2023.4.28 – Saxe Weekly

April 28, 2023

Dear Saxe Family, 

The weather was cooler this week, but Spring has certainly sprung around Saxe Middle School. Not only have the blossoms bloomed, but activities are abound around campus. It is a wonderful time of year and we look forward to applying the learning that has been taking place all year and celebrating the successes that come along with it! 

This week in the Saxe Weekly, we take a look at the latest 1 Second Everyday, Teacher Appreciation Week, Daytime Open House recap, an upcoming assembly, Arbor Day, our SRO Safety Tip of the Week, Science, World Language, Crafting Club, eSports, PTC Meeting, Band, Saxe Spirit, Art, Stress Less lessons, Administrative Assistant Day, Dogs of Saxe, Kindness, Scenes around Saxe, and much more.  Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend! 

Be Well, 

Dave Gusitsch

Principal, Saxe Middle School

Upcoming Noteworthy Dates:

5/1 -5/5 – *Teacher Appreciation Week at Saxe (thank you, teachers!)

5/1 – Emotions into Art Presentation for Grades 6/7

5/3 – PTC Meeting  – ABC’s of Social Media @ 9:30 am in the Saxe Auditorium

5/4 – Incoming 5th-grade parent orientation – 6:00 p.m.

5/5 – Grade 5 Colonial Day

5/11 – Save the Date – Incoming 6th-grade parent orientation – 6:00 p.m.

*Please note: the official Teacher Appreciation Week is May 8-12, but we will be kicking off the month of May in alignment with National Teacher Day on Tuesday, May 2.

*Quotes that resonated with us this week:

“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.”  – Marcel Proust

“Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life. Tiptoe if you must, but take a step.– Naeem Callaway

“The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide you’re not going to stay where you are.” – J.P. Morgan

If you want to feel more comfortable and happy, work on making the people around you more comfortable and happy.” Kathy Freston

“Success seems to be largely a matter of hanging on after others have let go.” -William Feather

One Second Everyday

Back again for this week – the latest Saxe Middle School 1-Second Everyday! “Life is made of seconds.” Showcasing so much of what makes Saxe Middle School great! This will be a recurring, bi-weekly feature. At the end of the year, we will have a full version that includes every single day of the 2022-23 school year. Enjoy! (pro tip: to enjoy the video at a slower pace, change your viewing option to .75 speed).

Teacher Appreciation Week at Saxe

Thanks to our amazing PTC, our teachers will be feeling the love for Teacher Appreciation Week at Saxe, all week! Here’s the amazing lineup the chairs have scheduled: 

  • Monday, May 1st: Cookies by Valerie in teachers’ mailboxes
  • Tuesday, May 2nd: Bubble & Brew truck serving coffee/tea and pastries
  • Wednesday, May 3rd: Surprise distributed to each teacher’s mailbox
  • Thursday, May 4th: Tasty Yolk Truck serving egg sandwiches and potato smashes 
  • Friday, May 5th:  La Pescaderia’s Cinco de Mayo fiesta in the teachers’ lounge

Again, thank you to every parent who participated to make this happen!

Daytime Open House Presentations

If you were unable to attend the Daytime Open house for your child(ren)’s team?  All team presentations are linked below for your viewing pleasure!

Thursday, 4/20Friday, 4/21Monday, 4/24Tuesday, 4/25
8:55amG7: RED TeamSlide Show8:55amG7: GREEN TeamSlide Show8:55amG7: BLUE TeamSlide Show8:55amG7: PURPLE TeamSlide Show
10:10 a.m.G6: GREEN TeamSlide Show10:10 a.m.G6: BLUE Team Slide Show10:10 a.m. G6: PURPLE TeamSlide Show10:10 a.m.G6: RED TeamSlide Show
11:20 a.m.G8: RED TeamSlide Show11:20 a.m.G8: BLUE TeamSlide Show11:20 a.m. G8: GREEN TeamSlide Show11:20 a.m.G8: PURPLE TeamSlide Show

Thanks to everyone who came out to join!

Grade 6 & 7 Assembly 

We are excited to share that on Monday, May 1st, we will be hosting our first mutli-grade assembly in several years, “Emotion Into Art,” featuring acclaimed artist, Tom Varano. Emotion Into Art™ is an extremely unique Speed Painting/Inspirational speaking performance. This is a nationally recognized show with the goal of inspiring students of all ages to not only follow their dreams, but to follow their dreams with PASSION! The performance entertains and captures the students’ attention while the microphone allows Tom to speak a message of hope and encouragement into their lives.  This show consists of three to four paintings created live, set to powerful music. In between each painting, an inspirational message, ranging from a variety of topics, is covered. One of the paintings (4 ft by 5 ft) from each show is donated to the school as a reminder of Tom’s amazing performance and powerful message.

Some of the presentation topics include: 

  • Having Courage
  • Learning Leadership
  • Living with Passion
  • Dreaming B.I.G.
  • Overcoming F.E.A.R.
  • Reading
  • Being Helpful
  • Developing Discipline
  • Being Generous

Thank you to the generous support of our Saxe PTC, we are able to bring this amazing experience to our students, and staff! Stay tuned for more in the May 5th Saxe Weekly… 

Happy Arbor Day 2023

Not only do we have a beautiful campus, but we also make sure our students “understand the Science” behind why it is beautiful! Students in 8 Red Science toured our campus and created a log of the different tree species found here at Saxe. Students used the app, “Seek”, to identify trees down to the species level. It is very exciting to see the species richness that exists here on our campus. Happy Arbor Day!

For anyone wondering how many species we have, the following were identified (and, there may be many more around campus)! 

Japanese Cherry, Blue Spruce, Eastern White Pine, Saucer Magnolia, Red Maple, Black Hawthorn, Norway Spruce, Norway Maple, Eastern Red Cedar, Black Maple, Ashe Juniper, Star Magnolia, Wayfaring Tree, Western Azalea, Golden Trumpet Tree, Northern Red Oak, White Oak, Shingle Oak, Vine Maple, Boxelder Maple, & Flowering Dogwood. 

Office Blank’s Safety Tip of the Week

Safe Driving Week isn’t only for our new teen drivers. All drivers need to be aware of the roadways. With the warmer weather upon us, more and more kids are walking after school at dismissal time. We must all be cognizant of the speed limits around school zones as well as the multiple crosswalks in our towns. Our campus monitors do a great job ensuring our students cross safely, please help them out by watching your speed around our schools. Also, a friendly reminder to pick up & drop off at the designated areas. Morning drop off should take place at the Lower Division entrance and pick up is the front loop at the Main Entrance. Thank you for your cooperation!


Students in 8th-grade Science Workshop interviewed one another about a challenge they face when eating their favorite foods. After gaining some insight and formulating a problem/needs statement, students then came up with radical ideas for solutions. After receiving feedback from their partner on their designs, students then built a prototype to present to the class. The Think Space provided a perfect environment for students to conduct their interviews and do their planning before moving into the Design Lab to construct their prototypes.

In correspondence with our Ecology unit and Earth Day, 6 Blue and 6 Red did a short project about an endangered species of interest. They then created posters about their organism, including human impact and ways to help their organisms’ populations replenish.

World Language 

This week, 7th Spanish and 7-8 Mandarin classes participated in skits to prepare them for a real-world restaurant ordering experience in the target language.

On April 27th, Saxe Latin students and teachers traveled with their NCHS Latin student and teacher peers to participate in Latin Day at Holiday Hill. Students had the opportunity to collaborate and compete in cultural activities with high school and middle school students from across Connecticut–while wearing togas! 

In grades 6 – 8, French classes created comic strips related to food, daily routine, and school life which are shared below!

Seasonal Crafting Club

In Seasonal Crafting students are learning about the art of linocuts. A linocut is a type of relief, or block print. Using linoleum they are designing, carving, and making a custom print series.

Saxe eSports

Congratulations to Peter Tsapralis and Cyrus Stevenson, members of Saxe’s inaugural eSports team, for their big semifinal win against Collingswood Middle School in Vanta’s Super Smash Bros Team Tournament. Peter and Cyrus were able to defeat the Panthers 2-1 in a very tight contest with Peter dealing the deciding smash against a member of the Collingwoods team. We wish them luck as they will go on to face another Collingwoods team next week for the championship.

Save the Dates: 

Saxe PTC Meeting

Please join for an informative session on the ABC’s of Social Media next Wednesday!

Incoming 6th-Grade Parent Orientation

Wondering what the transition from 5th-grade to 6th-grade will be like? Join us for an information session on Thursday, May 11th at 6:00 p.m. in the auditorium. We will share all that is below, and more!

Secret Buddies

Over the past few years, Ms. Orlando has helped participating staff enjoy periodic moments of “attitude of gratitude” through the “Secret Buddy” program. It is always a highlight to find a surprise from your buddy. Thanks to Ms. Orlando & all who participate!

Tweet Street

Below are photos and phrases that were included on our Saxe middle school Twitter page (@SaxeMS) this week. Enjoy!

Our Saxe Music Dept is awesome! Mr. Coulter shared:

“Here’s the G5 Band playing‘ Day-O (Banana Boat Song)’ the traditional Jamaican Folk Song, in tribute to Harry Belafonte on his passing. We discussed his wonderful contribution to American popular culture & his hit songs.”

We even made it into the New Canaanite!

Just a couple of awesome examples of some serious #SaxeSpirit for Neon Day today!

Our Saxe Esports teams have competed well all season. One team has even reached the Championship round next week to square off with a team from NJ. Congrats & good luck! Stay tuned for updates…

Even some of our older students enjoy a little Brain Break at Saxe! It’s a great way to reset & refocus the body & brain between classes and/or testing! 

Here is a great example of some “Art protecting some Art”!

Thank to our Saxe Counselors for conducting some Stress Less workshops this week. Great life skills for students to learn & practice…

6th Grade Q4 Robotics students are off and running. They will learn all about motors, gears, sensors and coding through this VEX Robotics model, then they will make their own robots! #SaxeInnovates  #SaxeDesignLab

Our students brought snacks and jokes to Ms. Connaughton to celebrate Administrative Professionals Day! Thank you, Ms. Connaughton for all you do for the special education department Saxe!

And, as a show of “thanks!” to all of our Administrative Assistants, our Saxe PTC showed them some extra love with some sensible gifts from Shelala (thank you!) 

8Red is ready for spring and showcasing some of what we value most – #BeKind! (Or, #BeeKind)  🙂

One of our youngest #DogsOfSaxe to date – Toby stopped by straight from the breeder! That is one fine looking German Shorthaired Pointer…

First cut of the season in our courtyards… They look great & thanks to our Saxe Custodians who make it happen – you are appreciated!

Spring is in the air around Saxe! Thank you to Ms. Jordan for the spring update of our flower pots – they look great!

Have a great week, see you next Friday!

Thank you to all of our Saxe Weekly contributors! Each weekly edition is an example of collaboration in action. A special thanks to Lauren Sherwood 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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