The Tohickon Golden Eagle
SPRING IS AROUND THE CORNER!!!
Dear Tohickon Families,
The busy month February has concluded. In addition to being a short month, we had a number of disruptions due to snow days. However, in lieu of all of this, we held a number of events including, but not limited to, program planning, midterms, the dodgeball tournament, sixth grade orientation, the ninth grade holocaust assembly and our Relay for Life Kickoff Assembly.
Spring is around the corner as we move into March! We always know that spring is close when it is time for our annual Spring Musical. This year our Spring Musical will take place on March 7, 8 and 9. The event will begin at 7:00 PM on all three evenings and there will be a matinee on Saturday, March 9, at 2:30 PM. The students, Mr. Dengler and our staff have been working diligently over the past several months to put this production together. Please come out to support our kids if you have the opportunity to do so.
Mr. Matt Landis, a Tamanend Social Studies Teacher and published author, will be here to present his latest book, The Not So Boring Letters of Private Nobody, to our seventh and eighth grade students on Tuesday, March 19th. The novel is about a trio of seventh graders becoming friends as they discover the secrets of a Civil War soldier and the story takes place in Doylestown! Author visits are always a unique experience for our students and English teachers. We are looking forward to hosting Matt in the coming weeks.
The month of March is an important one as it relates to Relay for Life. In addition to the usual collection process, it is a time when a lot of logistical planning occurs behind the scenes. As new coordinators for the program, Ms. Ball and Mr. Sibel have a tremendous amount to do in preparation for the May event. The coordinator position is a voluntary one, and we are very thankful that Ms. Ball and Mr. Sibel offered to take on this role. We are sure they will do a fantastic job!
As we move into March, I wish all of our Tohickon families a safe and healthy month! Please do not hesitate to contact the main office at Tohickon Middle School if you have any questions or concerns. We can be reached at 267-893-3300.
Important March Events
There are upcoming events that students and parents should be aware of. The events for the month of March are as follows:
- Safe to Say Presentation for Grade 7
- Safe to Say Presentations to Grades 8 and 9
- Spring Sports Meetings during Advisory
March 7, 8 and 9
- Spring Musical beginning at 7:00 PM. Matinee on March 9 at 2:30 PM.
- Author Visit - Matt Landis
- Parent Council Meeting at 9:00 AM in the Tohickon Library
SAFE TO SAY - WHAT IS IT?
The Safe to Say Program is an anonymous reporting system mandated by the State of Pennsylvania. We are required to present this program to all of our students. The program trains students and staff members to treat every warning sign, such as threats to oneself or others, seriously. Students and staff are trained to act quickly and get help by talking to a trusted adult and/or by reporting it anonymously via telephone, mobile device, or website to the PA S2SS Crisis Center. If you are interested in finding out more about the program, please go to the following website: Safe2SayPA.org
2018-2019 PSSA TESTING DATES
The 2018-2019 PSSA Dates have been selected. We will be administering the PSSA Test as follows:
ELA TESTING DATES
April 16th (AM and PM)
April 17th (AM only)
MATH TESTING DATES
April 30th (AM and PM)
SCIENCE TESTING DATES
May 2nd (AM and PM)
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Tohickon Guidance Office at 267-893-3310.
Relay for Life Kickoff Assembly
The Relay for Life Kickoff Assembly took place on Tuesday, February 5th. Several cancer survivors were present to share there experiences and to encourage eighth and ninth grade students to participate in the annual May event. The stories were emotional and touching. We are thankful for all of those that participated in the event!
Bucks County DA Presents on the Dangers of Drug Abuse and Vaping
The Bucks County Assistant DA, Tom Gannon, was here to present to our ninth grade students on the dangers of drug use. This presentation took place on 2/6. During this assembly, there was a focus on the dangers of vaping as well.
VH1 Save the Music
The Tohickon 9th grade Orchestra and String Ensemble performed to a sell-out crowd January 25 in the annual CB Save The Music Concert Series. Tohickon music teachers Paul Dengler, Sarah McGahey and Jennifer Repper also performed in all three shows. Central Bucks music teachers have raised more than $160,000 dollars over the years for the VH1 Save the Music Foundation to donate instruments, music technology and instruction to underfunded music programs around the country. This year, they raised $35,839.71!
PLUMSTEAD POLICE DEPARTMENT SHOWS THEIR STUFF AT THE ANNUAL TOHICKON DODGEBALL TOURNAMENT
The Plumstead Police Department joined the fun at the annual Tohickon Dodgeball Tournament. Once again, everyone had a great time! We had a nice turnout of spectators and were very thankful for all of the staff members that attended and participated.
Spring is near and it is a very busy time of year here at Tohickon and on the 7th grade floor! The second half of the school year brings with it many core assessments. Core Assessments are universal assessments used across the district in each given content area. These common grade level assessments are designed to evaluate the students’ mastery of certain core skills or content. Core Assessments are given throughout the year in science classes at the conclusion of each unit. In the other core subject areas, core assessments are limited to two or three in a year, mostly falling in the third or fourth marking period. For example, in the ELA A classes, students are currently preparing for the Citizen Composer Core Assessment, which is an argumentative writing piece. ELA B classes will soon be starting the Book It Core Assessment, which is a book presentation that focuses mostly on character, theme, and public speaking skills.
We have two community service efforts happening in March. We are kicking off the month with a supply drive for the American Cancer Society’s Astra Zeneca Hope Lodge in Cheltenham, PA. This drive is a way for 7th graders to contribute during Relay for Life season, even though they cannot participate in the event. The Hope Lodge is a place for cancer patients and their caregivers to stay for free while receiving treatment at an area hospital. For more information about Hope Lodge, visit their website: https://www.cancer.org/treatment/support-programs-and-services/patient-lodging/hope-lodge/philadelphia/about-our-facility.html. A list of needed items was emailed home, but the six top items they have requested include: Clorox Bleach, white washcloths, kitchen towels, HE Tide Laundry Detergent, Liquid Fabric Softener, and kitchen trash bags. The collection has been extended and will now end on March 8th!
In celebration of Pi Day, math classes will be selling Tastykake Pies with all proceeds going to the Ronald McDonald House. Similar to the Hope Lodge, the Ronald McDonald House provides respite for children and young adults who are undergoing treatment in the Philadelphia area for serious illnesses. It is a place of rest and comfort for the patients and their families. Students can order pies through their math teacher and all orders will be delivered in class.
Pictured below are some of the 7th grade students who participated in our school-wide student-faculty basketball assembly last week!
Team Odyssey - Grade 8
Team Odyssey students have been working hard this Winter, and most are looking forward to Spring. On February 21st we had a team awards assembly. Many students were recognized for outstanding academic achievement. Some students received team awards that reflect our team’s core values: Teamwork, Determination, Honor, Success and Positive Attitude. In Advisory, we are working on a service project. Students researched worthy causes and developed presentations highlighting the value of supporting the cause. Students then presented to their peers. Eighth graders voted and selected the organization we would support. The Bucks County SPCA was chosen as the organization we would support. We have reached out to the SPCA to find out how we can help. We will now work with students to come up with a plan to support the Bucks County SPCA. In science class we are beginning to study Astronomy. The picture below shows students visiting the mobile star lab that was set up in science class. If you have any questions or concerns about your child, please reach out to a Team Odyssey teacher.
Team Expedition - Grade 8
In Ms. Gendron's English classes students have been reading The Dead & The Gone and completing lit. circles to discuss the novel in depth. Students have been working in small groups and guiding their own discussions. They discuss events, characters, and personal connections to the novel. The goal is for students to engage in critical thinking and reflection as they read.
Mr. Levenson's science classes are studying astronomy. In the astronomy unit students are learning about telescopes, how they work, the advantages and disadvantages of them, and they spent some time building a refracting telescope like the one Galileo used in the early days of astronomy. Students also had an opportunity to see a larger model reflecting telescope that can be used to see much greater details of stars and planets. Finally, students recently got an opportunity to see Mr. Hall present a show on the stars and constellations in a mobile planetarium we brought over to Tohickon for the week.
After examining aspects of the Constitution in Mr. Trimbur's class, students are currently engaged in a Mock Congress simulation. In the activity students play the role of representatives and attempt to pass laws. Students will also learn about the Electoral College through taking part in a mock Presidential election.
In Mr. Sibel's English class, students are working through a Science fiction unit, tackling the question, “How does information and technology effect our worldview?” Students will read a variety of texts from poetry to prose, that tackle the difficulties of balancing life in the technological age; as Heidegger says, “All distances in space and time are shrinking…yet the frantic abolition of all distances brings no nearness”.
In Spanish 1, students are having fun discussing the latest fashions, describing what they and their friends are wearing. French classes are learning about and celebrating Mardi Gras.
Ninth Grade Team
After wrapping up our exploration of human origins and our hominid cousins in science, we will be diving into the Earth’s oceans: the hydrosphere. What does the bottom of the ocean look like? How does ocean water distribute oxygen to living things and energy throughout the atmosphere? What makes water such an essential and unique chemical? How are humans changing the world’s oceans? Investigating these questions will allow us to understand why the world’s oceans are so critical to the existence of all life on Earth, as well as what we can do to protect and preserve the ocean’s resources.
In English, students have finished reading To Kill a Mockingbird and writing their theme essays. Now, we are turning our attention to Elie Wiesel's Memoir, Night. Wiesel was just fifteen, the same age as our ninth graders, when he and his family were evacuated from their village and sent to a concentration camp in Poland. His first-hand account helps students to better understand the horrors of the Holocaust.
On Tuesday, February 26th, the Tohickon ninth-grade class attended a very special assembly on the Holocaust. For the fifth consecutive year, presenters from the Jewish War Veterans of the U.S.A. shared their experiences with the freshman class. Students have been learning about the atrocities that occurred in Europe during World War II in both English and United States History classes, so the presentation served as a powerful culminating activity. Mr. Allan Silverberg, the committee chairman of the Jewish War Veterans, served as the facilitator of the event and introduced Danny Goldsmith. Mr. Goldsmith retold the harrowing story of his mother’s efforts to keep him and his sister out of the concentration camps and how his family was aided by many strangers throughout the war. At the conclusion of their presentation, Mr. Goldsmith and Mr. Silverberg eagerly answered any remaining questions from the audience. A special luncheon was held following the presentation that included the day’s presenters, teachers, and ninth-grade students who had won a very competitive essay contest to have lunch with our guests. Our appreciation goes out to the Jewish War Veterans of the U.S.A. for helping the ninth-grade class continue a very important Tohickon tradition!
Tohickon Club Update
In order for clubs to run, a teacher must be willing to sponsor the club after school and there must be a reasonable level of student interest. For these reasons, Tohickon clubs may be different from year to year. Throughout the year, Tohickon expects to be running the following clubs:
- Diversity Club - Sponsored by Mrs. Fox (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Art Club - Sponsored by Mrs. Bongiorno (email@example.com)
- A.C.E. Club - Sponsored by Mrs. Fox (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Math Club and Math Counts Team- Sponsored by Mrs. Bellavance and Mrs. Rissing (email@example.com)
- Morning Math Help Club - Mrs. Bellavance and Mrs. Rissing (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Fitness Club - Sponsored by Mrs. Dobrowolski (email@example.com)
- Garden Club (Seasonal) - Sponsored by Mr. Neely (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Film/Moviemaking Club - Sponsored by Mr. Powell (email@example.com)
- Running Club - Sponsored by Ms. Lewis and Mrs. Parisi (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Writing Club - Sponsored by Mr. Sibel (email@example.com)
- Student/Parent Book Club - Sponsored by Mr. Sibel (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Magic: The Gathering Club - Sponsored by Mr. Geller (email@example.com)
- Ultimate Frisbee Club - Sponsored by Mr. Altmire (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The number of clubs may increase as the year progresses. We will continue to keep you updated in our monthly newsletters, listing all active clubs. If you are interested in joining one of the clubs at Tohickon or have any questions, please see the club's sponsor in order to sign up.
Diversity Club Field Trip to Bucks County Visitor Center
The Tohickon Diversity Club joined with Holicong’s GSA and Lenape’s SAGA club to take a field trip to the Bucks County Visitor Center to explore their Equality Pride History Exhibit. This educational exhibit highlighted New Hope Celebrates commitment to honoring the historic contributions made by gay individuals to Bucks County’s diverse, welcoming community through showcasing the LGBTQ+ community from the past five decades.
TOHICKON STUDENTS PERFORM WELL AT MATH COUNTS COMPETITION
Tohickon students did really well at the Math Counts Competition! 84 students competed in the Bucks County competition. Our team of 8th graders also competed in the Team Round of the competition. They came in 5th place out of 11 Bucks County Middle Schools. The students had a great time and want to do it again.
FOR PETE'S SAKE CANCER COLOR RACE/WALK 5K AND 1 MILE FUN RUN
On Sunday, April 14th, 2019, there will be a 5K and 1 Mile Fun Run at Central Bucks East. The purpose of the event is to enable cancer patients and their loved ones to strengthen, deepen, and unify their relationships by creating unforgettable and lasting respite vacations. Use the following link to register or to make a donation:
From the Nurse's Office
The health office has recently seen an increase in cold related symptoms. Please remember to give medication at home before school, as the nurse’s office does not have cold medication to administer to students. Also, we encourage students to carry water bottles to remain hydrated throughout the school day.
Important Information for Incoming 7th Graders
All incoming 7th grade students are required to have a Pennsylvania State Mandated dental exam. Dental exams are acceptable with any date after 9/1/2018. Please complete and return the dental exam form prior to the start of the new school year. Also, 7th grade students should have received the Tdap and meningitis vaccinations prior to the start of the new school year. Please keep this in mind as your child has their yearly physical completed. Feel free to contact the health office at 267-893-3315 with any questions or health concerns you have for your child. Here’s to a calm end to winter!
The Spring Athletic season will kick into high gear on Monday, March 18th. It is our busiest time of the year as we will be fielding a 7/8 girls Lacrosse team, a 7/8 boys Lacrosse team, a 7/8 Track team, 7th, 8th & 9th grade softball teams (numbers permitting), 7th, 8th & 9th grade baseball teams (again, numbers permitting), and a 7th & 8th grade girls soccer team. Field space and weather are always an issue in the Spring, so wish us luck! If your son or daughter is considering playing a Spring sport, please make sure that their physical, or recertification, is up to date and that you have filled out all of the pertinent information on Family ID. These both can be found on the Tohickon website under Athletics. If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to email our Athletic Director, Pat Costello at email@example.com.
Spring Sports Meetings for Students
On Wednesday, March 6, we will be holding Spring Sports Meetings during the Advisory Period. The coaches from all spring sports will be meeting with students in different areas of the building. They will explain several procedures and expectations. We will be making announcements prior to and on the day of this meeting. If you have any questions, please contact Pat Costello and firstname.lastname@example.org.
FROM THE GUIDANCE DEPARTMENT
9th to 10th grade Course Verification Sheets
9th grade students will receive verification sheets of their 10th grade course selections on March 6th. Parents are asked to review the course selections with their child. Requests for changes and/or questions should be noted on the verification form. Signed verification forms should be returned to Advisory teachers by March 13th. NO CHANGES will be made after March 13th.