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Rewarding Kewaskum Elementary School Kids with Hobby Day Featuring Sherry Gerhartz
Episode 317th March 2022 • Fifteen Minutes with Fuzz • Fuzz Martin
00:00:00 00:10:49

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Mrs. Sherry Gerhartz is the dean of students and a music teacher at Kewaskum Elementary School in Kewaskum, WI. This week, they are rewarding their students for their positive behavior with a PBIS special day called, "Hobby Day." PBIS encourages kids to make good choices in the classroom, on the playground, on the bus, in the lunchroom, bathrooms, hallways, etc.

My wife, Shanna, and I were asked to come present to the kids on Hobby Day about podcasting. Shanna put together a really fun presentation and we're going to teach the kids about some of the vocabulary of podcasting and how shows like this end up on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

Just a word of warning—I recorded this show while sitting in the vice principal's office. So, you'll hear a little bit of echo and a lot of fear in my voice from some PTSD from my youth (kidding).

Thanks again to Mrs. Gerhartz for hosting us! It was a lot of fun! And thank you for listening!

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Fuzz Martin 0:00

Hey what's up, WashCo. How's it going? You good? I'm good. We have a fun episode lined up for you today. But first I want to be a dad and brag for a moment. Can I do that? It's my show. I have to and you're here already. So just stay with me right now. My daughter Bri Martin. She's a senior at West Bend West and this past weekend she competed in the Wisconsin High School powerlifting Association's state championships at the Fox Cities Convention Center in Appleton. She went up against 23 other girls in her weight class and took eighth out of that group. It was the last meet of her high school career. I'm sure she'll tackle some USAPL meets and she's talked about joining the UW La-Crosse powerlifting team when she goes to school in the fall, but it was great to see her lifts. And I'm super proud of her. A lot of people asked me what her best lifts are, like how much she how much can she lift, bro. So in powerlifting, you get three attempts each at the squat, bench press and deadlift, and then they take your best lift from each of those three, and then give you a total. That's how they judge you. So as a 5'11" 17-year-old girl who weighs about 170 pounds, she can squat 265, benchpress 132, and deadlift a whopping 335 pounds. And our best total was combined 715 pounds just a few weeks ago in Germantown. She also won a $1,000 scholarship from the WHSPA for dedication to the sport and community service. And that's awesome because we have to pay for college coming up. So needless to say we are very, very, very proud of you, Bri. Congratulations. I've been her coach since she was 13. And I'm grateful that I had the opportunity to be with her through it all. It was an amazing experience a lot of fun. And I would do it all over again in a heartbeat. On this week's episode, I'm speaking with kewaskum elementary school dean of students and second through fifth grade music teachers Sherry Gerhartz. Mrs. Gerhartz is putting together a cool event called hobby day, at which my wife Shanna and I will be talking to students about podcasting. We'll also be teaching kids how podcasts are made, what technology we use to record and how shows like this and up on Apple podcasts and Spotify. A little bit of warning, there's a little bit of reverb because I literally recorded it in the vice principal's office. So I should have been used to that I should have had that all figured out. But you see now it's a different different studio than I'm used to. And with that, here's 15 minutes with Mrs. Gerhartz on 15 minutes with Fuzz.

Mrs. Gerhartz Thanks for having me in today. So before we talk about hobby day, I wanted to learn a little bit about you and your role at Kewaskum Elementary School. So first of all, how long have you been here at Kewaskum?

Sherry Gerhartz 3:07

been teaching Kewaskum since:

Fuzz Martin 3:15

Your role is as the elementary Dean of Students, what does the school day look like for you?

Sherry Gerhartz 3:20

Well, the typical school day for me is I am teaching music in the morning for students in second through fifth grade. And then in the afternoon, I have my dean of students role. And that role entails addressing any bus incident reports that students may have. It's working with some students individually who are struggling with some behaviors. It's kind of a lot more like an assistant principal. Okay.

Fuzz Martin 3:48

So when I when I came into your office here and there was the chair next to the desk, I had a little bit of memories flashback for when I was in elementary school. So not that I was in the chair that you teach music. How fun is that?

Sherry Gerhartz 4:00

I love teaching music. It's a lot of fun. The kids really enjoy all the different activities, playing games and moving around and playing instruments, all those fun things that we get to do in general music.

Fuzz Martin 4:10

What do you love most about your career here at Kewaskum? Elementary?

Sherry Gerhartz 4:14

Well, there's basically two things. First and foremost, the kids are number one, you know, they always know how to put a smile on your face. And they know how to make the day a challenge sometimes, which is also a really good opportunity for us to experience and I love the staff that I work with everybody is willing to help out. Everybody's hard working. And this really is like a second family to me when I get to come to work. So I wake up every day and I love being here.

Fuzz Martin 4:40

So this week, my wife Shana, and I get to participate in a fun event called hobby day. And the invite said it's a PBIS reward date. Now, I am married to school teacher so I kind of understand the reference but for those listening, what is PBIS and how do students earn rewards?

Sherry Gerhartz 4:56

So PBIS stands for Positive Behavior Intervention and Support, and we are a school that implements two different tiers of that. So our first tier is the basic rules or expectations that we have the students participate in, which is being safe, being responsible and being respectful. And we teach them the behavior expectations for those three areas in all the different areas of the school and kids will remember this at the beginning of the year. And through the videos we show throughout the year that they've learned this in the cafeteria, on the playground, on the bus, in the hallways, in the bathrooms, and then of course, in all of their classrooms, all opportunities to reward them for doing something positive.

Fuzz Martin 5:38

Right, exactly. So let's talk about hobby day. How many families and community members are participating today and how many students will be participating?

Sherry Gerhartz 5:46

So we're really fortunate to have eight different businesses or community organizations who are helping to contribute to our happy day and I just like to give them some credit. We have Piggly Wiggly coming in to do cookies. We have the Gift Nook in Kewaskum, who's going to help teach crochet the West Bend Public Library has donated Legos for us to use. Wendy Dreher from Hair on Main is teaching scrapbooking. We have the YMCA coming in to do sports fusion. The Home Depot has donated woodworking projects for that. And Jessica at the Coffee Korner has donated some coffee sleeves that will be used again at the Coffee Korner once kids have colored them.

Fuzz Martin 6:29

Oh, great. That's awesome. That's excellent. And that'll probably be my next stop right after this interview. There are a number of different hobbies that are being represented at the event. What are some of those those hobbies that the kids will be learning about today?

Sherry Gerhartz 6:41

In addition to those businesses, we have a few parents coming in and some of the hobbies they're teaching are origami, ghost investigation doesn't. Cool. And of course, your podcasting. Some other activities that kids are really hyped up about are the Cupcake Wars. All right, and we have a staff member doing that. RC cars where they get to bring in their own RC car and they'll drive those around. Sure. And then of course, slime making slime making is the number one thing that kids have wanting to do.

Fuzz Martin 7:10

Excellent. I probably would have participated in slime making myself. So do they just get to do one hobby during the day?

Unknown Speaker 7:16

That's correct. So this hobby day is for all of our 4k through fifth grade students and everybody's picking one hobby that they're going to do for that 60 minute time period.

Fuzz Martin 7:26

Awesome. If you had your choice, which three of the hobbies would you have chosen?

Sherry Gerhartz 7:31

I think ghost investigation does sound pretty interesting. So that would have been one of mine. Dance because well, I like music and then I like the idea of the winter hike. Okay, getting outside as always, it's a good thing. Yeah,

Fuzz Martin 7:45

My, my daughter, who was in first grade here chose tent reading, which I was actually surprised. And I was actually pleasantly surprised that she wants to do tent rating. So I would have done Lego building for sure. Like number one, number one, then probably RC cars and winter hike would have been cool. Or perhaps sports fusion. What do you feel that hobby day does for the students here at school?

Unknown Speaker 8:06

Well, we hope that it's giving a lot of our students an opportunity to try something new. They get to work with other kids in other grade levels, which is really nice. We have hobbies where we have four Cares all the way up to fifth grade, aged kids in that same hobbies. That's a good opportunity to make some connections for our older students to do some role modeling and just to help out the younger students. And then it just also allows our kids to make connections with businesses shows people in the community. And finally, if it's not something that they're willing to try new, we hope that it's something they really enjoy. Sure,

Fuzz Martin 8:44

Absolutely. And then any big plans for the next PBIS reward.

Unknown Speaker 8:49

So our final big PBIS reward is going to be in May, and that is our grillin' and chillin' events.

Fuzz Martin 8:56

Oh fun. Okay, and then what happens at that event,

Unknown Speaker 8:59

So the kids, we have a cookout with her lunch program, and in the past, students have been able to bring their bikes, they've been able to bring scooters. And they can color outside with chalk. They can read outside or we let some of the kids go over to the high school track and run around the track.

Fuzz Martin 9:19

Great. Well let me know if you need a so many on the grill. Is that something that's one of my hobbies so great. Mrs. Gerhartz. Thanks for joining me on 15 minutes with Fuzz today and have fun and happy day. Thank you.

Thanks again to Mrs. Gerhartz for having us in for hobby day and for coming on the show today. Mrs. Martin is joining me right now in the studio. What has been your favorite PBIS reward day that you've ever had the school that you've taught it?

Shanna Martin 9:46

I would have to say one of my favorite days was when I was in a school that was close to a bowling alley. Yeah, so we took like the whole school bowling at separate times for grade levels. Sure. It was pretty cool because it was in walking distance and that's fine. We walked away with bowling and it was something that we didn't do very often.

Fuzz Martin:

Sure was fun. If you were going to participate in hobby day, okay, yes. What hobby would you have chosen?

Shanna Martin:

There's so many to pick from. They looked so fun. I would have to say either like there was cupcake decorating. There's cookie decorating, or there's Lego building earlier. shrinky dink making so I would probably have a hard time I can decision.

Fuzz Martin:

Yeah, I would have said Lego building number one, number one. So are you ready to teach kids about podcasting?

Shanna Martin:

I'm so excited to teach these like younger kids about podcasting. I teach middle school all the time

Fuzz Martin:

And let's get to it. Thanks for listening to 15 minutes with Fuzz. Please subscribe on Apple podcast, Spotify or wherever you listen to podcasts. And we'll talk to you next week right here on 15 minutes with Fuzz.




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