RACHEL ALPERT, flutist and freshman at Centennial High School, has won the eastern Division title for junior high woodwinds at the Music Teachers' National Association competition.
To win the competition, she performed a memorized, 20-minute program. Winning the Contest qualifies her to compete at the national level in late March in Kansas City.
Also in March, Miss Alpert will be the first flutist at the Junior High Allstate Band's concert.
"She just soaks up everything I tell her," says her flute instructor, Marlee Lindon.
Members of the Dunloggin Middle School's Disability Awareness group are 24 seventh-graders who are in partnership with Cedar Lane School, a school for severely handicapped students.
The seventh-graders have learned about life in a wheelchair and meals from feeding tubes.
They have gone bowling with 13 handicapped middle-school children, shared a party at holiday time and enjoyed reciprocal school visits.
Dunloggin's entire seventh grade is becoming involved in learning about handicaps. Physical education teacher Liz Brigham has her students experiment with playing basketball in wheelchairs. Industrial arts teacher Stu Sklar helps the children make mobiles to donate to Cedar Lane School. And in home economics teacher Janis Solomon's class, students fashion aprons for the handicapped students.
The next step is to help Cedar Lane School's PTA with the school's continuing financial needs. Equipment available to help the children is expensive, and Cedar Lane's PTA is small.
So the seventh-graders are celebrating the month of love by holding a penny drive, with a goal of making an $800 donation to Cedar Lane School.
Cedar Lane's children could use your pennies. Call Dunloggin Middle School at (410) 313-2831 to make a donation.
Northfield Elementary School's Student Government Association raised funds last year to aid cancer victim Tracey Carroll, a school parent.
This year, in honor of National Philanthropy Day, the SGA was honored by Maryland's chapter of the National Society of Fund-raising Executives for the effort.
The group was recognized as Outstanding Youth Fund Volunteer Fund-raiser at the elementary level.
Community members attending the ceremony from the school were teachers Betsy Adelman and James Wagner, Principal Arlene Mindus, Tracey Carroll and her daughter Emily Carroll, as well as last year's SGA officers.
If you have been wondering about Ms. Carroll's health, her cancer is in remission. She gives some credit for her good health to the positive energy of the students' efforts.
Here's a potpourri of Department of Recreation and Parks classes for next month:
* "Puttin' on the Ritz," cooking instruction by local chef John Neault, is given from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m Thursday and Feb. 8.
Participants will learn to prepare crab dip, salsa roll-ups, garden alfredo dip and more.
The class will be held at Rockburn Elementary School.
* Prepare for your financial security in "My Spouse Always Handled the Money," a money-management seminar taking place at 7 p.m. Feb. 21 at Elkridge Landing Middle School.
David Stepherson, portfolio manager at Mercantile Bank and Trust, will cover financial control, investment and tax reduction.
* Children in grades three to eight can play winter baseball at Elkridge Landing Middle School, where they'll practice for the outdoor season.
Teachers Conrad Brookhart and Kevin Hendon and college baseball standout Mark Trecanelli will teach the class, which runs for five weeks beginning at 4 p.m. Feb. 5.
Information: (410) 313-PARK.
Love songs, lullabies
The Howard County branch of the Peabody Children's Chorus celebrates the month of love at 3:30 p.m. Sunday with the concert "Love Songs and Lullabies."
The program will include traditional and culturally diverse selections.
The Children's Chorus includes four levels of vocal ensembles for children ages 6 to 16.
The concert will be held at Hammond High School, and admission is free.
The chorus requests that children under 5 not attend.
Call 203-0664 for more information.
Fire Department breakfast
Elkridge Volunteer Fire Department volunteers will flip pancakes at the all-you-can-eat breakfast Sunday.
Eggs, sausage, toast, hash browns and beverages will accompany the 'cakes from 7:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the new hall, 6275 Old Washington Road in Elkridge.
Tickets for adults cost $4 and $2.50 for children 5 through 12. Children younger than 4 eat for free.
Celebrate Black History Month with griot Michelle Hamiel, who will tell tales for the family.
"Traditional African Tales" will be presented at Miller branch library at 11 a.m. Saturday.
Call (410) 313)1955 to register.
"Creative Conflict Resolution for Families," a parent fair, will take place at Centennial Lane Elementary School from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 8.
While children enjoy Magicomedy by Robert Strong, their parents can learn tactics for family tranquillity from a trainer from Howard Community College's Conflict Resolution Center.
This program is sponsored by United Way Family Preservation Grant for St. John's Lane, Longfellow, Northfield and Centennial Lane elementary schools.
Call 313-2800 to reserve a place.