Cogwheel Archive

Rotary Cogwheel | 05.12.2016

May 10, 2016

Today: The Fabulous Northfield Troubadours

Birthdays: Rotarians Around the World

Next Week: Kim Briske, Classification (Hillmann)

Last Week:
The bi-lingual immersion Compañeros program is an alternative curriculum available at all three elementary schools in Northfield to students in grades 1-5. In this model, all students have the opportunity to be both first-language learners and second-language learners.

Robert Garcia, a fourth grade instructor at Greenvale Park Elementary School, and Stephen Kallestad, one of his students, gave us a sampler of the type of instruction that takes place in the classroom. Spanish is spoken from the moment students arrive in the fall. Students receive half of their instruction in English and half in Spanish. Literacy instruction is split evenly between both English and Spanish. Science, social studies, health, and special modules — art, music and physical education —  are taught primarily in English. Math is taught primarily in Spanish.

The district strives to have a balance of native Spanish speakers and native English speakers in each classroom.  Señor Garcia said iIt typically is more like one-third native Spanish speakers and two thirds native English speakers. Students are selected by lottery.

Señor Garcia strives to create a comfortable environment where student can learn together. Students quickly pick up on hand gestures and facial expressions to help learn their second language, he said. They benefit from listening to their peers speak in their native languages. Technology is used to help students who are self-conscious about learning a new language in front of their peers.

Señor Garcia said they let students learn at their own pace, but every year, he said, students become more fluent and more proficient with their second language.

Parents are invited into the learning process. Interactive homework is one of the methods of increasing parent engagement.

An added benefit of the program, Stephen Kallestad added, is that the cross-cultural exchange extends beyond the classroom.

Mini Classification

Beth Kallestad has two children, Julia who is about to finish eighth grade at Northfield Middle School and Stephen who is in fourth grade at Greenvale Park Elementary School. Stephen is in the Compañeros program and shared the podium with Senor Garcia for the presentation.

New Member:

Michelle Lasswell must think she’s working on commission. She’s kept the “new member” turnstiles humming. Good going Michelle. Raj Singh is our newest member, inducted last week. His sponsor is Wendy Sivanich. Welcome, Raj. 

Guests: Nicole’s parents, Hugo and Claudia, and her host parents, Mary and Dan Magnuson (Nicole); Amy Brinson (Allawala); Sonja Anton, Mari Arneson and James Rehwaldt, all Oles, who promote Northfield / Flensburg friendship, (Yogi); Tracy Fossum (Fossum) and Colleen Reistad (L. Dilley).

Scholarship Enhancement:  Jon Snodgrass, who, we are quite certain, will invest it some “sure thing,” like a movie.


The annual Northfield Rotary Scholarship was presented last week to Yessenia Celis Castillo at the high school’s academic awards ceremonies. The award is for $3,000. Congratulations Yessenia. 

May 19 is “Ride Your Bike to Rotary Day.” Members are encouraged to saddle up and go green for their transport to and from our meeting that day. We will be back at the United Methodist Church. 

Chris Weber reported that Bailey Williams, a St. Olaf College student, is a runner-up for the Global Grant Scholarship. He thanked Robert Flaten and Bill Carlson for helping with the interviews for this program.

Jake Conway and Ron Linde are organizing river cleanup projects along the Cannon River for Saturday, May 14. Talk to them if you are interested in helping.

The graduation party for our inbound students, Nicole and Carson, will be Wednesday, May 25, 5:30 p.m. at the Estenson Event Center. Jean Wakely needs volunteers to help with set-up, cooking and clean-up. Talk to her is you can help.

Polio Plus night at the Twins-Yankees game will be Saturday, June 18. It’s a great opportunity to raise awareness for the campaign.

We are need of correspondents for our 2016-17 outbound students. If you are interested, talk to Vicky Langer. The students are:

  • Sage Brinton, Argentina
  • McKenna Dale, Brazil
  • Caroline Hummel, Norway
  • Noah Klein, South Korea
  • Jane Ludwig, Colombia
  • Yizel Marcial, Germany
  • Daiki Nishioka, Taiwan
  • Liliana (Lily) Noble, Italy
  • Madison Peterson=Bradford,  Brazil
  • Emma Pritchard, Taiwan
  • Nathaniel Urke, Brazil.

Past Northfield Rotary Club meeting videos on YouTube

Coming Up

May 25 — Graduation party for Carson and Nicole, Estenson Event Center

May 26 — Griff Wigley and Marty Larson, CROCT (Heineman)

June 2 — Dundas Dome (Estenson)

June 9 —Jennifer Dunn-Foster, Classification (V. Dilley)

Quote of the Week:

“Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind.” -Henry James