2019.6.14 – Saxe Weekly

June 14, 2019

Dear Saxe Family,

As we finish our last full week of the school year, we have much to share, and be grateful for! This week we take a look Health Education, ELA, World Language, Social Studies, Garden Club, Fun/Field Days, Dance, Student Leadership, Emotional Intelligence, and more…

Enjoy and have a great weekend. Happy Father’s Day to all of the Dads out there!

Dave Gusitsch

Principal, Saxe Middle School

Upcoming Noteworthy Dates:

6/16 – Happy Father’s Day!

6/17 – 7th Grade Brownstone Field Trip

6/18 – 8th Grade Promotion Practice

6/19 – 8th Grade Promotion Ceremony @ NCHS

6/20 – 8/29 Have a great summer!

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

*Quotes that resonated with us this week:

“It doesn’t matter what’s been written in your story so far, it’s how you fill up the rest of the pages that count.”

“Success is on the same road as failure; success is just a little further down the road.”

“If you try something you risk failure. If you don’t, you ensure it.”

“Failure is a bruise, not a tattoo.”

“The difference between a stumbling block and a stepping stone is how high you raise your foot.”

Saxe News

Below is the link to the final episode of Saxe News. Thanks and congratulations to George Petrakopoulos and his Saxe News team for a great year of keeping us all informed and entertained! This episode is a great recap of the year and a nice way to wrap up on a positive note. Enjoy!

Health Education

The fifth graders this year continued a tradition like no other, beginning every health class with “Happiness is…”. The Happiness Advantage kicked off last year as an idea that has taken a life of its own transforming a hallway into over 4,000 orange post it notes representing what brings our 5th-grade students “Happiness”. The fifth graders enjoyed doing this as a start to each and every class and as you can see in the picture, the “Happiness Is…” wall brought a whole lot of smiles to grade 5, (and the rest of Saxe!).

ELA

5th Grade Shakesperience: Greek Mythology

Big thanks to the PTC for supporting another great event for our fifth graders. Shakesperience returned to bring mythology alive for our fifth-grade students. Currently, students are studying Greek Mythology and the adaptations of spoken stories throughout the years. Kids had a blast acting out the different parts and learning the meanings/explanations and current relevance of Greek mythology.

Picture: A few of our 7th-grade readers excited for

Summer Reading with books that they’ve loved this year!

Summer Reading:

We are often asked, “What can I do to help my child maintain their skills over the summer?” The best thing to do is to read! Is there anything more beautiful than sitting with a great book in your hand teaching you new information or transporting you to a mystical land far away? If it’s not a book in your hand that you desire, kids also love audiobooks, graphic novels, and short stories. Kids should feel open to read magazines, newspapers, or blogs related to their interest and maturity level throughout the summer, too. It matters most that students read a lot and socialize about what they are reading; we strive for students to develop the love and stamina for the habit of reading. And lastly, don’t hesitate to read with your kids! Even eighth graders love to talk about books with loved ones. Books can be a great way to talk to your children about topics and ideas that kids may be wrestling to understand.

The Summer Reading assignments are posted online only, and are linked here for your reference. English Language Arts teachers will review the assignment with students in classes before the last day of school, but we ask that you access the assignment through the links below. Enjoy great books this summer!

Incoming Grade 5: Summer Reading Assignment

Incoming Grade 6: Summer Reading Assignment

Incoming Grade 7: Summer Reading Assignment

Incoming Grade 8: Summer Reading Assignment

Looking for inspiration? New Canaan Public Library has a great teen and pre-teen reading program through the summer and would love for you to join them this summer in their Joust Summer Reading and Joust Teen Summer Reading program(s). Read great books and earn some prizes!

World Language

The Spanish Department wishes everyone a fantastic summer! It has been a wonderful year and we are so lucky to work with our students. It was a true honor and full circle moment for Spanish classes to listen to NCHS Senior intern, Emily Dowdle, present about her trip to Guatemala in Spanish geared toward each grade level. Students also enjoyed hearing about volunteer opportunities within the New Canaan community as well as possibilities at the high school. Thank you Emily, it was a true pleasure to have you work with us this year!

Social Studies

As the year comes to a close, our students have been busy with work on various authentic performance tasks bringing their understanding, knowledge, and skills together.

In grade 8, as a part of their American Identity unit, students researched a specific group of people in the United States and then created interactive lessons to teach their classmates. Several of the essential questions that students discuss are

  • Why it is important to recognize the culture and contributions of all groups within a democratic society?
  • How do unequal power relationships affect different individuals within a society?

As a part of their Africa unit, grade 7 students worked collaboratively to simulate the African Union. Leveraging strengths and challenges of member countries, students created a corridor or route, connecting countries and considering shared goals.

In grade 6, as a part of their Globalization and Changing Cultural Landscapes unit, students culminate their learning by participating in a mini-model United Nations project on globalization. Students researched many member countries and met to discuss and finally reach consensus on a UN resolution for globalization.

Saxe Garden Club

Thanks to all of our students who helped with Garden Club! Ms. Wyllie and Ms. Jarosik have invited students and their parents to come back over the summer to enjoy some of the bounties of what they planted. We could not have such a nice garden without all of their help!

Around Saxe

Grade 6 Fun Day

Sixth-graders had a great day for their Fun Day on Wednesday. There was a huge variety of activities for students to choose from, including the inside “Zen Zone” for students who wanted to get away for a little bit and enjoy some downtime. Thanks to all of our parent volunteers and faculty who made this such a terrific day!

Grade 5 Field Day

The fifth-graders enjoyed a beautiful afternoon of games, friendly competition, dancing, and play. This year featured our first grade-five picnic in the 6th-grade courtyard” (a preview of a space they will use next year). Thank you to all the parents, students and teachers who made the day a great success!

Dr. Clapp calling the shots from the captain’s chair…

The best hat spotted out at Field Day…

8th-Grade Dance

The main gymnasium transformed into the “Wild West” as students enjoyed their final dance! Thanks to the parent volunteers who did such an amazing job and provided a great meal lineup with pulled pork, mac and cheese, salad, treats, and more!

Student Leadership Summit

This Friday, the Student Leadership team had their final School Climate Summit. The leaders from grades 5-8 gathered to determine a plan for the school climate work at Saxe next year. They decided to focus on “Exclusion” as their number one area for growth next year, and also were celebrated for all of the positive work they all did this year to make Saxe a safe, happy place where all feel respected. Thanks to the Student Leadership Teams and to Mr. Lepisto and Ms. Reynolds for their wonderful leadership of the SLTs. We will miss you next year Ms. Reynolds! And thanks to Dr. Bliss, Dr. Clapp, Mr. Bedard, Dr. Ferreira, and Mr. Gusitsch for their support!

Students name “things” that help promote a positive school climate at Saxe…

Mr. Gusitsch, Ms. Reynolds and Mr. Lepisto at the Summit

Student Leaders deciding on plans for improving school climate next year…

Emotional Intelligence

Ms. Risoli teaches her final EI lesson with her 6th-grade Connections group. Thanks to everyone for all of the EI work this year!

STEM

From VR, to building birdhouses, and everything in between, Ms. Birdsall provides great opportunities for our students at Saxe!

NCHS Interns “making a difference”…

Check out the 3 on 3 basketball tournament fundraiser for” Kibera in Kenya” that NCHS senior interns Stephen Wronski and Ben Sarda created, tomorrow (6/15). The tournament consists of 5th-8th grade. Click here for the Eventbrite site where all the details are listed.

Live music for Flag Day today!

One of the many fine mornings this week…

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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