Skinner Girls Make a Difference

Race for the cure

Girls On The Run

In celebration of October’s month to spread awareness of Breast Cancer, seven “Girls on the Run” students and their two coaches Jennifer and Brittnee participated in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure on Sunday, September 28, 2014 to show their support for a cure to a disease that affects a great deal of women and men in the community and to learn more about Breast Cancer.

The students really had fun showing off their Skinner spirit and engaging in conversations with not only other Denver community members, but people from around the state of Colorado about individuals who have personally or had a friend or family member struggle with the disease.

The students were treated to free registration forms and goody bags including bright pink head bands from Lululemon of Cherry Creek.

We really enjoyed the early Sunday morning with the young ladies and appreciated the generous donations from Lululemon. In particular, we wanted to thank the girls and their families for spending their Sunday morning supporting other community members and women around the country. Way to go ladies!

Skinner Student to Perform at the Highland’s Street Fair

7th grade talent show snapshotMaya Stone, a young and driven musician and a recent graduate of Skinner Middle School, has been playing the guitar and singing for three years.  Maya started her performance career when she won Skinner Middle School’s annual talent show in 7th grade singing Bon Iver’s, “Skinny Love.”  Since then, Maya’s natural talent for songwriting and guitar has grown significantly with the help of Angie Stevens and JT Nolan. The Denver Highland’s Street Fair will mark her second “large” venue after her performance with Angie Stevens at the Soiled Dove in January 2014. Don’t miss this opportunity to see a local and rising star.

When:  Saturday June 14.  Maya preforms at 10:00 a.m. on the East Stage  Julian and 32nd.

Spring Arts Night

NearlyFinal_InClassroomThis Wednesday and Thursday at 6:30pm, Skinner Middle School is hosting its Spring Arts Night!  Have you ever wondered where the arts have gone in education? Wonder no more because Skinner’s got it covered.  The visual and performing arts are strong at Skinner providing students with a daily dose of creativity, innovation, and teamwork.

Drama: Led by Ms. Allen, Ms. Poellet and McAdams, Skinner students will perform William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, a comical play that will make you smile and laugh the whole night.  Skinner has over 30 students participating in Drama this spring.  This after-school enrichment program has grown so much in the past several years that Skinner is able to double cast its productions.  Both casts are outstanding and if you had a chance to get a preview at last month’s DPS Shakespeare Festival, you will agree.

Music:  The Skinner Band, Jazz Band and Orchestra will have performances immediately following the Shakespeare play. Led my Mr. Dwyer, over 100 students are involved in daily music education at Skinner.

Art: Skinner will also be showcasing outstanding visual artwork form all grade levels under the guidance and teaching of Skinner’s enthusiastic new art teacher, Jessica Feaster.  Work includes digital artwork, clay sculptures, painted guitars and even a 9-foot colorful sculpture made of water bottles!

There are two opportunities to come and celebrate the Arts at Skinner:

Wednesday, May 21, 6:30 pm: Much Ado About Nothing (cast A), Band and Jazz Performances

Thursday, May 22, 6:30 pm:  Much Ado About Nothing (cast B), Orchestra Performance IMG_5231


(Skinner students at DPS Shakespeare Festival)

Skinner Goes To Washington

skinner-white-houseEvery other year Skinner’s 8th Grade US History teacher, Mr. Dehning, leads a school trip to Washington D.C. and Philadelphia, PA for 7th and 8th graders. This year 37 students left bright and early on Sunday, May 4th along with teachers Ms. Allen and Ms. Winter.  For several students it was their very first time ever taking an airplane and traveling out of state.  For all, it was a week away from their families to explore, have fun, and learn outside of the classroom setting.


The trip began in Washington D.C where the group visited many prominent and important memorials such as the Lincoln, Kennedy and MLK Memorials.  They continued on to visit the Smithsonian Museums and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum to explore difficult but important periods in history.  After D.C. the students went to Gettysburg to learn about not only the Civil War, but also the Amish people.  Gettysburg was followed by two days in Philadelphia to learn about the Founding Fathers and the birth of our nation.


Ian Spetnagel, 8th grader, reflected,“ There was no better place to visit than where our whole country was built.  It was a great trip.”  Sister to Ian, 7th grader, Olivia Spetnagel stated, “It was an incredible learning experience that opened a door for the many more travels I hope to pursue.  The best part very well may have been the silly jokes we shared together. It was a trip that will never be forgotten and will only enrich other future travels.

More Neighborhood Families Choosing Skinner

SkinnerJuniorHighSchool3What happens when you have a school with great leadership, great teachers, strong academic offerings, a wide range of extracurricular activities, and a community that stands behind its neighborhood school? You have the ingredients for success.  This past week DPS communications had this to say about trends in Skinner’s enrollment.

“Skinner Middle School is experiencing dramatic increases in both overall enrollment and in the number of neighborhood families choosing the school. Skinner’s total enrollment for 2014 is projected at 500 students, which represents a 34% increase since its 2012 enrollment of 372 students. Of these 500 students, 185 will be sixth-graders, which represents an increase of 52% since the 2011-12 school year. In addition, the school system’s official enrollment count, which is conducted in October of each year, reflects a 94% increase in the number of neighborhood residents enrolling in Skinner (136 students in 2013 compared with 70 students in 2012).”

Mile High 5 – This Saturday May 3rd

Mile High 5 coming up this Saturday, May 3 at Sloan’s Lake, have you registered yet?  The Mile High 5 offers a quality 5 mile, 5k (3.1 miles), and 5,000 ft. fun run, open to competitive and recreational runners/walkers. Prizes will be awarded to top finishers in age categories.  You can register here:  

Register for your spot on the starting line now.  Bring a friend and run together. This is fun community event with a race for every level and age.

Click here for an article from the North Denver Tribune about the race:

Our goal is to support children in being more physically active and 100% of proceeds go directly back to support educational and physical fitness initiatives.

7:30am – 8:30am – Registration & Packet Pick up
8:30am – 5000ft
9:00am – 5k (3.1 mile)
9:15am – 5 mile

Your entry into the Mile High 5 includes: Registration for the 5 mile OR 5k (3.1 mile), a race t-shirt and post-race refreshments. The 5 mile and 5k are chip timed.

The proceeds from the race benefit partnering Northwest Denver schools: Brown International Academy, Centennial – A School for Expeditionary Learning, Colfax Elementary, Edison Elementary, Escuela Valdez – A DPS Dual Language School, Skinner Middle School, and North High School.



Skinner’s Got Talent

talent show 3Last Wednesday night was a night to remember at Skinner.  The Skinner talent show brought down the house with more than 25 performances that included singing, dancing, skits, interactive dance-offs, and musical instruments. The talent show was MC’d by 8th graders Sue Ali and Aidia Bousman. Their wit and humor kept the crowd entertained and the performance flowing. Congratulations to all who participated and a special shout out to the following Skinner students:

Julian Ruck “Most Creative” for his original song and costume “I Like Turtles.”

1st place: Darius Padilla stole the show (and a few hearts) with his very own choreographed dance which earned him top prize.

2nd place: Tiyanna Dennis for her cover of Adele’s “Hurt.”

3rd place: Amber Kiley dropped jaws as the opening act with her piano and vocal set.

A huge thank you to the Neighborhood Center for organizing and making the talent show happened.

Another Reason to Love Skinner

Another reason to love Skinner?  The Neighborhood Center!

On Friday April 11th the Neighborhood Center rewarded 70 deserving Skinner students with a night of swimming, sports, movies, games, dancing, and a lot of food!  The ‘After Dark’ event went from 5-11 pm and provided a safe and extremely fun night where students could flow freely from one activity to the next.  Highlights of the evening included a staff-student dodge ball game, painting of several ceiling tiles (which will be placed in the tutoring room), and many wrinkled fingers from excessive pool use. Thank you to Neighborhood Center Staff and volunteers for making this night happen and being such an important part of the Skinner Community.


Skinner World Language Night 4/9

world language

Skinner is pleased to announce Skinner World Languages Night coming up this Wednesday, April 9th from 6-8pm.  World Languages Night will include projects by Skinner’s 2nd Period Advanced Spanish class, a sampling of delicious foods from various countries and a panel of Spanish-speaking professionals who will be answering questions from Skinner students.

The entire community is invited and students currently enrolled in Spanish at Skinner are required to attend.  Students will be participating in a written scavenger hunt throughout the evening and participating in lots of other fun activities.

Volunteers are needed!  We have two different jobs: monitoring the food/projects in the cafeteria and helping with check-in.  Please click on one of the links below to sign up to volunteer.  Thanks in advance for your help!

Mary Overton – Skinner Spanish Teacher


Help in the cafeteria (5:30-7:30 pm):

Help with check-in/check-out (5:30-8:15 pm):

45 Students Attend the Colorado Science Olympiad Competition

imageolympiads 1









February 22nd was the culmination of weeks of hard work in preparing Skinner students for our second Colorado Science Olympiad, a state-wide competition held in Fort Collins that fosters science excellence.  As the only middle school representative from Denver Public Schools, 45 of our Skinner Scholars approached the events with a strong effort and a can-do attitude.  The competition consisted of 23 different events.  There were “build-it” events where students were tasked with building helicopters, boomilevers (a fixed position crane), mouse trap propelled vehicles and even rotors designed to bring a raw egg safely to the ground without damage.  Masters events were also a part of the day and in these events students had to prepare for performance tasks and paper and pencil assessments in the fields of human anatomy, entomology, meteorology, chemistry and experimental design.  At the end of the day we returned to Skinner knowing not only that we had a great time but that we are now considered experts in our respective fields.  Official results to come shortly!

Christopher Martin – 7th grade Science Teacher


UPDATE!  March 14, 2014

We are so proud to congratulate the following Skinner Scientists for placing at the Colorado Science Olympiad, and congratulations to all 45 of our Scientists for their incredible performance at the Olympiad.

  • Out of the total of 37 teams, the team of Jackie Montero & Kevin Padilla took 9th place in Meterology!
  • Out of the total of 37 teams, the team of Avery Ahern, Glenn Holzhauer & Angel Martinez took 9th place in Experimental Design!

Great Schools Have Great Volunteers

Did you know that Skinner has over a 100 parent, grandparent and community volunteers?  DSC_0743 Meet Chris Sandoval.  Chris is a member of The Grands, grandparents and community elders who volunteer at Skinner. He began volunteering at schools when his grandchildren started at Edison Elementary.   Luckily for Skinner, he sought out volunteer opportunities here when his grandson entered 6th grade.  He still has 3 grandchildren at Edison and volunteers there regularly too.  Chris is a cafeteria monitor 3 days a week and plays an important role in keeping the cafeteria an organized and a welcome place to eat.   Michelle Koyama, principal at Skinner, says that Chris helps out in many different ways.  “Mr. Sandoval and his commitment to a regular routine as a cafeteria monitor, has been tremendous.  Students see Mr. Sandoval as a member of the Skinner Team, and connect with him as he takes time to talk with the students and build positive relationships.  Between lunch periods, Mr. Sandoval helps in the main office which is also greatly appreciated by the office staff.”   Chris has also volunteered with the Neighborhood Center’s Haunted House and Skinner’s Science Fair.  Chris says that he enjoys getting to know the students and teachers in all of his volunteering work.

Skinner is very fortunate to have Chris on our volunteer team.  If you see Chris, please thank him for his efforts.

The Skinner community has a very active volunteer program.  If you would like more information on how to get involved in volunteer activities, contact Rebecca Caldwell at or 720-424-1495.

Skinner Music Program Hits a Note!

Honor BandThree of our Skinner musicians were selected  to participate in the 2014 Citywide Middle School Honor Orchestra.  Only a select number of students per school, recognized for their talent and leadership skills, are asked to audition.  A representative from Denver Public School’s music program traveled around the city to conduct auditions.  Skinner is so pleased to have had three of our student musicians selected to participate.

With this honor comes the responsibility for the students to learn the music, attend all rehearsals and participate in a professional manner as a young adult.  This year’s conductor is Amy Martinson, music teacher at Hill Middle School.  The Middle School Honor Orchestra will be a part of a concert along with Honor Orchestras representing DPS elementary and high schools.  The concert will be on Saturday, February 22, at 3:00 p.m. in the auditorium of North High School. Congratulations to our Skinner musicians, we are so proud of you.


Pictureed:  Cheyanne Burton – 8th grade alto sax,  Sofia Jenkins-Nieto – 8th grade alto sax and Dorian Earnest – 7th grade bassoon

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