative b plus or minus the square root of b squared minus 4ac over 2a." The catchy tune helps students remember the complex formula.
Kudos and Notable Events ...
Patriotic Essay Honorable Mention ... Ali Guerin, grade 8, was awarded a special certificate as a top ten finisher in this year's Bishop Stanley J. Ott Assembly Knights of Columbus "Patriotic Essay Contest." The competition was open to 7th and 8th graders. Ali's essay was submitted by her English teacher at Runnels, Kylie Harbin. ( Photo: Ali Guerin)

On Exhibit at Firehouse Gallery ... The artwork of alumni Jonathan Mayers ('02) and Lauren DeWitt ('10) and Runnels art teacher and alum Sydney McGraw ('10) is on exhibit at the Arts Council of Baton Rouge's Firehouse Gallery this month in a show titled Stabbed in the Art. The reception is tonight at the gallery from 6:00-8:00 p.m.

Alum in Ireland ... Griffin Gowdy ('15), now a BFA candidate at LSU, was in Ireland last summer assisting with an installation and performance piece called Swimming to Inishkeel. The work, which was assembled and conducted in Ireland and later exhibited at LSU, is a multi-media, sculptural and performance piece. The project and Griffin's contributions to it are the subject of a recent article featured on LSU's College of Art and Design website. CLICK HERE to catch up with Griffin.
Sweet Stuff in Elementary Classes ... Valentine's Day and the kind gestures that attend it were invited into our classrooms with several sweet activities this week. In all grades, students had the opportunity to participate in a valentine exchange using valentine mail bags they had decorated themselves. In Julie Stevenson's 1st grade reading classes, students had fun with "Guess Who?" secret valentines. Each child printed a clue about themselves on a valentine, then another student was asked to figure out from the clue who that student was. In Burgundy Brumfield's 4th and 5th grade art classes, students made valentine themed monoprints using gelli prints, which allow the artist to create just one unique, singular print each time. With most printing techniques, you get multiple copies.
( Photo: Alaina White, 4A, makes a heart-shaped monoprint in Mrs. Brumfield's class. )
Sneauxball Catapult Challenge ... In Julie Fink's 6th grade science classes, students extended their knowledge about Newton's 3 Laws of Motion and various forms of energy recently by building catapults from Popsicle sticks and rubber bands and using them to launch marshmallows (the sneauxballs). The marshmallow when hurled into the air by the arm of the catapult will have both kinetic and potential energy in flight. As it rises, some of its kinetic energy will be converted into potential energy. And as it falls, its potential energy will be converted to kinetic energy. The students had great fun seeing how far and with what degree of accuracy they were able to fling the "sneauxballs." ( Ashlynn Harper, Taylor Valentine, and Sadie Miller, grade 6, follow the trajectory of the marshmallow launched by their catapult. It went a little high. )
We Sincerely Thank...
Muchas Gracias ... Thank you, PAR, for the fantastic Teacher Appreciation "Mexican Fiesta" Luncheon on the main campus Wednesday. It was superb! Special thank yous go to PAR President Blake Stevenson , Teacher Appreciation Chairs Shasta Felton (elementary) and Brooke Yura (Jr./Sr. High) and parent volunteers Sam Coates, Wendy Dolan, Andi Holliday, Nicole Latiolais, Jean Martinez, Eunice McCarney, Katrina Ray, Jamie Simpson, Colleen Spillane, Rachel Stewart, Jessica Tregre , and Rebecca Todaro . We also send shout-outs to the NHS for manning the dessert and beverage stations and P.E. classes for set up and clean up. ( Photo: Teacher Appreciation volunteers, from left, Blake Stevenson, Jamie Simpson, Rachel Stewart, Eunice McCarney, Rebecca Todaro, Jessica Tregre, Brooke Yura, Shasta Felton, and Wendy Dolan. )

A Gift of Music ... The Advanced String Orchestra under the direction of Dan and Jennifer Cassin performed a concert for the February Senior Adult Program and Lunch at the First United Methodist Church in downtown Baton Rouge on Wednesday. They played the Pachelbel Canon, Whirligig Cancion, which is a slow movement from a suite commissioned for the Runnels String Orchestra by Christopher Lowry, Concerto Grosso, Ashokan Farewell and Celebration March. The performance was extremely well received and the musicians were invited to join the seniors for a delightful lunch. ( Photos in Weekly Album)

Senior Class Valentine's Day Feast ... Members of the Class of 2019 were treated to an Italian themed lunch on Thursday in the gym. Many thanks to senior parents Rachel Evans, Jean Griffin, Lisa Kadi, Allynn Kennedy, Christine Pousson, Michelle Tate, and Wendy Worsham for hosting the event. ( Photos in Weekly Album)
( Be Our Guest! - The curtain rises on our fabulous production of Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" tonight at 7:00 p.m. If you can't catch the show tonight, be sure to see it Saturday, Feb. 16 at 2 p.m. or 7 p.m. or Sunday, Feb. 17 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 for students and $12 for adults in advance and $15 for all at the door. Online ticket sales end 12 hours before each show. Red roses will be available for purchase during intermission and after performances.) Click here for tickets.
In this week's photo album: Strings Performance at First United Methodist Church, 2nd Grade Social Studies, 3rd Grade Science (Waterproof Roofs), 3rd Graders Try Out String Instruments and Harps, Catapults in 6th Grade Science Class, Mardi Gras Marching Band Practice, 9th Grade Performs Scenes from Romeo and Juliet, 5th Grade Balances, Library Google Doodles, Valentine's Day Festivities, and Candids
Athletic Corner

Congratulations to freshman Dawson Latona for being the first to cross the finish line along with District Attorney Hillar Moore in the Susan G. Komen Louisiana Race for the Cure on Feb. 9. This was their second year in a row to win first place. They finished with a time of 17:42.

Dawson is a member of the Cross Country and Indoor Track & Field teams.

(Photo: Freshman Dawson Latona and District Attorney Hillar Moore are all smiles following the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure held in downtown Baton Rouge on Feb. 9. Photo by the Office of the District Attorney.)


The Indoor Track and Field State Championship will be held Saturday, Feb.16 at the LSU Maddox Field House. Competing for the Raiders are junior Annie Fink in the 1600m and 800m, senior Micah Roper in the 3200m and Relay Team members Micah Roper, Ryan Roper, Blaiklee Guillot and Sydney Worsham in the 4x800m.

Coach Julie Fink said, “We need Raider Nation support so come out and cheer our state meet qualifiers.” Race times are at 2:35 p.m. for the 1600m, 3:56 p.m. for the 800m, 4:34 p.m. for the 4x800m and 5:54 p.m. for the 3200m.

Last weekend, the Raiders lost to Crescent City in the district championship game. After a tightly contested first half, Crescent City pulled away in the second half. The Raiders bounced back against Springfield and French Settlement. Runnels defeated Springfield 74-56. Cade Tate scored 26 points and accumulated over 2000 points for his career. Ben Holliday had 21 points including 4 straight three-pointers in the third quarter. Collin Bueche added 10 points and 6 rebounds. On Tuesday night, the Raiders scored another win against French Settlement, 88-68. Four of the players scored in double figures. Cade Tate had 30 points and 9 assists. Ben Stafford had 14 points along with 6 rebounds. Griffin Kennedy had 12 points and 8 rebounds, and Ben Holliday added 10 points. The Raiders will finish the regular season Friday night at home against Albany. Playoffs start the next week, and Runnels is projected to be the 3rd seed.

Wednesday evening, the 8th grade Raiders beat Sacred Heart 44-32, with Alan Lam scoring 10 points and Alex Lam adding 8. The 7th grade crushed Sacred Heart 32-18, with Rossie Harrison scoring 18 points. In a close game, the 6th graders fell to Sacred Heart 32-26, with Preston Treadway scoring 8 points and Noah Hebert adding 6.

On Feb.9, the junior high basketball teams hit the trifecta. The Runnels 8th grade took on a challenging team from Dunham, winning 42-30. Alex Lam and Charlie Tucker each scored 10 points. The 7th grade Raiders beat Episcopal 36-24 with Rossie Harrison scoring 12 points and Cooper Coates adding 10. The 6th grade defeated Victory Academy 18-14, with Wyatt Horridge scoring 8 points.

Varsity Volleyball Coach Jean Martinez and Junior High Volleyball Coach Zoe Craig will be holding a Mardi Gras Mambo Volleyball Camp scheduled for March 6 - 8 from 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m. The camp is open to all Runnels students in grades 5-8. Camp fees are $75. Registration info will be coming soon.

The Raider bowling team is currently ranked third in the district. On Monday, the team defeated Istrouma at All Star Lanes. Junior Mitchell Egger was the high scorer with 204, while Janie Schlotterer set a personal best of 123. 

The boys and girls varsity tennis teams will have their first match of 2019 on Monday, Feb. 18 at 3:30 p.m. at Forest Park. Come out and cheer on the Raider tennis teams.
On Saturday
Varsity Baseball Jamboree – 11:00 a.m. at Raider Park
Indoor State Track & Field Championship - LSU Maddox Field House. Race times: 2:35 p.m. - 1600m, 3:56 p.m. - 800m, 4:34 p.m. - 4x800m, 5:54 p.m. - 3200m

Email game and fan photos to  n.latiolais@runnels.org . Please include the event and the name of the students pictured .  
Friendly Reminders
Feb. 15 - 17 / Disney's Beauty and the Beast / Gladys Hague Runnels Theatre, Friday, Feb. 15 at 7:00 p.m.; Saturday, Feb. 16 at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.; and Sunday, Feb. 17 at 2:00 p.m. Tickets: $10 for students, $12 for adults in advance and $15 for all at the door. (Online ticket sales close 12 hours before each performance.) Click here to purchase tickets .

Feb. 20 - 22 / Jr. Beta State Convention / Cajundome in Lafayette

Feb. 22 / Elementary Drama Performances / The Boy Who Cried Wolf , Grades 4-6, 9:20 a.m. and 10:10 a.m.; Wing It! , 2A, 1:40 p.m., 1B, 2:20 p.m.

Feb. 22 / "Pasta for Patients" Fundraiser Ends / Click here to donate online.

Feb. 23 / Louisiana High School District Rally / Southeastern University

Feb. 24 / PAR Mother & Son Dance / Catalano Gym, 2 p.m. - 4 p.m. Click here for tickets.

Feb. 27 / Jr. High Drama Performance / The American Revolution in 40 Minutes or Less, Gladys Hague Runnels Theatre, 2:10 p.m.

Feb. 27 / Band Solo & Ensemble Festival

Feb. 28 / Strings Solo & Ensemble Festival

Feb. 28. / Kindergarten Taste of Louisiana , Kindergarten Classrooms, 10:30 a.m.

March 1. / Elementary Mardi Gras Celebration / Gladys Hague Runnels Theatre, 1:35 p.m.

March 2 - March 10 / Mardi Gras School Holiday

Through Mar. 6 / Register for After-School ACT Prep Workshops at Runnels / Click here to register .

March 11 / School Resumes