Students reading outside in the grass

Life in the WDMCS 5/19/14

Life in the WDMCS is a weekly feature that highlights what is happening at each of our buildings. If a school is not listed, there was no submission from that building this week.


The Valley Orchestra Guild will hold its annual Instrument Return/Rental Night on Tues., May 27 from 4:30-7:30 p.m. in the Valley orchestra room. Students may re-evaluate, resize or re-rent their instruments. The cost to rent an instrument is $75 per year plus a $100 refundable deposit. If you have questions, please contact Michele Stevens at 710-4468.

West Des Moines School’s Nutrition Department will be providing free meals to children under the age of 18 this summer! Every day, a hot and cold lunch option is available as well as a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. In addition, arrangements can be made to have infant formula, baby cereal and baby food available for children under the age of one if requested in advance. This summer, meals will be served at six different sites Monday through Friday beginning Monday, June 8 and running every week until Friday, August 9. All sites will be closed Friday, July 4.

  • Crestview Elementary – Breakfast from 7:45-8:15 a.m. and lunch from 11-11:45 a.m.
  • Hillside Elementary – Breakfast from 7;45-8:30 a.m. and lunch from 11-11:45 a.m.
  • Valley High School – Breakfast from 8-8:30 a.m. and lunch from 11:15 a.m.-noon
  • Phenix Elementary – Lunch from 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
  • American Legion Park – Lunch from 11:45 a.m.-1 p.m.
  • Rex Mathes School – Lunch from noon-12:30 p.m.

There are no income requirements or registration necessary. Any child under age 18 is welcome to come eat. For more information, contact the West Des Moines Community School’s Nutrition department at 515-633-5085 or check the West Des Moines School’s homepage for updates at Each year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture partners with local organizations like West Des Moines Schools, to provide free meals to children when school is out for the summer. For more information about the national Summer Food Service Program, visit

Clive Elementary

Once a month, kindergartners at Clive Elementary get together with their second grade reading buddies to read. The kindergarteners and second graders both love reading to their reading buddy, and the second graders are great reading role models to the younger students. Having the older children demonstrate their reading fluency and joy of reading is a great way to get the kindergarten students more interested in reading and advancing their reading skills. At the beginning of the year in the reading buddy program, the second graders start off doing all of the reading to their kindergarten buddy. As the year advances, and the kindergarteners become more proficient in reading, the second graders and kindergarteners will take turns reading to each other. We have also enjoyed the nice weather by reading outside in the grass, which the students greatly enjoy. The reading program is yet another way to teach the kids to love reading, and to show them just how fun reading can be.

Crestview Elementary

Twelve students represented Crestview Elementary at the district’s annual Spanish Quiz Bowl. This competition is for students who are not native Spanish speakers. Kids who are good at Spanish, work hard in class and demonstrate a good attitude were invited to go to the Spanish Quiz Bowl. These teams competed against teams from other schools around the district. The Crestview teams were fourth graders Benjamin Mann, Finn Nadel, Jasmyn Tran, Katie Stahl; fifth graders Payton Lombardi, Ericka Elston, Natalie Ulrich; and sixth graders Levi Butler, Nathaniel Thomas, Zerrick Gurley, Nate Willcockson. The sixth graders who are native Spanish speakers, work hard in class and have a good attitude were invited to help run the competition. Those students were Eric Paniagua and Stacey Sanchez.

Crestview Elementary will have Wellness Day on Friday, May 30. This day allows kids be involved in fun activities and also activities that help the students improve their health and well-being. Presenters include Hy-Vee Dieticians, Walnut Creek YMCA, Clive Fire and Police Departments, Clive Parks and Recreation, Zumba and many others. This is a fun and educational day for the students at Crestview. If you would like to volunteer to help, please email Mr. Amundson at

Fairmeadows Elementary

Staff and students at Fairmeadows are focusing on being people of good character. The staff at Fairmeadows chose students they felt were showing the pillars of character in all parts of the school day. These students showed the staff they are responsible, respectful, trustworthy, fair, caring and good citizens. Students received a special certificate, pencil, and have their picture taken for display. Students included for the month of May are: Taylor Harris, Isabelle Beargeon, Emma Foster- Kruger, Harlow Blaser, Casey Ross, Daltry Hughes, Aiden Maina, Valerie Medina, Maya Crncevic, Laiya Kha, Miranda Alba, Meadow White. Bryan Williams, Lily Johnson, Biahna Weigandt, Austin Allen, Dulce Macedo, Hayden Fenimore, Owen Frizzell, Nic VanArkel, Kaden Derry, Haley Auen, Neil Madigan, Tyler Anderson, Elliott Oleson, Ben Fess, Keeley Hill, Charile Givant, Logan Hodge, Emerson Drake, Will Rubach, Abby Whitson, Cam Lechtenberg, Diana Agirre, Mikelle Murdock, Aldin Odzakovic, Taylor Engleman, Liam Feeley, Laura Kipnusu, Samuel Hanson, Raelyn Acklin, Alex Broughton, Aubrie Dewes, Ethan Whitham, Sam Aung, Mary Deyva, Cream Ruangwet, Jonathan Rojas, Kassidy Grissom, Alex Ling, Kolbe Luinstra, Kaitlyn Miller, Aidan Drake, Dylan Majeres, Kayleigh Lewis and Josh Yencer. Congratulations!

Hillside Elementary

The district hosted its 31st Annual Math Bowl on May 8th at Indian Hills Jr. High. Each classroom teacher in grades 3-6 selected two students from their homeroom to participate in the event. Students are selected on their interest in math and math problem solving abilities. Marshall Jarnagin 6th grade and Kauai Cua 4th grade received a special award for placing in the TOP 10% in the district. The following students were selected to attend: William Adams, Faraja Mukome, Grant Gilmore, Cora Waterman, Ethan Joy, Shivam Sharma, Conner Franklin, Ty Betts, Kauai Cua, Olivia Stout, James Malcolm, Teghan Bennett, Taylor Coe, Ian Gaunt, Reagan Demmon, Henry Shires, Hannah Felsen, Maisy O’Hern, Mia Rand, Jake Reuss, Austin Jarnagin, Maya Williams, David Gaunt, Sayvion Hines, Avi Gedler, Caleb Crawford, Marshall Jarnagin, Clayton Adamson, Perla Reveles and Zak Fleischman.

Jordan Creek Elementary

Fifth grade students at Jordan Creek Elementary visited the Iowa State Capitol Building and the State Historical Building as a component of their social studies units. Students have studied the government systems and U.S. history throughout the year. While in the Capitol building, the students took guided tours and were able to sit in the court room, the representative and senate houses, climb to the top of the dome, and visit the library. Students were also met by Representative Trimble, who had previously visited the students in their school. Fifth graders also visited the Historical building and were able to make connections to the units they have studied throughout the year. Students saw Conestoga wagons, Civil War displays, a woolly mammoth, different regions in nature, as well as other displays. These fifth graders are finishing their U.S. history study as they year winds down. They are completing a pioneer simulation in social studies. Science units have them creating a project about the changing earth. They will be studying rocks and minerals as their last topic. Learning about pre-algebra concepts, measuring the area of circles, and determining volume of 3-D figures includes some of the math topics they are working on. They will be starting end of the year assessments soon. Students are also competing reading units, performing Reader’s Theatre plays, reading and writing poetry, and competing biographies. Art sketchbooks are also being completed as well as fitness testing. Students in class 5A recently said good bye to their student teacher and 5B had a Drake practicum teacher that finished her work with the students as well. Fifth grade band students toured and presented concerts at Jordan Creek, Westridge, and for their parents. They were also able to eat lunch at the mall after their performances.

Valley Southwoods

Valley Southwoods held its annual Tiger of the Month Recognition Breakfast to honor students who had been selected as a Tiger of the Month throughout the school year. VSW teachers and administrators collaborate to choose a candidate who contributes to VSW in a positive way each month. Students are selected for exhibiting a positive attitude towards learning; taking pride in their school work; being compassionate, cooperative, encouraging and inclusive of others; and making responsible choices. Students honored at the breakfast were Heather    Stout, Jordan Aguirre, Grace Worlie, Cassidy Potter, Hanna Bush, Osman Smajlovic, Aidan Morrow, Anna Crawford, Megan Maly, Carlos Perez, Jackson Gallentine, Hallie Lawyer, Samuel Galligan, Evan Westman, Jessica Studer, Shamicka Delerme, Emily Veatch, Cayden Codel, Cole Hahn, LaKendra Punteney, Sarah Friesth, Samuel Cox, Caleb Fox, Kaycie Tilton, Parker Jensen, Alyssa Danley, Hunter Schueler, Hannah Fuller, Alanna Maxwell, Quinton Curry, Anna Peterzalek, Ryan Hill, Kamden Lee, John Mahoney, Christopher Loyd, Kate Jaros, Abigail Kigin, Max Edmondson, Alyssa McKinney, Leila Hagan, Alexandra French, Grace Blazevich, Luke Bonner, Kade Kuehl, Ally de la Rosa, Julius Cooper, Jacob Bedia, Logan Maxwell, Brendan Roe, Sam Maudsley, Chase Stahl, Sonia Moorjani and Rachel Greene.

Valley High School

Valley High School doubled its donations from the previous year at the student council’s annual blood drive. Students and staff donated 107 pints of blood, saving 307 lives. Of the 156 individuals who signed up to donate, 123 were first time donors.

Valley senior Kyra Cooper was selected to receive a 2014-15 NSLI Youth Scholarship to study Arabic abroud in the summer of 2014. Her program will take place in Muscat, Oman, through the America-Mideast Educational and Training Services, Inc. The program emphasizes rapid language acquisition in a language immersion environment by combining in-class language instruction, a comprehensive cultural program and homestays. The NSLI Youth Scholarship is sponsored by the U.S. Government through the Bureau of Educatinoal and Cultural Affairs.