Parents with school-age children know the routine by heart.

"Can I go out?" asks the child.

"Do you have any homework?" asks the concerned-yet-loving parent.

"Ah, mmm, well, I don't know."

"You don't know! What do you mean you don't know?"

"Well, I think I do but . . .," and the hasslebegins.

Most of us, either as children or parents, have been through the scenario. Sometimes the homework is not fully understood by the child or helpful parent. Other times, homework is just plain, old WORK, and who needs that after being in school for SIX, LONG HOURS?

If you find your family in this ritual, then you may like to attendthe "Hassle Free Homework" program at 7 p.m. Monday at Sunset Elementary School.

The program, sponsored by the Northeast Families for Education, will feature the principals and counselors from Northeast High, George Fox Middle, High Point, Riviera Beach, Solley and SunsetElementary schools.

Small group sessions, conducted by counselors, will help parents and their children focus on specific strategies to help improve the homework hassle situation.

"We are trying to help our students develop responsibility for do

ing their homework,"said Patricia Emory, principal at Solley Elementary.

She says that the the homework-help program was created after a recent parent survey of all schools in the Northeast feeder system showed the top parental concern was homework.

Supervised child care with entertainment and refreshments will be provided.


While parents on one side of Pasadena are wrestling with homework problems, parents in the Chesapeake feeder system will begin to grapple with the new Maryland State Performance Program.

At 7 p.m. Tuesday, parents of students inthe Chesapeake system are invited to a meeting at Chesapeake High School's auditorium on the MSPP.

Principals from Chesapeake High, Chesapeake Bay Middle, Bodkin, Fort Smallwood, Jacobsville, Lake Shore and Pasadena elementary will attend to discuss and answer questions about the program.

Cheryl Wilhoyte, assistant superintendent of Schools for Instruction, will present a history of the MSPP and the state's expectations for school performance. Information specific to the Chesapeake feeder system will be provided.


Before delving into the heavy-duty education questions next week, take a few hours tonight or tomorrow evening and enjoy some family-style entertainment at two local happenings.

Tonight at 7 p.m., "Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" will be the featured flick at Riviera Beach Elementary School.

Admission is $1 for everyone, age 3 and older. Children 2 and under will be admitted free. Children under 7 must be accompanied by an adult.

Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. with popcorn, candy and soda available to purchase.

Family Night Movie Time is sponsored by the Greater Riviera Recreation Council and the county Department of Recreation and Parks.

Saturday night's Clown, Magic

and Illusions Show, sponsored by the Band Boosters at Chesapeake High School, should tickle the funny bone.

Tickets, available at the door, are $4 for adults, $2 for children under 12.


The sky's the limit when it comes to projects at local school science fairs this month.

At Sunset Elementary School, Grand prize winners Amanda McIntyreand Eileen Stock will represent their school at the county science fair in April.

Third-grade winners were: Chris Moylan, first place,Kraig Danton, second place; and Anthony Mele, third place.

In fourth grade, Sarah Zacharko placed first, Devin Martin second, and Meagan Sears third.

Fifth-grade winners were Deborah Morris, first, Sara Ruff, second, and Andrea Kirby, third.

More than 50 projects were entered in the science fair at Lake Shore School.

Grand prize winners Chrysa Latrick and Cory Ford will represent Lake Shore at the county competition.

Other winners were: Leslie Bruce, Victoria Lloyd and Sarah Silanskis, kindergarten; Robert Herrmann, Matthew Latrick and Christopher Morck, first grade; Nicholas Ehlers, Erin Fitzgerald and Jessica Hutchinson, second

grade; Adam Hedetniemi, Pamela O'Brien, Morgan Powell and Robert Strickland, third grade; Adam Borkoski, Kimberly Hepburn and Chris Zeruto, fourth grade; Ryan Howard, Aaron Jeffords and Ricky Koebrugge, fifth grade.

At George Fox Middle School's competition, seventh-grader Danielle Turner's physics project captured the grand prize.

Dan Sawyer won the 1991 Kodak Award and received a check for $25 and a plaque.

In the life science category, Amy Smith won first place, Liz Sexton took second and Nathaniel Fish was third.

Earth science winners were Kim Kirby, first place,Andy Dhillon, second, and David Duvall and Rachel Zepher tied for third place.

Robert Peterson won first place in the computer sciencecategory.

The physics awards went to Turner, Kyle Garsky, second place, and Jason Yannuzzi, third.

Consumer science winners were Roy Burns, first, and Liz Boone and Mike Eck tied for second place.


Pasadena Assembly of God invites the community to a special program at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, at the church, 206 PleasantviewAve.

Mike Zello, evangelism director of Teen Challenge of Washington and Maryland, will present a program about Teen Challenge. Teen Challenge is a Christian ministry that helps young people deal with drug and alcoholproblems.

Zello, an ordained Assembly of God minister, heads up the inner-city street evangelism program in the district in addition to serving as youth pastor at New Life Assembly of God.

Visitors are asked to donate a food item to be used by Teen Challenge in its street ministry.

For more details, call the church at 647-2025.


Several schools have issued a special invitation to grandparents to come and visit with their grandchildren on Grandparent's Day.

Jacobsville Elementary has set Tuesday as its day to honor grandparents.

Registration will begin at 9 a.m. with classroom visitation to follow.

Grandparents are invited to visit at Fort Smallwood Elementary on Tuesday from 9:30 to 11:15 a.m.

Sunset Elementary has invited grandparents to visit Wednesday from 9 to 10 a.m.

Lake Shore School has scheduled Grandparent's Day for April 2.


Next week will be a busy onefor students at St. Jane Frances School.

Tuesday, puppeteer Shirley Johannesen Levin will bring her Puppet Dance Productions to entertain junior high students. The program, "Freedom and Human Rights Awareness: A New Look Around Us," incorporates puppets, poems and audience participation.

Wednesday will be a super-busy day packed with activities.

For younger students, the Student Activities Committee is sponsoring an Easter Egg Hunt, with a special visit from the Easter Bunny.


You've collected soup labels and grocery store receipts; the scavenging has eased, or so you thought. Well, think again. Blue-and-white soda caps are the latest collectible to help schools raise money.

The local Pepsi bottler, Pepsi-Cola Cheverly, is sponsoring "School Caps Challenge."

From now through May, specially marked caps from two-liter Pepsi products can be redeemed for 10 cents each.

So far, George Fox Middle, Chesapeake Bay Middle and Lake Shore schools are participating in the program.

So check with your school and save those caps for cash.


What do you get when you take 240 Chesapeake Bay Middle School students, four enthusiastic engineers, some tag board, staples and masking tape? The obvious

answer is pandemonium, but the actual results were quite surprising.

Eighty students from each grade, sixth through eighth, were invited on an inschool field trip to participate in the Discover"E" Engineering program, sponsored by the Westinghouse Corp. and theschool science department.

Four engineers, Chuck Kerfoot, Eli Solomon, Scott Imhoff and Conway Bolt, donated their time and talents topresent the outreach program at the school.

After a brief introduction by the Westinghouse team, students viewed a video about engineers and learned the basic principals that are used. Then the fun began.

Teams were selected and presented with the problem: design and build a bridge 18 inches long, 6 inches wide, out of tag board, staples and masking tape that can support the most weight.

Sound easy?

Well, after brainstorming with team members, each group built its creation and put it to the test in a "Collapse Off." In the contest, bridges were tested with weights and the results videotaped.

The bridge supporting the most weight -- 49 pounds -- was built by a seventh-grade team.

"We were very pleased with the results of the Discover E program," said Barbara Johnson, science department chairwoman. "The students were able to experience first hand how science and the real world work together to solve everyday problems."

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