Whiz Kid: Fifth Grade Student Starts Intermediate School Out Right

Donny Frankenbach knows a second language, excels at his new favorite instrument, volunteers, and participates in tech club as a well-rounded fifth grader.

Name, age: Donny Frankenbach, 10


Achievement: Donny is just in intermediate school, but is nearly fluent in Spanish, helps volunteer at the blood drive and is on his way to conquering the alto saxophone.

Key to Awesomeness: Donny has been in the school district's dual language program since kindergarten and loves playing his saxophone.

He is a part of the second class of dual language students in the Southampton School District. Each week he does an equal amount of work in Spanish and in English. He takes social studies and Spanish in Spanish and English and math in English.

There are two classrooms of students that switch between learning in Spanish and English on a daily basis. The idea is to teach students in the language and dedicate more time to it then a normal language program so these students become fluent.

“The idea was to have a goal that they become fluent by the end of sixth grade,” said Erin Frankenbach, Donny’s mother. She said she is not sure Donny is fluent quite yet, but he definitely can carry on a complex conversation.

"It’s really fun," Donny said. "It's great because the teachers are really nice and sometimes we combine classes and do projects together.”

Donny also took up playing the saxophone this year. He is first chair and Mrs. Rumph, the band teacher, asked him to participate in the New York State School Music Association, because she thought he was ready only after a half of a year of practice. He gets to do a solo for a judge to showcase his talent.

Donny said that he practices a lot, including at night, with weekly private lessons, and in school, sometimes even during recess.

He also started out his fifth grade year out right academically, being on the principal’s list both quarters, which is awarded to those who have an 88 average or higher.

He enjoyed participating in technology club after school this year. At tech club, he made a bench from scratch by cutting the wood, assembling the bench and putting finish on the wood

Donny also gives his time as a volunteer at the Southampton Fire Department blood drive, where he hands out clam chowder to people who have donated blood.

Angela Walker March 23, 2011 at 01:19 PM
Way to go Donny!!!!
J.A. Costa March 23, 2011 at 05:10 PM
Well deserved publicity, Donny. Congratulations to your parents. Mrs. Costa
Theresa Hunter March 23, 2011 at 11:10 PM
WAY TO GO , DONNY!!!!!!!!!! Keep up the GREAT WORK !!!!!!! LOVE YA , Aunt "T"
Mrs. Rumph March 24, 2011 at 05:34 PM
Donny continues to be a model student in the 5th grade band and has challenged himself by joining the Jazz band as well. Congratulations on your article and all that you have accomplished!
Kerry Goleski March 30, 2011 at 01:50 PM
Thanks for the Positive comments! If anyone would like to nominate a whiz kid e-mail me at kerry.goleski@gmail.com. we are always looking for exceptional students :)


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