Putting the FUN into Fundraising

Yesterday we announced the full schedule and details for the upcoming Great Outdoors, 2021 Spring FUN-draiser, and we are beyond thrilled to bring this new event to our great community!


The spring event is our most successful fundraiser of the year, generating a significant amount of money that helps support both our immediate needs and our long-term goals. Before the pandemic, parents, parishioners, and community members gathered in-person for a Gala and participated in a live auction that raised thousands of dollars for scholarships, a specific annual area of need (known as our yearly Fund-a-Need project), capital improvements, teacher development, and so much more.


As with our 2020 event, our 2021 festivities will again feature a virtual auction, but this year we are on a mission to pump up the FUN in fundraising. The parent-volunteers who have planned for this year’s fundraiser, have created a series of events that celebrate our Falcon community, time with our families, and time outdoors in our beautiful North Star state.


Below are the key details to note as we countdown to this community-wide initiative!


  • ClickBid registration is open for the Virtual Auction. Please go to this link now and register for your bidding number. Share this link with family members and friends and encourage them to register as well!
    • Families that register for the Virtual Auction may record 5 volunteer hours in Sycamore.
    • The auction preview is live and features over 100 items and packages – we have something for everyone, at every price point!
    • Bidding begins on Wednesday, April 28


  • Our 2021 Fund-a-Need will raise funds specific to our science curriculum, impacting the learning experience in every classroom in our great school. In the coming days, you will see several items added to the auction that you can “purchase” to directly support a teacher’s science curriculum.


  • On Thursday, April 22 every student will be given an Adventure Challenge Booklet to participate in a Great Outdoors scavenger hunt. This activity is optional, but an amazing way to have fun together as a family!
    • The booklet will have instructions on how to complete each of the challenges and is scaleable for all grade levels.
    • The challenges fall into four categories: at-school, at-home, in White Bear Lake, and Acts of Service.
    • Students will return their completed booklets on Monday, April 26 and winners will be announced on Tuesday, April 27.


  • The Virtual Auction will open for bids on Wednesday, April 28 at noon and will close at 9:00 p.m. on Friday, April 30. 
    • Get in there early and claim your favorites!
    • Continue to share this amazing opportunity with friends and family members. The amazing line-up of auction items makes this initiative a win-win for all!
    • Your purchases support the enhancement and expansion of Catholic education in White Bear Lake. WIN-WIN!

More on the Fund-A-Need

Each year as we launch this critical initiative, we identify a specific area of need, known as our annual Fund-a-Need project, which supports an aspect of our STREAM (science, technology, religion, engineering, arts, and mathematics) curriculum.
In 2020, Virtual Auction participants played a significant role in helping us raise enough money to complete the school Chapel, supporting our religion curriculum. Our 2021 Fund-a-Need will raise funds specific to our science curriculum, impacting the learning experience in every classroom in our great school. In the auction preview site, you will see several auction items that you can “purchase” to directly support a teacher’s science curriculum.

Ready to Get Your Bid Number?

Visit this link now and get your registration number so you don’t miss any of the fun!

A Look Inside Tech

Our kindergarten through fourth-grade students rotate to specialists throughout the week, fully rounding out their STREAM (science, technology, religion, engineering, and math) curriculum.

From Spanish and technology to P.E. and music, our Falcons are being challenged in new and exciting ways, keeping them fully engaged each and every day!

Recently, in technology, our students have been tackling a rich mix of projects and balancing the hard work with some friendly competition at the end of each class.

The kindergarten and first-grade classes have been wrapping up their coding lessons and developing their typing efficiency.

The second-grade students have been writing stories about a dog, using the Keynote app to prepare a presentation that shares the tale.

In third grade, the students are mastering Google Slides by writing a presentation on a specific country.

Lastly, the fourth-grade students, are working on tinker modeling, which we will share more about on the Falcon Feed blog in the weeks ahead.

The technology room is very quiet as each of the students focuses on their projects, and in the final minutes of class, breaks out into excited chatter, happy dances, and encouraging chants as students compete against each other in educational brain-break games.

Oh, but all the games are in Spanish, adding a different twist on brain-break time!

Discovering Pi

While Pi Day may have taken place while the students were out on spring break, there was no way Mrs. Heinz (our middle school math teacher) was going to let the day go by unrecognized!

What is Pi Day you say?

Pi Day is celebrated on March 14th (3/14) around the world. Pi (Greek letter “π”) is the symbol used in mathematics to represent a constant — the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter — which is approximately 3.14159. Pi Day is an annual opportunity for math enthusiasts to recite the infinite digits of Pi, talk to their friends about math, and eat pie.

At Frassati, our sixth-grade students did a lab experiment to discover (and celebrate!) Pi.

In this lesson, students blew bubbles on their desks and then measured the circumference and diameter of the bubbles they created.

The sixth graders then recorded their data for analysis and reviewed their findings as a class. To sweeten the lab, the experiment ended with slices of pie for all to enjoy!

Board Games Inspired by Books

How do you teach middle school students to dissect a book? To dig into the plot? To define the roles of the characters? And to look for themes?

Some teachers would assign a book report, some a basic Q & A sheet. However, in Mrs. Schmidtbauer’s class, the seventh graders were given a different kind of assignment that challenged them to not only consider the basic elements of their book but how to creatively share the theme of the story with others.

Each of the seventh-grade students read a book of their choosing and were given a month to design a board game based on their book. They had to create all the materials needed to play the game, along with an instruction sheet that would allow others to play the game without the creator’s guidance.

Mrs. Schmidtbauer (our middle school language arts and literature teacher) has saved other students’ board games over the years, so before digging into the assignment, the students had the chance to play board games from previous years to see how other students had completed the project.

As the students turned in their completed projects, the class broke into groups and took turns explaining their board games and how to play them. Each group then had time to play their creations and showcase their creative thinking!

2D to 3D Thinking

In Ms. Geppert’s technology class, fourth-grade students are stretching their thinking from 2D to 3D, in preparation for upcoming lessons on 3D printing.

The students were given cards that had flat, 2D diagrams displayed on them, that guided them on where to place Keva planks to create various angles. Over the course of the lesson, students needed to create three different perspectives, and check their designs with the photo examples they were given.

This exercise helps students think about all 3 dimensions, which prepares them for their intro to Computer Aided Drafting (CAD), and how to think through alignment and design in 3D.

Ms. Geppert said that “it is pretty common for a student who is new to CAD software to make a creation and think it is aligned until they change the perspective on the screen and then find it’s leaning. Before we print, we want to have thought ahead about these kinds of design flaws.”

The fourth-grade students will continue their practice with Keva planks before moving into their computer work.