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MILFORD – Lauralton Hall’s Environmental Club wowed the crowd with innovative outfits that turned trash into glam at its annual Eco Fashion Show. Now in its eighth year, Trash the Runway is one of the club’s many activities aimed at promoting sustainable living and good stewardship of the earth.
Models paraded the runway in dresses, gowns, pants and skirts made out of aluminum cans, pizza boxes, newspaper and an Eco Fashion Show staple – duct tape. New this year was a collaborative project with Village Vogue Boutique in Milford, incorporating vintage and "recycled" clothing into the show.
"This is a student-run activity," explained club moderator Donna DiMassa. "It’s about the girls feeling empowered to take over the management of a project and make it a success. We are grateful to Village Vogue for selecting several outfits that mixed vintage clothing with contemporary styles. We hope this will encourage other students and faculty, that recycled clothing is something you can wear every day, not just at a fashion show."
HAMDEN – Eighteen of Sacred Heart Academy’s world language students have gained national recognition for excellent performance on the 2013 National Spanish Examinations (NSE).
The students earned a total of three gold, eight silver and seven bronze medals.
WINDSOR – Students at St. Gabriel School have a vested interest in the lives of a number of salmon that are swimming in local rivers on their way to Long Island Sound.
The middle school students adopted salmon eggs in December and learned about the fish’s life cycle over the weeks until they released the young fish in March into Salmon Brook, at Granby’s Salmon Brook Park.
It was the 13th year that St. Gabriel’s participated in the Connecticut River Salmon Association’s (CRSA) Salmon-in-Schools program, assisting in the CRSA’s efforts to restore Atlantic salmon to the Connecticut River watershed.
"It’s actually very interesting and the kids love it," said science teacher Meg Rosa. She is concerned that state budget cuts might threaten the school’s participation next year, though.
"The entire project has not only been an amazing science lesson, but also a hands-on learning experience of environmental awareness and sustainability," said Ms. Rosa.
CRSA delivered 200 Atlantic salmon eggs in mid-December to St. Gabriel’s. They were housed in Ms. Rosa’s classroom, where students in grades six through eight tracked and documented the salmons’ growth from the "eyed" egg stage to the "alevin" stage, to the "fry" stage. The students also learned about the salmons’ environments.
In March, the children released close to 150 fish eggs into the brook. Ms. Rosa said it would have been more but the school had problems with the tank.
Ms. Rosa said that after being released, the Atlantic salmon spend the next two years between Salmon Brook Park’s stream and the Farmington and Connecticut Rivers, where they grow until they reach the stage at which they change from freshwater fish to saltwater fish. They then head out to Long Island and the Atlantic Ocean, and eventually return to the stream to lay eggs.
The school’s involvement in the salmon project is a win-win, Ms. Rosa said.
"This project is something students look forward to starting in at least grade four," she said. "It would be such a shame to see this program end, not only for students, but for the environment."
The eggs the school receives come from the Kensington Hatchery, which distributes them to more than 60 schools in the state. The CRSA has let its participating schools know that the hatchery’s operating budget of almost $148,000 is not scheduled for funding in Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s proposed budget. Without the funding, the CRSA Web site says, the Salmon-in-Schools program would end.
The students "are very disappointed already," Ms. Rosa said. "It’s almost like a rite of passage for our kids."
WEST HAVEN – “It Is Me, Do Not Be Afraid” was this year’s theme for the Pascua Juvenil, or Youth Easter, at St. Louis Church on April 6.
Father Jeffrey Gubbiotti, former pastor of St Louis Parish, has been developing a different Paschal experience for youth for the past five years.
For the last three, the Archdiocese of Hartford’s Office for Hispanic Evangelization’s pastoral juvenil (Hispanic youth and young adult coordinator) has co-sponsored the event.
Third and fifth graders at Pope John Paul II School lin New Britain learn about Siberian huskies and the Iditarod Trail during a recent visit to the school by Julia Klaucke and Jen Caulfield, of Urban Mushers, and their dogs. The children had spent a month reading books, writing stories, researching Alaskan animals and undertaking other related projects under the direction of April Stitch, third-grade teacher. (Photo submitted)