AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat Kings“But we decided as a leadership team that we should at least explore this possibility,” Guerrero said. “And last year everything actually came together – there was an extra classroom available and it all worked out. “It’s been amazing,” Guerrero added. “The kids blow me away every day. They’re funny and articulate and intelligent, and there are 37 of them – that’s huge!” But it’s far from a bed of roses for those in the magnet program, says director/teacher Angela Togia. To get into the class, the student had to agree to maintain excellent attendance and be on their best behavior. Even parents promised to be involved and volunteer at school. “We want to create scholars,” Togia said. “We’re trying to provide a comfortable environment during this transitional time in our students’ lives. “We want them to be comfortable to make mistakes and learn,” she said. Already, the students have read “Farewell to Manzanar” and were visited by a former detainee of a Japanese internment camp, then visited the Japanese museum and learned to make wooden blocks. As part of the arts portion of the program, some of the students have been in the Steel Pan Ensemble at Norwalk High for a couple of years, Guerrero said – and they will continue to do so. “That’s the part I love – being able to be in the steel-pan band,” said Christian Manriquez, 11. “I like being here with my friends, and I’m really into music, so it’s a good thing for me.” Last week, the students were able to participate in “Estrella,” a bilingual opera performed at the school by the Guild Opera Company. Aside from the arts, the students will also learn computer programs like GarageBand, iMovie, iPhoto and PowerPoint. Starting in January, Guerrero said officials will begin evaluating the magnet program to determine its effectiveness and whether it should continue. “I’m just so grateful to the parents who have entrusted their children to us for this experience,” Guerrero said. “And every teacher in this school is invested in having this be a success, so the whole school acts as a support.” [email protected] (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3051 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! NORWALK – They’ve been in class for nearly three months now, and already they’ve performed in an opera, visited the Japanese American National Museum and played in a steel-pan band at nearby Norwalk High School. Before the school year is over, they will have snorkeled and scuba-dived as part of Marine Science Adventure Camp on Catalina Island, visited the Bowers Museum to view a mummy exhibit as part of a lesson on Egypt, and been given a chance to take up the keyboard, drums, guitar or violin. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg for the new sixth-grade arts and technology magnet pilot program at Morrison Elementary School. For years, says Principal Marsha Guerrero, parents have asked for a program to keep their children at Morrison for their sixth-grade year, even though the school only goes up to fifth grade.