Science and Technology's Semi-Regular Department Newsletter

January 29, 2016



Michael Tollin is working hard on advancing the MHS Technology Education courses and has taken over the MHS Robotics team.

How are things going in technology? What are you looking forward to teaching this semester?

I am starting semester 2 with mostly brand new students to me and they are all enthusiastic about the courses. I am really looking forward to teaching Engineering Design as it is a combination of creativity, problem solving, and engineering!

What is happening in Robotics?

The robotics team has qualified for the state championship which will be at the end of February at NJIT. In the meantime, the team is readying the robot with more fine-tuned hardware and programming. The team is also focusing on community outreach by showcasing the robot to the local Boy Scout team. Come out in February and support the team!

What do you like to do outside of work? Anything people don’t know about you that is particularly interesting?

Outside of work I am a volunteer EMT in Flemington and I also play saxophone as part of a local community band. I also enjoy camping and hiking and I draw as a hobby.


Harding Township is holding their annual Science Fair on February 23 from 5:30 - 7:30 pm and is looking for judges. Last year Luis joined me and it was a great time. Contact me soon if you are willing to help out, I will be seeing Mike Gervis on Monday.

In Madison we have science fairs at two elementary schools. In the past we have gone to the KRS fair with the Robotics Club, Animals, and Physics Phun - and it was really appreciated by the students and parents. If you have any availability these are great events to be part of!

  • Torey J Sabatini Elementary School's fair (run by their PTO) will be on March 22 from 6:30 - 8:30 pm.
  • Kings Road Elementary School's fair (run by Becki Sullivan, 5th grade teacher) will be on March 23 from 6:00 - 8:00 pm.


Biology I, Chemistry I, and Forensic Science are due for new textbooks - and we may have the opportunity to get them purchased by the end of the year. If you teach in these areas, please forward me your requests for evaluation copies of textbooks. I'll contact the reps and get them so we can do a review and choose.

For MJS, we need books too - but this is going to be more greatly tied to NGSS and therefore won't happen soon. High School publishers don't seem to be offering specific NGSS texts, so there is no reason to wait!


On Monday, February 1 we have our next department meeting. Please continue your work according to your grouping:

  • All MHS Teachers - brief meeting to go over course recommendations - Meet at 2:50 in Room G54 - then you will go to breakouts
  • Technology - curriculum renewal, March showcase planning - Meet in B9/10
  • MHS Science - NGSS Gap analysis, pilot lesson planning - Meet in content area groups, room TBD
  • MJS Science - Evaluation of Activate Learning Resources - Meet at 3:15 in Room 112
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So far we have had 4 people sign up the the NGSS Institute - if you are interested please let me know so you can join them for this valuable workshop - I will plan on starting sign ups next week.

The Secondary Institute is from July 25-29. More information is at:


Everyone is signed up and excited for the NJDOE Model Curriculum workshops!

You can find the information on these workshops here:

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