Sunday, September 26, 2021

Durham Names Campus Geography Bee Winner

DIS_GeoBee (1)“To take a rain forest tour and to dance at Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival celebration, you would travel to what country?”

Questions like this were asked to the top ten 5 and 6 grade finalists at Durham Intermediate School for the annual National Geographic Bee. The contest was held on Wednesday, Jan. 29.DIS_GeoBee (2)

This year’s winner Kiera DiCesare is a sixth grade student. The school contest is the first round of the annual Bee. As school champion, Kiera advanced to the next level and took a written state Bee qualifying test. Up to 100 of the top scorers on that test will be eligible to compete in the state Bee scheduled for March 27. Winners at that level will advance to the national Bee scheduled for May in Washington, D.C. 

Click here for more information about the National Geographic Bee.

Durham Ambassadors in the Community

Be my valentineThe Student Ambassadors at Durham Intermediate School have been busy since returning to school following the winter break.

DIS Ambassadors and Humanities students will spread the love this February with Meals on Wheels. The students made Valentine cards for local seniors, which will be delivered by Meals on Wheels volunteers on Friday, Feb. 13.

“Valentine’s Day is all about showing others how much they are loved,” said DIS teacher Fran Loewen.

Lowen added that for many older adults and disabled persons living alone, they make experience social isolation.

“Valuing others and showing compassion are just two of the core values Durham students learn,” said Lowen. “What better way to apply that lesson than to spread the love to members of our community?”DIS_SnowOne

Last month, the DIS Ambassadors Club raised over $200 for Spokes 4 Hope with their “SNOW-one like You” campaign. Spokes 4 Hope is a non-profit organization that supplies bicycles to abused children who are going through difficult times.

Each morning in January, students were encouraged to purchase a snowflake for their friends, writing a unique quality about that friend on each snowflake. The fifth and sixth grade class held a friendly competition to see which homeroom class bought the most snowflakes. Winners were Mrs. Scogin’s 5th grade class, and Mrs. Snow’s 6th grade class. Both classes will receive a popcorn party for their efforts!

DIS Shares The Warmth This Season

DIS WarmthDurham Ambassadors and Student Council kicked off their Share the Warmth fundraiser.

Each Friday morning through February, students have the opportunity to build relationships with other students over a donut or cup of hot chocolate in the cafeteria.

All proceeds will be donated to charities this holiday season.

Durham Student Finds Fitness Fame in Europe

Elise Cerami, Carroll ISD Student

Elise Cerami, Carroll ISD Student

Elise Cerami, a sixth grader at Durham Intermediate School is helping to promote health and fitness for youth in Belgium.

Through local company, Kidz In Motion Sports, Elise was part of a video produced for the Belgium Public Televison Broadcasting service. The company’s goal is to educate and encourage kids to be more active.

Utilizing sports and activities, the company hopes to motivate and inspire children try new activities while building their self-confidence. Most of the kids highlighted in the videos have some level of experience with their sport, but more importantly the videos show how much fun their chosen sport can be. Producers say the videos do a great job depicting the child’s passion and dedication toward their activity in an effort to show other children to enjoy a new activity.

Elise was chosen by Coach Nathan at Southlake Tennis Center to represent the sport of tennis. Elise Cerami’s video is temporarily being aired on this website.

Durham Humanities Students Spread the Love with Meals on Wheels

Durham Intermediate School fifth and sixth grade G/T Humanities students joined with Meals on Wheels to deliver more than just a nutritious meal this Valentine’s Day.

Students in the G/T ELA and G/T Social Studies classes created fun, personal Valentine cards along with a special bookmark for 180 Meals on Wheels clients. The Humanities program encourages students to reach out to the community and engage with and serve others.  The Valentine cards were delivered on Feb. 14 to a Dallas County area branch.

Pictures below show students at work on their Valentines.

Durham Ambassadors Raise Money for Homeless

This school year, Durham Intermediate School started a new service group program called Durham Ambassadors. Last year, fifth graders submitted applications and the teachers chose the group to serve the school and be “ambassadors” of the school for the current 2013-2014 school year. Ambassador duties include: greeters at the front doors, help at parent nights and service projects.  

The group recently finished The Pulsera Project- a fundraiser for homeless individuals living in Nicaragua. The Pulsera Project is a nonprofit organization that takes unique, handcrafted woven bracelets (“pulsars”-in Spanish) made by impoverished youth in Nicaragua and ships them to groups, mostly schools, to sell for $5 each.  All the funds go back to these young bracelet makers in Nicaragua to help support via youth shelters, scholarships, community programs and many other projects. The bracelets were well received at Durham and the Durham Ambassadors sold all 500 bracelets within a week, raising $2500.

For more information about the non-profit visit:





Bears, Bikes and Benefit at DIS

Durham Intermediate School received additional recognition this month for the school’s annual Teddy Bear Auction and Bike Build. Hosted by the student council, the DIS Teddy Bear Auction raises money to purchase bicycles for children in need. More information about the auction is posted here.

The Star-Telegram recently featured the event in the paper’s Southlake Journal edition. Click here to read the story.

A photo slideshow of the auction and bike build is available below.

Judges Compliment DIS Choir

On Friday May 17, the DIS Honor Choir spent a fun day in the sun at the NRH2O Choir Festival in North Richland Hills.

The choir, under the direction of Amanda Gillum, performed Charlottetown and a heart-warming “Over the Rainbow” with stunning solos by fifth grade student Suzy Lewis and sixth grade student Kelley-Anne Richards. Judge’s compliments to the choir included “energetic dynamics and musicality”, “strong 2- part singing”, and “an impressive mature sound”.

The DIS Honor Choir received a rating of “Superior plus,” a rating that DIS hasn’t received since 2011. Mrs. Gillum, DIS Principal Debra Moore, and the DIS Family are so proud of these students for their hard work and dedication.

Student's Winning Essay Describes "Once In A Lifetime Teacher"

DIS Teacher Liz Herron (left) and student Jacqueline Hall (right)

Writing isn’t always fun for sixth graders but when one Carroll ISD student put pencil to paper, the words just came naturally.

When Durham Intermediate student Jacqueline Hall learned about the “My Favorite Teacher” essay contest hosted by local bookstore Barnes & Noble, she started making a list of all her teachers she’d write about.

“I started thinking how everyone wishes and looks for that once in a lifetime teacher, ” Hall said. “And I started listing reasons why she’s been so amazing.”

For Hall, that teacher is Liz Herron. Herron is the sixth grade Humanities ELA (English Language Arts) teacher at DIS.

“She’s such a great teacher. She knows what it’s like to be a sixth grader in Language Arts.” Hall wrote about Herron; and her entry was chosen as the winning essay.

“As teachers we have a very finite time with these guys and the world that they’re going in to, its so different than when I became an adult years ago,” Herron said.  “I want to make sure that I give them the ability to think, to be creative, and to believe in themselves and to problem solve and be able to face whatever challenges they’re going to have.”

Herron and Hall have a strong teacher-student bond that is evident when you meet them. Their friendship has lasted the past two school years, since Herron taught Hall in fifth grade last year.

“I was just so touched and so humbled by her words and it honestly inspired me to be better.” Herron said she read the winning essay and was overwhelmed by Hall’s words, “I thought oh my gosh, she’s expecting great things from me I’ve got to be better!”

The community will have an opportunity to listen to the winning essay. Hall will read her words during a reception for Herron at Barnes and Noble in Southlake Town Square at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 18.  Herron and Hall will both receive special awards during the event.  Click here for additional details about the reception.