Thursday, May 10, 2018

Mill Creek Welcomes Rezoned Students With Open Arms; Other Schools Doing Same

Posted by John Peck in General

The kids were all smiles only moments after disembarking from the bus.
They were Rainbow Elementary kids who will be transferring to Mill Creek Elementary when the new school year begins.

Mill Creek faculty and students pulled out the stops for the newly rezoned students.
They wanted this orientation visit to be a welcoming one so students would feel good about the change.
Student reaching into bag for drawig
Student reaching into bag to draw which "house" she will be part of next year within the school

The Rainbow entourage was Mill Creek's 3rd visiting school group for the day. Orientation visits were also held for Heritage and Madison elementary students rezoned to Mill Creek next school next year. 

Mill Creek literally rolled out the red carpet.

The long red carpet runner led from the front entrance into the main foyer of the school. There, throngs of Mill Creek students gave visitors high fives and friendly hugs as they made their way into the rotunda.

That's when the party began with song, dance, and gift bags filled with goodies and trinkets.

If there were ever any jitters, they were erased by the time Principal Carmen Buchanan and staff sat cross-legged with them on the floor and assured them how excited the school is to have them in the family. "We know you loved Rainbow and that change is hard. But we  know you will love Mill Creek," she told the kids. "We are excited you are here."

Student leaders then lead the group on a quick tour of the school: the school nurse's office, lunchroom, library, bus and car line, along with explaining protocols.

The highlight was the gym visit, where strobe lights, glow bracelets and upbeat music created quite an ambiance leading up to the main event - the drawing of their house.
Mill Creek has six proverbial "houses" that represent a different positive character trait. Students each year draw their house which immediately puts them in a "family" within the larger school family. It makes them feel better connected and there are activities throughout the year that boost their interraction with one another.

All Madison schools hold orientations for new students and parents.
The one at Mill Creek was specifically geared to rezoned students. Bob Jones and James Clemens high schools, Discovery Middle and Liberty Middle, have also been holding special events for rezoned students.

Students leaving bus
Rainbow students arriving to a lineup of cheering Mill Creek students 

Principal Carmen Buchanan talking to kids sitting on red carpet
Principal Carmen Buchanan welcoming kids on the red carpet at Mill Creek Elem

Streamers in the main rotunda
Streamers overhead greet visitors in the rotunda, where they were cheered on arrival

Library tour and greeting
Library tour and greeting by staff

cafeteria tour
Student leader (purple shirt) leading visitors through cafeteria and going over serving
line procedures. Visitors made sure to check out the stock in the ice cream cooler

Dance party in the auxiliary gym
Dance Party in the auxiliary gym. The glow bracelets were a big hit with the visitors

Learning the House colors and what they mean
Each "House" is depicted by a different color shirt. Newcomers picked the "House"
they will belong to and were immediately welcomed into the family by fellow students

Signs of the different houses

Different House colors and the character traits they stand for


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