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Author Archives: Thomas Paine Elementary


First graders studying citizenship with help from special guests

October 9th, 2013

Mrs. Thurston’s first grade class had a few special guests to help them with their citizenship studies.  Urbana Mayor Laurel Prussing and the Chiefs of Police and Fire came to the class to help the students understand citizenship, what it means to be a good citizen and what we can do for the community to implement such qualities.  Both the Fire and Police chiefs brought along some of their big equipment to help with the lesson.  The class will discussed Urbana’s 180th and Thomas Paine Elementary’ s 50th birthday as part of this topic.

Community Involvement coordinator Angie Armstrong was particular happy with the students that day.  “I was especially proud of how our students welcomed our Mayor and Chiefs!  They were so respectful!” she said.  Mayor Prussing also had great things to say about Mrs. Thurston’s students to the WCIA news crew.  The students gave the Mayor a number of cards they made celebrating the birthdays of the City of Urbana and Thomas Paine Elementary.

Kids learn lesson of citizenship by WCIA news


Students and staff celebrate 50 years of Thomas Paine

September 18th, 2013

The students, teachers, staff, and community recently held a birthday party for Thomas Paine Elementary School.  The 50th celebration included cup cakes and balloons, but also had an inspirational speech by Fire Marshall Phil Edwards, and a history lesson by fifth grade students Phoebe Gerstenecker and Ben Pond.  This will be the first of several events throughout the year celebrating Paine’s 50th anniversary.

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Class of 2012-2013 5th Grade Promotion Ceremony

June 1st, 2013

Thomas Paine 5th grade class of 2013 marked the end of their elementary school career with a dramatic and musical celebration shared with family, teachers, staff and community members.

Students Look to the Community for Important Life Lessons

October 11th, 2012

Thomas Paine special education teacher Katie Firmand is reaching out to the community and finding the community reaching back to her and her students. The community-based instruction (CBI) curriculum that Firmand has put together for her 2nd and 3rd grade class is providing her students and the community-at-large a host of opportunities to interact and learn from each other.

“I want my kids not just to live [here], but for the kids to really be a part of this community,” said Firmand. The curriculum she’s put together with help from community business-partners, educators, and other district students covers a wide range of life skills from the basic (how to interact with other people) to more complex tasks (such as how to calculate a tip at a restaurant). The community-based instruction is meaningful instruction that occurs in a student’s community with naturally occurring materials and situations. It helps students enhance their skills to be part of their community and gain independence. Read the rest of this entry »

science fair projects on display

Students Hold Annual Science Fair

May 3rd, 2012

Elementary students at Thomas Paine packed the gym earlier this week for their annual science fair. Projects covered all science-related topics from biology and earth sciences, to mummification, brain functions, rockets and more. Read the rest of this entry »

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