November 10, 2017
Your Dollar Did This!  

Programs like Oyster Education Days, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation's marine science trips, PEAC experiences with Christchurch School, and runoff programs with the Friends of the Rappahannock develop a deep working understanding of the issues that confront the Chesapeake Bay.

Chesapeake Academy students will be effective stewards that can advocate responsibly to sustain our community's marine resources.  The Bell Tower Annual Giving Fund ensures the school is prepared to seize these opportunities as they arise.  Thank you for your gift!

" If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share."   
W. Clement Stone

Class Acts...
What's Happening on the Halls?
The Head's Heads Up 

As a school community, w e spend a lot of time thinking about the various answers to the question, "Why Chesapeake Academy?".  This reflection is important because of the feedback it gathers as we continually strive to offer an excellent preparation for our students, but it also serves to highlight our shared values and what makes our community so special.  Students have written responses on "Why Chesapeake?",  the VAIS visiting team asked Board members and parents the question, and I asked teachers to write down small snapshots from daily life that illustrate the spirit and community of Chesapeake Academy.

The answers to "Why Chesapeake Academy?" seem to fall broadly into three main categories:  the educational experience; the relationships among students, staff, and parents; and the role Chesapeake Academy plays in developing character and community leaders.  

Today, I'd like to share some of the thoughts gathered about the educational experience by students.  Student enthusiasm for various classes, activities, and learning challenges is evident in their writing.  While we might expect that many students say they love PE, recess, art, and music (and they do!), almost all of them also created lists of academic successes and experiences.  Just within the second and third grade responses, I found these lovely quotes:

"I love reading and writing poetry."
"My teacher knows how to help me learn."
"I don't have to sit at a desk for the whole day."
"My teacher reads funny books, and I am learning to read chapter books."
"Math lab is my favorite time of the week."
"I like to explore in science."
"Writing is fun!"
"I can work with other people or by myself when I need to."
"We make things in science to solve problems."
"I like playing games in Spanish."
"Math is the thing I like the best."

In turn, faculty members gave examples of moments when they saw the "Why Chesapeake?" in action.  They wrote of their joy in student success and of a culture of academic exploration that the students embraced.  From "At the beginning of the year, my students groaned when we had a writing assignment, but now they cheer in anticipation if we are going to write!" to "My students love to make recommendations to others about books they should read!"  It's clear that the academic program engages and challenges students.  

Students work collaboratively and independently, each getting what he or she needs for continued academic growth. Our students feel excited about school, and eager to take on new challenges--that is a compelling answer to the question, "Why Chesapeake Academy?".

Do you have your 
Parent Partnership Conferences scheduled?  
These begin on Monday! A strong parent/teacher partnership is a POWER TOOL in your child's education!
Don't miss out!  
Parent Convenience Drives Continuous Enrollment Process!

Our new process for reenrollment will significantly streamline and simplify the steps to ensure that your child has a place at Chesapeake Academy for 2018-2019.  Last year, 95% of Chesapeake Academy students reenrolled, and with increasing interest in admission to Chesapeake Academy, we want to make it easy for our current families.

In this reenrollment cycle beginning in January 2018, we will ask you to sign an electronic Continuous Enrollment Contract through RenWeb, which will remain in force for the duration of your child's enrollment.   As a component part of this process, we are using FACTS, an online financial assistance and tuition management system.

In January, all Chesapeake Academy families whose children are eligible to return for the 2018-2019 school year will receive an email with the following information:
  • details about conditions for continued enrollment, including deadlines 
  • details about tuition amounts for 2018-2019
  • information about financial assistance applications
  • a description of billing options for tuition 
  • instructions for opting out of reenrollment

    Frequently Asked Questions About Continuous Enrollment
    Why Continuous Enrollment?
    Continuous enrollment streamlines the reenrollment process for families and allows the school to most effectively plan for enrollment numbers for new admission prospects.  More and more independent schools are using continuous enrollment successfully and families report favorable experiences with this "once and for all" enrollment process.
    What is the Continuous Enrollment Deposit?
    With the shift to Continuous Enrollment, families will no longer be asked to make a 10% deposit to secure a spot.  Instead, families will simply make a $500 deposit using the FACTS system, which is the new online tuition management service.  It is our hope that this shift will provide more financial flexibility for our families, while still allowing the school to plan for staffing, students, and program.

    What is FACTS?
    FACTS is an online financial assistance and tuition management software that many independent schools use.  It works seamlessly with RenWeb and will be integrated with your RenWeb profile.  Through FACTS, you can file for financial assistance and manage your tuition payment plans with credit card or ACH. 
    There is a $45 fee for FACTS for those requesting to use a payment plan, and this is significantly less than the payment plan fees we've collected in the past.   Previously, Chesapeake Academy used SSS (School and Student Services) for financial assistance consideration. FACTS replaces that software program and we pass the savings on to you.

    What do I have to do to reenroll in January 2018 for next September?
    After reviewing the tuition as set by the Board of Trustees in January, simply respond to the Continuous Enrollment email, which will direct you to the Continuous Enrollment Contract if you are ready to reenroll.  You will review current profile information and make a $500 deposit through the FACTS tuition management system within RenWeb.  That is all!  If you are paying in full on  July 1, there is no fee for using the FACTS system.  If you would like to use the 2 payment plan or the 10 payment plan options, you will pay $45 through FACTS to set up the payment plans.  This is significantly less than payment plan fees we've collected in the past.

    What if I am seeking consideration for financial assistance for the 2018-2019 school year?
    When you receive the Continuous Enrollment email, follow the link to FACTS, where you can complete your financial assistance application through the system with a non-refundable $100 fee.  You will not be asked to complete the Continuous Enrollment Contract until the financial aid process is completed.  Previously, Chesapeake Academy issued a letter of intent to those seeking financial assistance consideration.  To streamline the process, once you pay the financial assistance application fee, we assume it is your intent to reenroll.  Financial assistance decisions will be given at the end of March.  At that point, parents will accept the decision and complete the Continuous Enrollment Contract, or communicate that they wish to opt out. 

    What documents do I need if I'm filing for financial assistance consideration? 
    You will need to complete the FACTS questionnaire and submit 2017 1040 (personal and business, if applicable) and 2017 W-2.  Chesapeake Academy is no longer requiring the CAFAA.  

    What if I am unable to commit by the reenrollment deadline?  
    If you are uncertain about your plans for 2018-2019, you may select to opt out of the Continuous Enrollment process by following the steps in the email to notify the school.  

    What happens if I opt out of Continuous Enrollment?
    If you follow the steps to opt out of Continuous Enrollment by the deadline, there is no financial penalty.  However, you give up your child's spot in the class.  If your plans change and you wish to have your child return to Chesapeake Academy, you will need to go through the application process.  Some of our classes are full, and we cannot guarantee readmission.
    What will reenrollment look like after 2018-2019?
    Once all of our families have completed this initial Continuous Enrollment process, the typical reenrollment season will consist of an email reminder from the Admission Office about the updated tuition amounts, the deposit, financial assistance consideration, and the opt out option.  There is no additional paperwork to complete and return.

    What are the deadlines I need to know?
    The Continuous Enrollment Contract email will be issued on  January 22, 2018.
    The deadline for responding to the Continuous Enrollment Contract is  February 5, 2018. (This is the deadline by which you need to complete the contract, begin the process of financial assistance, or let us know you are opting out).  The deadline for submission of all financial documents for those seeking consideration for financial assistance is  March 16, 2018.

    What if I have more questions?
    Contact Hilary Scott, Director of Admission, at or at  804-438-5575.

First grade has been talking about the measurement of time--using both clocks and calendars. This set the stage for learning the concepts of past...present...and future.  Students brought in pictures from their own lives and are putting them onto personal timelines to show the history of their own lives to practice this new skill.

Cargo Plane Challenge in Second Grade!
While the class focuses on measurement, second graders choose a design and folded paper planes. After identifying and counting different coins, second graders attached and balanced the money to their planes (assessing the value of their cargo) to achieve an optimal flight distance. The challenge was to create the plane that carried the most cargo the farthest distance (measuring). Boy, did they have fun with this!

A Hearty Welcome to Mason Walker!

Chesapeake Academy is delighted to welcome new student, Mason Walker, to fifth grade!

Mason, son of Brendan and Amber Walker, joined CA on Monday, November 6.   If you are a seasoned Osprey, please be sure to introduce yourself to Mason and his family...and help us make this new family feel adjusted, included, and part of the Chesapeake family!

Hot Website Tip for Readers
(Thanks to Mrs. Manetz, second grade) will use your favorite authors to suggest others that are stylistically comparable! 

You will spend a happy hour playing with this site!  And you can use it with your students to help them expand their favorites!  
Children's Author David Lopez Visits CA!

Author David Lopez visited campus on  Wednesday, November 8  to regale students in kindergarten through fifth grades with tales from his  Maddie's Magic Marker s eries. "A fabulous storyteller, Lopez ignited student interest in both reading and writing," explained Molly Vanderpool.  "He explained to the students all the ways he had been afraid to write before he began...and then he advised them to just start writing.  You never know what could happen," added Martha Rogers.  In addition, he conducted a writer's workshop session for sixth through eighth graders to explore how to construct and complete novel, characterization, historical research, and more.  

Oyster Festival Education Day Highlights Regional History and Marine Science

Presenters from Middlesex Elementary, Chesapeake Bay Governor's School, Friends of the Rappahannock, Virginia Gamefish Tagging, Fairfield Foundation, Christchurch School, and the Yorktown Watermen's Museum explored maritime history, native American and colonial history, oysters, watershed science, bay critters and water quality for local elementary and middle school students. Chesapeake Academy third, fourth, and fifth graders attended with their teachers.  America's Privateer Lynx, a tall ship replica, and The Claude Somers , a Chesapeake Bay skipjack from the Reedville Fishermen's Museum were also featured exhibits this year.

"My students loved visiting The Claude Somers where they not only got a sense of this historic work vessel but they also learned about oyster life cycles and their importance to efforts to restore the health of the Chesapeake Bay," explains Martha Rogers.

Kaitlin Benson chuckles, "My students loved getting their hands on marine creatures, whispering to snails and touching eels...they had a ball with an angry fish (Could this have been a sugartoad?). This sort of experience really helps kids contextualize all we teach about marine ecology."

Katie Parker comments, "The archeologists from Fredericksburg really got my kids excited! Their exhibit was all about digging for unique finds and figuring out what each artifact reveals about the area. I love how we always learn something new at these Education Days!"

Autobiographies Inspire Brain Buckets 

Digging deeper is the name of the game in third grade. Students explore passions and interests to discover more and more effective ways to research and present their passions fueling more and more inquiry! What a wonderful whirlpool! Brain buckets house research materials and growing projects and foster independence and organizational skills as students learn to manage their own projects. Autobiographies provided the launch point for this series of discoveries in second grade, inspiring students to create their own!  Students  worked through the writing process brainstorming, drafting, editing, rewriting, and finally "publishing" their books. What would you put into your own autobiography?
Pucker Up for Lemonade Wars!

Fourth grade students have started to read  The Lemonade Wars  by Jacqueline Davies. This book is full of economic terms and lessons that our budding entrepreneurs need as they begin to build their businesses for VCPE's Mini Economies Fair. They are also participating in running a pretend lemonade stand business. Students will create a business plan and advertisements, keep track of sales/profits/loss, and manage their inventory to ensure they have proper supplies for their customer demands. 
Blair Kenyon Answers...."Why Chesapeake?" 

I wouldn't say that we chose CA, as much as CA chose us. 

Our older son, Oliver, had just finished third grade at Lancaster, and we had talked to a few people about CA, but we were not at all sure that we would be able to afford it. In our discussions with Hilary Scott and Richard Abbott, we were convinced to go through the application and interview process, and see how things played out.

I think that there is a stigma tied to independent schools that they try to create "cookie cutter" kids, I have found that the opposite is true with regards to CA. Both of our boys have been afforded the opportunity to blossom as individual, and wildly distinct, personalities. I cannot stress how important that has been to our family.  

Blair Kenyon

"Make it a habit to tell people thank you. To express your appreciation, sincerely and without the expectation of anything in return. Truly appreciate those around you, and you'll soon find many others around you. Truly appreciate life, and you'll find that you have more of it." 
Ralph Marston

Curious about Beautycounter Skin Care Products? Now is the Time to Find Out!

Beautycounter creates effective makeup and personal care products that are safe, non-toxic, and free of the harmful ingredients found in most beauty products. Come see Becca Sterrett and Charlotte Charlton, Beautycounter representatives, here at Chesapeake Academy to shop, socialize, learn more about safer beauty--and support our school! 

There will be Beautycounter fundraising  events on Wednesday, November 15 and  Thursday, November 16  from 4 p.m. to  6 p.m. in the library. 

These generous ladies intend to donate a percentage of their sales to Chesapeake Academy!  They will donate:
10% if total sales are < $1500
15% if total sales are > $1500 and < $3000
20% if total sales are > $3000

You can reach these ladies at  and
if you have questions.  What a nice way to support the school!

Cross Curricular Unit on Fifth Grade Economics

Davenport & Company Financial Advisor Brian Manetz shared his knowledge of stocks with Chesapeake Academy fifth graders as they begin a cross curricular unit that fits in with the school's economics thread. Students read the novel, Lawn Boy by Gary Paulsen, a hilarious story about a young entrepreneur who strikes it rich in the stock market and used this background along with the insights obtained from Mr. Mantez to invest $1,000,000 in a two-week long mock stock market exploring four stocks of their choosing and watching gains and losses! The economics thread in the CA curriculum at the fifth grade level features classroom economies, guest speakers, mathematics and literature connections, as well as market experiences. Chesapeake Academy third through fifth graders are also preparing to participate in the Virginia Council on Economic Education's Market Days at Virginia Commonwealth University.

"This cross-curricular unit was a fun way for my students to learn the basic vocabulary for the stock market and to begin to tackle market research on stock histories.  I was  excited to see how a piece of literature inspired entrepreneurship and offered students an insight into the possibilities and risks of the stock market!  This is a great way to get our class ready to participate in the VCPE mini economies!" Lucas Edwards agrees, "Learning more about the stock market made me want to help my dad more at his new job.  Now, I want to earn more money!"

The sixth graders will be opening the YMCA Festival Of the Trees with their presentation of "Santa on Strike."  The play will be held  Thursday, November 30 at 6:30 p.m. at the YMCA.  

Student Council Leads The Fun!
Thanks to all the folks who came out to enjoy Student Council's  recent Capture the Flag event!  A good time was had by all!

Believe it or is time to think about Clash of the Coins!  This event begins promptly after Thanksgiving, and we hope to make a difference for a family during the holidays!  Start stockpiling those coins!  The theme will be Crazy Christmas!

We will also be collecting warm, gently used coats, hats, or gloves for our Giving Tree that will go to children in our community who have need of them.

"Let us rise up and be thankful,
for if we didn't learn a lot today,
at least we learned a little,
and if we didn't learn a little,
at least we didn't get sick,
and if we got sick, at least we didn't die;
so, let us all be thankful."

Geography Illuminates Interactions! 

In order to begin to unravel the mysteries of human settlement patterns and their relationship to global cooperation or conflict, Chesapeake Academy sixth grade Geography students tracked Ferdinand Magellan's attempt to circumnavigate the world, noting along the way, the locations of various resources, why resources are located there, and what barriers exist to the use of these resources. These barriers ranged from  incomplete knowledge and accurate maps, the environment, scarcity of vital resources, misunderstandings between different cultures, etc.

In order to bring the experience closer to home, students headed out to the Blue Ridge Mountains to consider settlement decisions in a setting where they might survey a broad spectrum of landforms and resources readily. Students hiked up Humpback Rock and along a portion of the Appalachian trail, noting some of the difficulties faced, both physically and in terms of navigation.

Visiting a recreated 1890s farm revealed how early Virginians used limited resources to survive in an isolated environment. Students took time to imagine the perspective and decisions of early settlers by composing a letter to a friend back east in the 1890s about the challenges they faced and how they used their resources wisely to address those challenges.

As preparation for the field study, students created 3-D topographic maps, which Magellan did not have, to develop a sense of how to use maps to see resources.  The class discussed how human settlements impact environmental resources and went on to learn about the creation of the National Park system. Watching a short documentary on the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone pointed out the delicate balance of ecosystems and resources.

Looking ahead, Geography students will use this developing understanding of the interaction between resources and relationships to study the geography and culture of the Middle East.

Chesapeake Bank Sponsors Junior Achievement Course for Eighth Grade Students

Thanks to Chesapeake Bank, eighth graders are growing their financial literacy skills in a weekly activity period. Junior Achievement's programs foster work-readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills, and use experiential learning to inspire students to dream big and reach their potential. Students who participate in Junior Achievement programs demonstrate a significant understanding of economics and business concepts. The Junior Achievement programs help prepare young people for the real world by showing them how to generate wealth and effectively manage it, how to create jobs which make their communities more robust, and how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to the workplace. Students put these lessons into action and learn the value of contributing to their communities.
Gamification Goes On the Road!

Engaging students in a quest for mastery? Who doesn't see the beauty in that?  On November 6, Hillary May Smith presented her Gamification of PreAlgebra to the Virginia Association of Independent Schools Professional Conference in Richmond, Virginia. In the gamification of Pre-Algebra, students act as agents in the Extraterrestrial Intelligence Team (EIT), an elite team of mathematicians, scientists, and strategists managing the alien invasion. The game often pulls in literature as a basis for the narrative--H. G. Wells'  War of the Worlds and the Animorphs series by K. A. Applegate, for instance.

Gamification applies some of the principles of gaming to class structure and content. In Pre-Algebra, the biggest advantages of gamification are motivation and mastery. Smith explains, "In the structure of our Pre-Algebra classroom, there is no penalty for the learning process. You will either earn all of the points at that step or you will continue to work on it until you master it."

This setup also ensures that students are continuously working toward mastery. Just as a video game continually spits you back to the same spot until you "beat the boss," the "gamified" course does not let you move on until you have mastered the material. "As gatekeeper to moving from one step to the next, I have the opportunity to meet with students every single day. I must sit with each student to evaluate if he or she is ready to move on to the next task; that gives me an incredible amount of contact time with each learner individually," Smith explains.

The Pre-Algebra class content is built into a series of quests. These quests are composed of multi-modal tasks to explore Pre-Algebra concepts. One task might be to create an Educreations video explaining how the identity property of multiplication applies to equivalent fractions; another might be to play Coordinate Plane Battleship with a peer; yet another might be to master a series of problems using order of operations. Some of the tasks involve participating in a teacher-directed lesson (direct instruction still matters in the classroom). The core content, practice, and projects are Main Quests (quests that must be completed) while quantitative reasoning, lateral thinking, coding, etc. are built into Side Quests (quests where students have some measure of choice in which ones to tackle).

Along the way, as students complete quests, they earn points. The points correspond to levels, which correspond with traditional grades. In order to earn an A or a B, students must complete the Main Quests for that marking period and a certain number of side quests. In order to reach the elusive Level 10 (EIT Chief), students will need to complete all of the main quests and nearly all of the side quests for that marking period. Students track their points and are able to use their direct control over their grade progress by managing their time, need for extra help, etc: So students really do control their own grades and this motivates their learning.

Athletic Director, Ian H. York
Coach's Corner

The fall athletics season was filled with growth, character, and many successes.  All of the players grew in their ability to contribute to a 
team and in their playing skills. Our morning faculty meetings began regularly this season with tales of hard work, digging deep, and sometimes regrouping. There is much to celebrate in a season well-played.

Athletics Awards were given in a special assembly on November 7. Congratulations to all Osprey athletes!

Most Valuable Players: Adair and Elizabeth Stanley
Coach's Award: Calista Nelson
Most Improved Player:  Anna Carey

Varsity Soccer
Most Valuable Player: Jack Porter
Coach's Award: Stewart Hollingsworth
Most Improved Player: Landon Reihs

Junior Varsity Soccer
Coach's Award: Nathan Meberg
Most Improved Player: Joey Porter

Golf Team
The golf team as a whole earned accolades, improving steadily, supporting one another and competing with character.

"Life is an echo. What you send out, comes back. What you sow, you reap. What you give, you get. What you see in others, exists in you. Remember, life is an echo. It always gets back to you. So give goodness."  Unknown

CAPPA Countdown!

CAPPA is busy and excited to be supporting and sponsoring several upcoming events!

Tuesday, November 21 is a school-wide pre-Thanksgiving Feast that will make Charlie Brown jealous!  Hamburgers, hotdogs, and sweet potato fries along with dessert are all on the menu. No popcorn and jelly beans here!

Thursday, December 7, CAPPA will be serving cookies and cocoa to pre-kindergarten 3&4 through third grade students after the PALS program!  What a treat!

Friday, December 8 is the Kilmarnock Lighted Christmas Parade, and we are looking for some creative, energetic parents to help build a Christmas Float to enter.  Rob Pittmand and Christina Hubbard have agreed to organize this project!  Please contact Shelley Ritter at to volunteer. This is a wonderful community event, and CA has a history of entering wonderful floats.

Friday, December 15 is our school's holiday program with light refreshments. The call will go out for tasty contributions.  Please be on the look out in your in-boxes for more information.

"When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself."

THE Attitude is Gratitude

  • Third, fourth and fifth graders would like to thank all the donors to their mini-economies store.
  • Thanks to fifth graders who collect the school's recycling so that it can be taken to the center.
  • Thanks to Chesapeake Bank for sponsoring Junior Achievement for our eighth graders.
  • Thanks to Hillary Smith for representing CA so well at the VAIS Professional Day Conference!
  • Thanks to CAPPA for all of the many, many ways they support our school!  These folks are heroic!

"What separates privilege from entitlement is gratitude." 

Don't Miss the Dates!

11/11 SSAT at Chesapeake Academy, 8:30 a.m.
11/13 Academic Awards Assembly, 10:05 a.m.
11/13 through 11/16 Parent Partnership Conferences
11/14 Basketball Open Gym, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.
11/15 Beauty Counter Fundraiser, 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.
11/15 PALS, Virginia Repertory Theatre's Pinocchio, 9:30 a.m.
11/16 Basketball Open Gym, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.
11/16 Beauty Counter Fundraiser 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.
11/17 Middle School Advisory
11/20 Basketball Preseason Practice/Tryouts
11/21 Basketball Preseason Practice/ Tryouts
11/22 - 11/26 Thanksgiving Break
11/27 Basketball Practice Begins
11/29 Tag Day
11/29 Festival of Trees classroom projects due
11/30 "Santa on Strike," sixth graders open YMCA Festival of the Trees, 6:30 p.m.
12/5 Middle School Performance at RWC, 2:00 p.m.
12/7 PALS, Christmas with Santa, 9:30 a.m.
12/8 Kilmarnock Christmas Parade

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend."   

Chesapeake Academy | |
 Post Office Box 8   107 Steamboat Road    Irvington, VA 22480