5/12 - 8th Grade Sci/Tech MCAS
Royal Pizza Night for Blake
5/13 - 7th Grade Math MCAS
5/14 - 7th Grade Math MCAS
5/15 - Nature's Classroom Forms are due
7th/8th Grade Dance (7-9 p.m.)
5/19 - Royal Pizza Night for Blake
5/19-5/22 - 8th Grade Memorials, Monuments, and Museums Trip
5/21 - Grade 6 Orchestra Concert
5/26 - Memorial Day
5/26-5/29 - Blake Art Show
5/27 - Blake Art Show Reception
MCPE Annual Meeting
5/29 - Blake Six Flags Music Trip
6/1 - Grade 6-8 Band, 7-8 Orchestra Concert
6/2 - Blake Chorus Concert
6/3 - CSA Meeting (7 p.m.)
6/4 - Go Fresh Night for Blake
6/10 - PEM Field Trip for Koalas
MHS Athletics Info Night (see details below)
6/11 - PEM Field Trip for Otters
6/12 - PEM Field Trip for Sea Turtles
Grade 8 Mandarin Field Trip
6/17 - Grade 7 Creature Feature Field Trip
6/19 - Grade 7 Field Trip to Boston
6/22 - Transition Day
Grade 8 Closing Ceremony/Graduation
6/23 - Last Day of School
Topic/Question(s) for the Dinner Table
To help encourage conversations about the role relationships play in teaching and learning, our topic/question of the week is: The more often you put yourself in the shoes of a student, the better you will know what and how to teach and evaluate that student.
Teacher Appreciation - Thank You!
On behalf of the Blake staff, I would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the Blake CSA and parens 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 2015-2016 - Please Complete
As you know we are continuing with our mobile learning program at Blake for the entire 6th-8th grade for the 2015-2016 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 2015-2016 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 14: iPad Planning Inventory at Blake Middle School for 2015-2016. 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, 2015. I sincerely appreciate your taking the time to complete this brief inventory and am hoping for 100% participation.
We have outlined the 2015-2016 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 2, meaning the following are acceptable devices for students to use: iPad2, iPad Mini, iPad4 and the iPad Air. Although the iPad 2 is no longer manufactured by Apple, it 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, or iPad Air are the recommended devices. Our work over the last three 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...
Mobile Learning in Medfield
Blake iPad Program Update for 15-16
Blake Mobile Learning General Information
Blake Mobile Learning FAQs 15-16
Blake Mobile Learning Participation Options 15-16
iPad Program Estimated Lease-to-Own Pricing Structure 15-16
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 (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions, concerns, or thoughts that you may have.
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.
Nature's Classroom Information
All Nature's Classroom final invoices were sent on Tuesday, May 5. Friday, May 15 is the final due date to turn in all Nature's Classroom payments and paperwork to advisory teachers. After May 15 all materials should be turned in directly to Mrs. Avery in the Guidance Office.
Gettysburg Address Winner
Congratulations to Campbell Ayer for being selected as our Gettysburg Address speaker at Medfield's Memorial Day Celebration. Thank you to Sophia Gustafson as she will be signing the address as Campbell performs the address. It will be read at the town wide ceremony honoring the soldiers from Medfield that have given their lives in the service of our country.
6th Grade Geology Field Trip
The sixth grade took to the streets of Medfield last Wednesday 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 15 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.
Heifer International Campaign
Starting May 12th, the Community Service Club, led by its sixth grade members, will begin a week long fundraising campaign for Heifer International. Blake students will have the chance to purchase and collect the very popular magnets, put together by the Community Service Club, starting Tuesday May 12th. The campaign ties directly into the sixth grade Social Studies unit on poverty. Students will learn what poverty is, how it happens, where it exists, and ways in which organizations are trying to solve the problems associated with it. To learn more about the fundraiser and Heifer International, please click on the presentation below.
Sixth Grade Heifer International Fundraiser
ADL Peer Training Program
ADL peer leader applications are due on May 13th. Any sixth and seventh grade students who are interested can e-mail Mrs. Campbell (email@example.com) with questions.
8th Grade Closing Ceremony
Our 8th grade closing ceremony and goodbye evening will be on Monday, 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.
Seventh Grade Heads to Boston!
Last week seventh grade students will be receiving field trip forms for the June 19th trip to the Freedom Trail in Boston. Students should return their permission slips and checks to their English teachers by the end of the week. Any parents interested in chaperoning on the trip should contact Brian Gavaghan (firstname.lastname@example.org).
This is a general reminder to all parents to be sure to follow the parking regulations in the parking lots and around the 'flagpole circle'. When dropping off or picking up students, vehicles should not be parked ('stationary' or 'live') in the fire zone. We need to make sure that we are providing a safe environment at all times for our students and community. Thank you for your cooperation.
Round 2 of MCAS testing finished up this week. Please find the May MCAS schedule 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 (email@example.com) or your child's guidance counselor.
Parent Information Nights for 2015-2016
For your reference and information, here are links to the presentations and handouts from the parent information nights...
Blake Incoming 6th PIN 2015 Presentation
Blake Incoming 7th PIN 2015 Presentation
Nature's Classroom Trip Slideshow
Nature's Classroom Trip Documents and Forms
Blake Incoming 8th PIN 2015 Presentation
Blake Parent Resources Handout 2015
Blake Program of Studies 2015-2016
Girl Talk will meet this Wednesday after school in room 207. Come and join us even if you have not been able to make it to the previous meetings.
Ted Talk Club
The remaining dates for Blake's Ted Talk Club are below. We may try to squeeze a make up date in there too but we will let you know if advance.
Meeting 14 - June 5
Please let Mr. Hellerstein or Ms. Allen know if you have any questions.
Blake Track Update
TRACK SCHEDULE WEEK OF 5/11
MONDAY - home meet vs Ashland at 3:00
TUESDAY - practice
WEDNESDAY - practice
THURSDAY - home meet vs. King Philip and Hopkinton at 3:00
FRIDAY - off
High School Athletics Meeting
On Wednesday, June 10, at 7:00pm, 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)
Thanks to CSA and MCPE - Recent Grants
Thank you to the Blake CSA and Medfield Coalition for Public Education (MCPE) for supporting grants during the month of April. The CSA funded 'Having Fun with Pyramids and Pharoahs' - three one hour presentations designed to bring to the life the world of the Ancient Egyptians for our seventh grade students. The presentation is designed specifically for middle school students to enrich the seventh grade curriculum unit on Ancient Egypt. The program presenter, Paulette Morin, an Egyptologist, has over twenty years of experience perfecting the program. The CSA also provided a generous donation towards our Nature's Classroom and Washington, D.C. scholarships.
The Medfield Coalition for Public Education approved three grants. The first grant proposal, entitled "Creating and Tinkering in the Makerspace at Blake Middle School," is the second phase of the transformation of the Blake Library Media Center -- establishing a Makerspace for students. "A Makerspace is a physical location where people gather to share resources and knowledge, work on projects, network and build." (Educause Learning Initiative, April 2013). The intent of a Makerspace is to provide materials, resources and space for students to design, create, tinker, discover and explore with the objective to inspire deeper learning. The second grant proposal was entitled "Blake Middle School World Drumming Curriculum." The grant will fund the purchase of a class set of African drums and storage equipment that will be made available to the students in 6th grade general music as well as other music classes grades 6-12. The set will include: one standing ngoma drum, fifteen tubano drums of different sizes, one djembe drum, two talking drums and mallets, three hand drums, two bongos, ten Senor Kelly Shaker, three guiro, three clave, three maracas, two gongokuis, two shekeres, two cowbells, education guides, handbooks, student worksheets and a DVD. The third grant proposal was entitled: "Teaching Foreign Language with Technology." This grant provides the opportunity for one of our teachers to attend an intensive three-day workshop where the participants will "explore practical ways to use technology to enhance instruction through the 5Cs framework (Communication, Creativity, Culture, Community and Critical Thinking) with specific attention to listening, speaking and writing skills. The workshop will explore innovative ideas, effective techniques and thoughtful plans for incorporating web-based resources, social media, mobile devices and emerging technologies into foreign language classrooms with an eye towards building creativity, collaboration skills, and critical thinking." Key learnings will be shared at the High School, Middle School and Elementary Department meetings.
1. Blake CSA thanks all those who purchased a plant for a loved one at our Mother's Day plant Sale. Don't worry - Dads won't be forgotten for Father's Day. Details to follow closer to the date.
2. We continue to look for a treasurer to join our board. Under the guidance of a Townwide Treasurer, the Blake treasurer manages the budget, writing checks for approved funding requests and managing the inflow of funds. Please respond to firstname.lastname@example.org interested in hearing more.
3. At last month's CSA meeting we approved a funding request that ties in with for the upcoming 7th Grade Social Studies module - Having fun with Pyramids and Pharoahs. We also disbursed $6000 towards the Washington DC and Nature's Classroom trips.
4. The last CSA meeting of the year will be on Wednesday, June 3rd at 7pm. We will be introducing our new board, along with approving our budget for 2015-2016.
5. Please continue to support our ongoing fundraisers - BoxTops, SCRIP and the Textile recycling. And as always - we thank our generous local food vendors who contribute a portion of their proceeds on designated evenings.
Blue Ribbon Program for Showing Appreciation. As we approach the end of the school year, are you looking for a way to let a member of our school community (teacher/administrator/coach) know just how much you and your child appreciated them? Consider MCPE's Blue Ribbon Program: www.medfieldcoalition.org/events-programs/blue-ribbon-program. It’s an meaningful (and easy) way to say, “Thanks!” Requests need to be submitted by June 19th.
The AmazonSmile Program is perfect for Father’s Day and graduation shopping and is an easy way to support Medfield Public Schools, at no additional cost to you.
Every time you shop at smile.amazon.com, Amazon will automatically donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to MCPE, and, good news: your
Amazon Prime account will continue to work the same way. As always, please support our local businesses when you can, but for those items you can't purchase locally, think of AmazonSmile and MCPE!
MCPE Annual Meeting Scheduled
The MCPE Annual Meeting is scheduled for May 27th at 7:00 PM at the Zullo Gallery. The public is welcome to attend.