2018.9.14 – Saxe Weekly

September 14, 2018

Quote(s) that resonated with us this week:

“Remember the hours after September 11th when we came together as one! It was the worst day we have seen, but it brought out the best in all of us.” ~ Unknown

“You never know… Today could be the best day yet!”

“Do what you love and you’ll never have a problem with Monday.”


Dear Saxe Family,

It was an exciting week at Saxe and we have much to be proud of. The week began on the 18th anniversary of 9/11/01 with a solemn remembrance of one of the most influential days in our adult lives. Students were respectful and the adults in the building had an opportunity to reflect.

Throughout the week, Dr. Clapp hosted a wonderful 5th-grade parent coffee. Our 6th graders kicked off the first round of Mountain Workshop field trips with a rainy, foggy, but fun-filled day at Calf Pasture. Our PTC hosted a “New to New Canaan” coffee to warmly welcome our newest Saxe family members. Our teachers conducted professional learning walk-throughs and participated in enriching department meetings. Each class that I visited during the week was filled with enthusiastic learners who demonstrated an eager willingness to participate and explore in their lessons.

You will find useful information, pictures, and videos from all of the aforementioned below. Enjoy the latest edition of the Saxe Weekly and have a great weekend!

Dave Gusitsch

Principal, Saxe Middle School

Upcoming Noteworthy Dates:

9/18 Saxe PTC Welcome Back Coffee @ Waveny (9:30 a.m.)

9/19 Yom Kippur (no school)

Saxe Resources:

Website: https://www.ncps-k12.org/saxe

Twitter: @SaxeMS

PTC: http://www.saxeptc.org/

Weekly: SaxeMS.com

Want to check out the weekly from last week? Click, here.

One Second Everyday:

New this week: Saxe Middle School 1-Second Everyday! “Life is made of seconds.” Check out a few seconds from each day of the 2018-19 school year (so far), showcasing so much of what makes Saxe Middle School great. This will be a recurring, bi-weekly feature. Enjoy!

Pro tip: want to enjoy your 1SE experience even more? Set your youtube playback setting to play at .75 speed…

Grade 5:

Thank you to the one hundred fifth-grade parents who came out to hear an update from Dr. Clapp about the first few successful weeks of school. Dr. Clapp also covered some “Tips from the Trenches” for navigating the middle school years and some other helpful resources (linked, here). The “Who to call…?” chart of handy phone numbers is linked, here.

Grade 6:

The 6th-grade Green Team students were the first to participate in the Mountain Workshop, held at Calf Pasture Beach. Students split up into groups to participate in activities designed to promote teamwork, problem-solving, and positive shared experiences. The challenges were met head on, with good attitudes, despite the rain!

Remembering September 11, 2001:

The following message was shared during morning announcements on Tuesday:

On this important date in our country’s history, please take a moment to reflect and acknowledge the victims, heroes, families, and all of those impacted by the events of September 11, 2001.

(Moment of silence)

As a tribute to those affected by 9/11 please consider an act of kindness today, even if it is a simple smile or “hello” to someone. Thanks and have a great day.

A special thanks to our Art department for setting up their “Saxe remembers September 11th…” display. It is an amazing, moving tribute to all of the lives lost 17 years ago.


Thanks to Ms. Freeman for displaying a special “Flag of Honor”

Saxe “Did You Know?”:

Over the summer, one of “Saxe’s own”, Jonathan Adams, was featured as a “SHAPE America Success Story”. This is the national organization for Health and Physical Education which has a strong global network. Congratulations to Mr. Adams and the NCPS #healthed team for their great work! Feel free to check out the full story, here.

World Language:

Saxe Middle School has two different instructional approaches to learning a new language under one roof. The fifth grade is a continuation of the FLES (Foreign Language in the Elementary School) Program. Students in grade 5 are immersed in Spanish 3 times a week for 20 minutes. The transition to middle school supports all of the language students learned K-4 and adds more detailed writing!

In the Spring of fifth grade, students are given a choice for grades 6 – 8. We share with students that this is an important choice as the language you choose to study in Grade 6 is the language they will study for the next three years. Beginning in sixth grade you can begin your study of Mandarin, French or Latin. You may also decide to continue your study of Spanish, increasing your proficiency level while developing your reading and writing skills.

This week we’d like to share some pictures from our Latin classrooms. We have three Latin teachers: Mr. Hearty, Ms. McQuarrie and Ms. Mykytenko.

Learning Derivatives is FUN!

How are YOU feeling today?

Social Studies:

Inquiry is at the heart of social studies at Saxe at all grade levels. Our fifth graders start the year off with what we call “CSI Roanoke.” Working as history detectives, students use a variety of primary and secondary sources as they investigate what might have happened to the colonists in that ill-fated colony. Students consider concepts such as organization, motivation, and even leadership. Along the way, they develop skills in using a variety of types of sources and collaborating with others. Thank you to the students in Ms. Berry’s class for letting us take a few action shots of them hard at work!

Ask your child what they might be investigating in social studies!

Professional Learning in NCPS:

New Canaan Public Schools Professional Learning Team believes that effective professional growth has a positive impact on student learning. Our goal is to create and implement a unified vision for the district. On Thursday, each of our departments met to review/evaluate student data and curriculum in order to further develop effective instruction that meets the needs of every student. We are so proud of our dedicated professionals!


We love our 4-legged friends at Saxe too. Ms. Rende recently showed her “Dogs of Saxe” poster from last year and has started photoing our feature stars for the 2018-19 edition. Thanks for rolling down the windows and letting your pooches say hello at drop-off and pick-up!

6 thoughts on “2018.9.14 – Saxe Weekly

  1. I’m enjoying all the wonderful visuals and video clips. Seeing the kids in action is a parent’s dream! Thanks – I know this must take a lot of time to compile and edit!


  2. What an incredible addition to our SAXE experience! As a parent it’s wonderful to see all the hard work AND fun the children and staff have during the week. Thanks to all for a great start to the year & for the time it takes to put something like this together – truly appreciate the extra efforts!


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