by Britney Morgan
Congratulations to the Benjamin E. Mays Lady Raiders as they advance to Macon for the Georgia High School Association State Championship after a 56-38 win over Dutchtown High School.
It’s been more than a decade since the Lady Raiders made an appearance in the State Championship. The last time was in 2003. They won the championship in a 49-44 overtime win over Hephzibah High School under the leadership of Coach Oliver Banks.
They will now have another opportunity to bring home a state championship victory as they go head-to-head with Stephenson, Friday March 6 at 7 p.m. at the Macon Coliseum, 200 Coliseum Drive, Macon, GA 31217.
Admission tickets are $12 and parking is $10 per car and $15 for buses and/or stretch vans.
Good luck to the Lady Raiders as they fight to bring home the state championship. Send them words of encouragement and wish them good luck @MaysAthletics.
For more information about the GHSA Basketball State Championship games visit ghsa.net.
by Britney Morgan
1997 National Teacher of the Year and award winning, New York Times bestselling author, Sharon Draper, led a reading session with Margaret Fain fifth-grade students on Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015.
During her visit, Ms. Draper read passages from her new book, “Stella by Starlight.” The students followed along and participated in a Q&A afterwards. Fifth-grade Language Arts teacher Stephanie Jordan says that her students were well prepared because they studied the novel in class. In addition to reading the novel, they used Ms. Draper’s online study guides to support their in-depth analysis.
Ms. Jordan explained that the novel and its curriculum lined up perfectly with Common Core Standards. The students were able to analyze how visual and multimedia elements contribute to the meaning, tone, or beauty of the text by listening to the audiobook as they followed along with the story.
The setting for “Stella by Starlight” is 1932, and the dialect from that period was challenging at first for students until the audiobook was incorporated in the study. The novel touched on the Renaissance period and voting rights—topics that the fifth-graders are currently learning about in Social Studies.
As a part of their studies, the students learned how the novel evolved. Ms. Draper told the students that when her grandmother passed away she left Draper one of her journals. This is what she used as the starting point to write the novel. Draper says that her grandmother is her “Stella by Starlight”.
“My students already knew the story, but it was phenomenal for the children to actually hear Ms. Draper tell that story herself,” said Jordan.
Before departing, Ms. Draper shared her autograph and posed for photos with the children.
South Atlanta to host tonight’s Elite Eight game against Morgan County as they continue their March to Macon
by Britney Morgan
After beating Central Carrollton last week by a score of 103-38, the South Atlanta Hornets have advanced to the GHSA’s Elite Eight with an overall record of 27-4.
With a fairly young South Atlanta boys’ team and no returning starters, Basketball Coach Michael Reddick said that a lot of people thought they would have a down year. Setting high expectations for his teams, there was never doubt in his mind that they would make it this far. “My guys work very hard to make sure we would have a good year,” said Reddick.
Coach Reddick says the team’s recipe for a good year includes lots of hard work during the off-season. “We practiced hard and played 38 games in June. We did a lot of individual development in the fall, and we have been extremely competitive in practice this year.”
Coach Reddick went on to say that his team’s depth makes them exceptional, “With all 13 players bringing something special to the hardwood, South Atlanta doesn’t have a set lineup. The Hornets have had several injuries this season, but they are always able to fill-in for each other and pull through.”
As a coach, Reddick says that he focuses on teaching his guys discipline, responsibility, character and citizenship. He works to give his players the tools necessary to be successful in life and looks to expose them to new things. Each year they take a trip outside the state to play and to visit a university.
Grateful and appreciative of the South Atlanta community, Reddick said, “We take great pride in our community.” He encourages everyone to come out and support their team as they continue the journey on their “March to Macon” for the GHSA State Championship Games.
The South Atlanta Hornets will go head-to-head with Morgan County tonight at 6:30 p.m. at South Atlanta High School.
For more information about the GHSA State Basketball Championships visit www.ghsa.net.
Principal Gregory Parks empowers his students with the Leadership Data Talk at Usher- Collier Heights Elementary
The Talk encourages and motivates his staff and students for the week ahead. Parks said that his students are valuable stakeholders, and at Usher-Collier Heights, their goal is to empower them with different types of data such as achievement, attendance, suspension and volunteerism to support their everyday decisions.
Along with the data talk, Parks shares motivational stories and quotes; and this week, he even played an inspiring song by Mali Music called “Beautiful”. He says that he chose this particular song because “our children are beautiful inside and out”.
Occasionally, he will also surprise students with a guest speaker to give encouraging words on different leadership topics. Monday, Comer Yates, the executive director of the Atlanta Speech School visited Usher. He spoke to the children about heroes. Yates shared how they too can be heroes, as long as they believe in themselves first.
The Leadership Data Talk started two years ago to support the school’s culture of excellence.
“We are preparing our students to maximize their potential and to believe in their goals and dreams,” said Parks.
After breakfast, encouraging words and music— the Usher Collier Heights students were ready for a great week.
- South Atlanta boys defeated Butler 78-67 Wednesday night. They will play Central Carrollton Saturday, Feb. 21 at 6:30 p.m. at South Atlanta High School.
- Mays girls beat Alexander 61-37 Tuesday night. They will play Woodland-Stockbridge Friday, Feb. 20, 2015 at 5:30 p.m. at Mays High School.
- North Atlanta Boys will play Gainesville at North Atlanta High School tonight, Thursday, Feb. 19 at 6:00 p.m.
- South Atlanta girls lost to Washington County 57-54 Tuesday night. They ended the season at 27-2, best record in school history.