2018.10.12 – Saxe Weekly

October 12, 2018

Quote(s) that resonated with us this week:

“Stand up for what you believe in even if it means standing alone.”

“You’re the driver of your own life. Don’t let anyone steal your seat.”

“Work for a cause, not for applause.”

Dear Saxe Family,

Another week is in the books at Saxe! Below you will find information from some of the exciting events that took place around school this week. They include the latest One-Second Everyday, Clubs, Saxe News, Grade 5 Fun Run, World Language, Theater, Music, Math, and more…

Finally, Celebrate Saxe has “officially” come to a close. It has been an amazing two weeks with a lot of fun, generous contributions, and certainly much to celebrate. Thanks again for helping our PTC reach our fundraising goal which ultimately goes directly to our students, your children. If it has been on your “to do list” and you have not participated but still want to, it’s not too late! Please visit the PTC site, here.

Have a great weekend and thanks for taking the time to check out our school through the Saxe Weekly!

Dave Gusitsch

Principal, Saxe Middle School

Upcoming Noteworthy Dates:

10/18 Dr. Marc Brackett @ Saxe Auditorium 7:00 pm

(this is one that you do not want to miss)

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

One Second Everyday:

Back again for 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 it more? Set your youtube playback setting to play at .75 speed

Celebrate Saxe!

If you missed the Celebrate Saxe video earlier in the week, please click here to view it. Enjoy!


Here are a few more pictures from the Celebrate Saxe Celebration today:


Grade 6

The 6th-grade Purple Team participated in the Mountain Workshop last Friday, 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 great attitudes!


Math Department

Two math department representatives from Saxe Middle School attended the National Council for Teaching Mathematics (NCTM) conference this past week. Lisa Wolff, a sixth-grade teacher, along with Linda Santoro, Saxe Math Specialist attended the conference in Hartford. They were engaged in a multitude of workshops on number talks, cognitive engagement, performance assessments, and other sessions to build student understanding in mathematics. One of the most impressive sessions included the integration of technology in a way to support and enhance curriculum.

Lisa and Linda learned about Augmented Reality GeoGebra. Students can graph a function and see it in space. You can walk around the graph, walk through it and see it from all angles. Students can see what happens to a graph as you change parts of an equation/function. We are excited to have them report out to the rest of the math department about their learning!

Music Department

Students in sixth-grade chorus skills class have been hard at work practicing their music literacy skills. They have been reviewing music notation, practicing rhythm skills and have begun to sight sing. Often students will ask, “How do I figure out what this sounds like?” Sight singing is the answer. It is a system of syllables based on the musical scale that allow a singer to learn the music without the use of a piano, other instruments, or recording of the music. This learning process allows students to become independent and self-reliant singers.


Around Saxe

After two date deferrals due to rain, the Grade 5 Fun Run was finally held on Wednesday, which was a day earlier than scheduled due to, you guessed it, more rain on Thursday… It was worth the wait! The students had a great time and enjoyed activities above and beyond what the name may imply. Dancing, problem-solving, team-building, and a “SAXE” class of ‘22 aerial shot were just a few of the fun highlights!



Gardening Club

The Gardening Club is reaping the rewards of their hard work from the end of last year! There were still herbs and tomatoes to pick and the students enjoyed a watermelon that they grew from seed. The Mexican sunflowers are attracting both Monarch Butterflies and birds and a big thank you goes out to Mrs. Carpi who donated the seeds! Ms. Wyllie, Ms Jarosik (Garden Club Advisors) and the students are looking forward to planning next year’s garden and hope to grow some indoor plants to brighten up the school during the colder weather.


“Saxe News” Video Club

Check out the latest installment of “Saxe News” which highlights the video club. It is a group of hardworking students who are doing a nice job putting together some quality footage from around the school. We look forward to seeing their future features!


5th and 6th Grade CREW for Alice In Wonderland

Students are hard at work painting paper mache butterflies and mushrooms for the lower division fall performance of Disney’s Alice In Wonderland! “Thank you!” to the parent volunteers who help make all of this possible.


World Language


New Canaan Public Schools is fortunate to have a K-12 Spanish program! As a result of the systematic approach to learning Spanish since Kindergarten, students in New Canaan learn very early on that learning a new language is not an addition to their schedule but part of their core education! This has supported our students in their long-term motivation for learning new languages.

At Saxe, we have 4 Spanish teachers that support our language program 5 -8th grade. Ms. McMahon, Ms. Vavricka, Ms. Milositz, and Ms. McGurk are work collaboratively to create and implement lessons that take students from where they are to an Intermediate High Proficiency level as defined by ACTFL!

Two of our sixth grade classes ensuring their communication skills are clear by using the correct pronouns and verb conjugations when describing different people.

6th graders in Mrs. Milositz’s class practicing their subject/verb agreement with a speaking activity!

8th graders in Mrs. Milositz’s class researching vacation destinations in various Spanish speaking countries.


Students in Mrs. Vavricka’s 7th-grade classroom use new food vocabulary to share what the usually eat when they are home.


Student’s in Mrs. Vavricka’s 7th-grade Spanish compare and contrast Mexican food to Tex-Mex food by reading an article in the monthly magazine “¿Qué tal?” that has current events articles for Spanish learners acquiring a second language.


Mrs. Vavricka’s 8th-grade students utilize maps of the lower level division to give directions to each other in Spanish by applying their vocabulary and commands. Students really enjoyed arriving at various destinations in their Spanish hallway.

6th-grade students in Mrs. Vavricka’s class enjoy listening to Mrs. Hauri, a native speaker, review and read a dialogue containing new vocabulary and grammar.

Senora McGurk’s 5th-grade Spanish class describing different people.

The Saxe and NCHS Science and Engineering Team

The Saxe and NCHS Science and Engineering Team would like to invite students in grades 7-12 to a lecture and demonstration by scientist Martial Pabon on Wednesday, October 17 at 2:15 in room 165. His expertise and day-to-day work is organic chemistry, physico-chemistry, and surfactants. The topic will be energy and energy storage:

  • how energy is critical for human beings in our modern life and for our future
  • how it can be generated in a way that is as clean as possible, with minimal impact on the environment
  • how energy can be stored in a greenway via batteries
  • alternative ways of storage

He will share a small demo with a mini fuel cell experiment.

Shirt(s) of the Week:


Have a great week!

Saxe Resources:

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

Twitter: @SaxeMS

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

Weekly: SaxeMS.com

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