These are the Five Pillars of NJHS. They will be organized according to the priorities of this year’s NJHS student leadership. It is their goal to create opportunities that foster growth according to these priorities. Your help and suggestions are always appreciated. Please communicate them to email@example.com.
Last updated: 10/27/22
Upcoming meeting dates - December 2, January 20, February 10, March 10, April 7, May 19
All meetings from 7:15-7:40 a.m.
Horsetooth Cleanup is becoming a tradition! This year we were so pleased to have 18 Boltz students, friends, families, and siblings join this event! So much trash picked up and for Ella Reed - the leader of this project - a quality learning experience. Thank you all for your support. We have our sights set on another cleanup in the spring. We shall see!
Are you kidding me? Did you see how awesome the carnival was? So proud of the students who led this and thankful for those who helped. There were soooo many! Some even covered shifts for others who missed theirs. Selflessness, vision, sacrifice, dedication, perseverance, flexibility, and thoughtfulness. Those are characteristics of leadership and if you needed an example, your fellow NJHS members just delivered a flawless performance. Congratulate them if you see them. They had the courage to take a risk, and it paid off. Think about how much they learned about making big ideas turn into reality!
Also, I hope you will be inspired to take a risk and lead a project. The carnival added to the success of the Boltz 50th anniversary celebration. What you probably don't know is that it also is going to make our school better by contributing to the Science Olympiad program. Can you imagine? A student group creating a fun experience that raises money to support the academic goals of another student group? It's a glimpse of what NJHS can be. Students, you can improve the experience here at Boltz and start traditions that will live on after you are in high school. Will you step up to lead?
Communication: We are getting feedback again this year on communication. We couldn't agree more! Let me tell you what we are doing to communicate. We have Mr. Vigil announce meetings ahead of time. We have a Google Classroom where everyone can find the meeting schedule for the whole year, find meeting agendas, contact an advisor, and see announcements. Each project has a Google Classroom for communication. We have an app called Remind that students can instantly sign up for and receive text communications. We have provided email address for all leadership members and advisors. I'm now looking into a bulletin board in the hallway and might use smoke signals if that's what it takes! If your student doesn't know what is going on, please get them connected with these many avenues for communication.
This year's student leadership is off to a fast start with big ideas. We had a great first meeting where the students were in charge and they did a terrific job. Attendance was over 68 students, but we did miss a few. It's understandable this early in the year, but we do need to encourage responsibility. We ask that when a student is going to miss a meeting they communicate that with an advisor. Mr. Mayer, Ms. Nickerson, or Ms. Green in the office would be happy to take that message. Multiple unexcused absences could result in removal from NJHS. Ugh! I dislike focusing on those types of things. Let's talk more about what the students are accomplishing!
1. Horsetooth Cleanup - Brendan McKellar is heading this project up. A date is still to be determined, but if you or your student is interested, there is a Google Classroom where all relevant information is being posted. Contact Brendan or an advisor and we will get you set up.
2. Carnival - Jocelyn Carrasco-Bracomontes, Cassidy Smith, Natasha Barron and Maggie Lee are building this huge and exciting idea out. Again, there is a Google Classroom for communication. Details are still in progress, get involved early!
3. Movie Night - Mason Friedline is building a community building set of movie nights to happen here at Boltz and open to all students. Details are still emerging, but there is a Google Classroom for communications.
4. Walk-a-Thon - This year students are getting a chance at heading up this event. Claire Nguyen has taken the reigns. We are shooting for Halloween and being dressed up for the Walk-A-Thon. Currently students are working on a prize list for participants and we could use all ideas. Join up!
5. We are also looking to launch many more projects at out September meeting with the Food Bank, Boltz School Clean-up and Pride, New Ideas, Talent Show, Concession Sales, Pickle Sales, Bag Toss, Induction Ceremony, T-Shirt Design, Humane Society, and New Ideas.
All projects and even meeting to plan a project counts as service hours.
These projects are just ideas, and some of them are huge, but that is what NJHS is about - learning to be a leader. Talk to your student about stepping up and taking on one of these projects, or if they have another idea, bring it forward. At the very least, join in with one of these projects. Some ideas can happen at school, some will happen outside of school, but they won't happen if students don't lead them. Some projects will get started and never come to fruition - that's okay! It's a learning experience. Some won't work out just like we had envisioned, and some will exceed all expectations. Again, this group is about learning to lead, fostering service (in ourselves and others), building character, becoming better citizens, all while maintaining academic excellence. It isn't a class where you come to a meeting and a teacher has created a project that you have to do. We have big visions and big dreams. I've heard about building a Gaga ball pit. I've heard about resurfacing the tennis courts. I've heard about fixing the holes in the football field, we've raised thousands for animal shelters and Children's Hospital and local non-profits; we are just getting started. These students know that everything that they start has the potential to become a tradition here at Boltz and change the future of education as we begin again on our 50th anniversary.
It's building community, too. We have adults volunteering with students - bringing ideas as guest speakers to our leadership, and collaborating at all levels. We welcome all comers.
Sometimes, I feel overwhelmed with all of the projects and logistics and the pace, but other times, when you see a student get or create an experience they wouldn't have otherwise had, and they grow and shine, I'm reinvigorated. I had one of those just this week (probably more than one). One of our student leaders from last year who has now gone onto FCHS came back to an event and talked about the meaning one of our projects had on their life. I just can't put into words how powerful that moment was. Thank you for entertaining and supporting and adding to the vision of NJHS here at Boltz. I hope you'll encourage your student to step up to the plate and make the most of this opportunity.
Completed Projects (there are more!)
The last day before spring break was quite exceptional for NJHS. You may have heard about Stall day; it's a Boltz tradition. This year, Christopher Blea and Neveah Stahl were relentless in spearheading the Stall day efforts and as a result approximately $2000 was raised! The project raised funds for the Children's Hospital and for potentially building a Gaga ball pit here at Boltz. Nice work!
We were also excited to receive over 40 applications from 6th graders interested in joining NJHS next year!
Meanwhile, Haven Gibson continued to earn NJHS a quirky and tasty reputation for selling pickles at lunch and after school. Haven's project has raised over $100 for a no-kill animal shelter and there are still a few pickles left to sell!
NJHS is also excited to announce that Mrs. Nickerson has signed on as an advisor!
Last but certainly not least, we are very proud of the huge group of students who stepped up to the challenge and took the risk of running for various executive board positions next year. With that in mind, we are happy to announce next year's:
President - Brendan McKellar
Vice president - Mason Friedline
Treasurer - Maggie Lee
Secretary - Joanna Van Shaar
Through their leadership, I'm confident NJHS will do many great things next year and for years to come!
There are so many amazing things about the students here at Boltz. They have vision, conviction, grit, generosity, helpfulness; the list keeps growing. I'm not going to lie, Brendan McKellar's project felt like a long shot at times. Brendan wanted to make a difference for a no-kill animal shelter; how to do that in the middle of the Omicron surge and amongst other obstacles was the challenge. We tossed around a number of ideas, but Brendan came up with the Bean Bag Toss with the help of a few friends. A leader collaborates. The next challenge was when to hold the fundraiser. Brendan could only be present during 7th grade lunch. He needed an 8th grader and a 6th grader to help out during their lunches, so he stepped out of his comfort zone and recruited help - an invaluable leadership attribute. Within minutes of arriving (7th grade lunch is last), Brendan evaluated the situation and began realizing how the already successful project could become better with some tweaks. He adjusted on the fly, and - to my surprise - he began to plan the next iteration. Evaluating, taking responsibility, making adjustments, committing to perseverance...
Now, I don't want to give the impression that it didn't go well. Look at the pictures! The Bean Bag Toss was busy for the entirety of all three lunches. It brought excitement and joy to students. It touched students outside of NJHS. Animal lovers went through the line multiple times, donated without accepting a prize, and asked about when it would happen again. Not bad for a cold afternoon in February! And what a community we have here where students step up to support their peer's vision as well as the animal shelter. It's more than enough to fill this teacher's bucket. I just wish more people knew what amazing things these fine young humans at Boltz are doing. It's not always flashy, but I'd be happy to argue with anyone who doesn't think what Brendan did was very meaningful, for the animals, for himself, and for the student community.
Our January meeting was so productive! We are creating scarves for donation/fundraising. Pictured below you will also find incredible leadership from Joanna Van Shaar on our Val-O-Grams fundraiser and Cooper McGrew's mind-blowing dedication to the Give Next endeavor. These students show up early ready to produce. It's awe inspiring!
Sadly we don't have pictures, but we are very excited to announce the conclusion of three more projects!
Another success was produced by Ella McKnight who successfully planned and executed a ball drive during the last week prior to winter break. Ella was such a thoughtful and responsible leader. It's amazing what these young adults can do! We look forward to seeing their leadership qualities continue to grow!
Being a leader requires many skills and practice. One of those skills is seeing a need in your community. Bailey Kettler has now concluded another project. It's incredible how well honed her ability to spot a need is! This time Bailey collected donated toys to brighten the holiday season for children in our community. It brings a tear to my eye thinking about how Bailey brightened another child's day out of the kindness of her heart. NJHS members are not required to take on these projects.
Finn Berning persevered in his efforts to put together foot care kits which will be distributed at local shelters. Thank you for your thoughtfulness and endless energy to help the community, Finn!
A huge congratulations to Claire Nguyen for taking on a behind schedule project and bringing to a successful conclusion! Claire led NJHS to create holiday cards thanking local first responders for their heroic efforts during the pandemic. Way to go Claire!
Congratulations to Emily Texeira for making the Horsetooth cleanup plan become a reality! Dozens of volunteers came out to clean up around South Bay on a beautiful Sunday morning. Once again, we are amazed by the vision and follow through of these young student leaders! They have huge hearts and are willing to give of themselves to make a difference in the community. Go Boltz!
Time to celebrate a success! Bailey Kettler saw a need, planned, and executed a trip to the Larimer County Food Bank and we couldn't be more proud! The folks at the food bank said they had never had a middle school student plan a trip like this! Way to go Bailey! In addition, thank you to the eight students and parent volunteer who participated. Now that Bailey's got the hang of this project, look for her to pass her leadership knowledge on to other students who will likely lead this project many more times this year. We will see!
There will be successes and failures this year, but that is all part of learning about leadership. With these projects and likely many more to come, we hope to get as many students as possible involved and give them the opportunity to take on authentic leadership roles that will further promote the 5 pillars of NJHS. Again, if you have ideas, opportunities, suggestions or concerns, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org. Encourage your student to check their email regularly (our best form of communication) and keep up to date on Google Classroom. Most importantly encourage them to get involved with various activities and to lead at least one project this year! Thank you and I look forward to updating this website with more exciting news to come!
Communication Issues: Our biggest struggle this year by far is communication. We are using this website, email, Google Classroom and a phone app known as Remind. Remind seems to have the best response, but some students have not signed up for it yet due to missing the meeting. Have your student click on this document for the instructions on how to sign up for Remind if they haven't done so already. Thanks!