Clary MS @ Levy Newsletter

October 2020

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Dear Clary Family,

It's hard to believe that we are already into the month of October! September presented us with many challenges and questions. Our new learning platform, Microsoft Teams, has taken some time to get used to, and I know it has not always been easy, but together, the students, teachers and families are having many successes. We cannot stress enough the importance of student engagement in both synchronous and asynchronous learning. Course content is progressing and it is imperative for students to keep up with their schoolwork. Parents, please be sure to check your child’s progress through SchoolTool and we will continue to work collaboratively with you to ensure students succeed at every level and we increase student achievement.

Meanwhile, we are excited to see students walk through our doorways on October 5th! As always, I encourage you to please continue to refer to the county website, our school website, and our social media pages (Facebook and Twitter) for information throughout the year.

In closing, I want to thank you for your continued support and wish you and your family good health and a wonderfully smooth start to our vitrual school-year. I feel confident that when we all return together, it will be with a greater sense of belonging and a renewed perspective on all of the values that make Clary Middle School such a special place.


Principal Lisa Costanzo

Remember we are at a new location this year

We are at 157 Fellows Ave. Syracuse, NY 13210 for the 2020/2021 school year.

MYP Learner Profile

In September, we focused on the being Risk-Takers.

We are risk-takers. We approach unfamiliar situations and uncertainty with courage and forethought. Teachers nominated students in their class who were determined, resourceful, and resilient during this time of remote learning. Congratulations to our nominees from each team!

Team Cornell: WB, JH, NW Team Yale: DH, SH Team Harvard: TB, RC, Davie: LS, Martin: LS

The staff also nominated a teacher who took risks. Congratulations to Michele Gagnon!

October- We are INQUIRERS

In October, the Clary Middle School community will focus on what it means to be an inquirer. As an inquirer, we develop our natural curiosity. We know how to learn independently and with others, developing skills necessary for inquiry and research with enthusiasm.

Students who are inquirers are curious about the world. They ask questions and seek answers. They love learning and discovering new things and will carry this love of learning with them throughout life. Teachers at Clary Middle School create classroom environments that encourage students to ask questions. They work together to plan learning experiences that open up the lesson to student inquiry. They model the asking of questions and teach students how to recognize and to ask quality questions about the world and their learning. Inquiry isn't just about asking questions; it's about asking deep, thoughtful, meaningful questions. Students are also taught how to seek answers to their questions, to evaluate the quality of the answers they discover, and to use their new knowledge to continue to ask more questions. Students at Clary should see inquiry as an expected as well as valued part of learning.

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Virtual Open House

Our Virtual Open House will be Thursday October 8th. Teachers will have pre-recorded messages containing introductions and contact information as well as the syllabus for each class they teach. Links will be posted on the school website ( under the "News" section as well as on our Clary Facebook page and sent out via text message on Thursday.

Hybrid Bell Schedule

SEL- 8:45-8:59

Period 1- 9:00- 9:54

Period 2- 9:56- 10:50

Period 3-10:52- 11:46

Period 4- 11:48- 12:42

Lunch - 12:45- 1:15

Period 5- 1:51-2:45 (Virtual for everyone)

Period 6- 2:46-3:40 (Virtual for everyone)

Hybrid Model Procedures

Now that we are coming back to school, at least part time, there are some new procedures to keep everyone safe. Take a few minutes and watch this video for all of our instructions.

Please also have students bring a water bottle to school. Students will not be allowed to use the water fountains due to Covid-19.

Welcome Back Clary!!

6th Grade Team

The 6th grade Clary Team is so excited to welcome students to our new location, Levy Middle School, starting on October 5th. As a reminder do not forget to leave home without your mask! We will be providing materials for students to complete work in school, so please leave your laptop at home. If you are still having trouble navigating Microsoft Teams or Canvas, please reach out to any one of your teachers and we will gladly walk you through each platform.

Mrs. McCoy is looking forward to seeing her Instrumental music students this year. Instrumental music will be remote until at least January, due to that she will be instructing the students already enrolled in the program or those that have already taken at least one year of instrumental lessons elsewhere. Learning and teaching instrumental music in the virtual world is something neither of us signed up for but Mrs. McCoy looks forward to finding ways to keeping all of us engaged and having fun while learning all there is to learn about your instrument.

7th Grade Team

7th Grade Team Yale

October 2020

The seventh grade teachers are extremely proud of our Students who are adjusting well and succeeding at a type of schooling we have never seen before! We are so excited and looking forward to having the students in class and ready to continue learning!

A few reminders for hybrid students returning to school:

  • Bookbags ARE allowed, feel free to bring yours.
  • Please remember to bring supplies like pens, pencils, notebooks, and folders.
  • Please continue to use Talking Points, Email and Canvas as forms of communication.
  • Students will be staying in their homeroom for all classes and teachers will move to various classrooms through the morning.

A Word from Our Teachers

Mr. Curtis: The Scientists of 7th Grade are MASSively impressive this year. Their passion speaks VOLUMEs to their hard work, even if the first unit was a little DENSE. (Parents, if you don't get these puns, ask your 7th grader to help you help.)

As we move ahead, your Scientists will be ROCKing it out with our Earth Science unit. We'll tackle this planet-sized unit together one layer at a time. Students: I'll be looking for rock-stars to lead our learning, who's up for the task?

Mrs. Garcia Bardenett: We are finishing Scale Factor shapes in Math and will be starting with proportional shapes soon!

Mr. Elsenbeck: We have started “A Long Walk to Water” and have been doing great work in class!

Ms. Gagnon: Hey there citizens! We are learning about the electoral process to better understand the Presidential Elections!

8th Grade Team

Team Harvard

Welcome 8th Grade Scholars. We are excited to work and learn with you this year! Please remember to join your classes on Teams and complete you work on Canvas. Reach out to any of your teachers if you need help with this. Happy Learning!

Individuals and Societies

Hello Social Scientists. We will be wrapping up with the Civil War and moving onto the elections. We cannot wait to dig deeper into this topic. Feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns ( or on Talking Points).


Ms. Casey-Wagemaker (Algebra)- Welcome to Algebra I! Being in Algebra as an 8th grader is a great opportunity! You have a chance to earn high school credit before even getting into high school. Please remember that this means this class will require more work and more effort than your other classes. That being said, I will be available frequently for extra help.

Communication with Ms. Casey-Wagemaker (Ms. C-W)

Inbox feature on Canvas

Microsoft Teams chat box

Talking Points App

Ms. Fonseca (Math 8th)- Students are working on rigid transformations.: Translation, Rotation and Reflection, what are they in math? They are identifying them as well as looking at their properties. After that they are going to look at congruent figures by applying their knowledge about rigid transformations.

Language and Literature

Mr. Gilbreath- Our blended classroom supports individualized needs of students through data, social-emotional activities, personalized learning, and technology. We promote independent learning, through which we value our progress and set obtainable goals. We promote our learning through the lens of community, global context, and self. This allows us to consistently question our own thoughts and choices through self-efficacy. Overall, our classroom is a safe space where students are comfortable, both in-person and online, to explore themselves and the way they learn. In our first Unit, we discover different characteristics of our personal identity. Also, we view different perspectives of identity and how it shapes our world view.

Ms. McCray- This course will help students to strengthen their understanding of literature through deep dives into diverse text. Students will spend time reading several different literary genres including but not limited to, poems, short stories, novels and plays. Students will develop critical thinking skills by reading and analyzing text.

Ms. Ospina- This year in science we will be working with NGSS, which is the Next Generation Science Standards. These new standards provide a way for students to question the world around them and gain academic confidence. Students will discover life science through questioning and exploration. They will work through assignments independently while receiving support from me when needed. Students will have a playlist every week with the assignments for the week. As a student, they will be responsible for their playlists and completing all work on the playlist by Friday of every week. In Living Environment students will also have to complete 1200 lab minutes to qualify for the NYS Regents, resulting in a High School credit!

Please refer to our Padlet for FAQs.

Related Studies Team

In P.E., students are practicing taking their pulses, learning about their heart rates when they exercise and how it makes them feel. They are also learning more about physical activity and how it can impact social and emotional health.

Music students are focusing on how music plays a part in their individual lives and are learning to analyze the elements of music they hear in a song.

In Health, students are learning about Anxiety Disorders and how school age children are affected; they are also talking about how it relates to Covid-19. FACS students are reviewing the many different cooking methods there are.

In Design, students have been working on the introduction to design process and the way measurement affects our way of living.

In Art, students will be taking a virtual trip to the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, Netherlands to practice their ability to discuss art and share their opinions. Students are exploring the importance of the role of art museums in our society.

Instrumental Music Lessons have started with Mrs. McCoy. Musicians will meet 20 minutes once a week for lessons and will also have virtual rehearsals. Mrs. McCoy looks forward to the engaging and fun activities that we will come up with for this school year.

Checking Out Online Books

When you sign on to Clever (where Canvas and Office 365 are) if you go to "Sora" you can check out online books! Mr. Pasternak wants to see how many books you can read while we are virtual. Sign out an online book, read it, and email Mr. Pasternak at to schedule an appointment to chat about what you are reading!
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PTO Meeting

Monday, Oct. 26th, 5:30pm

This is an online event.

Parents please join us for our virtual PTO meeting at the zoom link below.

Meeting ID: 844 1808 9375

Passcode: hYRx3n

Wellness Tip

Each month we give an example of how to take care of our mind, body, or both. This month we have included a breathing technique to help elevate stress and help to refocus our mind. We know that with everything going on it can be difficult to maintain a calm and clear mind. Practice this technique in the morning or throughout your day to help stay level and at your best mentally!
5-4-3-2-1 Mindfulness Exercise