3/19 - Harmony Day (see details below)
SEPAC Meeting - 7 p.m. (Blake LMC)
3/20 - String Fling
3/22 - 5-Town Special Olympics
Term 2 Report Cards go Home
3/26 - Medfield Talks - The Big Disconnect (see details below)
3/28 - Superintendent’s Advisory Council - 7 p.m.
3/29-3/31 - Blake Musical
3/30 - Miss Amazing Pageant
4/1 - 8th Grade ELA MCAS
4/2 - 8th Grade ELA MCAS
4/3 - Parent Workshop - Developing Reflective Learners (see details below)
4/4 - #DLDMedfield (No School for Students)
4/8 - 7th Grade Trout Release
4/9 - 7th Grade ELA MCAS
SEPAC Meeting - 7 p.m. (Blake LMC)
4/10 - 7th Grade ELA MCAS
4/11 - Superintendent’s Advisory Council - 9:30 a.m.
Topic/Question for the Dinner Table
To help encourage conversations and dialogue about learning and making steps towards progress, our topic/question of the week is: What action can you take today or this week to improve the learning environment at Blake? We Need to Start Somewhere - Take a Step (Week of 3/17/19) (This is an anonymous Google Form)
Coordinated Program Review Parent Survey - Please Complete
As part of our Coordinated Program Review for the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), we have been asked to compete a Civil Rights program review. This will involve equity walkthroughs of each school building and central office, data review from DESE profiles and data collection from the Office of Civil RIghts (OCR) and finally, a crucial aspect of this process lies in receiving feedback from the Medfield Public Schools community.
To this end, we have created a survey for staff, families and students (in grades 5, 7, 8, 10 and 12). Students and faculty will complete this survey in the coming weeks during school hours. I am hoping that you will take the time to complete the survey as well over the next two weeks. Again, the information we gain from this survey will be anonymous and will help the district to assess its programs and evaluate all aspects in regards to Civil Rights.
Developing Reflective Learners - Feedback, Assessments, and Learning - Wednesday, April 3 at 6:30 p.m.
My personal belief is that at least in education relevance is more important than tradition when it comes to methodology. - Tom Whitby
If we look at the schools that have grown the most in the last five or ten years, schools that have made really significant improvements for students in learning, these are the places that have had teacher communities that have been willing to come together and pull their oars together towards the same coherent goals. - Justin Reich
Please join us for a workshop with Dr. Nathaniel Brown, Associate Research Professor at Boston College's Lynch School of Education, focused on Feedback, Assessments, and Learning. Dr. Brown** is a leading expert in assessment and evaluation. Topics to be addressed at this workshop include motivation, grading myths and truths, grade inflation, measurement, evaluation, and assessment precision.
Central to our work at Blake Middle School and the Medfield Public Schools is the continued refinement of all of our practices. Professional development and edification of current student-centered practices in education are at the core of our belief system and values at Blake and in Medfield. With all of our endeavors, we have followed four core principles to bring a student-centered model to fruition:
- Program Development
- Classroom Implementation
- Professional Development
Blake Middle School has a partnership with Boston College’s Lynch School of Education, and Dr. Brown has had meetings with our Blake Administrative Leadership team, led a professional development workshop with all Blake staff, and will be continuing formal work throughout the coming year. We are excited about this work and look forward to engaging parents/guardians and the community in our continued efforts to enhance the learning environment, provide a meaningful and relevant education for our students, and take steps towards our shared mission...
Blake Middle School believes in a living mission statement, based on the concept that our community seeks and respects knowledge, integrity, character, wisdom, and the willingness to adapt to a continually evolving world.
Please complete the Google Form below to RSVP for each parent/guardian joining us for this workshop on Wednesday, April 3...
Developing Reflective Learners - Parent Workshop with Dr. Brown (4/3/19)
Music Ensemble Selection - All Incoming 6th-8th Grade Parents/Guardians
All parents/guardians must complete the music ensemble selection Google Form for 2019-2020.
2019-2020 Blake Middle School Music Selection
For Incoming 6th Grade Parents/Guardians
For your reference, I have copied the link to the presentation and handout along with the Program of Studies 2/27/19…
Blake Incoming 6th PIN 2019 Presentation
Blake Parent Resources Handout 2019-2020
Blake Program of Studies 2019-2020
Below please find links to the Course Selection Google Forms that all incoming 6th grade parents/guardians must complete…
2019-2020 Blake Middle School Music Selection
2019-2020 Blake Middle School World Language Selection
Incoming 7th/8th Grade Parents/Guardians
For your reference, I have copied the link to the presentation along with the Program of Studies evening...
Incoming 7th/8th PIN March 2019 Presentation
Blake Parent Resources Handout 2019-2020
Blake Program of Studies 2019-2020
Nature's Classroom PIN Slideshow March 2019
Challenge Success Student Survey Information
Throughout this past year Medfield has partnered with Challenge Success, a program out of Stanford with this mission statement: Challenge Success partners with schools, families, and communities to embrace a broad definition of success and to implement research-based strategies that promote student well-being and engagement with learning. This program is designed to support and provide resources to our student and parent community. The Challenge Success team in Medfield has been working to identify and develop strategies to meet the social/emotional needs of our students. As part of this work, all of our students will be taking the Challenge Success student survey this week...
- 6th Grade: Tuesday, 3/19 during E Period
- 7th Grade: Tuesday, 3/19 during B Period
- 8th Grade: Monday, 3/18 during D Period
Challenge Success Parent/Guardian Information Sheet Survey 2018-2019
These links provide more information about our work...
Medfield Challenge Success Introductory Video
Medfield Challenge Success
Please do not hesitate to reach out to if you have any questions or concerns about the survey or this initiative.
Harmony Day - 3/19/19
On Tuesday, March 19 Blake is invited to join the Harmony Club at Medfield High School, sponsoring its annual Harmony Day. Harmony is a day where the club encourages any MHS community member who has a friend, family member, etc. in their life who is LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning/queer) to wear a green shirt. The idea was started by Clinton Oxford, a 2008 graduate of Medfield High School, who thought if everyone could see just how many have a LGBTQ person in their lives, it might reduce the name-calling/anti-gay remarks heard in the hallways. Our students and staff at Blake are invited to wear green in support of this day. In addition to wearing green on Tuesday, 3/19 there will also be a poster in the main foyer of the building. Students, staff, and even visitors are encouraged to hang a simple, anonymous, green sticker onto the "Harmony" poster that day in support of someone they know, care about, or just someone they've heard of who is a member of the LGBTQ community. It is our hope that this simple demonstration is a symbol of support in our community, reminding everyone of the importance of Acceptance.
March Madness Book Tourney at Blake
March Madness has arrived at Blake with the March Madness Book Tournament! Students nominate favorite books, make predictions on winning titles in book battles, and compete for best bracket. Winning titles are determined by school-wide vote. Reading is a social activity, and the buzz around Blake is that this year's bracket is the most challenging yet. Take a peek and join in the fun at home.
As we are now close to 'MCAS season', the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education asks that we review our expectations with students prior to testing. English teachers will be reviewing student responsibilities in English classes in the weeks ahead. I have posted the Student Responsibilities during Testing sheet that will be reviewed with students during the week in their classes. I would like to call your attention to the updated guidelines with regard to electronics (iPods, iPhones, iPads, phones, Apple Watches, all types of Kindles, Nooks, and e-readers). The DESE states: "Results will be invalidated for students who use cell phones or other electronic devices at any time during a session, including after a student turns in his or her test materials, during a break, or during the transition to a test completion area." Blake students will be instructed to turn off all devices and place them in their locked hallway locker. This is a good time to check in with your child to be sure that they still have a combination lock on their locker and that they are using it to secure their belongings. Please review this aspect of digital responsibility with your child.
While we do not want to foster undue anxiety or pressure for students, a good night's sleep and a hearty breakfast will ensure that they come to school prepared to do their best. Please be sure that students arrive at school on time. Arrival by 7:30 allows plenty of time to get settled. If your student is sick on the day of a scheduled test date, it is best for your child to get some rest and take it on a make-up day. Make up tests will be given throughout the testing window. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact Kelly Campbell (email@example.com) or your child's guidance counselor.
Special Olympics Information
For the seventh consecutive year, the Medfield Public Schools has partnered with Special Olympics of Massachusetts to develop a 5 town chapter and this year's event will be held at Holliston High School on Friday, March 22, 2019. We are thrilled that Medfield students from Blake, Wheelock, Dale Street, and Medfield High School will be participating. For those students and/or parents interested in attending the event to support the athletes, independent transportation arrangements must be made in advance and communicated to the front office at Blake. The event is scheduled to begin with the parade of athletes between 9:30 and 10:00 and is expected to conclude around 12:30 p.m., with the athletes staying for lunch. Please join us in wishing our student-athletes the very best!
Kindness Month at Blake
Please join the Blake community for ‘A Month of Kindness’. Be sure to follow the hashtags #blakeiskind, #bmsed, #happyblakers, and #medfieldprojecthappiness. We encourage everyone to participate!
For Project Happiness this week students will be starting a two week lesson that is a combines happiness and kindness to celebrate kindness month at blake. This week, students will be watching a video, reading an article, and listening to a podcast and making connections between kindness and happiness. A few notes for your reference...
- The daily inspiration from Project Happiness is included in the morning announcements to staff and students.
- To subscribe: https://www.projecthappiness.org
- To follow on Twitter: @happyblakers #MedfieldProjectHappiness
Take some time and add your thoughts, ideas, and quotes to our kindness padlet!
Medfield Talks - The Big Disconnect (3/26/19
MEDFIELD TALKS Presents Catherine Steiner-Adair Sign-Up Form
Hello students and members of the Blake community! If you turn in an order form for the book FLY GIRLS no later than March 26th, you can get this book signed by the author Keith O'Brien! Think about it, this compelling real story of five amazing pilots who overcame the odds and made history may someday become a movie, a box office hit. Imagine having a signed copy of a book that was made into a movie. How cool is that!
Think about how it could be an awesome gift for someone, like a relative or a family friend who likes stories of success, grace and valor. Don't you think they would love to have a book like that!? Author Keith O'Brien will be here on April 12th to tell us more about the story of these five fantastic aviators. Let us hope when he comes to see us, he can feel glad that people really want to read his book. Happy reading!
This Friday students will be bringing home their report cards for the second term. Time will be spent in advisory with students reflecting upon the work they accomplished, as well as setting healthy goals for the third term. If you have a question about your child's work or the reports, please start by having a conversation with your own child. If questions still exist, you should contact the teacher directly to gain more insight.
Parent/Guardian Input Information for 2019-2020
The due date for parental input for the 2019-2020 school year was Friday, March 15. This was one of the first steps in the process of placement and scheduling for next year. There is no need to be concerned if you did not put thoughts in writing, as equal consideration is given to the needs of every student, whether or not we have received input from parents. The input is only necessary if you have information to share that you do not believe the school already knows. As stated in the letter sent in early March, parents are asked not to make specific requests for teachers, as they will not be considered part of the placement process. The information that has been gathered will inform our work, and we do not guarantee placement with specific peers. We are confident our teachers and clusters are well balanced and that they each will provide a productive and positive educational experience for our students. Please trust our professional judgment as we strive to ensure a high quality and positive education for each of our students.
Digital Learning Day for Blake and Medfield Staff - 4/4/19
April 4, 2019 is Digital Learning Day for the staff of the Medfield Public Schools. I encourage you to begin checking out the hashtag #DLDMedfield and to look for more information to stay current with the Blake and Medfield tweeters. Some of our Blake students will be helping out throughout the day as well. We are excited about this opportunity to learn from one another and expand our understandings of technology integration as we continue to work towards our mission for our students and school.
Mathematics Placement Process
Math teachers at Blake will soon start the process of course placement for the 2019-2020 school year. The goal of the process is to see that every student is placed in a class that allows for them to learn math well while feeling good about their efforts. For current 6th and 7th grade students, decisions on student placement are made by considering current class grades, placement test grades, MCAS scores and teacher recommendations. For current 8th grade students, placement is determined by success in their current class level and teacher recommendation. We are very mindful during this time to consider the whole child while making these decisions. Additionally, it is important to us that parents feel they have a voice in this process. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to your child's teacher. If your questions involve long-term planning for math, do not hesitate to email Susan Bycoff, Math Department Chair at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Dangers and Risks of Vaping Follow Up
It was great to see some of you at the 'Dangers and Risks of Vaping' presentation we held at Blake. I would like to thank Bob Clarke for sharing his expertise, care, and time with all of us. In Bob's presentation, he shared information about e-cigarettes, juuls, and vapes - outlining the health risks and addressing some of the common 'safety myths' held by students and adults alike. As a follow up to the presentation, I am sharing the link to the slide deck from the evening...
Vaping Presentation 2/27/19
We are working with our staff to share this information with students and will continue our open lines of communication with families as well. We strongly encourage you to talk with your children about the dangers of vaping and the problems that can occur from it. Honest and straightforward discussions about issues such as these between parents and children can have a significant impact on their choices.
Blake Site Council Book Discussion Group
Blake’s Site Council book is What School Could Be by Ted Dintersmith. At our next Site Council meeting (4/8/19), we will be discussing the book - join us!
Blake Middle School Site Council Survey
The Blake Site Council has taken time to review the data collected from last year's survey and the Executive Summary can be found here: Blake Middle School Executive Summary 17-18. Focus areas on the survey centered on the topics of school culture, academic workloads, stress, and habits. Our intent is to distribute the 2018-2019 survey in the near future. Stay tuned!
Nature’s Classroom Information
Save the date! The 2019 trip to Nature’s Classroom will be Tuesday, October 22 to Friday, October 25. The cost of the trip will be $490.00 and a deposit of $245.00 is due on Friday, April 12, 2019. The balance will be due on Friday, May 17, 2019. Cost is never a reason for a child not to attend the trip. Please reach out to Nat Vaughn email@example.com if this is a concern for you.
In preparation for the trip an updated physical must be on file. Please submit your child’s 6th grade physical to Mrs. Williams as soon as possible. You may send it in with your child, or email directly to Mrs. Williams at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Seventh Grade Science
Student Council Dodgeball Tournament Follow Up
Thank you to all who helped with the Student Council Dodgeball Tournament. We raised over $600 for the a charity related to The Silver Strong Fund.
Spring Track at Blake
Click here to learn about and register for Blake Track 2019 - season starts April 2!
Save the Date - Miss Amazing!
Miss Amazing’s event is less than two weeks away and tickets are now on sale! Go to https://www.eventbrite.com/e/miss-amazing-massachusetts-and-rhode-island-2019-tickets-57856394032 to buy your tickets! Tickets will only be available online until March 28th, then all further sales will take place at the door. Space is limited and tickets are going fast so buy yours today!
Blake is always looking for substitute teacher applicants. Applicants need not have teaching licensure but should be energetic, flexible and enjoy working with children. For more information or to apply, please visit medfield.net and find applications under the tab "employment opportunities". Please contact Kelly Campbell at email@example.com with any questions.
MHS Youth Lacrosse Clinic for Boys
Registration is now open for the April 4th Youth Lacrosse Clinic for boys in Grades 6-8, hosted by the MHS Boys Varsity Lacrosse team. For more information, please see the registration form posted in the Thursday packet.
Please join us Tuesday, March 19th at 7pm in the Blake Library to hear Mary Bruhl, Director of Student Services, discuss her entry plan and MA DESE Coordinate Program Review updates. And help us support our student athletes at the 5 town Special Olympics event hosted by Holliston High School on March 22nd! To learn about SEPAC, please visit our website: https://sites.google.com/mail.medfield.k12.ma.us/sepac/
Blake PTO Update
Want to get involved? We're looking for a Treasurer for our Board next year! Contact Keven Gallagher (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information!
Our Annual Appeal is here! We are again requesting a contribution of $50/child this year; an amount that has remained the same over the past 4 years. This is a suggested amount, but we will gratefully accept any amount you can contribute. Please make checks out to Blake Middle School PTO and send it in with your child. We are hoping for 100% participation of Blake families by April 1, 2019. This will allow our students and teachers to benefit over the next year, as the students and teachers did before them. We thank you in advance for your financial support of the Blake PTO.
Don’t forget to like us on Facebook (Medfield K-8 PTO) and follow us on Twitter (@MedfieldK8PTO). And for more information and calendar of events, please check out our website medfieldk8pto.com