9/11 - Medfield Food Cupboard One-Day Drive (see details below)
Grade 7 Nature's Classroom Info Session (6 p.m.)
Grade 7 Parent Night (6:30 p.m.)
9/18 - Stars Canoe Trip
SEPAC Meeting (7 p.m. in Blake Library)
9/19 - Yom Kippur (No School)
9/20 - Stars Canoe Trip
9/21 - Stripes Canoe Trip
9/26 - Stripes Canoe Trip
9/27-9/28 - Eagles Canoe Trip
10/1 - Blake Site Council Meeting (3:30 p.m.)
10/5 - Half Day for Students
Professional Afternoon for Staff
10/8 - Columbus Day (No School)
10/12 - Blake Picture Retake Day
10/23-10/26 - Nature's Classroom for 7th Grade
10/31 - Halloween
Topic/Question for the Summer Dinner Table
To help encourage conversations and dialogue about consistently keeping questions as part of our learning processes, our topic/question for the dinner table is: What question(s) is/are on your mind right now? Asking Questions (This is an anonymous Google Form)
School Absence Reminder
This is a reminder for parents that a student's absence or tardiness must be reported by a written note or a parental telephone call to the school absence line (508-242-8501) by 8 a.m.
Blake Parent Nights for Fall 2018
The Blake parent nights for Grade 7 is tonight...
9/11 - Grade 7 Nature's Classroom Info Session (6 p.m.)
Grade 7 Parent Night (6:30 p.m.)
For your reference and information, here are the links from the Grade 6 and Grade 8 Parent Information Nights...
Grade 6 Fall 2018 PIN Presentation
Memorials, Monuments, and Museums Presentation Fall 2018
Grade 8 Fall 2018 PIN Presentation
Arts in Education Week
This week (9/9-9/15) is Arts in Education Week. I have shared this with our art and music departments. Please keep this in mind when talking to your children about cultural events, music, and the arts this month.
All families should have received an e-mail from 'firstname.lastname@example.org' with 'Emergency Contact Information' in the subject line. We are asking all families to complete this digital sign-off for most of the beginning-of-year forms...
- Student Responsible Use Guidelines/Acceptable Use Policy
- School Handbook (and Addendum, where appropriate)
- Free and Reduced Lunch
- Your child's emergency contact information (all students) and additional contact/authorizations (Grades 1 through 5 only).
- Photo release form
Online Homework Posting System
This year we will be continuing our system for posting the homework on our website. The link to the homework pages is here - Blake Homework Pages. The primary mode for students' understanding and recording of the homework for the given night is from the teacher and the posted homework in the classroom. The information that will be on the website is intended to serve as a 'back-up' resource. Due to the inherent challenges of technology that arise from time to time (servers, e-mail, etc.), we can not always guarantee that the website will be 100% accurate and reliable. However, we hope that it will help students and parents as an additional source of information.
Thank you to everyone for supporting #MedfieldProjectHappiness - 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
Fall intramurals at Blake will begin in early October. Look for signup information on the intramural page of the website the week of September 17. Parents/guardians are welcome to run intramurals as well. If you have any questions, thoughts, or suggestions, please contact Matt Marenghi (email@example.com).
Theme of Happiness for 2018-2019
Our theme for this academic year at Blake is one of Happiness. We believe that this theme will extend the work we have done over the last six years with our themes of Community, Perseverance, Creativity, Acceptance, Collaboration, Empathy, and Diversity. As a staff we have begun brainstorming ideas and I encourage all families to join us in the brainstorming process as well. As ideas and thoughts come to mind, do not hesitate to e-mail me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Kelly C. (email@example.com).
Blake Social Emotional Learning with Project Happiness (www.projecthappiness.org)
Project Happiness (www.projecthappiness.org) specializes in emotional resilience-building programs which provide proven techniques to empower students and their communities to thrive. Drawing from the three pillars of neuroscience, positive psychology, and mindfulness, all participants learn social and emotional learning skills. Project Happiness is connected to Common Core Standards, which helps students to learn to build a climate of kindness, appreciation, and cooperation. Each lesson fulfills Common Core Standards by teaching skills that allow students to calm themselves when angry, make friends, resolve conflicts respectfully, and make ethical and safe choices.
In May 2016, The MCPE funded the Project Happiness grant which included: Project Happiness Middle School Curriculum, Project Happiness Training Videos, Project Happiness Film, and 20 Project Happiness Books. Medfield Public Schools were recently featured by Project Happiness. http://us9.forward-to-friend.com/forward/show?u=2e45f17d3d4a1ef72e24e6d3f&id=acd6095363
A Message from Blake Student Council
It is the time for Student Council Elections as the new school year is upon us!! - Announcements to intro Student Council - Advisors tell kids about running for Student Council - Speeches due - Speeches delivered and Elections (by ballot) DETAILS: -Mandatory WEDNESDAY meetings from 2:10 – 3:10 -Leadership role in the grade – behavior, conduct, academics, etc. -Peer role model in advisory -Volunteer time for school and community -Help encourage spirit days -Keep notes, distribute, and post information to advisory students If interested, students should ask advisors for a Speech Writing Tip Sheet!
In order to promote some of the exciting programs and events in the Medfield Public Schools, we plan to continue the use of student photos on our district/school websites, teacher websites, blogs, and district approved Twitter accounts. In addition, there are times when we will have coverage in the local newspaper or on local TV. Please let Nat Vaughn know by Friday, September 8 if you DO NOT want your child’s photo or name to appear in the media. Please note, your child’s image or name may still appear within the school for classroom projects, hallway postings, in-school presentations, newsletters, yearbooks, and other in-school media. Please contact Nat Vaughn if you have any additional questions.
Box Top Collections
Box top collection runs 9/24-10/29. The cluster with the most box tops wins a prize. Homerooms will collect the box tops and they will be brought to the office weekly.
Seventh Grade Trip to Nature's Classroom
The seventh grade will be leaving at 6:30 am on Tuesday, October 23 for the annual trip to Nature's Classroom on Lake George. Students should arrive between 6:10 and 6:20 am and report directly to their bus. You will be contacted if you have any outstanding paperwork or money due. On Friday, 8/31 we went over the roommate process with the students during science class. Students will not begin signing up for roommates until after the parent presentation on 9/11. We also handed out a sheet outlining final details and a packing list for the trip. The sheet will also be shared digitally with students next week and can be found by clicking here. The same information will be presented at the seventh grade PIN on Tuesday, 9/11 at 6:00 p.m. If you have any questions, please contact Judy Silva, firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, please be sure to contact Tricia Williams regarding any medical needs, allergies, or health concerns (email@example.com or 508-242-8554). We are looking forward to the trip!
Mobile Learning Update
In our continued effort to support families with the integration of technology, I am sharing a link to a 'customizable device contract' from Common Sense Media...
Tablet Family Contract
As noted at the top of the front page of this link, it is important to talk with your children about how the device will be used at home. The suggested guidelines will help assure open and consistent communication so that you are 'on the same page'. The form is customizable to allow for variances in approaches from family to family. We are strongly encouraging all Blake families to take the time to fill out this contract, post it in a 'public' location in your house (i.e. refrigerator), and keep a copy in a secure location. Starting off the year with clear guidelines and 'house rules' will be the first step to a productive and successful experience. Should issues arise throughout the year, it will serve as a solid reference point for resolutions.
Social Emotional Learning Resource for All Families
I want to remind you about our website that comes from the Office of Social/Emotional Learning (www.medfieldsel.com). Included in the website is information regarding our current list of mental health resources, information about our RISE Transition Program, and a lot of information about Social/Emotional Learning. In addition, in our “In The News” tab, you will find articles that we feel may be of interest, including current trends that may affect our kids. Check back often, as there are new things to read all the time. The “Communication” tab will bring you to letters that this office has sent out during the course of the school year, so if you want to refer back, it is easy to find. Medfield Public Schools is taking the commitment to Social/Emotional Learning very seriously, so check out the site, browse around, and use it as a way to ignite conversation with your kids. - Dr. Dave Worthley (@DrWorthley)
We are thrilled to be partnering with Challenge Success this year, a coordinated program from Stanford University designed to help schools and families develop and articulate alternative models of success that are aligned with current research on healthy child development. A group of educators from Blake and Medfield High School will be trained this September and we look forward to bringing this work to our community. Big thanks to MCPE (Medfield Coalition for Public Education) and Medfield HS PTO for supporting this endeavor.
Eighth Grade Canoe and Swim Test Information
As part of the eighth grade Charles River Community Awareness Unit offered in the fall, each eighth grade student is required to pass a swimming test during the summer. Each student is required to tread water for five minutes and swim a distance of seventy-five yards. A qualified swim instructor is required to administer the test and sign the form: Swim Test Form. Completed swim tests may be dropped off at the main office of the Middle School Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. throughout the summer. All swim tests must be completed and returned to the student’s new advisory teacher by the first day of school. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter. The Charles River Community Awareness Unit is an exciting way for students to begin their eighth grade experience! (FYI: In the past, students have been certified at Hinkley Pond, YMCA and local swim clubs.)
Safety Reminder for All Blake Families
Bike Safety Reminders-- We are noticing that students are riding through the middle of the bus circles amongst cars and ask that you remind your child that students should only be walking bikes on sidewalks and use the crosswalks when on bikes. We are also noticing a number of students with no helmets or with helmets on but not buckled. We will continue to remind students but any help with that message from home would be great. It's great to see so many kids on bikes and we want to ensure that everyone is safe.
After an incredible showing on Friday for our first theater meeting, Blake theater gets into full swing with auditions Tuesday (9/11) through Thursday (9/13) and the first set crew meeting on Friday. Please make sure the students bring their sketches. Tech crew's first lighting/stage managing class is Monday 9/17. The commitment letter and participation fee are due by 9/17.
Bird Seed Request
With the new school year upon us, Mr. Gow is looking to replenish his bird seed supply for the Exploration classes that he teaches. The most needed bird food is "black oiled sunflower seed." Please contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or drop off a bag at the front office.
Site Council Opening for Incoming Grade 6 Parents/Guardians
We have an opening for a parent representative (Grade 6) on the Blake Middle School Site Council. The Site Council meets monthly to review issues and discuss initiatives for the Blake Middle School community. The Council is also responsible for developing the annual School Improvement Plan and monitors progress with the plan throughout the year. Members include the administration, teacher representatives, and members of the community. The meetings are typically held once a month on Monday afternoons at 3:30 p.m. Serving on the Site Council is a wonderful way to get involved in your child's education and have an active and positive role in improving the Blake Middle School experience. Interested parents should send a letter of interest, indicating their desire and rationale for involvement, to me (email@example.com). If multiple parents express interest, an election will take place at parent night. Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions.
Blake Site Council Book Discussion Group
Over the last two years the Blake Site Council has read several books and we will continue this practice during the 2018-2019 school year. Stay tuned for more information and we hope you can join in these discussions!
Recognition of September 11
September 11, 2018 marks the seventeenth anniversary of the tragic events that transpired on September 11, 2001. To help commemorate all those who were affected by the events that took place, we are encouraging everyone, in an appropriate and respectful manner, to wear the colors of red, white, and blue on Monday, September 11. One of the lessons we were all reminded of seventeen years ago was the importance of community and looking out for one another. In that spirit, and to continue a tradition started seven years ago, Blake will be helping its own Medfield community by holding a one day collection for the Medfield Food Cupboard. More details regarding specific needs will be shared as we get closer to the date. Donations will be collected in the guidance office on Tuesday, September 11.
Outdoor Classroom Space - Seeking Help
Mr. Gow is looking for volunteers to help construct an outdoor classroom space near the school - thanks to MCPE for their generosity and support. He needs help with trail clearing, trail building, outdoor classroom site work, and the building of a platform for a future shed. For those who are interested in helping this summer, please contact Michael Gow at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Middle School Athletics for Fall, 2018
Anyone interested in participating in Blake Middle School Athletics in the Fall (Grade 6-8 Boys and Girls Cross Country, 8th Grade Girls Field Hockey, 8th Grade Girls Volleyball, or 7th and 8th Grade Football) please do the following ASAP:
- Register your son/daughter on FamilyID.com (direct link off Blake Athletics Page)
- Pay online (Direct Link for UniBank on FamilyID) or send check for $225 (made out to the "Town of Medfield") to Medfield High School, C/O Eric Scott, AD, 88R South St, Medfield, MA 02052. You can also drop it at the main office.
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.
As with our teaching positions, from time to time our nurse, Tricia Williams, will be out of the building and we need a substitute nurse for these days. We are fortunate that we have several substitute nurses in the district who are able to work on those days. If you are a registered nurse and have an interest in potentially serving as a substitute throughout the year, please let us know. You can contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Tricia Williams (email@example.com). By the same token, if you have friends in the area who would have an interest in serving as a substitute, please let them know that they can contact us as well. The safety and well-being of our students is always our top priority, and we would appreciate your interest in one of these roles.
This year we are continuing with recess as part of our Advisory structure. A great deal of research evidence shows that students are more productive and intellectually engaged when a physical and or mental 'break' is provided in the middle of the day. We are looking for donations from families to provide options for students during this time: frisbees, wiffle balls/bats, kickballs, tennis balls, single and double jump ropes, volleyballs, foam footballs, soccer balls, and hula hoops. If you have done some 'fall cleaning' and have extra items that could be donated, have students drop them off in the main office. Thank you in advance for your help.
Twitter Accounts (@nat_vaughn, @blakeoffice) and Blake Hashtags (#bmsed and #bmstech)
We have established the hashtag (#bmsed) for education-related tweets of interest and Blake events and (#bmstech) for technology tweets of interest at Blake, so be sure to check them out! My account is @nat_vaughn and the Blake account is @blakeoffice, and we will continue to tweet up-to-date information, Blake happenings, links to sites, and articles of interest on a daily or more frequent basis.
Students are not permitted to take bus rides home with friends on other buses without prior approval through Central Offices. If you have any questions, please contact Phyllis Montillo (firstname.lastname@example.org or (508) 359-4978).
In order to minimize distraction during the school day, all cell phones will need to be off and locked in lockers next year during school hours. Students will not be permitted to carry phones during the day. If a student needs to make a phone call, phones are available in the guidance office and the main office. In addition, if a parent needs to contact a student during the school day, please call the main office and we are happy to get messages to students throughout the day. As always, students are discouraged from bringing valuable and distracting items to school.
Blake PTO News
Volunteers Needed for Blake! In particular, we are in need of a Hospitality Chair or Co-Chairs, which helps coordinates 3-4 teacher luncheons a year. It's a great way to get involved and appreciate the wonderful staff at our school! Please click on the link to the volunteer form below. Thank you! https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScVH6fbiK1-cVI5r7yu42e6szW5bnuT2EUO9qk3CLc-l9A8UQ/viewform
SEPAC's first meeting of the academic year is Tuesday 9/18 at 7pm in the Blake library. Please come and meet Mary Bruhl, the new Director of Student Service along with other Student Service staff. Visit https://sites.google.com/mail.medfield.k12.ma.us/sepac/ for the agenda and information about Medfield's SEPAC