2020.3.20 – Saxe Weekly

March 20, 2020

Dear Saxe Family,

This edition of the Saxe Weekly marks our first-ever full week of e-learning. I could not be more proud of every member of our learning community. As challenging and unpredictable as this week was, there was a continuous stream of positivity that was ever-present through emails, google hangouts, zoom sessions, facetime meetings, voxer conversations, texts, phone calls, pictures, and videos. Basically, everything except in-person interactions, which typically make up the foundation of our business in education – relationships. Everyone was adapting and adjusting as we worked through the unknown, together. It is fair to say that we witnessed the finest representation of the human spirit on display, literally at its best.

In addition to continuing our learning journey, albeit, in a new fashion, staff and students figured ways to effectively connect. I received messages throughout the week with examples of students connecting with each other, staff connecting with each other, and staff and students connecting with each other, through multiple mediums that helped make the completely abnormal (school outside of school) seem somewhat, normal. You will see many examples of this below…

You recently received an email outlining the schedule changes that will go into effect next week. For your reference, you may also find that information, here. We are excited to put this plan into action as we believe it will assist us in working towards our overall goals during this long-duration closure.

This week, we take a look at Health and Physical Education, World Down Syndrome Day, School Counselors, lots of e-learning, #DogsOfSaxe, School Spirit, Students in the News, our latest one-second everyday, and much more…

Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend!

Dave Gusitsch

Principal, Saxe Middle School

Want to check out the “Saxe Weekly” from last week? You’re one click away, here.

*Quotes that resonated with us this week:

We owe a huge debt of gratitude to our “quote-master”, Mary Calabrese, especially now. Her continuous stream of positivity has been a breath of fresh air for staff and parents alike. Thanks, Mary!

“When you can’t control what’s happening, challenge yourself to control the way you respond. That’s where your power is.”

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”

“This is just a chapter….not our whole story.”

“The best view comes after the hardest climb.”

“Keep your head up…..keep your heart strong……you got this!!”

And, we even received some quotes from families who wrote in following our e-learning launch. Thanks to all who reached out!

“Patience and fortitude conquer all things.”

“Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors.”

“The strongest people make time to help others, even if they are struggling with their own problems.”

“Being challenged in life is inevitable. Being defeated is optional.”

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

“Choose to be Happy! It’s truly a choice.”

We could not be more proud to see all of the hard work of our staff and students captured in their virtual environments. Enjoy!

We always appreciate our custodians, especially now!

A “New” Look

While we are not in the building, we are continuing to share about our learning community through our digital slideshow that streams on our website. These slides typically play on the screens throughout Saxe.

Saxe Birthdays

We may not be physically in school, but students are still celebrating their birthdays. Happy Birthday to the following students!

Departments and/or Grade Levels:

3/21 is World Down Syndrome Day! Some of our special education staff were prepared to celebrate by wearing our World Down Syndrome Day shirts to raise awareness and did a Zoom call instead!

World Down Syndrome Day is marked each year on March 21, beginning in 2006. The 21st day of March was selected to signify the uniqueness of the triplication of the 21st chromosome which causes Down syndrome.

Health & Physical Education

Students in 7th-grade health created some positive infographics around stress management.

During E-Learning it is important not to forget the benefits of staying active throughout the day. We hope you are enjoying the Families as Fitness Partners Calendar. The Saxe PE department is proud of their students who are sharing ways they are meeting their physical activity goals!

School Counseling

Here is a nice picture of our wonderful school counseling staff: Ms. Beltran, Ms. Nettleton, Ms. Risoli, Mr. Lepisto, Ms. Bachman, and Ms. Pausig. (Disclaimer: this photo was taken before the implementation of the social-distancing mandate). They are an essential part of our staff and programming. Please reach out to them if you have any questions!

E-Learning

There is so much to be proud of. Enjoy some of the e-learning action from across the town! Thank you to everyone who contributed this week. We tried to keep up with all of the photos that came in (there were a lot, which is great!)…

There was even an e-learning Charter on display!

Saxe in the News

Congratulations to 5th-grader, Cary Wang, for recently being published in the New Canaan Advertiser! Please check out his story below:

“I have recently written a book report and analysis on Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson. I shared it with Mrs. Devine. Thank you very much for the encouragement! I modified and submitted it to NC Advertiser as an opinion piece, specifically and Op-Ed. I was surprised by the editor’s immediate response on Saturday. Today it was published!”

An 11-year-old boy’s introspective view on hope, kindness, confidence, and future improvement

Leading by Example

Thanks to Social Studies Coordinator, Mary Hanna for “keeping it real” as she communicated her SS E-Learning plan with her staff! In addition to business that had to be covered, Ms. Hanna maintained the all-important focus on humor, warmth, being welcoming, connection to the e-learning process, collaboration, and flexibility.

“Good afternoon! Congratulations on what I hope has been a successful day of learning. I saw some wonderful work and I truly thank you for your hard work and time today! I am in my “office”. As you can see it’s really my daughter’s old room. She was an Irish dancer and runner, hence the trophies. My husband Kevin and I aren’t sure what we are supposed to do with those trophies when your kids leave. How long should the room still look like your child still lives there? Big questions. Nora notices any change when she is back. Her school in Nashville returned from the tornado on Monday but was out today through at least their spring break of next week due to Covid 19. Liam’s Boston gigs seem to be cancelled. My grade 2 and 3 Mystery State Skypes with schools across the US are postponed. We are truly all in this new territory together!”

Human Nature

Dan Tosches, Campus Monitor, continues to update the calendar in the Lower Division office to maintain “a sense of normalcy”.

Sites around Saxe

The 6Red team was ready for St. Patty’s Day…

Your Saxe Admin Team is making the best of the situation through their Zoom sessions!

The lonely view of empty hallways at the beginning of our closure:

It’s only been a week, and I miss seeing our beautiful school each day!

Have a great week!

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

Saxe Resources (live links)

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

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

Twitter: @SaxeMS

The Saxe Weekly: SaxeMS.com

Saxe Middle School

Celebrating Our Learning Community Through Caring, Communication, & Commitment

 

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