Your Weekly Update from Kennedy Middle School
Week 14 of the school year - full speed into trimester 2!
Dear Kennedy Families and Caregivers,
It was a fast, but also great week at Kennedy. Teachers and students are diving into trimester 2 and are on their way with new, exciting content and curriculum. Grade 7 had a special in school field trip from the Natick Army Labs. To say the kids were excited and engaged is an understatement! Check out the picture below of one of our students putting on parachute gear. They were amazed at the weight of the equipment. We can't thank the Natick Army Labs enough for taking the time to visit Kennedy this week. We were honored to have you with us.
I am particularly excited that this upcoming week we will be diving into the character strength of gratitude in the Positivity Project. I can't think of a strength more important to review now with our students that can make an important impact in their lives. Here is a segment from the parent letter this week on gratitude:
Positivity Project News
This week our school community will be focusing on the character strength of Gratitude. Gratitude means you are aware of and thankful for good things that happen.
Out of all 24 character strengths, gratitude is the single best predictor of individual well-being. It is correlated with increased energy, empathy, happiness and optimism. And, the great thing about gratitude is that it can be intentionally cultivated. Numerous studies have concluded that gratitude is like a muscle. The more you practice it, the stronger it gets -- and the more you’re able to reap its benefits.
To practice and encourage the character strength of gratitude with your child, please visit the Positivity Project’s P2 for Families (password: P2) where together you will watch a video, read a quote and talk about the answers to three questions.
Here is the Gratitude Strength Family and Caregiver Letter for this week: Parent Letter on Gratitude
Trimeter 1 grades viewable after 3:00pm today!
The parent portal opens after 3:00pm on Friday, December 9th. Here are the directions for viewing the grade 5 ROSP and grades 6 - 8 trimester report card.
Here is a note from grade 5 teachers about the ROSP:
ROSPs In Grade 5
The ROSP will be available for you to view in PowerSchool between December 10 through December 23. This report on student progress will show how your student is meeting academic standards with the following scores:
4 - Exceeding -This student consistently and independently exceeds the grade level standards of rigorous subject matter.
3 - Meeting -This student consistently and independently demonstrated mastery of proficiency in the grade level standard.
2 - Progressing - This student is developing concepts, processes, and skills of the grade level standard with some additional time and support.
1 - Beginning -This student is beginning to progress toward the grade level standard with additional time and support.
It is typical for students to earn a “2-Progressing” academic score in this first term of fifth grade. Our goal is to have students meet grade level standards by June. It makes sense that in December, they have not hit that target yet, especially in L&L and the math practice skills where our skills spiral throughout the year.
Please remember, your children are SO MUCH MORE than what these reports will show. These reports will not tell you that your child is a unique and valuable member of our class. They do not reflect the times when your child was a good friend to someone else. Report cards do not show the number of times your child asked for help or participated in extra activities to be a stronger, more well-rounded student. The assessments don't measure the joy and laughter your children bring to our classrooms every day. The scores do not reflect the kindness and compassion they show for their peers and their teachers. Your child's teachers know your children. They are special people, and they are growing leaps and bounds each and every day. Thank you for sharing them with us.
~ Grade 5 Staff
Lost and Found:
Please remind your students to check the lost and found by the main entrance and down by the gym prior to winter break. All items left after beak will be donated to charity. Thank you!
I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend.
Jodie Cohen, Principal
“We tend to forget that happiness doesn't come as a result of getting something we don't have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have."
~ Frederick Keong
Twitter - @KennedyMSNatick
Instagram - @KennedyMSNatick
SIX Things You Need to Know
1 - PFLAG Assemblies (December 14th and March 15th) information:
The assembly on December 14th will focus on providing students with baseline knowledge about LGBTQ+ definitions and terms so that all students can move forward with a common framework and understanding of the terms. Session 2, March 15th, will focus on creating a safe space for LGBTQ+ students and becoming an ally for this population. The 5th and 6th graders will attend their sessions together while the 7th and 8th graders will be together for their sessions. Our goal is to help create an inclusive and affirming environment for all students at Kennedy Middle School and we believe these assemblies will help with that goal.
An opt out letter was sent home via school messenger on Friday, December 2nd. Please respond to your student's school counselor by Friday, December 9th to opt out of one or both of the assemblies.
2 - Postural Screenings in the Clinic
Postural screenings will be conducted for all KMS students in grades 5-8 in their PE classes during the week of December 13 - 20, 2022. Most pediatricians perform this screening at your child's annual wellness visit and if you would like to OPT-OUT your student from their school postural screening, please click HERE to complete the required opt-out form. If you have any questions, please contact your KMS nurse at firstname.lastname@example.org or 508-647-6652.
3 - Grade 8 to 9 Transition to Natick High School Timeline
Letter to families from Mrs. Morin, 8th grade school counselor:
Good Afternoon Grade 8 Parents,
Today your child reviewed the Natick High School Transition Timeline of events with their guidance counselor, Mrs. Morin. Students were given a paper copy to take home. We've attached the timeline here for your review and reference as well. While the first "event" doesn't take place until January, many students have begun thinking about their next steps after middle school and have asked how the process for preparing for high school will unfold. Please don't hesitate to reach out to the admin team or Mrs. Morin with any questions.
Here is the link to the Grade 8 to 9 Transition Timeline.
4 - Middle School Tutoring Program at NHS
We are happy to announce that KMS is continuing our collaboration with the high school and running a tutoring program for middle school students at Kennedy and Wilson. There are members of the National Honor Society at the high school who are volunteering to tutor middle school students. Our hope is to create tutoring partnerships that will primarily meet in person at the high school library between 2:30-5 p.m. as it will be monitored by a staff member. Occasionally, sessions can be held via Google Meet as a virtual option. Families will primarily be responsible for transporting their students to the high school for their tutoring sessions. We are providing training for the tutors on best practices for working with middle school students.
If you are interested in signing your student up for tutoring, please fill out this form. The hope is to get students matched with tutors by the end of November.
5 - Yearbook Orders
The full-color, 64+ page, hard-cover yearbook that chronicles the highlights of the 2022-23 school year is on sale now! We are discounting the book until November 14th. If you reserve your copy before 11/14 the price is only $30. After the 14th, the cost increases to $35. All orders must be placed by January 10, 2023, to be guaranteed a book! Any orders placed after January 10th will cost $40 and are subject to availability. Order your book today! 8th-grade students who qualify for financial aid should speak to their guidance counselor about seeing if they qualify for a free book.
6 - UPCOMING SCHOOL EVENTS for your calendar
- December 14th - Professional Development Early Release Day - School ends at 11:30am
- December 23rd is a FULL day of school - Dismissal at 2:05pm
- December 24th - January 2nd - Winter Break - NO SCHOOL
- Trimester 2 ends - Friday, March 17th
- Trimester 3 begins - Monday, March 20th
- Trimester 3 ends - TBD (depends on last day of school based on snow days)
Paper - On-Demand Tutoring
Natick Public Schools is excited to announce our partnership with Paper for on-demand tutoring for NHS students. Paper is a secure, online tutoring service that provides students with unlimited, 24/7 academic support. Whether they’re stuck on homework, studying for a test, or need someone to read and make suggestions to their essays, there will always be experts available online to assist students in over 200 subjects and more than 4 languages.
Paper tutors have been specially trained to conduct expert, academic support in a secure, chat-based platform. With a commitment to helping students learn, they’ll never give students answers, but rather interact with them in an encouraging tone to lead them forward.
This is a free service that we’re providing, so students are encouraged to use it as much as they need, whenever they need. Our teachers also have accounts and will be able to review all student activity to see what they’re working on and provide more targeted instruction as needed.
If you’d like to learn more about Paper you can sign up for a Paper hosted Parent Info Session, available in both English and Spanish.
To see Paper and the help it offers firsthand, we encourage you to login with your students. To get started, simply visit PAPER’s student login page, type your school’s name, and log in via Google using your school credentials
We’re thrilled to offer our students the unlimited, 24/7 support that Paper provides and we can’t wait to see what we’re able to accomplish together.
Our Kennedy Middle School PTO works hard behind the scenes to support our school in a variety of ways. They are working diligently to bring great activities to our school community. Please check out their website for more information.
- Title I: Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990Title II
- Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990Title VI
- Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964Title IX
- Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972
- MGL, Ch.76, Section 5: Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 76, Section 5