2019.5.3 – Saxe Weekly

May 3, 2019

Dear Saxe Family,

We are so fortunate to be in a wonderful town that values education and celebrating events with families, neighbors, schools, and the entire community. Just this past week, over 1,000 people turned out to participate in the 3rd annual NC Color Run and hundreds more participated in the South/Saxe Lower Division Spring ‘19 Walk/Ride to School Day. The vibe that was present at each of these events screams, “NC is awesome!”. In addition to these two events, this week we also take a look at Walk/Ride to School Day, Science, Latin Day, Leadership Team, Art, NC Color Run, Food Service, dogs, upcoming events, Community of Caring, and much more. You will also find the latest episode of Saxe News and One-Second Everyday, respectively.

Enjoy and have a great weekend!

Dave Gusitsch

Principal, Saxe Middle School

Upcoming Noteworthy Dates:

5/4 “May the Fourth” be with you!

5/6 BOE Meeting

5/7 Teacher Appreciation Day

5/8 New Canaan Cares presentation for incoming freshmen

5/13 Grade 5 to Grade 6 Transition Night

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

*Quote(s) that resonated with us this week:

“Be careful with your words. Once they are said they can be forgiven, but not forgotten.”

“Live in such a way that if someone spoke badly of you no one would believe it.”

“Failure is not the opposite of success. It is part of success.”

“To succeed in life you need 3 things: a wishbone, a backbone, and a funnybone.”

“Strength Does Not Come from Winning – your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.” —Gandhi

Back again for this week – the latest, updated Saxe Middle School 1-Second Everyday! “Life is made of seconds.” Check out a few seconds from each day of 2019 (so far), showcasing so much of what makes Saxe Middle School great. This is a recurring, bi-weekly feature. At the end of the year, we will have a full version that includes every single day of the 2018-19 school year. Enjoy!

Pro tip: want to enjoy it more? Set your youtube playback setting to play at .75 speed

Saxe Spring Open House

Thanks to the many parents who came out to attend our Spring Open Houses! It was great to see so many of you come out and hear from our tremendous teams of teachers.

Walk to School Day

Saxe 5th and 6th-graders joined the South Elementary School tradition and participated in the latest Walk/Ride to School Day. Students walked from every direction and were greeted at school with some music, their favorite staff members, and a whole bunch of smiles. We are not sure who had more fun, the students or the staff. Either way, it’s a “win” for Saxe! I’m not sure there is a better way to start the day…

Dr. Clapp is “all in”! Word on the street is that he only took one slow motion, graceful spill while installing a sign. Love the dedication…


Grade 5 students in Ms. Veach’s science classes have been working diligently in the Saxe Design Lab with Technology Integration Specialist, Mrs. Pacelli to extend their implementation of the engineering design process during their Robotics unit. After successfully completing the design challenge of creating a robot to remove hazardous waste from a disaster site, the students were able to extend their learning by choosing a final challenge to test their skills and deepen their learning. Please see the attached videos to see the unique robot designs and some of the ways the students were able to test if their design was successful.

Sandy the Beach Cleaner


Mars Rescue


Safety Explorer



Latin Day

Students participated in a multitude of events – athletic and academic – all done while dressed as a Roman in tunics! There were workshops including laurel wreath making, lumpies, and button making.

Leadership Team

Spearheaded by one of our very own, passionate 5th-graders Lorinna Doust, the 6th-grade Leadership Team was able to bring some joy to PAWS. Lorrina went to PAWS to film and the team did voiceovers, editing, and final cuts. The following video will be shown in 5th and 6th-grade science classes. Enjoy!

Art at Saxe

Below are a few samples from a recent stop into the CIA after school program. Such impressive talent in progress and on display!

Saxe News

This week the Saxe News crew takes a look at homework through the eyes of a middle schooler. There is some thoughtful insight on the topic and how several different students experience it. Enjoy!

Around Saxe

Over 1,000 people came out to participate in the 3rd Annual NC Color Run. Not only was it a terrific event, proceeds go to college tuition grants for graduating NCHS seniors through the NC Scholarship Foundation. It was a great family friendly event and it was fun to see representatives from Central Office and every school in the district! I could not be more proud of the students and faculty from Saxe who participated… Thanks to all who were involved in making this such a true community event.

Thanks to Ms. Rosen and several Saxe band students for coming to perform live before the kickoff of the Color Run!

Who’s having more fun than Ms. Rocco?! (hint: no one…)

Food Service

Thank you to Ms. Michelle Santelli and her staff! Please see the note below that was in the most recent PTC Newsletter:

New Healthy Food Options at Saxe

As Director of Food Services, Michelle Santinelli is passionate about serving a variety of healthy options for the students every day. Since she joined the Food Services Team, Michelle has replaced many items from the past years with high-quality food items such as Non-GMO Angela Mia Crushed Tomato Sauce for pizzas and pastas, Barilla Whole Grain Pasta, Whole Muscle Chicken Tenders and Certified Angus Beef Burgers to name a few!

Michelle’s main focus is to continue to provide healthy, well-balanced, colorful, seasonal and locally grown food for the students. Please click HERE to see what is currently being offered at Saxe. Please share this menu with your kids to make sure they are aware of these healthier offerings outside of the snack line!

Saxe “Participates” in Local Maker Faire

Saxe participated in a local, crowd-sourced project to help set a record for the World’s Largest 3D Printed Duck. Parts were printed and sent in from all around the world. Below is a link to a video that shows some of the assembly and a closeup of our Saxe sticker in the mix! Thanks to Ms. Bridsall for taking the lead and helping Saxe be part of the worldwide event.


The Ultimate Life Skills club conducted mock interviews this week. Students chose a job of choice (mostly entry level or something relevant to them) and prepped for the interview using sample questions. Afterward, they were interviewed for the position. Great life experience…

Mike’s Mailbox

Mike’s Mailbox is in the lower division office if students would like to leave any cards or notes for Mr. Patrona! He has loved all his cards and they have been a great source of comfort and positivity to him!

Dogs of Saxe

We love seeing our four-legged friends come through the arrival/dismissals lines. This picture is an instant classic! Photo credits go to Ms. Rende and 5th-grader, Michael.

Thinking Globally and Acting Locally

Yet another “thanks” goes to our PTC for helping us provide water refilling stations around the building. The latest one to go online is in the 6th-grade hallway. Please encourage your children to bring their refillable water bottles to visit one of our stations and stay hydrated throughout the day!

Friendly Saxe Reminders

As the weather gets warmer, please remind your children to be mindful of appropriate attire in a school setting. For more information, please feel free to visit page 21 of the student handbook, here. Thanks for your support.


As we continue our state testing, please remember to encourage your children to get a good night rest, eat well, and possibly pack a snack to replenish any depleted stores. We are proud of how well our students do on these tests and appreciate your support in partnering to maximize their performance!

Upcoming Events

In case you missed it, here is the link to the end of the year events for the 8th grade!

8th Grade EOY Letter

Volleyball Youth Night at NCHS

Scenes Around Saxe

Spring has sprung around Saxe and we are lucky to have such tremendous grounds, courtyards, and outdoor learning spaces to appreciate all that nature has to offer, and teach us.

Community of Caring

You may have noticed the bench that sits beneath the beautiful pink (currently) tree right outside the main entrance of Saxe. Thanks to our caring PTC, we were able to replace a recently disintegrated original bench that commemorates a former Saxe student, John Leslie. Main office secretary, Ms. Calabrese was instrumental in coordinating the replacement and the family was grateful beyond words. Thank you to everyone who made this possible. The plaque on the bench reads:

In loving memory of our friend

John Leslie

The Class of 2012

Have a great week!

* A special thanks to Mary Calabrese for the continuous stream of positive, optimistic quotes!

Saxe Resources:

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

Twitter: @SaxeMS

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

Weekly: SaxeMS.com

Saxe Middle School

Celebrating Our Learning Community Through Caring, Communication & Commitment

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