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Fold and Fly, Build and Go

Students used LEGOs and building kits to explore easy engineering concepts.

Students explored physics and engineering concepts through engaging class activities and fun field trips during the second week of Summer Camp themed “Easy Engineering.”

Classroom activities for older students included time to “fold and fly” a range of paper airplane designs. Some planes were designed for distance or time aloft, others for their acrobatic abilities or attractiveness. All were made for fun! The paper airplanes offered a great opportunity to explore the four forces of aerodynamics: drag, gravity, lift and thrust.)

Younger students decorated simple drawings of planes, adding their own unique features. (One student for example, added a coconut cannon to the top of his plane!)

Students also had an opportunity to design and build vehicles out of LEGO™ or other materials, learning about wheels, axles and chassis and how they are combined to make the framework of a vehicle.

Creativity in design is always encouraged. Older students created various eye-catching designs utilizing LEGO. Younger students showed their creativity on paper, creating a train on cotton candy tracks and carrying a car full of clowns!

In addition to classroom activities, older students were given a guided tour of GE Aircraft Engines and visited the National Museum of the United States Air Force as part of an overnight trip to Dayton, OH. Younger students enjoyed the interactive play area and train ride at Entertrainment Junction in West Chester, Ohio.

Plateful of Learning – and FUN!

Students enjoyed a plateful of learning and FUN during the first week of Summer Camp themed “Garden to Plate.”

Language, math, and science learning occurred through a variety of activities including reading recipes, measuring ingredients, and exploring how chemical changes occur in food when it’s cooked.

And students learned about food that comes from a garden and how it is prepared, as well as basic kitchen skills and rules for kitchen safety.

The highlight of the week was a student-prepared and student-served brunch for parents and siblings. The menu included made to order omelets, yogurt and fruit, waffles and more.

THANK YOU to Chef Dorizas for training and leading our students!

Tips to Help Kids with Autism in Summer

Summer is officially here!

Along with the joy of having concluded another school year, however, comes the challenge of coping with the loss of structure the school year provides.

“Five ways to help your child with autism cope with summer’s relaxed schedule “ (Washington Post, July 7, 2014) lists the following tips for parents of kids with autism provided by Lauren Kenworthy, the director of the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders at Children’s National Medical Center, Washington D.C.

  1. Use a calendar to label “typical” summer days, weekends, vacations and holidays. Then create a “typical day” schedule that follows the school schedule as much as possible in terms of lunch time and breaks.
  2. Talk to your child about having a Plan A, but also a Plan B in case things don’t work out. For example, if you’re planning to go to the pool, tell him that if a storm comes up or the pool is closed, you might do something else, and that is your Plan B.
  3. Avoid developing bad habits. It can be tough to stick to a schedule during the summer, when you just want to relax and let go a little bit, but the more you can keep to a routine for meals and sleep, the more well-regulated your child is likely to be.
  4. Recognize the warnings. It’s important to know the signs that your child is getting overloaded and remove him from challenging situations before a meltdown.
  5. Keep things positive, always. With any child, it’s more effective to reward good behavior than to punish bad behavior. Praise your child four times for every one time you need to correct something.


Photo: stylephotographs/

LGS Named Top 50 Non-Profit

In 2017 Linden Grove School was named a Top 50 non-profit in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky by LEAD Cincinnati and VonLehman CPA & Advisory Firm. Organizations were recognized as “pillars of the community,” serving as “examples of individuals working together to bring ideas to life, make plans materialize, and make a difference in people’s lives.”

The article on LGS which appeared in LEAD Cincinnati is reproduced below. For a full list of Top 50 Nonprofit Organizations in the Tri-State, click here.  



Why work math problems in a workbook when you can write them out on the top of your desk using a dry erase marker?

That’s just one of the ways teachers make customized learning fun at Linden Grove School in Deer Park. It allows teachers to select math problems for each student depending on how easily they are grasping particular concepts. 

Head of School Kristin Tennyson
Head of School Kristin Tennyson

Providing customized learning for K-8 students with autism and associated learning needs is the heart of their progressive education program, says Kristin Tennyson, who has served as head of school at Linden Grove for 17 years. Specialized therapies, small class sizes and low teacher-student ratios help each child maximize their academic potential. Additionally, the devoted teachers and staff partner with families and community members to ensure each child feels safe, engaged, supported and challenged to promote life-long success. 

“We use a variety of research-based programs because every student has different needs,” Tennyson says. “We’re a real school, we’re accredited, and we have after-school activities and field trips so that our students get that true school experience.” 

LEGO education programs, robotics classes and other specialty courses inspire creativity and critical thinking. An applied skills program for grades 6 through 8 prepares students to lead independent, fulfilling lives through activities such as cooking, service learning projects and career exploration. 

Parents praise Linden Grove School for providing students a caring, supportive and academically appropriate setting, more effectively opening the world of learning and social interaction. 

“It’s fun to work here,” says Tennyson. “I can’t imagine working anywhere else. Parents are so thankful to us, but what they may not understand is that we learn as much from the kids as they learn from us. Linden Grove is a place of hope for everyone.”

Friendships Valued Most among LGS Grads

Da Vinci Exhibit-2
Kiely Boone lends a hand to Avery Schonberg at one of the many hands-on exhibits.
Sheldon Eads tests his catapult design for a unit on simple machines.
Daniel Mills will miss his LGS friends but looks forward to making new friends in high school.

Alexis Gerver shows off her costume at the 6-8 team Halloween Party.

Twelve incredible young people will soon graduate from Linden Grove School and move on to the next chapter of their lives. Many will attend high school at The Children’s Home of Cincinnati. Others will attend their local public high school or a parochial high school.
No matter where they’re headed, all have set exciting goals to achieve academically and make new friends in high school.
Friends are the thing all grads will miss most about LGS: the students they spent time with in class, on field trips, and at social events on and off campus. When asked about their favorite memories from LGS they answered with a mixture of activities including field trips to local museums and Siekman’s farm, extra-curricular activities such as Taekwondo and LGS’s semi-annual dances, and class projects ranging from potato cannons to catapults.

See special insert! The class of 2017.

Majestic Monarchs

Butterfly display at Krohn Conservatory6-8 Team students walked among hundreds of butterflies at the Krohn Conservatory’s annual butterfly show.

The theme of this year’s show is “The Majestic Monarch” – the well-known butterfly with the orange and black wings that travels as much as 3,000 miles during its annual migration.

Monarch populations have “decreased significantly” during the last two decades, largely due to habitat loss. By featuring the monarch, Krohn Conservatory hopes to raise awareness about the plight of this iconic pollinator and the importance of creating and preserving butterfly habitats.

But monarchs weren’t the only species enjoyed by LGS students – there are more than 75 different kinds of butterflies on display, with about 1,200 total butterflies on exhibit at any given time. Students were able to observe the flowers butterflies seemed most attracted to, and used “landing pads” to observe butterflies up close.


LGS Awarded 3D Printing Package

3D printing will become part of LGS learning resources thanks to a grant from the GE Additive Education Program.
As a grant recipient, LGS will receive two 3D printers with supplies, STEAMtrax curricula and kits for classroom use, webinars and training for LGS staff, and more.
The 3D printing package will expand hands-on learning opportunities across multiple grades and academic areas, while encouraging critical thinking skills and providing exposure to 21st century technologies. For example, the “Tinkering Turbines” kit challenges students to design, print and test a wind turbine model that transforms wind energy into electrical energy. In social studies, 3D printing can be used to create topographical maps to depict geographic features or models of structures and artifacts from ancient civilizations.
The grant is part of an initiative by GE to develop the skills of today’s students and tomorrow’s workforce. Priority for donations was given to schools with strong STEM programs. 
Hands-on activities engaging multiple senses increases student learning and retention. Examples include building catapults from craft sticks to understand simple machines, as well as creating the scene from an historical novel using LEGO™ Build to Express kits.
3D printing will enable LGS to create new hands-on learning activities, while exposing students to 21st century technologies.

Learning Expedition

4-6 team students and staff went on a learning expedition to the Cincinnati Nature Center where they had the opportunity to observe local plants and animals in various life stages.

Students and staff hiked the trails and looked at different trees, rolled over logs and looked at what insects they could find, and even went into a cabin to quietly spy on tons of birds and squirrels. They also got to use a small net to see what they could catch in the pond.

Cincinnati Nature Center staff were on hand to share information on the physical and behavioral adaptations of plants and animals in the forest and pond.

Students learned a great deal about nature, and also worked on communication, observation and critical thinking skills. At one point, students paired off and one students had to direct another student how to get to a tree. Then they had to take off the blindfold and find the same tree. The next time you hike with a friend or family member – you try it!


A Cloud of Bubbles

Alexis learns about states of matter in a hands-on experiment with water and dry ice.

6-8 team students enjoyed another engaging science activity thanks to Mr. Kennedy and Mr. Loar, this time exploring the three states of matter: solid, liquid and gas.

“Normal” ice—frozen water (H2O)—changes from solid to liquid when it melts, eventually evaporating into gas.

Dry ice—frozen carbon dioxide (CO2)—changes directly from solid to gas in a process called sublimation. Additionally, dry ice sublimes more rapidly when submerged in water.

During a recent experiment in the grass area beside the school building, students observed the change from solid to gas when dry ice is submerged in water creating a cloud of water vapor fog. But then they took things one step further . . . .

By adding a squirt of dish soap into the water, a cloud of bubbles begins to appear!

The soap in the water traps the CO2 and water vapor in the form of a bubble. Grab the bubbles and give them a squeeze and the bubbles burst with an explosion of fog!

Students also used soapy water to scoop air into bubbles. Air is made primarily of nitrogen and oxygen. How those gases get into our atmosphere is a lesson for another time!


Creative Lessons Make Math Easy

Everyone knows the Associative Property of Multiplication, right? You know, the property that states that when multiplying three or more real numbers, the product is always the same regardless of their grouping.

LGS students recently learned this pre-algebra concept through hands-on activities using math cards and pipe cleaners.

For those who don’t have the benefit of our creative teaching staff, we’ll walk you through it:

What’s the answer to the following problem?     2 x 3 x 4 = ?

The answer?     2 x 3 x 4 = 24


Sometimes it’s helpful to group the numbers with parenthesis.

Using the above example, you can group the numbers like this:  (2 x 3) x 4 = 6 x 4 = 24

You can also group the numbers a different way: 2 x (3 x 4) = 24

Either way you get the same answer. That’s the Associative Property of Multiplication!


Let’s try another example: 2 x 8 x 5 = ?

You can group the numbers like this: (2 x 8) x 5 = 16 x 5 = 80

Or you can group the number like this: 2 x (8 x 5) = 2 x 40 = 80

Either way, you get the same answer.


Here’s the property in letters:     a x (b x c) = (a x b) x c


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