5/10 - Grade 8 ELA PARCC
Grade 6 Science Field Trip Rain Date
5/11 - Grade 8 ELA PARCC
5/12 - Grade 8 ELA PARCC
5/13 - 1/2 Day for Students
Professional Afternoon for Staff
7th/8th Grade Dance (7-9 p.m.)
5/16 - Grade 7 Math PARCC
Grade 8 Sci/Tech/Eng MCAS
Final Payment due for Nature's Classroom 2016
5/17 - Grade 7 Math PARCC
Grade 8 Sci/Tech/Eng MCAS
5/18- Grade 6 Math PARCC
Grade 7 Math PARCC
5/19-5/20 - Grade 6 Math PARCC
5/24-5/27 - 8th Grade Trip
5/24 - Grades 4-6 Orchestra Concert
5/28-5/30 - No Homework Weekend
5/30 - Memorial Day (No School)
6/1 - Blake Art Show Reception
Grades 7-8 Orchestra Concert
Grades 6-8 Band Concert
6/2 - Blake Mini-Marathon
6/3 - Great East Music Festival
Civics Field Trip
6/7 - Blake Chorus Concert
6/8 - PEM Field Trip - Koalas
6/9 - PEM Field Trip - Otters
6/10 - Grade 8 Mandarin Field Trip
PEM Field Trip - Sea Turtles
6/13 - Blake Site Council Mtg - 3:30 p.m.
MHS Athletics Meeting (see details below)
6/15 - Creature Feature Field Trip
6/22 - 8th Grade Closing Ceremony (see details below)
6/23 - Last Day of School for Students and Staff
Topic/Question for the Dinner Table
To help encourage conversations and dialogue about the ways we are inspired, this week's topic/question for the dinner table is: What practices and characteristics inspire you as a learner? Please see link to Google Form to share your responses: Inspiration (5/8/16) (This is an anonymous Google Form)
Term 3 Interim Reports
Last Friday students brought home their interim reports for the third term. They spent time in their advisories reflecting upon the work they have accomplished thus far, and setting healthy/measured goals for the end of the year. Our hope is that this communication will give you an update on the progress your child is making in school. If you have any questions about your child's work or the reports, please start by having a conversation with your child. If questions still exist, you should contact the teacher directly to gain more insight.
Teacher Appreciation - Thank You!
On behalf of the Blake staff, I would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the Blake community for the lovely thoughts, notes, and signs of appreciation throughout last week. We are fortunate to be a part of this wonderful community.
iPad Planning Inventory for 2016-2017 - Please Complete
As you know we are continuing with our mobile learning program at Blake for the entire 6th-8th grade for the 2016-2017 academic year. To help us effectively plan for next year, we are asking all current 5th-7th grade parents/guardians (incoming 6th-8th grade parents/guardians for the 2016-2017 academic year) to let us know your plans for your student (Lease-to-Own, Bring an iPad from home, Borrow) for next year, by completing this brief survey by Thursday, May 12: iPad Planning Inventory at Blake Middle School for 2016-2017. This inventory is different than the initial survey sent back in January. Please fill out this inventory for each child that will be attending Blake next year. This decision is not binding and we recognize that your plans may change - confirmation and final decisions will be made by mid-June, 2016. I sincerely appreciate your taking the time to complete this brief inventory and am hoping for 100% participation.
We have outlined the Blake Mobile Learning Initiative Participation Options (Lease-to-Own, Bring an iPad from home, Borrow) for Blake students for this program. We are committed to providing an equitable learning experience for our students and appreciate the shared commitment and investment in the education of our students. As such we have a system in place for families with demonstrated financial need.
The 'minimum specifications' will still remain as the iPad 4, meaning the following are acceptable devices for students to use: iPad4, iPad Mini, iPad Mini 3, iPad Mini 4, or iPad Air. The device selected by the students/families will suffice for the students' needs in school as long as Apple continues to update the OS (operating system) on that device. If your family intends to purchase a new device this year, then the iPad4, iPad Mini, iPad Mini 3, iPad Mini 4, or iPad Air are the recommended devices. Our work over the last four years has provided a foundation as our teachers and staff continue to thoughtfully implement and review the effectiveness of this initiative. It is important to keep in mind that teachers and students will be following the same curriculum frameworks and the common core Blake curriculum.
For your reference I am sharing links below to documents about our initiative/program...
Blake Mobile Learning Blog
Blake iPad Program Update for 16-17
Blake Mobile Learning General Information (has articles, background information, and philosophy)
Blake Mobile Learning FAQs 16-17
Blake Mobile Learning Initiative Participation Options
iPad Program Estimated Lease-to-Own Pricing Structure 16-17
We are excited about the prospects that lie ahead as we work to provide your students with the opportunity to learn with meaningful technology and are hopeful that we can foster and promote a positive and relevant learning experience. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me directly (email@example.com) with any questions, concerns, or thoughts that you may have.
Course Selection Forms
Reminder to all 6th and 7th grade parents that course selection forms for the 2016-2017 academic year need to be turned in asap.
Marimba Concert Flyer
Check out the flyer below for information about the Marimba event on June 9!
6th Grade Geology Field Trip
The sixth grade took to the streets of Medfield last Friday to investigate geological 'crimes' committed by the 'Agents of Erosion'. Students traveled to Rocky Woods, the Vinelake Cemetery, and other locations around town to collect evidence of crimes against rocks. They returned to the classroom laboratory to gather and maek sense of the evidence, hopefully building a case to convict one of the 'Agents of Erosion' (running water, wind, waves, gravity, and glaciers).
7th/8th Grade Dance Information
The third and final 7th/8th grade dance will take place this Friday, May 13 at 7:00 p.m. in the Blake cafeteria. We ask that families drop students off no later than 7:15 p.m. and pick them up promptly at 9:00 p.m. (Families should contact Mrs. Ruminski or Ms. Hurley directly before Friday if the drop-off/pick-up times present any issues.) Students are reminded of the rules of conduct in the contract they have signed and families are encouraged to review appropriate behavior and attire with students before the dance. Students should check with Student Council if any questions remain as to whether a contract has been turned in.
8th Grade Closing Ceremony
Our 8th grade closing ceremony and goodbye evening will be on Wednesday, June 22 at 7 p.m. This evening will be our opportunity to thank and recognize our 8th graders for their years at Blake and wish them well as they head off to high school. Families are welcome, and there will be a reception with refreshments, including allergen-free treats, in the cafeteria following the ceremony. We are hoping for a 'cool weather' evening.
Last week Kelly Campbell and Nat Vaughn met with each grade of students at Blake in an assembly forum to share some reminders as we head into "end of year" mode. We renewed our expectations for all students with regard to good decision-making and responsible behavior across the board but especially as it pertains to the following topics:
- field trips and safety when off campus
- end of year activities
- technology and devices
- school attire
- substitute teachers
- locking up your belongings, especially after school
- being in a supervised area before and after school
- on-time arrival to school in the morning
Last week, Blake’s Technovation Teams concluded its second season participating in the Technovation Challenge, an international competition that teaches mobile app development, entrepreneurship, and community engagement. High school and middle school girls work in teams of up to 5 to develop mobile apps to solve a problem in their local community. Each team collaborates through the process of ideation, market research, writing a business plan, and developing a prototype to then pitch in a regional Pitch Night competition at the Microsoft NERD Center held on May 4th.
One of our teams, Appily Ever After 2.0, (Jamie Hollander, Emily Boyd, Anna Debettencourt, and Paige Koterba) competed at the High School level with their app, Schoolutionary. An app that gives students who are uncomfortable with these disruptive behaviors a method of anonymously reporting what they’ve witnessed to their teachers.
Team BetaBugs (Chloe Dudley, Kate Anderson, Allison Lane and Rachel Parry) developed the Study With Friends app. They hope to solve the homework problem that many teens face.. the dreaded no answer when texting a friend for help! Who’s available? Their app aims to connect peers larger than their circle of friends to support an on-demand-get-help-with-homework-when-you-need-it solution!
And our last team, Loading Life (Isabella Brooke, Gabbi Zehme, Noelle Lindgren and Charlotte Wraight) placed 3rd place in the Middle School division with their StresSOS app. Stress was a very prevalent theme throughout the competition. However, their app provides unique, customized stress solutions based on how stressed you are and the amount of time you have.
The amount of commitment and teamwork that went into these past 6 months was unbelievably! All three teams should be very proud of their accomplishments!
Winners from each region’s Pitch Night are entered into the Semi-Final Round. From there, only 10 teams are picked world-wide to pitch their app on the big stage in San Francisco to win $10,000 start up funds. However, the real goal is to spark and inspire girls to pursue careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). I think we are doing just that! To learn more about the Technovation Winners and to view the Photo Gallery, please visit: http://masstlcef.org/technovation2016/
Also, watch the documentary, CodeGirl profiling several 2015 teams (2 local to Massachusetts), on their Technovation journey!
Please find the May PARCC/MCAS schedules listed above. 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. 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. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact Kelly Campbell (firstname.lastname@example.org) or your child's guidance counselor.
ADL Peer Training Program
We are preparing to select and train its second cohort of 7th and 8th grade Peer Trainers in the Fall of 2015. While many of the current 7th grade Peer Trainers will be returning as 8th graders, we encourage interested 7th graders to apply with the understanding that there will be only a few openings in that grade level. For some students, the Peer Training Program, sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League’s A WORLD OF DIFFERENCE® Institute, is an opportunity to inspire others to challenge all forms of prejudice, including bullying and cyberbullying. For other students, it is an opportunity to actively promote respect for cultural and other human differences. And for others, it is an opportunity to build greater unity in community. For everyone who participates, the Peer Training Program is an opportunity to transform their schools and communities.
The Program begins with a series of dynamic training sessions for new members led by adult facilitators from A WORLD OF DIFFERENCE® Institute. Participating students engage in fun activities and meaningful discussions on cultural, racial, socio-economic and other human differences, and on how these differences sometimes divide rather than unite people. In addition, the students explore what they can do, individually and collectively, to help foster a world in which human differences are valued and respected.
Students also develop their leadership potential, and their communication and presentation skills, so that they, too, can lead activities and discussions on these topics. When the trained students are fully prepared, they will facilitate workshops for their peers during the school year.
Any student with an interest in fostering a more accepting school community, facilitating workshops for their peers related to identifying and responding to bias of all types in our world, and learning more about how to build a more respectful environment for all people is welcome to apply to be a part of the Peer Training Program. A representative from ADL will be visiting Blake this week to share more information with students in the current 6th grade. Students in the 6th and 7th grades will receive electronic application materials via e-mail, and parents will also receive an email with more information, including time commitments involved for training and participation. Commitment to this exciting program does entail a weekly commitment to the program as well as several school days of training which would require students to check in with teachers to get any missed work. Heather Gonzalez and Matt Marenghi will be continuing in their roles of the Peer Trainer program advisors at Blake. I am grateful for their dedication to the program and the students. More information will be coming soon but please feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com if you have questions or would like more information.
Blake Site Council 16-17 Survey
The Blake Site Council has been working on the development of our annual survey to students and parents. A similar survey has been administered the last three years and we are committed to having parents and students take it each year as part of our continual efforts to examine our programming. Focus areas include the topics of school culture, academic workloads, stress, and habits. The results will help us to gather information and examine our current practices to better meet the needs of our students and assess progress towards our mission. Please complete the survey for each child you have at Blake, and base your responses on your student's experiences this year. The questionnaire is anonymous, and your identity can not and will not be discovered through the completion of this survey. We sincerely appreciate your honest responses and are hoping for 100% participation from the Blake community. If you have any questions or have difficulty accessing the survey, please do not hesitate to contact me directly (firstname.lastname@example.org). Link to the survey: Blake Middle School Parent Survey March, 2016
Spring Cleaning - Request for MakerSpace Donations
In our ongoing efforts to foster experiences for students to be 'hands-on' and creative with materials, we are looking to provide outlets for students to create in our 'maker space'. As you begin your spring cleaning efforts (optimistic, I know!), we are looking for any donations from Medfield families of: old electronic toys, PVC pipe, felt/fabric, crafty supplies (yarn, string, makers, wipe off markers, wipe off contact paper, marbles, duct tape, wasabi tape, different types of glue), cookie cutters (variety of shapes), old tools, play dough, recyclables (anything used for storage containers/bins), cell batteries, AA batteries, conductive materials (copper wire, aluminum foil, telephone wire, washers, brackets). Any donations can be dropped off at the Blake main office and would be greatly appreciated.
Grade 6 Standards Based Reporting Pilot and Focus Group
Thank you to all sixth grade parents/guardians who were able to come to one of our Standards Based Reporting information sessions. As promised, here is the link to the presentation...
Standards Based Reporting Presentation Fall 2015
We are also looking for parents/guardians to be part of our parent focus group. This group will be comprised of the 6th grade science teachers, administration, and parents and will meet throughout the year (Fridays at 12:30 p.m.) to discuss the work that is taking place and provide feedback. The remaining date that has been set for is: 6/3. If you are interested, please complete the form below...
Standards Based Reporting Focus Group Sign-Up
STEM/Engineering for Middle School Girls
There are many STEM/Engineering opportunities for Middle School Girls especially during the summer - check them out!
High School Athletics Meeting
On Monday, June 13, at 7:00 p.m., there will be a meeting held in the gymnasium at the Medfield High School for all athletes and their parents interested in playing high school athletics this coming fall season at Medfield. This meeting is very important and will cover many questions and concerns you may have, as well as introductions to all high school coaches and staff. Immediately following this meeting, coaches will meet with their respective sports to speak about the season and answer any questions you may have.
*Sports offered for the fall season are:
Cross Country (Boys and Girls)
Soccer (Boys and Girls)
Field Hockey (Girls)
All Night Grad Party Request
This week all households in Medfield received the blue ANGP flyer in their mailboxes. ANGP, better known as the All Night Graduation Party, now in its 24th year, is the safe and substance free celebration for graduating Medfield High School students. Please help make the night a success with a donation to the ANGP. Use the blue All Night Graduation Party flyer received in the mail, or send a donation to Medfield High School ANGP, P.O. Box 38, Medfield, MA 02052. Every gift helps. Before you know it your student will be celebrating this milestone. Thank you.
K-8 PTO Update
COMBINED BLAKE & MHS TEACHER APPRECIATION LUNCHEON - MAY 13TH
The theme is Farmers Market emphasizing fresh and healthy foods in a relaxed setting. We will be having a raffle as a special THANK YOU to our fabulous teachers and staff. Gift card donations are available on the Sign-Up Genius along with food donations, so please consider contributing to the luncheon in that way as a HUGE thank you.
Please visit the Medfield K-8 PTO website or click https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1fC6eFODC22eWf1TKc4YTIbSkhTtdcJfkt7oJIxhrvtg/viewform and sign-up to volunteer for the 7th grade Ice Cream Party, 8th grade Cookout, the 8th grade Closing Ceremony Reception (7th grade parents are needed for this event) and Box Tops Helpers. We appreciate all your help and support. We couldn’t do it without you!
MEDFIELD SPIRIT WEAR
Attention Spring Sports Teams, Club Organizers and Administrators! Blake PTO & MyLocker are ready to get you geared up for the season and your big event. Customize EVERYTHING from text to colors and designs from sports to drama to music. Choose from t-shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, pants, bags, hats, blankets & more. Spend $85 or more and get a free customized t-shirt. 12% of proceeds from each order will go to your school’s PTO. NOTE: Due to different branding sizes, make sure to check all size charts when ordering to ensure you get a great fit for each product. Please contact Laura Zaher SPIRITWEARMEDFIELD@gmail.com with any questions. This is all you have to do:
- Go to shop.mylocker.net, enter your school locker number - BLAKE BD979 and use promo code b2g6dTK1
RECYCLE INKJET AND TONER CARTRIDGES
Get rid of your trash and help Blake earn cash & supplies by recycling your inkjet and toner cartridges. We accept HP, Brother, Canon and Lexmark cartridges. Collection boxes are located outside of the Library. Thanks for your help! Please contact Donna Knott at email@example.com with any questions.
Please like us on Facebook Medfield K-8 PTO , follow us on Twitter MedfieldK8PTO and check out our website http://medfieldpto.weebly.com
THANK YOU to the community participants, volunteers and corporate sponsors who helped to make MCPE's first-ever LCR tournament such an overwhelming success. We raised approximately $5,000 which will go toward our mission of enriching our children’s educations.
FALL BALL - COMMUNITY HELP: One of the ways we hope to raise funds at the Fall Ball is through both an online and a live auction of desirable items and exciting experiences. We're thinking outside the box and hoping you can help us take our auctions to the next level. Please click on the Sign Up Genius link (signupgenius.com/go/70a054bacab2faa8-mcpe/) to see if you're able to contribute to this very worthy cause. Thank you, in advance, for making the success of our schools a community effort. If you have something you'd like to donate that is not listed, or have any questions regarding the Fall Ball, please contact Wendi Ayer firstname.lastname@example.org or Kim Price email@example.com.
Please click here for Thursday Packet Information.