Teacher Appreciation Week

What do teachers do?  What don’t they do may be the easier question.

This week schools across the nation are celebrating Teacher Appreciation Week.  Through hand written notes, heart felt gestures, and many other creative ways, teachers are being celebrated. They are being recognized for the time, passion, patience, caring, love, skill, energy, and the many other things that they give to their students every day.

Our Alward Parent Club celebrated teachers this morning by hosting a coffee bar.  Teachers were treated to  a latte, cappuccino, or a coffee of their choice courtesy of Mad Cap Coffee of Grand Rapids.  Our students added to the celebration with hugs, thank you’s, and some hand written notes.  There is more in store for teachers throughout the week!

Please join me, our Alward PTC, and our students in thanking our teachers for all that they do.  It is their dedication, love of students, love of learning, and commitment to families that creates the learning rich environment our students experience every day.

Thank you teachers.  We celebrate you this week, however, we appreciate you far beyond the reach of a school year.

With Gratitude,

Louise Moore

Homecoming Spirit Week

In honor of homecoming next week,  Alward students can show their Eagle Pride by participating in Spirit Days.  Please help your child celebrate being an Eagle by helping them prepare for the week.

Monday Sweet Dreams  Day (Comfy day  PJ’s / sweats)

Tuesday:   Taste the Rainbow Day       – Wear your grade’s color!

K-Yellow       1st-Green     2nd-Purple     3rd-Blue     4th-Orange      5th-Pink 

Wednesday: Willy Wonka Hat Day      – Wear your favorite Hat

Thursday:  Now-n-Later Neon Day      – Wear neon colors

Friday:  Eagle Pride is Sweet Day        – Wear your Maize and Blue

Go Eagles!

Welcome Back- to Change!

Dear Alward Families,  

Welcome back. I hope this communication finds you enjoying the end of summer. With another school year ahead of us, it is time to settle into an evening routine, finish up the school shopping, and get ready to learn and grow with friends and teachers.  I look forward to working with you and your family in the 2016-2017 school year.

During the summer months, Alward underwent the first of three phases of construction, creating a separate parent drop off and bus loop.  In addition, a buzzer system was installed to provide a safer, more secure entry process for 2016/2017 school year.

With this first phase complete, there will be new procedures in place to which our staff will need to help you and your children assimilate. We would like to again thank you in advance for your flexibility, cooperation, and patience through this process.  We will all be adjusting to this new, temporary system that may need to be altered during the school year to accommodate new situations or circumstances that come up during phase two of construction.


Below are some of the temporary changes with which we will help you through this year.

Parent Pick up and Drop Off

  • Parents who will be driving and/or picking up 1st- 5th grade students will drop off in the parent loop on the WEST side of the building between 8:30 and 8:45 am.  You will pick them up at the same location at the end of the school day at 3:45 pm.  
  • Parents dropping off and/or  picking up K students will need to PARK in the WEST lot, and WALK to the front entrance to drop off or pick up their student. This is the same procedure as in the past.

Morning Routine for students

  • All students K-5 will line up in the morning with no access to play area
  • There are new locations for 1st-5th grade students to line up on the EAST side of the building
  • Staff members will assist students who are dropped off to get to their “new location”
  • Staff members will assist K students who ride the bus get through the building to line up with their classmates  in the same location as they have in the past (by the office)  

Safe and secure entry system being used for the 2016/2017 school year:

  • Parents/visitors to the building  will need to be buzzed into the building by office staff
  • Parents/visitors will sign into the office and receive a visitor’s lanyard that must be worn during their entire visit AND RETURNED when leaving the building  
  • Mrs. Nurenberg is often busy with students and parents, and will only be able to buzz in visitors when she can provide them her full attention.  
  • An alternate system will be used for party days and other high traffic times  

Please feel free to call or email with questions or concerns.  



Louise Moore,

Alward Elementary Principal


Mrs. Bandstra – Honda Design and Drive Grand Prize Winner!


Mrs. Bandstra, art teacher at Alward Elementary, won the Honda “Design and Drive Contest” at Art Prize today.  There were six finalist in the competition.  Mrs. Bandstra’s piece was titled “Rosa Circle.”

Students lined the drive at Alward and celebrated Mrs. Bandstra as she returned from being named  Grand Prize Winner!


You can still see Mrs. Bandstra’s car at Art Prize through the weekend.









Trek for Tech = Huge Success!

$14,473.27 Total Earned
2,325 Laps Walked!
30 iPad Minis with Charging Stations On the Way!

What an incredible day for Walk-A-Thon we had on Friday, October 2nd.  Students, parents, and  teachers alike enjoyed the sun as they walked….and ran….  to help students earn the donations that they received from family and friends over the past two weeks.

Thank you to all students, parents, families, and community members who helped us raise $14,473.27 to provide a traveling cart of technology (mini iPads) for all students to use in their learning.  Alward staff and students are blessed to live in the community that we do, and receive the support, both in dollars and in time invested, from community members.

Thank you for a great day.  Thank you in advance for a great year!

Celebrations from Walk-a-Thon 2015 – Trek for Tech

TOP EARNING CLASS:  The top class from each grade level will enjoy cider and donuts on a date TBD.

PK – Mrs. Szymanski                             K – Mrs. LePard                   

1st – Mrs. Conner                                   2nd – Mrs. Goodger

3rd – Mrs. VanderWall                          4th – Mrs. Hamming          

5th Mrs. Bouwens

OVERALL TOP EARNING CLASS:  Home to the Walk-a-Thon Money Trophy for the 2015-16 year

Mrs. VanderWall

CLASS WITH MOST LAPS WALKED: Home to the Sneaker Trophy for the 2015-2016 school year

Mrs. Bouwens

TOP 25 EARNERS FOR THE SCHOOL:  Will receive pizza, along with top class earners, on October 21, AND did receive a personal treat and thank you this past Monday, October 5.

Ethan Carter

Ella Neifert

Logan Hipshier

Zachary Campanaro

Delaina Cook

Brianne Butler

Tristan Gauthier

Natalie VanderVeen

Hailey Veltman

Hayley Baldwin

Quinn Poll

Stasha Brandon

Owen Baldwin

Kenten Poll

Kiersten Christner

Ashlyn Christner

Jaxon W0lters

Mara Feldmeier

Gretchen Stoub

Aubrey Stoub

Payton DuRussel

Kiley Chase

Kaiden Chase

Rachel Van Dyken

Matthew Van Dyken


Stella Perrine

Elliot DenHof

Asher Hodge

Peyton Stuart

Katelyn Snyder

Sophie Jinks

Treyson McIntyre

Ava Palsrok

Makyla Southwick

Alyse Lanenga

Caden Koenig

Kate Albrecht

Tyler VanKempen

Caden Hodge

Madelyn Hyde

Irish Morton

Benjamin Raj

Ryan Hubert

Addison Lanenga

Andrew Van Ek 

Stay tuned for a video representation of the day!

Thank you Alward Community!