Fall 2016 Ascension Connection

Did You Know? Faculty by the Numbers
 
We had a chance to survey our awesome 2016-2017 Ascension Faculty to learn a bit about them. 28 members of the Faculty responded and this is what we learned. The numbers, in many instances, speak for themselves.
 
In total, 28 faculty members represent 409 years of experience in the field of education. 332 of these years have been in service to Catholic education, with 237 years devoted to Ascension School.
 
Together, the Ascension faculty holds 15 master's degrees and 39 teaching endorsements beyond the standard state of Illinois educator licenses. In addition, 16 members of our faculty have also been recognized as certified catechists by the Office of Catholic Schools for the Archdiocese of Chicago.
 
The faculty's commitment to our school and parish goes well beyond their credentials and years of experience. 15 are Ascension parishioners, 5 are Ascension alumni and, collectively, they are parents to 16 Ascension graduates and 7 current Ascension students.
 
Our faculty reports a wide range of hobbies and interests. They are sports fans (Cubs, Bears, Packers) and sports enthusiasts (running, volleyball, scuba diving, swimming, yoga). They enjoy the arts (ballet, theater, film) as well as being "artsy" (dancing, playing violin or ukulele, singing, scrapbooking, photography, arts & crafts, knitting).
 
As teachers, they're readers and historians in addition to coaches, mentors, and all-around volunteers.
 
You may find our teachers cooking for their families, working in their gardens or camping in their tents.
 
By the numbers and beyond the numbers, our Ascension faculty is an interesting bunch of folks.  Contrary to what many of their students believe, their teachers do not live at school!

Kickin' It
 
It's that time of year! Ascension Fall Athletics are back. 138 Ascension students in grades 4 through 8 have donned their shin guards, laced their cleats, and jumped into another season of co-ed Soccer! Led by their fearless coaches - school parents and high school alumni - the soccer teams participate in the Forest Park League and the Classic League.
 
It wouldn't be Fall if there wasn't Cross Country! With 43 students in grades 5 through 8 competing in 5 meets, the co-ed Ascension cross country team makes us proud on the field.
 
For the latest on how our teams our doing and to show your support, check out our Facebook page updated regularly by Athletic Director, Dan Kane ('99).
 
We are forever in gratitude to the parents and alumni who share their time and talent in coaching our students. Go Chargers!

 

Staying Connected
 

Just as technology has become a part of our daily lives, so too h
as tech become interwoven into the workings of our school.  From our school Computer Lab with
 instruction by Computer teacher Mr. Mueller to our refreshed school website and Tech Club, Ascension Staff and volunteers are working behind the scenes to use technology to our community's advantage.
Be sure to utilize the new Teacher Pages and Homework Pages on our school website. Teachers have committed to updating Homework pages daily. Also keep an eye out for information on our exciting student programs, including Tech Club where 7th and 8th graders build robots for First Lego League competitions, a pilot partnership with Code Play Learn, and an introduction to Code Combat in our curriculum.

Remembering One of Our Greatest
 
Ascension recently lost one of it's great saints.  Mrs. Mildred McDonald died on September 14, 2016 at 103 years old.  From the 1940s when her oldest child began school at Ascension, up until her death, Mrs. McDonald left an indelible mark on so many in our Ascension community, most importantly our children.  She started as a volunteer in the lunchroom making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and then served for decades as a teacher's aide in kindergarten and 2nd grade.  For more than 25 years, Mrs. McDonald made popcorn balls and gave them to all students as Halloween gifts; and to all Ascension 2nd graders receiving their First Holy 
    
Communion, she presented them with a hand-made, white cross. 
 
In 2013, when Mrs. McDonald celebrated her 100th birthday, all 400 Ascension students walked over to her home on the corner of Scoville and Van Buren and presented her with 100 beautiful flowers and an unforgettable rendition of "Happy Birthday."  We will forever miss the love, kindness, and generosity Mrs. McDonald bestowed on all of our Ascension children.

Preparing for Confirmation
 
For 10 months, the Ascension 8th graders have been preparing for their Confirmation. Challenged to grow in their faith, the Confirmandi have participated in faith conversations with their parents and sponsors; completed Acts of Mercy, or

 actions performed to extend God's mercy to those in need; participated in Faith Boosters or prayer opportunities to deepen their prayer life; and have written a letter to Bishop Manz asking to be confirmed. This year, Confirmation Mass will be held on October 22nd at 2pm.  Please keep our Ascension Class of 2017 in your prayers.