Sunday, October 29, 2017

Morgan Cuthbert and YHS Students Receive Exemplary Practice Award

Morgan and the Shellfish Nursery Staff with ROWE students
 Congratulations to Morgan Cuthbert, 7th grade science and math teacher, and the Shellfish Nursery staff, YHS juniors, Clementine Blaschke, Duncan Birkbeck, Grady Welsh, Ben Cox-Faxon and Connor Senger, on receiving the Exemplary Practice Award from the Maine Association for Middle Level Educators. Morgan and these students attended the MAMLE conference on Friday, October 20th to present their work and receive this honor.  

Thanks to Morgan for sharing this write up about the Shellfish Nursery work and this award!

Exemplary Practice Awards are rooted in MAMLE Core Beliefs:
An exemplary middle grade school must…
1. meet the developmental needs of young adolescents.
2. promote local professional development.
3. promote a healthy work environment for both students & teachers.
4. exemplify high standards based on research.
5. invite active participation by students, parents and/or community.

These students and I started our work on the soft shell clam project four years ago when this group was in 7th grade.  Since then this project has morphed into a collaborative learning study with the Town of Yarmouth and the Yarmouth School District.  The students’ goal is to research and pose possible solutions regarding the dwindling numbers of soft shell clams in the Yarmouth flats. We’re grateful to the Yarmouth community for their support. Hancock Lumber, Scott Dugas, and Bob Miles and Sons have all helped with this project. The Yarmouth Educational Foundation donated an upweller through the YEF grant process, which has enabled us to grow clam seed at a faster pace and in a protected environment that allows us to control for different variables.

In the past four years the students have connected with and presented to the an amazing list of local institutions. Highlights of these presentations include: Rowe School K-1, Colby College STEM Summit, University of New England Department of Education, Thomas College CIE, ECET2, MAMLE Annual Teaching Conference, The Gulf of Maine Research Institute Annual Conference, Sierra Club Earth Day Talk, and The Perloff Foundation Ecology Summit at USM.

The Yarmouth Shellfish Nursery has also been an integral part of the 7th grade ecology program at HMS. Students learn about many topics including classification of organisms, life cycles, competition, predator/prey relationships, trophic levels, and human impact on the environment.

This has been an amazing learning experience that gives the students a connection to their community and authentic learning experiences.  Students have become involved in scientific research and solving problems in their own community.

5/8 Buddy Food Drive

5th and 8th grade Buddies create a colorful parade to Town Hall
HMS 5th and 8th Grade Buddies are focusing on giving back to the community. Their first project was a food drive for the Yarmouth Food Pantry. On October 27th the buddies walked to Town Hall to drop off all of the donations they collected. 
Our students and teachers enjoyed the beautiful walk and the feeling that comes from learning about how we can help to support each other and our community. 
Our students at work
The Food Pantry coordinator let us know that the buddies collected 1,905 pounds of food for the food, which was more than double the amount of food they were expecting!

Our sincere thanks to our 5th and 8th grade students for their work on this important project and to the 5th and 8th grade teachers for creating this powerful learning opportunity. We're grateful to the staff at Town Hall for welcoming our students and teachers!

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Growth Mindset In Action

Gina Rollins shared some of our 5th grade students inspiring responses to this activity about growth mindset:
The students brainstormed the meaning of the word "yet" and then watched this minute long video entitled You Can Learn Anything

After viewing the video the students made a list of things they can't do, YET, in school and their lives outside of school. 
Gina and the students discussed how they would let each other know when they did not understand something. They agreed to communicate this by adding the word "YET." Gina wanted to share some of their amazing ideas about school:

Literary Cafe

Merry, Stuhr, Tracy Weinrich, and library volunteer, Nancy Castonia, created the perfect environment for our students to celebrate National Teen Read week and the annual HMS Literary Cafe! Our students appreciated the chance to relax and read in our beautifully decorated library and engage in conversations with peers and staff about their recent book choices. Thank you to our parents who provided the delicious snacks for this event!

Bus Driver Appreciation

On Friday, October 20th, our HMS Student Leadership Team greeted our bus drivers with cheers of thanks and appreciation for all they do! The students made signs and cards for the drivers and presented each of them with a sweet treat in recognition of the way they sweeten up our mornings and afternoons every day.

We're grateful to our drivers for their kindness and care of our students and for transporting them safely to and from our school each day. Thank you to our bus drivers and to Nini Emmons, our Student Leadership Team advisor, and to this team of students, for creating this wonderful celebration!

Eighth Grader Students Explore Our Community

 Thanks to Rod Corey for filling us in on our eighth grade students' recent trips/community service activities:
Thank you to our PTO for funding the tie dye t-shirts in the photo! The eighth grade class will make great use of them on our trips and team activities this year!
On Friday, September 22, the eighth grade participated in the worldwide event, Coastal Cleanup.  Walking through the fort, beach, and parking lots at Popham Beach, we collected 1,841 cigarette butts, many sandals, several abandoned lobster traps, rubber bands, bottles, cans, and hundreds of miscellaneous pieces of plastic.  The park ranger and several beach goers were very appreciative of our students' work. Data from the cleanup will be sent to the Coastal Cleanup organization which will be added to a world wide data base.

In September, students also spent some time learning about the history of Yarmouth through a visit to the Yarmouth Historical Society for a slide show and a walking tour of Main Street.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Congratulations to Elena Miller and Sawyer Flowerdew!

Mr. Rice, Sawyer Flowerdew and Ms. Rice
Congratulations and best wishes to Elena Miller and Sawyer Flowerdew, who are the first students to be honored by the HMS/Rotary Student Recognition program! The Unified Arts Team chose Elena for this recognition and the 8th Grade Team chose Sawyer. This award is based on growth mindset and the effort/grit/perseverance demonstrated by HMS students. Elena and Sawyer will be presented with their awards at the next Rotary meeting, which will be held at the Town Hall Community Room, on October 16th, at 7:15 AM. 

Mrs. Grover, Elena Miller, Mrs. Lambert and Mr. Dehetre
Our thanks to Sarah MacGillivray, past president of the Yarmouth Rotary, Bruce Myers, current president, and all members of the Rotary, for partnering with us to make this program possible! 

Monday, October 9, 2017

HMS Welcomes our New Students and Parents

Thanks to HMS School Counselor Laura Mike, PTO president, Amie Moore, and PTO members Marjie Longshore, Stephanie Brewer and Naomi Bentivoglio for the warm welcome they extended to our new community members! Students and parents who have recently moved to our town had a chance to meet new friends, ask questions and get to know our school during this gathering. Thanks to everyone who supported this special event!

Tell Us About You!

Thanks to Mr. Skilling, Ms. Damboise, Mrs. Lambert and Mr. Dehetre for creating this engaging learning opportunity that supports our students and staff to, "Tell Us About You!"
Mr. Skilling here!

We want to know more about you! This is your opportunity to show us some of the things you like to do. You just might find out that others might want to talk to you about it or that others just might may have the same interests as you!

So what physical or recreational activities do you, and maybe your family, like to participate in? For example, hiking, fly fishing, yoga, skateboarding, circus arts, sailing, martial arts, dance, juggling, mountain biking, skiing, archery, horseback riding, rock climbing, fencing, gymnastics, snowmobiling, kayaking, etc.

To share, first click on the link below. There you can record a video response on the spot, where you tell us your name and about your interests and maybe share some photos, OR  instead, you can upload a video that you have, or created, of you in action (max. length 1min. 30 seconds).

Regardless of how you want to do it, we are curious!!!

Thank you!
Mr. S

Famous Mainers

 Our 8th grade students are learning about famous Mainers' contributions to our state. Thanks to Ms. Rice and her students for sharing this fascinating project with us in a new and innovative way! 
Click on the icons within this presentation to learn more:

8th Grade Spanish Students experience a bit of Mexico

 Thanks to Paula Vicenzi for filling us in on this great, authentic learning experience, which allowed our students to end the year on an exciting note!
¡Vamos a Margaritas! 
As part of their cultural unit on Mexico and Food, Mrs. Vicenzi's and Mrs. Roberts' 8th grade Spanish classes went on their annual trip to Margaritas in Portland. A guided presentation gave students a chance to see Mexico as it is today; its people, tradition and art. Students toured the restaurant to see the folk art and decor which are all hand made in Mexico. After watching a demonstration on how to make fresh guacamole and salsa casera, students enjoyed the, "all you can eat taco buffet!" Margaritas also gave each teacher a piece of authentic Mexican art to be displayed in the Spanish classroom as a visual reminder of their trip to Margaritas and their Mexico adventure.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Thanks to our PTO!

Holy Cow are those Holy Donuts delicious! Thank you to Kelly Sawhney, Amie Moore, Marjie Longshore and our PTO for this awesome, much appreciated treat! We enjoyed every bite!

6th Graders Explore Mt. Apatite

Thanks to Ragan Bartlett for sharing this exciting news about the recent 6th grade field trip!

Sixth graders were graced with beautiful weather as they set out on their Mt. Apatite geologic field trip on Friday. They hiked the mountain. They observed and identified trees, gathered rock samples (quartz and mica were popular choices) and drew the origin rock face exposed by the quarry.

Thanks to our many parents who assisted in keeping our students organized during this authentic learning activity. Our students, parents and staff enjoyed all they discovered and the scientific camaraderie!