PS 319’s pumpkin contest is an annual event that has taken place every October for 30 years. One thing that makes this contest stand out is that each pumpkin design is a collaborative effort of a student and their parents.
Creating a unique fantastical pumpkin creation/creature is its own reward, and PS 319 makes that sentiment tangible by giving each entry a trophy. “It’s important every child who brought a pumpkin is rewarded as winner,” said Principal Aleyda Martinez, who also emceed the contest and performances. She mentioned that PS 319 has held this contest from its beginning, since the school was established 30 years ago.
Even though every pumpkin is a winner three pumpkins win 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places; plus seven win best pumpkin in each class level. Carmine Franzese, Deputy Director of Facilities; Ira Munet, UFT representative; and Albert Caraballo, community member were this year’s judges. One would not envy them this job, as so many Great Pumpkins were on display. The ‘minions’ were represented and won 2nd place, a pumpkin baby in a baby carriage, pumpkins made up to look like daisies, gumball machines, a box of popcorn, various ice cream treats, etc. It was an imagination extravaganza!
The crowd was entertained by the pre-kindergarteners performance of the Itsy Bitsy Spider and the dual language kindergarten class performed the Skeleton Dance and danced to “Thriller”.
Another North BK School in Spotlight
360 Keap Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211
Principal: Aleyda Zamora Martinez
Tell us about your school:
PS 319 is an early childhood school, servicing our youngest learners from Pre-K through grade one. Our mission is to instill a lifelong love of learning and to foster pride and self-esteem in every child. Through data driven instruction, goals and objectives are established for the whole school, groups, and individual students. By differentiating instruction, we strive to address the educational, social, and physical and emotional needs of all children, ensuring their ability to meet the challenges of the future. We firmly believe that a literate and educated child will become a productive contributor to society, and in order to meet maximum productivity, all stakeholders-parents, educators, children, and the community must be involved in the process. Although academics play an important role in our school environment, we also offer instruction in art, computers, science, dance, with our classrooms having SmartBoards. In addition, PS 319 offers a Dual Language Spanish program in Pre-K and Kindergarten, for all those interested. We believe in the importance of parent engagement, and therefore maintain on open-door policy, as well as a variety of school functions throughout the year, such as Family Fun Fridays, International Day, Pumpkin Contest, carnival, etc. A self-funded afterschool program for all our children, as well as a self-funded summer school program is offered yearly. Tours are available on an ongoing basis.