Lincoln Class of 2021 Moving Up
June 22, 2021
This year, Lincoln Avenue Elementary School held three Moving-Up ceremonies for the three Fifth-grade Classes and each event followed the same format.
The Moving-Ups opened with a select student from each class* leading the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance. This was followed immediately by the students performing America on chimes directed by Music Teacher Christine Cirillo.
Lincoln Avenue Principal Christine Carlson expressed an enthusiastic welcome to everyone at the celebrations, including Superintendent of Schools Dr. John Stimmel, Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Christine Criscione, Assistant Superintendent for Business Mr. John Belmonte, and Board of Education trustees John Verdone and Norm deVenau, along with the relatives of the students.
“This has been a school year unlike any other,” Principal Carlson acknowledged. “Navigating school in the midst of a global pandemic has been truly challenging. I am incredibly proud of the flexibility, grace, and perseverance you have shown despite the challenges you’ve faced this year. Most of all I am grateful that I was able to see you nearly every day this school year in person. Keeping our distance and wearing masks were not easy, but they were a small price to pay to be able to spend the majority of our days together at Lincoln Avenue. The end of elementary school is always a memorable time, and you will be able to share many years from now how Covid-19 made your experience even more memorable.”
Mrs. Carlson recognized that for the parents, at least, their children’s elementary school years must have seemed like a “blink of an eye,” especially now they are heading to Middle School. “They have come a long way from the small kindergarteners who had so much to learn to the mature intelligent young ladies and gentlemen ready to become more independent in MS. Today is a very special day to recognize all of your accomplishments. I hope that you take some time to truly appreciate all of the hard work that got you to this point.”
After announcing that each Fifth-grader has received “a special certificate from State Senator Phil Boyle to honor them for their hard work this year,” Mrs. Carlson continued by naming the recipients of the Special Students Awards (see PDF, below right). As their names were called, each student stood, removed his or her mask, and smiled for the applauding audience.
Another musical number prepared by the students under the direction of Music Teacher Mrs. Cirillo was Phillip Phillips’ song Home. (See the video below). Their moving performance was not sung, but done in sign language. Mrs. Cirillo “found creative ways to overcome some of the COVID restrictions [about singing],” Principal Carlson explained, “and has worked with our students tirelessly to prepare them for today.”
During the distribution of the Moving-Up Certificates, each student was called down from the stage, picked up their certificate on a table, and paused for a photo under balloon arches.
In closing the ceremonies, Principal Carlson shared a message from Sayville Middle School Principal Dr. Joseph Castoro and thanked everyone who made this day possible: "our Fifth Grade Teachers, Mrs. Barone for helping with organizing, Mrs. Aron and Mrs. Calderone in the Main Office, the custodial staff at Lincoln Avenue and here at the OJHS, and the PTA, specifically members of the 5th grade committee for providing all of the decorations and celebrations for our students.... A very special thank you to Mrs. Cirillo for working with the students and helping me with the logistics of today’s presentation."
Mrs. Carlson ended with words of encouragement for her Moving-Up students. “I am sure that many of you may be nervous about moving on to a new school, but I know that you will continue to flourish there just as you have at Lincoln Avenue. I can’t wait to hear about all that you will accomplish as you continue on your academic journey. Be like a tree,” she recommended, citing qualities the Fifth-graders could emulate, “Stay grounded, stand tall and proud…Connect with your roots…Turn over a new leaf…Bend before you break…Enjoy your unique natural beauty… and... Keep growing!”
During the recessional, the Fifth-graders marched out of the auditorium to their recorded voices singing the traditional song/parody—Graduating paraphrased by Christine Cirillo—sung to the tune of "Levitating" by Dua Lipa.
*Pledge: Thomas Burke & Aiden Devane - Student Council Senators (Bombara); Grace Gordon - Student Council Senator (Closs); Julian Trainor - Student Council President (Puglisi/Hawthorne)