LAST WINTER at Glenwood Middle School, Carol Nieberline's seventh-grade exploratory class collected more than 13,000 books.
On Feb. 11, the students presented them to the children at Harlem Park Elementary in Baltimore.
The Glenwood exploratory class, consisting of members of the wind ensemble -- performed a concert at Harlem Park.
Glenwood has continued its relationship with Harlem Park by establishing a pen-pal program, pairing sixth- , seventh- and eighth-graders with Harlem Park's third- , fourth- and fifth-grade students.
In April, the Glenwood students wrote their first letters, receiving replies from the Harlem Park students in early May.
The Glenwood students' enthusiasm was so contagious that the seventh-grade teaching team planned a field day at the school for Harlem Park fourth-graders for May 26.
The team organized eight activities during the day. During the lunch break, Glenwood's Jazz Band performed.
Several classes raised money to purchase treats for the visiting fourth-graders, and some bought marigold plants, which the Harlem Park students took back to school to plant.
On June 4, the Glenwood seventh-graders sponsored an end-of-year program at the Circle D Farm in Woodbine to honor 21 outstanding Harlem Park fifth-graders for achievements in citizenship or academics. The Harlem Park students were selected by their teachers. Again, each student was assigned to a Glenwood buddy with whom he or she spent the day.
Nieberline, the seventh-grade team leader at Glenwood, said she wanted the day to "be a very special celebration of the fifth-graders' accomplishments."
And it was.
Glenwood's guests enjoyed softball and volleyball games, swimming and lunch.
Even more exciting than the games were the new friendships.
The Glenwood seventh-graders raised several hundred dollars through candy and bake sales to pay expenses for the June 4 event, and more than 40 Glenwood parents volunteered.
Harlem Park Elementary received 40 additional boxes of books which had arrived at Glenwood after the Feb. 11 book delivery.
Nieberline thanked the community for its support of the students' efforts.
Neighbors also contributed money to help defray the costs of the Circle D trip.
The seventh grade plans to continue the relationship with
"The students of Harlem Park still need so much support, and our students want to provide what they can," Nieberline said.
Scout volunteer honored
Bill Tropf, a resident of Highland, recently received the District Award of Merit from the National Pike District of the Boy Scouts of America.
It is the highest award given to an adult volunteer in the district, which includes more than 75 Cub Scout packs and Boy Scout troops in Howard County.
Tropf has been active in Scouting as an adult volunteer since 1985.
He has been a Webelos Leader and committee member with Pack 737 in Clarksville, as well as the troop's treasurer, newsletter editor, assistant Scoutmaster, and outdoor advancement chairman.
Tropf has spent hundreds of nights camping with Scouts, and regularly takes a small group of older Scouts for 10-day treks in the Rocky Mountains of northern New Mexico at Philmont, the national Boy Scout ranch.
In recent years, Tropf has been more active at the district level of Scouting, serving as unit commissioner and heading the Boy Scout Round Table each month.
He also chaired a successful Scouting for Food Drive, which collected more than 30,000 pounds of food for needy families.
Tropf has received numerous Scouting awards, including the Unsung Hero Award from the National Pike District, the Boy Scout Training Award, the Commissioner's Key Award, and the Arrowhead Award.
As a merit badge counselor in six categories, he has helped more than 135 boys earn their awards.
When not volunteering with the Boy Scouts, Tropf is head of Missile Engineering at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab.
The words, "Houston, we have lift-off," will have a special meaning for students and staff of Manor Woods Elementary School School this fall.
On National Space Day, May 21, students, staff, and parent volunteers at Manor Woods Elementary signed a poster titled "Embrace Space" as part of the "Student Signatures in Space Program" sponsored by Lockheed Martin.
The poster, which will be computer-digitized to become part of the John Glenn space shuttle mission, will be launched in October.
When the shuttle returns, the poster will be returned to the school with a certificate stating that it was included in the flight.
The project began as part of Manor Woods' "Be a Rising Star" reading initiative.
Congratulations to Carol Grady -- Manor Woods' 1997-1998 PTA president -- who researched the activity and made it happen.
Manor Woods is one of four Howard County schools in the national program.
The success of the Manor Woods "Be a Rising Star" reading initiative received attention from some prominent Marylanders.
On May 21, state Sen. Christopher J. McCabe visited the school and spoke to students about the TV-Free Week Challenge he sponsored April 22-28.
McCabe awarded more than 300 certificates to students who accepted his challenge and chose reading over television for 10 days.
On the same day, Linda Thompson -- special secretary to the Governor for Children, Youth, and Family -- visited Manor Woods to review its reading program.
She met with Manor Woods reading specialist Debra Miller and recognized the participation of 335 Manor Woods students in the governor's "Bookmark Program."
These children read 10 books in 10 weeks, sharpening their reading skills in the process.
Pub Date: 6/11/98