Thursday, January 22, 2015

HMS Geo Bee

Elias Rich, an 8th grade student at HMS, won the school competition of the National Geographic Bee on Wednesday, January 21st; Elias will now have a chance at a $50,000 college scholarship. Our HMS school Geo Bee was the first round in the 27th annual National Geographic Bee.

Thousands of schools around the United States and in the five territories are participating in the 2015 Bee. The school champions, including Elias Rich, will take a written test; up to 100 of the top scorers on that test in each state will then be eligible to compete in their state Bee on March 27, 2015.

Congratulations are extended to Elias and the following school finalists for their hard work leading up to the Bee, and their inspiring efforts during the school Bee:

Seamus Donegan, Will Giese, David Hattan, Dan LaMourie, Will Moffatt, Lulu Rasor, Lucy Shamel (runner up), and Sophia Solmos.

Mrs. Newick organized and facilitated the school Bee. Ms. Adler and Mrs. Vicenzi served as judges.                                         
Will Moffat, Seamus Donegan, Elias Rich, Dan LaMourie, David Hattan, Lulu Rasor, Lucy Shamel, Sophia Solmos, Will Giese
Mrs. Newick, Elias Rich, Lucy Shamel

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

8th Grade Students explore Nonfiction

Our eighth grade students are absorbed in their book groups, as they learn about nonfiction writing. This is the fourth year that eighth grade Language Arts teachers are using these book groups to expose our students to informational texts, and teach them how to read nonfiction. This unique format provides the opportunity for students reading the same book to respond to challenging, engaging prompts, which promote critical thinking, and the need to site evidence about the characters, conflicts and settings of these books.

Some examples of these prompts are below (you can also click on the link), along with the photo demonstrating our students' investment in this work.


Nonfiction Book Group

1/15/15 If you could say something to one person in your book, or ask him/her a question, what would it be and why?  Be thorough in explaining why you would say/ask this statement/question.

1/13/15 Write a statement that best summarizes the central idea of the text you will read today. This is to be done individually after you finish your reading. You should start doing this when there are 10 -15 minutes left in class. Once your group is all done, discuss your statements and come up with one for your group to post on the blog. 

1/12/15 What conflict(s) seem to be emerging in your book thus far? What evidence is there from the text that this/these conflicts exist?
1/09/15 What questions do you have about the book thus far?  What is confusing? 

1/08/15 Who are some of the key people mentioned so far? Describe them as much as you can, using both physical and non-physical traits.

1/07/15 What is the setting of this true story?  Be sure to be specific with time and place and share any significance it has and/or thoughts you have on the setting.



Thursday, January 15, 2015

Science Award

Morgan Cuthbert, HMS 7th grade mathematics/science teacher has been selected as a Finalist for the 2015 Shell Science Teaching Award. The next and final step in the judging process is the site visit that will take place on February 2, 2015 with members of the Shell Science Teaching Award Judging Panel. 

No matter what the final decision is, Morgan can take great pride in knowing he was selected as a finalist for this award by science educators who know the challenges and rewards he experiences as a classroom science teacher, every day.  Morgan was hand-picked from applications submitted by science teachers from across this nation, and then distinctly selected for the efforts put forth in his writing, video, and classroom presentations.

As a Finalist for The Shell Science Teaching Award, Morgan will receive an expense paid trip to the NSTA National Conference on Science Education in Chicago, IL March 12 – 15, 2015.
Congratulations Morgan. We all wish you well on the final step.

HMS Spelling Bee

How do you spell?
2010    stromuhr
2011   cymotrichous
2012   guetapens
2013   knaidel
2014   feuilleton and stichomythia

These were the winning words for National Spelling Bee for the past five years.

On Wednesday, January 14, Harrison Middle School held the School Spelling Bee. The Bee began with ten students and the 100th word from the National Spelling Bee 2015 Spelling List. It took eight rounds to "crown" the two finalists. The final two words spelled were skirmish and edification. Congratulations to all participants; with a total of 496 students in Grades 5, 6, 7, and 8 the finalists did very well.

Our results are:

Champions:    Stefan Bell, Grade 5 and Bella Solari, Grade 6
Alternate:        Lulu Rasor, Grade 8
Participants:    Grade 6: Ellie Gabrielson and Lee Federle
                        Grade 7: Will Nicholas and Sam O’Donnell (Absent: Michael McNeil)
                        Grade 8: Vicky Williams (Absent: Hanna Zimmerman)

Stefan and Bella will compete in the County-Wide Spelling Bee on February 11th, with a snow date of February 12th. The time is 6:00-8:30 at the Falmouth Middle School.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Physical Education Classes focus on team building

Kelley Damboise and Brian Skilling's students are involved in engaging team building activities, which teach valuable life lessons. Brian explained that these activities help students to develop a safe and supportive  learning environment, where peers are willing to take risks and use critical thinking skills to assist each other toward a common purpose. These activities foster team goals, effective communication and trust among peers.

Paige Reinfelder wins a Silver Key in Scholastic Art Competition

Paige Reinfelder's phenomenal portrait (see below) won a silver key in the Scholastic Competition, and will be honored and displayed in an exhibit at MECA! Paige is an 8th grade student at HMS.

The Maine Scholastic Art and Writing Awards Exhibition will feature the Gold Key and Silver Key Award Winners. The Exhibition will take place at Maine College of Art from January 24 to February 14, 2015. The Awards Ceremony will be held on Saturday February 14th from 1 to 3pm.

Congratulations and best wishes to Paige on this exciting accomplishment!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

2014 Project Holiday

Once again this year HMS took part in Project Holiday, which helps Yarmouth families make the holidays a special time for their children. We're grateful to the HMS staff for their generous participation in this effort.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Up, up, and away in the STEAM Lab

Lucy Shamel and Gus Edwards at work

The 7th grade students are known for their balsa wood bridge building skills in Mr. Dehetre's STEAM lab. Many balsa wood bridges weighing less than an ounce have held over 100 pounds. 

But what do students do once they have their bridge built, tested it, and made a movie documenting their process? There's always something more to learn in STEAM lab. Lucy Shamel and Gus Edwards worked together to build a hot air balloon that actually flies! In the pictures below, they're testing their balloon indoors for leaks, and as you can see there aren't any! Soon we'll be taking the balloon outside with a larger burner to send it up in to the sky.

The students learned several things
 1. When the hot air balloon is rising, the air inside the balloon is less dense than the air outside of the balloon. 
2. When the hot air balloon remains level, the air inside the balloon has the same density as the air outside the balloon.
3. When the hot air balloon is going down, the air inside the balloon is denser than the air outside the balloon. 
4. There's always something to learn and learning is fun! 

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Mrs. Grover's 5th and 6th grade students at the winter concert

The 5th Grade Band, 6th Grade Band, 6th Grade Jazz Choir, and 5th & 6th Grade Chorus gave stellar performances at their winter concert! The challenging level of music they played was as impressive as their sophisticated interpretation of these pieces.

The students took the audience on a fantastic adventure through space when they played Mr. C's exciting, "Space Journey". The chorus combined music and theater during their enthusiastic, colorful finale, "Jabberwocky." All of our students communicated excitement and pride in their accomplishments to the audience with every note they played/sang. 

Mrs. Grover and her students

The HMS Symphonic Band, 7th and 8th Grade Jazz Choir, and 7th and 8th Grade Concert Choir took on some truly beautiful and challenging pieces at their winter concert, and played/sang them to perfection. Our students' hard work and dedication to their craft was obvious in their inspiring performances, which delighted and amazed the audience! 

We offer our heartfelt congratulations and appreciation to our students, Mrs. Grover, Mr. C., and Mr. Dustin for sharing their talents with us. Special thanks to Nick and Colin Prato for the outstanding musical accompaniment.
Mr. C. and his students

Mr. C.'s students perform