Sunday, March 31, 2013

Taylor Robison is awarded the Steingart Scholarship

Heartfelt congratulations to 8th grade student, Taylor Robison, who was recently named as the first recipient of the Steingart Family Music Scholarship! The scholarship will be used for private trumpet lessons for the remainder of the school year.

The Steingart family established this scholarship fund prior to Mr. Steingart's passing earlier this year. They saw their daughter Emily's world change in positive ways when she pursued the bassoon in middle school. Emily's love of music presented her with the opportunity to play with the Portland Youth Symphony, as well as the Youth Philharmonic (in Boston) while she was in high school. Her talent and dedication opened the door to some prestigious awards and opportunities, including traveling to China with the Youth Philharmonic orchestra.
Taylor Robison

 The Steingart family met with Mr. C. to present HMS with a check for $5000.00 for the purpose of funding years of private lessons for our students. The family wants to provide opportunities to other young musicians so they can explore and expand their own world of music, and all that it may bring into their lives.

The scholarships are presented to students who have a love for music, and are committed to their craft. Taylor is a most deserving recipient of this award!

World's Fair

Congratulations to the sixth grade students, for their inspiring, creative, unique, World's Fair presentations! The students took fair attendees around the world on a miraculous, engaging tour of fascinating countries. The presenters were poised and polished; the time and effort they put into their projects was obvious in every aspect of their work. Special thanks to the 6th grade team, who were the consummate guides/mentors to these travelers, and to HMS staff members who offered their support on this journey!

6th grade students present their projects

Sunday, March 24, 2013

There's A Monster In My Closet!

Congratulations and BRAVO to the cast, crew, parent volunteers, Director Deb Sevee, and Pete, John, and Avery Sevee on another outstanding show!

Everyone  involved with the 7th/8th grade musical, performed on 3/22, and 3/23,  worked together to bring the characters and story from There's a Monster In My Closet to life! The sets, lighting, acting, singing, choreography, and costumes were incredible; the backstage crew was spot on. The live music of the band "NNG", featuring Nick Prato, Nate Dealaman, and Grant Workman got the audience on their feet dancing and cheering. The audience LOVED this show; the excitement of the crowd during the performance, the last number, and the bows was theater at its best.


 Our gratitude to Deb Sevee, and the Sevee family-THANK YOU does not seem to be a descriptive enough word for all you do!

Special thanks to the band NNG-the live performance was wonderful!

Huge appreciation to Kathy Gardner who devotes so much time and energy to ensure that each one of the HMS shows runs smoothly!

To our spectacular parents-we're very thankful for your support. All of us lucky enough to be part of this community are fortunate to benefit from your involvement in our schools!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

HMS Visitors Learn About Technology

Mike Arsenault, HMS Technology Coordinator, shared the following description of a recent visit to HMS from a group of fellow educators:

As an Apple Distinguished School visitors come to HMS to observe, and ask questions about our successful laptop program. These visitors come from the United States, and around the world. On Thursday, 3/21, HMS hosted a group of Swedish educators.
Our visitors spent time with the 7th Grade Team for a question and answer period about teaching and learning in a "one to one" environment. Our guests then met with a group of 7th and 8th grade students for a "speed geeking" session.
Seventh grade teachers Morgan Cuthbert, Amanda Blaine, Mark McDonough, and Mike Hagerty meet with visitors from Sweden.
During this session each student discussed a recent project with a visitor for a few minutes. At the end of the discussion the visitors rotated around the room to talk with other students in order to get a good sampling of the type of work being created at HMS. Participating students were selected by their teachers for their quality work on specific projects utilizing their laptops. The visitors were tremendously impressed with the students' ability to articulate how the laptop enhances their learning.

I'm thankful that our students have the opportunity to share their learning in this way; they did a fine job representing HMS.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Top O' The Morning

Whether we are Irish, have an Irish connection or not, on Monday, March 18, it was St. Patrick's Day at HMS. Once again the HMS PTO led by Brenda Whitney brought a beautiful bounty for staff under the name of Top O' The Morning Teacher Appreciation Brunch. Yummmmmmmmmmmmm. Our hearty thank you to all.

Mr. C demonstrating his appreciation.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Read On & Better

The focus of our March 15 Inservice day was to continue our learning about informational text from the Common Core State Standards. We have embraced the responsibilities of implementing the Common Core as a professional study; we believe that teaching well means engaging in the continual process of studying students and their work in order to strengthen teaching and learning. We know new levels of literacy are required in the information economy of today, and a much stronger emphasis is needed on higher-level comprehension skills - that higher-level comprehension matters, that critical reading and and analytical thinking matter. Our day complemented the work that we have done in faculty and team meetings throughout the year -learning about teaching our students how to handle text of increasing complexity.
Reading informational text standards:
Reading informational texts for key ideas and details:
  • Reading closely and making logical inferences
  • Reading to determine central ideas and themes
  • Reading to analyze how individuals, events, and ideas develop and interact over the course of a text
Reading informational texts for craft and structure:
  • Reading to interpret the language used in the text
  • Reading to analyze the structure of the text
  • Reading to assess the author's point of view and how it shapes the text
Reading informational texts to integrate knowledge and ideas:
  • Reading to integrate knowledge and ideas and think across informational text
These standards are rigorous and the teachers are looking at all Units of Study to embed them so that students become proficient readers of informational text.

Crossing Walk Etiquette

These represent crosswalks at HMS. We ask students to use them when crossing traffic lanes. Please drive cautiously on school grounds. If you see a student waiting to cross or crossing, please stop to allow them to do so.

Each summer the parking lots and crosswalks are re-lined. This summer the crosswalks will have the same appearance and we will add some to make sure the students have a clear path from the school to walk home or catch a ride with a parent.

Thank you all for keeping our students safe.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Up, Up and Away

Hot air balloons; let’s build one and see if we can make it fly. That was the challenge given to several 7th grade students in Mr. Dehetre’s STEAM class this past trimester.

How does it work? The balloon has mass and due to gravity the balloon has a tendency to stay on the ground. To fly, the balloon must take on a force in the opposite direction that is greater than the force of gravity. Air is made up of molecules of nitrogen and oxygen. Air has mass. These molecules, when cold, move very slowly and have a tendency to stay together. When the air within the envelope is heated up this changes the behavior of the molecules. They now move faster and move apart.  Some of these molecules escape from the hole in the bottom of the envelope. As more and more molecules escape, the balloon becomes lighter allowing it to overcome the force of gravity and fly.

Taking the challenge were Sophia McGrath, Rebecca Israel, and Eliza Waterman. The girls studied a video showing how to construct and fly a model of a hot air balloon. Following the instructions, the trio built the balloon’s envelope from tissue paper. The paper was carefully cut to form gores which were then hemmed together through the use of glue sticks. Putting the balloon together was no easy task but the girls were successful with their first build. Will it fly? It sure did! Testing was done in the STEAM lab by forcing hot air into the envelope of the balloon. The girls held the balloon over the source of hot air for a good 3 or 4 minutes. Upon letting go, the balloon sailed to the ceiling.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Congratulations Mrs. Grover!

We’re thrilled to let you know that Kimberly Grover will receive the prestigious Yale Distinguished Music Educator Award! Along with this honor, Kimberly has been selected to attend the 2013 Symposium on Music in Schools at Yale University. 

Recipients of these awards have to be nominated in order to apply. Kimberly was chosen from a pool of nearly 300 nominees. She was selected by the panel of music professionals for her outstanding accomplishments and vision as a public school music teacher.

Kimberly Grover
Kimberly will attend this symposium along with the other 49 selected teachers, one from each state. The Yale School of Music pays all conference related expenses. 

Please join us in congratulating Kimberly on this impressive achievement!

Fond Farewell to Deb Dugas

We wish Deb Dugas all the best as she gets ready to embark on a new venture. Deb is leaving the School Nutrition Program, and HMS, on March 22nd, after approximately ten years of wonderful service.  
Deb began her career in  Yarmouth in 2003, when she volunteered in the schools. Deb was presented with the Friend of Education Award by the Yarmouth Education Association as a tribute to her dedication and hard work on behalf of our students.  
Initially Deb subbed for the School Nutrition Program, serving the students at "Camp Rowe" (housed at the Yarmouth Elementary School). She was hired permanently in 2004. Deb has filled in at every kitchen and in every position in the department during her time in Yarmouth!

Deb has been a valued team member of the HMS community for about eight years. Her work ethic, support of students and colleagues, sense of humor, and beloved Halloween character "Aunt B" are just a few of the hallmarks of her work that have made her such a vital part of each day at the middle school. Deb brought in some wonderful new team members over the years, which added to the success of the HMS Nutrition staff.

We wish Deb the very best; she will be missed by the School Nutrition Team, and the HMS students and staff. We thank her for all she's done for us over the years!