Wednesday, July 22, 2015

A trip to Washington D.C.

Imagine the first time you took a trip someplace exciting...did it involve riding a train or figuring out the complexities of the metro? Did it have you visiting sights you'd read about in history class? 
The anticipation was building for this group of five students from the Montagnard community who were selected to attend a week-long experience in our Nation's Capital. 

From June 21st - June 25th, Mr. and Mrs. Steve Parker (Brookstone teachers) served as tour guides and chaperones to five of the students who attend their afterschool program. The trip was filled with sights to see and people to meet, including:  
Alexandria Seaport Cruise
Library of Congress Guided Tour
Congressman Adams’ office
Tour of the Capitol with congressional staff
Visit with Senator Thom Tillis
Guided tour of Supreme Court
Nighttime Tour of Monuments
Behind the scenes, before-hours tour of National Portrait Gallery
Ford’s Theatre
Natural History Museum
National Zoo 
Guided tour of National Archives
Air and Space Museum

At the end of the visit, they made a list of the places they visited and the
various activities and asked each student to rank
each item on the list in the order that they found it enjoyable. Here are
the top items:  (Numbers 3 & 4 were actually tied for third place.  6, 7, &
8 were also tied for sixth place)

1.      Nighttime tour of the monuments
2.      Behind-the-scenes, before-hours tour of the National Portrait Gallery
3.      Tour of the US Capitol led by staffer from Congressman Adams' office
4.      Pool time at the hotel.
5.      Smithsonian Natural History Museum
6.      Boat Cruise on the Potomac River
7.      Meeting with Senator Tillis
8.      National Zoo

The group also shared time in devotions at the hotel, journaling about their experiences and swimming in the pool!

It was a packed week of firsts and a collection of memories this group of students will never forget!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Kindergarten graduation

They stole the show!




From their speeches to their songs to reciting the things they've learned this year... the entire audience was full of smiles in celebrating these lives and their accomplishments. They did it...they made it to 1st grade!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Alumni Campfire Conversation

On Saturday, May 16th, Brookstone alumni welcomed graduating 8th graders into the Alumni Society!

They gathered for an honest and encouraging "campfire conversation" around topics relating to succeeding in high school and beyond. Some of the starter questions were: 

·         Best advice you can give someone younger than yourself.
·         Best advice that someone has given to me or someone I know.
·         Worst advice that someone has given to me or someone I know.
·         Common traits you see among the best students.
·         Mistakes that you see a lot of students make.
·         One thing you will look to improve after high school.
·         One thing you wish you knew before high school.

Among many, many more!

The Brookstone Alumni Society works to actively engage and equip graduates to identify and set goals, plan accordingly and implement the steps to accomplish those goals. We also celebrate those accomplishments! 

Read more about the Brookstone Alumni Society here

Spring Partner Day 2015

What a special day April 30th was!

We were so happy to see the familiar faces of our caring Partners who took time out of their busy schedules to join us for a performance and a bag lunch. Partner Day is set apart to honor Partners and the unique ways they're involved at Brookstone.


Thank you for visiting our school and for all the support you share throughout the year!

Interested in learning more about Brookstone's Partner Program? Please click here to find a description on our website. 

New P.E. Gear!

SouthLake Christian senior Emily Wakeman knows nothing of "senioritis," a common condition among high school students nearing graduation.

For the third year, Emily's nonprofit Kicks for Kids raised funds to provide new equipment to share with Brookstone students! Last week the group gave our students the equipment in P.E. class and stayed to enjoy the new basketballs, jump ropes, hula hoops and wiffle ball set. Thank you, Kicks For Kids, for all you do to encourage our students to remain active and find fun ways to exercise!

Written by Laura Townsend, Volunteer Coordinator

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

1st Grader Invited to the White House

A'ja (1st grade) has a great aunt who works for the mayor in Baltimore and, for four years, has tried to get tickets to the White House Easter Egg Roll. It finally happended! On Monday, April 6th, 2015, the First Family hosted the 137th annual event and A'ja was there along with more than 35,000 people gathered on the South Lawn to join in the celebrations. The event featured sports and fitness zones, cooking demonstrations, and Easter classics such as the egg roll and egg hunt, live music and storytelling.  

She returned to school excited as can be, and we're happy to celebrate this milestone with her. 

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Innovative garden goes "up"

Katherine Smith, A Charlotte Catholic High School Sophomore and Senior Scout from Girl Scout Troop 3112, constructed a vertical garden and raised bed for the students.

Brookstone relocated to First Baptist Church in December of 2014. First Baptist Church has generously provided the school an exceptional facility for their K-8 school, serving 132 students. Their new urban location had much less green space for the students to grow their own fruits and vegetables, which they were accustomed to before their move. Katherine heard about their lack of gardening space, and researched the concept of building a vertical garden. She assembled a team of 17 volunteers to help design and construct a 9 foot wide by 5 ½ foot tall vertical garden. The garden structure only has a depth of 2 ½ feet, which gives the students plenty of gardening space without taking up a lot of playground space. The team also installed a 4 foot by 12 foot raised bed so the students could still grow larger root vegetables, fruits, and flowers, like sweet potatoes, tomatoes, and sunflowers.

The volunteer team built the vertical garden and raised bed on February 28, 2015. Katherine Smith, along with volunteer nutritionist, Elizabeth Stamas, introduced the students to their new garden on March 11, 2015. They planted seeds and seedling vegetables including radishes, beets, kale, collards, potatoes, cabbage, and sugar snap peas. The students were given a nutritional lesson and they will get the opportunity to harvest and consume the produce that they planted in a few months. They will share their extra produce with Friendship Trays, Charlotte’s local Meals on Wheels program. The Brookstone School is part of the Friendship Garden Network, which shares their produce with community members in need.

Eighty-five percent of the students are eligible for free or reduced lunch program, so the majority of the students do not have access to fresh fruits and vegetables. However, through their previous and new school garden, they will continue to have the opportunity to grow and regularly consume their own fresh produce. Not only will the students be able to share their increased nutritional knowledge with their families, but they are learning to grow their own vegetables, which will benefit them and their families for generations to come.

Katherine hopes this Gold Award Project will inspire others to build their own gardens at home, church, schools, and community centers. Having access to fresh fruits and vegetables and gaining nutritional knowledge can positively affect peoples’ long-term health, and their daily performance in school, work, and other activities. She hopes the vertical garden concept will encourage others to grow and harvest their own fresh produce, even if they have limited gardening space.  

Thank you, Katherine!!

Summer Camp is around the corner!

Planning for our 6-week summer camp is underway!

Thank you to these churches/groups who have committed to a week of service:

June 14th Davidson United Methodist Church
June 21st First Baptist Church Charlotte
June 28th SouthLake Presbyterian Church
July 5th Matthews Orthodox Presbyterian
July 12th Uptown PCA
July 19th Reformed Theological Seminary

We're excited for all that's in store!

Alumni breakfast

On February 21st Brookstone Alumni met for a quick breakfast before the group attended The ABC's of College Planning workshop at Central Piedmont Community College. The workshop held sessions on choosing the right college, finding scholarships and financial aid, and preparing for a college career during high school. Our alumni are excited (and a little anxious) about the college process, and we are proud to encourage these students to dream big!

A date with Thereasea Elder

Earlier this year, Mrs. Thereasea C. Elder took the time to share some of her story and what inspired her to become a Brookstone supporter. Below are Michelle Tipton’s notes from that visit...

I arrived at the home of Mrs. Thereasea Elder, a dignified 87 year-old, on a cold foggy morning. She told me to come as early as I wanted because she's woken up at 5 am since World War II. As we walked into her front parlor, she mentioned that the room has been the same since 1968. I knew she was special right then. No pretense, only honesty.

When I asked her why she got involved with Brookstone, she shared memories of her first visit to the school. She saw a community of people who care so much about the children, and she witnessed teachers who invested beyond the curriculum into building relationships with the whole family. Brookstone made an impact on Thereasea years ago and has been a grateful recipient of her support ever since.

What a privilege to sit with a community leader who is leaving a legacy bigger than herself. From teen pregnancy to education, Thereasea’s efforts positively impact Charlotte in big ways, and she thanks God for it all. Before leaving, I asked how her faith has encouraged her in these roles. She closed her eyes, held one hand up toward Heaven and the other over her heart. With misty eyes, she shared her favorite verse—John 3:16: “I do believe. I do believe. For God so loved me...and you.”

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

2015 Friend and Fund Raiser

February 26th was a lovely evening! Despite the threat of winter weather, nearly 500 supporters and new friends joined us at the Hilton to hear keynote speaker, Wes Moore, and to celebrate the mission of Brookstone school. Jane and Tom Coyle and Barbara and Steady Cash served as the event's honorary co-chairs. The gifts raised in donations and pledges will go a long way in providing excellent Christian education.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Our Christmas Program

On Friday, December 19th (only three days after the students began at our new school), we hosted many parents and guests for the annual Christmas Program. Each grade prepared a song to share with the audience, and we deeply enjoyed this special time set aside to give glory and honor to our Savior.