The Lancer Life Blog captures the life and pride of a General McLane student behind school doors. This District-wide Blog is a chronicle of news and events, as well as a platform to showcase the achievements and accomplishments of students, faculty and staff within this District. For story ideas, please e-mail Marissa Orbanek at

McKean students visit Children’s Museum

Posted on February 24, 2017

Yesterday, McKean Elementary’s AS class visited the ExpERIEnce Children’s Museum.

We think it’s safe to say they had some fun on this community based outing!


Relay for Life fundraising kicks off

Posted on February 24, 2017

Fundraising for this year’s Relay for Life at General McLane has officially kicked off.

General McLane High School and James W. Parker Middle School held a joint assembly yesterday for Relay for Life.

During the assembly, students received glow bracelets to show those they knew affected by cancer. There was also a Sun Safety Relay Race between teachers and students. Marla Stauffer, a retired General McLane High School teacher and General McLane resident, and Katie Staynoff Jones, owner of Miss Katie’s Dance Studio in Edinboro,  told the students about their survivor stories.

Throughout the week, students voted for teachers and staff they wanted to see dye their entire hair purple. The middle school winners included Don McGahen, Heather Helsley and Todd Sturgess. The High School winners included Mary Cousins and Tim Snair.

On Friday, both the Middle School and High School had hair dye stations in their main lobbies for students and staff who wished to donate a $1 to get a strike of purple. These events were coordinated by the 8th Grade Advisors and GMHS Principal’s Cabinet.

This year’s Relay for Life at General McLane will take place on Saturday, June 3 fro 11 a.m. until midnight.


MS students make sustainable ecosystems

Posted on February 23, 2017

James W. Parker Middle School students made sustainable ecosystems in science class.

Students in Mrs. Berchtold’s self-contained class created the ecosystems to observe and collect data  from its functions, while practicing responsibility.

Students will be observing these over the next month.


Junior receives House Citation from Representative Ryan Bizzarro

Posted on February 22, 2017

Earlier this month, General McLane High School junior Alex Lofgren was presented a Pennsylvania House of Representatives Citation by Representative Ryan Bizzarro.

The citation was given at the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) Squadron 502‘s annual banquet in honor of his recent achievements with CAP, the official auxiliary of the United States Air Force.  As a member, Lofgren participates in the Cadet Programs whose key elements are Aerospace, Leadership and Emergency Services.

Alex achieved the General Billy Mitchell Award this past fall, which marks his halfway point through the cadet program.  To earn this award, which also earned him the rank of Cadet Second Lieutenant, Alex needed to complete the Cadet Physical Fitness Test, pass comprehensive exams in Leadership and Aerospace Education and meet specific leadership expectations.

Only 15 percent of Civil Air Patrol cadets achieve the Mitchell Award and rank of Cadet Second Lieutenant. By earning both, Alex is now eligible to receive CAP scholarships and advanced placement of Airman First Class, should choose to enter the Air Force.

Congratulations to Alex on this outstanding achievement!


McKean 2nd graders read over 940 books in a month

Posted on February 22, 2017

23. According to the Scholastic’s Kids and Family Reading Report, that’s the average number of books that kids ages 6–17  read over the past year.

McKean Elementary’s second graders read 946 books in just one month!

The first annual ‘Blizzard of Books’ reading Contest took place through January. Hosted by McKean’s second grade teachers, the Blizzard of Books Contest was created to help students build positive reading habits, promote reading stamina, and learn time management skills, goal setting and responsibility

The second grade teachers set a reading goal for all students. Every second grade student had to read a minimum of 10 books at their independent reading level during the month, and they also had to successfully pass an Accelerated Reading quiz (to test their comprehension) on each book they read. Many students exceeded this goal.

Students that achieved their monthly reading goal were invited to celebrate at a pizza luncheon.

The top readers of the four classes were Chase Durlin (Mrs. Kirkpatrick), Avery Fiscus (Ms. Marnik),  McKenna Laughery (Mrs. Campbell) and Joseph Henry (Mrs. Hoge).

Congratulations to all of the students on a wonderful job!



Retired Wildlife Biologist visits McKean students

Posted on February 17, 2017

Retired wildlife biologist Brad Nelson came to McKean Elementary School on Thursday to teach fourth graders about environmental health.

He provided the elementary students with a wealth of information on protecting the environment, different animals and animal habitats.

Nelson worked for the  United States Forest Service and many state parks around the country, including the Allegheny National Forest and Kinzua Quality Deer Cooperative (KQDC).



Learning By Design Challenge at JWPMS

Posted on February 17, 2017


James W. Parker Middle School seventh graders celebrated their Makerspace work this week.

Their work was part of a Learning by Design Challenge. This takes places in the middle school art program and challenges students to invent, create and engineer a piece of art from the available recycle materials with minimal guidelines. They can work in groups or individually.

For this specific challenge, students had six 40-minute periods to create an extension of the body or piece of fashion. Students focused on good craftsmanship throughout the lesson and also discussed choosing and trying different tools/methods in a safe way to achieve the desired outcome. These methods included sewing, painting, cutting, drilling, glueing, printmaking, wire cutting/bending, etc.

Some of the materials that were available to students included tyvek(house wrap), cardboard of shape and sizes (fruit trays, egg cartons, flat sheets, packaging corner inserts, many various sizes of tubes), fabric, ribbon, electronic parts, bright/heavy paper, plastic balls, old books, paint sample cards and jewelry findings.

A panel of judges judged their work on creativity, craftsmanship and use of material. Celebratory Sculptures were given out for Best Craftsmanship, Best Theme, Best Use of Material, Most Creative, Most Unique, Best in Show, Most Futuristic and Most Attention to Detail.

Some of the results included: a dress made from Tyvek, a ski helmet made from insulating bubble wrap, a dress made from paint samples, a men’s reversible suit vest covered with metallic art tape, a dragon head made of cardboard with moving mouth, a men’s suit covered with black/gray fringe, metallic tennis shoes, and a silver dress with lace up back.

Learning By Design Lesson fosters 21st century skills of creativity, collaboration, problem solving, critical thinking and communication. There is a Learning By Design group, which is a sub group of the Pennsylvania Art Education Association (PAEA).  JWPMS teacher Christina Martin is a member of the PAEA.
For more pictures from their projects, visit our Featured Photos Page.


Candy Grams returns to MS

Posted on February 16, 2017

Candy Grams returned to James W. Parker Middle School this week!

Students sold the Candy Grams during lunch. All staff and students in the building had the opportunity to purchase a Candy Gram (M&M) for $1.00 to be delivered to anyone within the building at the end of the school day.

This was a fundraiser of the Life Skills classroom. Students learned to take orders, handle money, fulfill the order and then deliver the order. The students sold 753 bags of M&M’s in three days!

For more pictures, visit our Featured Photos Page.



GM schools raise more than $11,000 for American Heart Association

Posted on February 16, 2017

Throughout the last month, General McLane schools participated in a variety of fundraising event for the American Heart Association. The results are quite impressive, with the schools raising more than $11,000 combined.

Edinboro Elementary School’s K-4 raised $6,101.70. Its top fundraiser was fourth grader Owen Eisert, who raised $395! The school had an impressive 40% participation rate in its first year doing the event. Students jump roped throughout the week during their regular physical education classes.

McKean Elementary School raised $3,367.70. Mrs Campbell’s 2nd grade class is the winner of the healthy pizza party and extra PE class! They raised a total of $431! McKean hosted a series of events throughout the month, including visits from a variety of sports teams and a hula hoop artist.

James W. Parker Middle School raised $1,396.16. Students participated in jump rope during the physical education classes. This was the first year the middle school participated in this fundraiser.

General McLane High School had their Red Out last week.  Student Council organized its fundraising efforts (tshirt sales, bake sale, Chinese auction, teacher jeans day), and they raised $598 for the American Heart Association.  The week concluded with an assembly, where four senior boys basketball players competed in a basketball skills challenge against four teachers.  The seniors defeated the teacher-team, comprised of Mr. Wible, Mr.  Delsandro, Ms. Hansen & Ms. Nientimp — and won the challenge!

What a wonderful job by all those who participated and supported this fundraising effort!


Hula hoop dancer visits McKean

Posted on February 15, 2017

Hula hoop artist Jennifer Dennehy visited McKean Elementary on Friday and performed as part of an assembly for Jump Rope / Hoops for Heart Fundraiser.

Throughout the month, McKean has been hosting a series of events for their Jump Rope / Hoops for Hearts Fundraiser. Events included a Heart Healthy Recipe Contest and visits from the Bayhawks, Edinboro University’s lacrosse team and GMHS boys basketball team.

Fundraising for the American Heart Association ends today. For more pictures, please visit our Featured Photos Page.

February 2017
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