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CHAMPAIGN – Teachers know the telltale signs of hunger – children who ask for snacks before 10 a.m., wolf down two bowls of cereal at breakfast or seem tired and inattentive in class.
Studies have shown nutrition directly affects school performance, and across the country educators can see a difference in kids who don't get enough to eat at home.
URBANA – For people who work in the Urbana school district, a book about the effects of poverty on children may be more popular than even "The Da Vinci Code."
The book, called "A Framework for Understanding Poverty," was written a decade ago by Ruby Payne, a former teacher and principal and now a worldwide speaker on child education. Her book, which defines class differences and gives methods for teaching impoverished children, has sold about a million copies.
The six students of the Campus Academy gathered shortly after 8 a.m. recently in the basement of McKinley Foundation on the University of Illinois campus.
The students, all dressed in dark-colored dress pants and jackets and most with ties, are enrolled at a new home-school middle school for black boys. Here is an account of one day this month at the new Champaign school:
CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school district has received a one-week extension to file a report with the U.S. District Court outlining its plan to meet the objectives of its federal consent decree in the next three years.
The report, which was to be submitted by Friday, is now due next Friday – Sept. 22.
CHAMPAIGN – As an elementary school art teacher, Shauna Carey doesn't just teach children to draw. Her students have made their own paper and clay pottery. They've learned about architecture and the art of other cultures. She's incorporated photography and storytelling into her classes, and taught knitting.
But Carey also doesn't just teach children how to do art. She gives them "an understanding that art is an expression of people's lives, not just being good at drawing. Shauna brings a depth that is far beyond what people think of as elementary artwork," said Cyndy Lammert, whose children attended Washington Elementary School, where Carey teaches.
BISMARCK – Atlantis astronaut Joe Tanner took a walk in space on Tuesday morning.
More than 220 miles below, 21 first-graders at Bismarck-Henning Elementary School – Tanner's alma mater – undertook their own space shuttle mission.
DANVILLE – Lakeview College of Nursing officials soon will launch a $450,000 building expansion, adding much-needed classroom space at the Danville campus.
Chief Executive Officer Dick Shockey said the project was prompted by the college's growing enrollment, which stands at 255 this fall.
URBANA – Everything's coming up zinnias in the new garden at Leal Elementary School.
Starting this fall, the school has its first teaching garden, a classroom-sized plot of land that teacher Linda Zimmerman has cultivated all summer.
DANVILLE – For the last eight months, custodian Jack Harrier has been teaching Danville schools staff the ABCs of energy conservation.
His lessons already are paying off.
HUME – When area superintendents worked on their budgets in 2005 for the 2005-06 school year, everyone was complaining about gas prices in the $2 range.
That was before Katrina laid waste to the Gulf Coast, petroleum facilities there and, eventually, to superintendents' best-laid plans.