Pella Middle School

January/February Newsletter

Important Dates

  • 3/3: 90 min. Early Out for Professional Development
  • 3/8: PCSD School Board Meeting @ 4:30
  • 3/10: 90 min. Early Out for Professional Development
  • 3/11: Virtual Learning Day
  • 3/14-3/19: SPRING BREAK
  • 3/22: PCSD School Board Meeting @ 4:30
  • 3/24: 90 min. Early Out for Professional Development
  • 3/25: ISASP Testing Practice
  • 3/26: Quarter 3 End Date (Semester 2 Mid Term)
  • 3/26: Quarter 3 Reward Day
  • 3/29: Quarter 4 Day 1
  • 3/31: Quarter 3 Grades Published
  • 4/2: No Classes - Good Friday
  • 4/5-4-9: ISASP Testing - Iowa Statewide Assessments of Student Progress
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Emma Johnson Earns Prestigious Scholastic Art and Writing Award

Seventh grader, Emma Johnson, earned honors for her personal essay entitled, "Paisley Mae", in the prestigious Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. The regional portion of this contest is sponsored by the Belin-Blank Center at the University of Iowa. As an award winner, Emma placed in the top 15% of entries. She has been invited to attend the virtual awards ceremony on March 7, 2021.
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Pella Middle School Students Dominate the Three Rivers Reading Council Writing Contest!

Three Rivers Reading Council has announced its winners for this year’s writing contest. Pella Middle School students are well-represented on the winners’ podium! Students wrote short stories of 500 words or less.


Seventh grade, Anna Wick won first place, Naomi Dunsbergen placed second, and Jamison Castle won third place.


Eighth grade winners include Rachael Stratton earning first place and Anna German placing second. The first place winners’ stories have now moved on to the state contest sponsored by the Iowa Reading Association. Congratulations to these students whose creative writing talents rank at the top of our local schools!

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ISASP Testing April 5 - 9

ISASP testing will occur April 5-9. The students will be taking the assessment on their Chromebooks. Students will be leaving their computers at school on March 24th and during testing week, so their devices can be charged nightly.


Tests will be administered from 8:15 - 10:15 daily, and we will run our two hour late start schedule. Daily punctual arrival will be essential during these testing dates.


March 25: Students practice logging into the online testing system

March 25 - April 1: Students practice content tests in content classes

April 5 - Science test for 8th Grade & 7th grade will register for next year's classes

April 6 - Math Test

April 7 - Reading Test

April 8 - Language Arts/Writing Test

April 9 - Second Writing Test

April 12-16 - Make-up Tests

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Virtual Learning Day - March 11

On March 11, Pella Schools will hold a virtual learning day, because over 300 staff members will have received their second CoVid vaccine the day prior.; we have been told to anticipate several teacher absences. This day will serve as a good opportunity to prepare for potential virtual days in the future, if need be. You can view a detailed plan on this Virtual Learning link.

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The only time success comes before work is in the dictionary.

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Sarabeth Decious is Awarded Three Bred Heifers

Who knew you could apply for a grant that would award a 7th grade student their own start-up cattle herd? Sarabeth Decious, Pella Middle School 7th grade student, applied for a grant through the Iowa Cattlemen's Association, and she was awarded three bred heifers. The goal of the grant is to help 7th grade students get started in the cattle industry. Sarabeth has had a successful calving season already with her heifers, and he heifers, now cows, have birthed one heifer and two bulls. She plans to sell the bulls at the next Iowa Beef Expo. Congrats, Sarabeth!
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Logan Bruxvoort won the AAU kids State Wrestling Championship this past weekend at Wells Fargo Arena. Congratulations, Logan!

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7th grade took advantage of a warmer late Fall day to give rucking a try in PE.

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7th PE classes took part in another Guinness World Record attempt.

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7th PE classes took advantage of a balmy winter day in January to try some snowshoeing.

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Nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care.

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Pella CSD Embarks upon The 7 Habits & The Leader in Me

Pella CSD is embarking on Franklin Covey's The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People, and The Leader in Me. We know all students have potential, individual genius, leadership capabilities, and the need to be served as a whole person. Our goal is to develop the mind, body, heart, spirit, and potential of every student, and we believe this will be a valuable tool for all students K-12. Stay tuned for the new learning, opportunities to provide input, and opportunities play a role in this implementation. We will kick this off with all students next Fall!
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First Responder Appreciation - Pella CSD and Pella Christian School Resource Officer Honored

First responder, JR Pearson, of the Pella Police Department joined Pella PD in 2019 after 34 years with the Iowa Department of Public Safety. Officer Pearson serves as our School Resource Officer. He is working tirelessly to develop meaningful relationships with our students and staff. Thank you, Officer Pearson!

Full story:https://who13.com/first-responder-appreciation/first-responder-appreciation-jr-pearson-pella-police-department/

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Cunningham Enterprises Donates Again

Sherri Cunningham, owner and manager of the Pella Redemption Center, has once again donated a sizable amount of money to our student activity center. Now that we are not using the space for a choir rehearsal room, we are excited to get it set up for usage. Thank you, Sheri! We appreciate your continued support of the Pella CSD and Pella Middle School.
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Appropriate Dress at Pella Middle School for the Spring

As Spring starts to show its beautiful face, we want to ensure students come to Pella Middle School mentally, physically, and socially and emotionally ready to learn and grow. Ensuring students are able to focus on the learning while continuing to honor themselves, their peers, and the institution is very important to our team. That said, we want to honor the dress code in order to honor the above mentioned. Please be mindful of what your students are wearing in order to represent themselves, your family, and our middle school family the best they can. The full district policy is linked below.

Dress Code & Student Appearance (board policy 502.1)

Inappropriate Attire

* Clothing with vulgarity, profanity, suggestive/offensive language, pictures or gestures

* Clothing that contains pictures or symbols that promote alcohol, tobacco, drugs, or violence.

* Clothes not appropriately covering the body or with revealing holes, causing health or injury concerns, or clothing which detracts from the learning process and environment.

• Hats, caps, bandanas and hooded sweatshirts (with the hood up) are not to be worn in the building during the school day. Any item worn on top of a student’s head is prohibited unless it serves a “necessary purpose”. This policy will be followed during the school day and at all school-related activities.
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The Counselor Connection

As we continue on in these cold, winter months one practice that can help us re-set and be fully present is to practice mindfulness. Mindfulness is a state of awareness, paying attention to your thoughts, feelings, and sensations without judgement. There are several techniques to practice mindfulness. Here are some good ideas for practicing mindfulness at home.


Mindfulness Activities for Parents


One activity I use often with students experiencing a high level of anxiety is the 5 senses activity. This is a great way to become fully present and takes only a few moments!


Is your cup full? Is your child’s cup full? Check out this helpful illustration for ways to identify and fill our cups!


The emotion cup


Sincerely,

Jourdan Van Wyk, School Counselor

jourdan.vanwyk@pellaschools.org

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