Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Young Athletes Festival


HMS held the second Young Athletes Festival on Friday, May 23rd. We partnered with Lisa Bird and Mark Capano, from Special Olympics, to host this event for children ages 2 through 8 who are too young to participate in the Special Olympics. Our 8th grade students supported our visitors with various activities designed to introduce them to Special Olympics sports through play.

Meredith Hawkins, YHS student, introduced the idea for this event during her 7th grade year at HMS. Please see Meredith's write up below. The festival is a natural fit with our 8th Grade Civil Rights Unit, which the students are currently working on.

We were so impressed and moved by the determination of these young athletes, and by the caring encouragement and support provided to them by our students. Our 8th graders shared that they will always remember this day, and talked about how inspiring it was to work with our young visitors.

Our thanks to Rod Corey for his commitment to this event, and for his leadership and perseverance organizing everything that needed to be done to host the festival, and to Mike Hagerty, Megan Rice, Steve Simonton, Ira Warshaw, and Bill Shardlow for their input, guidance and support. 
 We greatly appreciate Lisa Bird's and Mark Capano's work, and their dedication to providing this opportunity to the young athletes and our students.

Special thanks to Meredith Hawkins, who remains unfailingly devoted to this work; she encourages and motivates all of us, and to Kathy Gardner for her important work behind the scenes.


Finally, we want to recognize our 8th grade students, whose participation at the festival embodies the true essence of community service, and caring for others. They acted as amazing ambassadors; we were proud to have them represent HMS.   

From Meredith Hawkins: 

For those of you who are not aware, I gave a presentation on "Spread the Word to End the Word," during my 7th grade year at HMS. "Spread the Word to End the Word" is an ongoing campaign working to raise awareness of the harmful effects of the R-word (retard). Middle school students pledged to work toward banning the R-word from their vocabulary.

After this presentation, I became aware of a Special Olympics day that North Yarmouth Academy hosted, and was inspired to do something similar at our school. In our efforts to bring this experience to Yarmouth, we found out about The Young Athletes program. This program is geared toward children who are too young for the Special Olympics, but would like to participate in a similar event.

On May 24th last year, the Maine Special Olympics, and eighth grade students, hosted the first ever festival for young athletes, ages 2-8, at Harrison Middle School. Eighth grade students assisted the athletes, and cheered them on as they participated in various games and activities. This program complements the Civil Rights unit that eighth graders study in the spring. We're hoping that this will become an annual event and continue as a tradition in the Yarmouth Schools.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me via email.
Thank you-
Meredith Hawkins

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Special Thanks to our Parents/Guardians

The HMS staff created this heartfelt thank you wordle to express their feelings about the phenomenal teacher appreciation celebration provided by our parents/guardians. Your recognition and support means so much to us. Thank you.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

HMS Spring Concerts

 Mr. Brann and Ms. Adler shared their thoughts about the spring concerts with HMS students and staff:

The May 6th spring concert featured the 5th Grade Band, the 6th Grade Band, the 6th Grade Jazz Choir and the 5th & 6th Grade Chorus. The YPAC had standing room only. The two bands played like pros - Mr C. provided the background for each piece and then both bands delivered. Mrs. Grover's 6th Grade Jazz Choir's rendition of Fireflies made us think of spring. The 5/6th Chorus ended the evening with a lively medley from Annie. The choreography for all the chorale pieces added more fun to the singing. Next, the 7/8 Spring Concert tonight. 

Mrs. Grover at work

The 7th and 8th Grade Symphonic Band, 7th and 8th Grade Jazz Choir, and 7th and 8th Grade Concert Choir showcased their musicianship and artistry during the May 7th spring concert. From the challenging pieces expertly performed to the emotion they evoked in the audience, our students ended the spring concert season on a truly special, perfect note. They are to be commended for their dedication to their craft, and for their growth as musicians, and individuals, which was clearly displayed last night.   

Mr. C. conducting

Our students honored Mrs. Grover and Mr. C. with moving tributes; a show of their thanks and appreciation for all that these educators mean to them. 

Students honor Mr. C.
Our gratitude to Mr. Dustin for his continued support, and to Mrs. Grover and Mr. C. for their inspiring and instruction and leadership. 
Students honor Mrs. Grover


Third Annual HMS Poetry KaBaam

 Charlotte Agell' summary of the Poetry KaBaam describes this amazing event:

Yarmouth students and staff gathered in the library on April 28th for the Third Annual HMS Poetry KaBaam. This event featured five high school students who returned to declaim their “Poetry Out Loud” poems. The audience “kabaamed” these poems. “Kabaam” is a locally made up word, a variant on poetry “slam.” In a “slam” poems are awarded numerical scores, much like in the Olympics. During a “kabaam” the audience writes down the emotions the poem elicited, and holds these up. 

After the YHS students performed, HMS students spoke poetry (their own and that of others) before their supportive peers, who "kabaamed" these poems, too. We thank the parent group for providing snacks for this annual 7th and 8th grade event, held in honor of National Poetry Month.

HMS students "kabaam" poems

Monday, May 5, 2014

2014 Stem Ecology Forum

HMS students, Clementine Blaschke, Olivia Feeley, Connor Senger, and Grady Welsh were asked to present at the 2014 Stem Ecology Forum held on 5.3.14. The invitation was issued by the Perloff Foundation and the University of Southern Maine. Mr. Cuthbert, 7th grade math/science teacher, and Mr. Arsenault, HMS Technology Coordinator, were asked to attend along with these students.

The students shared their research on the European Green Crab with teachers, educators and university professors from New England.  The students fielded questions and explained the devastating impact the green crab has on our coastal environment.  These students handled themselves with maturity and professionalism that was truly amazing.  Congratulations!