Lower School News

The 1st graders had lots of energy on a sunny spring day.  So PE teacher Jen Ward took them outside to do some exercises and play some games as pairs.  See a Short Video and a Photo Gallery of them burning off their energy!

The 1st graders have been learning all about penguins, including painting a life-size version of their penguin species.  So they were excited when they found the penguins they had been studying had been made into "pillows" and were waiting for them in their own seats!  View a Photo Gallery of the kids playing with their penguins, and watch a Video of them naming their penguins too.  Did you know that there are no penguins north of the equator...  except in zoos!

The 1st graders wrote stories about their favorite animals of the Arctic and Antarctic ("Los Animales Polares") in Spanish.  Here is a Video of four of them reading some of their articles out loud.  Yes, Saint George's 1st graders can write and speak Spanish!

The 2nd and 4th graders enjoyed playing metal and wooden xylophones in Judy Hafso's music class on March 29.  See photo galleries of the 2nd Graders and the 4th Graders, as well as a YouTube Video of the 4th graders practicing rhythms on their instruments and keeping a beat.

Lower School students can turn in their Silverwood "READ 2 RIDE" forms to their teacher or LS Librarian Lynette Georgeson by 4pm on Wednesday, March 31 to qualify.  If you have lost the reading log that came home in December, another can be found and printed off from Power School Learning "Kathy’s & LS News" page -- on the left side there is a tab called “Forms and Fliers” and the Read 2 Ride reading log can be found there.  If you have any questions, please feel free to email

The Kindergarten class created a coral reef along one wall of their classroom and learned all about the creatures that inhabit a reef.  See a 1-Minute Video of them naming different creatures of the reef, as well as photo galleries of the Reef and Decorated Books about the fish in a reef and of Hawaiian Day when they brought their stuffed animals and played Coral Reef Bingo!

The Kindergarten class created hearts to hang in the new Arts Building Gallery, while the 1st graders painted colorful hearts that are on display across the building's bottom front windows.  And Lower School students created paper cubes that combined into one of the biggest hearts you are likely to see.  Check out photo galleries of the Kindergarten Hearts, the 1st Grade Hearts, and the Paper Cube Heart.  Happy Valentine's Day!

The 4th graders split into teams to check the quality of the spring at the base of the hillside and the Little Spokane River by Graduation Bridge on Feb. 8.  They regularly measure water temperature, PH balance, and observe any creatures for signs of the water's health.  See a Photo Gallery of their investigations!

After 38 years in the profession and 31 years of devoted service to Saint George’s School as a teacher, administrator, friend and colleague, Kathy Johnson has announced her retirement at the end of this school year.  

Kathy’s career at SGS has been almost exclusively in the Lower School.  She taught Kindergarten for many years, establishing the solid learning foundation for so many young Dragons, including some of the current high schoolers.   She has been a life-long learner throughout her teaching career, serving as an adjunct instructor at the college level and showing dedicated commitment to numerous key school committees.  She capped her career as the Assistant Head of School for Elementary Education for the past eight years. 

"Knowing Kathy, she will not be slowing down in her zest for life," says Head of School Jamie Tender.  "She will be looking forward to spending time with her twin sister, her children, and grandchildren.  Everyone at Saint George's will miss her smiling face and positive approach, and all wish her well on her next adventures."

Head of School Jamie Tender has announced the promotion of current fourth-grade teacher Rick Petrini to the position of Head of Lower School for the 2021-22 school year.  Rick will build on the strong Lower School experience and foundation established by Kathy Johnson, who will retire as Lower School Head at the end of this school year.

Rick has been at SGS for 16 years and has earned the respect and admiration of his colleagues and SGS families for his hard work, dedication and commitment to the SGS community and elementary education.  Rick, along with Co-Chair Brad Kirsch, led the school's most recent NWAIS K-12 Self-Study.  He has served in lead roles on the Benefits Committee, Shared Leave Board, Compensation Committee, the COVID Re-opening Committee and was Saint George's previous McCutcheon Endowed Chair.  Rick is currently completing his second master’s degree; this degree is in Educational Administration.  

"Saint George's is fortunate to have an accomplished educator with the experience, SGS knowledge, and impressive record to lead our Lower School starting in the 2021-22 School year," says Jamie Tender.  In addition to Rick’s teaching duties this year, he will be included in the planning for next year.

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