Island Trees Memorial Middle School
The Home-School Connection
December 4, 2017
Let me begin this week by thanking each of you for your continued support. From your support of our school and the PTSA at our Holiday Boutique to your spirited and energetic presence at schools sporting events, your desire to connect to our school is gratifying and powerful.
Of significant note was the Substance Abuse Forum hosted by our PTSA on November 27th. The strong community response to this presentation evidenced a desire to learn more about the health risks associated with tobacco (including vaping), drugs, and alcohol. Thank you to all who attended and our PTSA for organizing this powerful event.
As we begin December and are sometimes pulled in multiple directions at once, please reach out to your teachers or to me if you need any support related to extra help, clubs, contests, intramural activities, or any other school-related function that may serve to keep your child connected to our school. We have so much to offer and would be excited to connect your child to a program that they might be enjoyable and rewarding.
Though there are features in this newsletter that are repeated (Let's Stay in Touch, If You are Looking For), each newsletter includes new information about programs which are timely and worthy of our attention. Take a look at this week's notes on A Long Walk to Water, The Hour of Code, and Common Sense Media. Please also encourage your child to participate in the LIRR"s Safety of the Tracks contest. All submissions must be in by December 15th.
Please enjoy this week's newsletter!
Grades 7 & 8
Thursday, Dec. 14th, 7-9pm
59 Straight Lane
Grades 5 & 6 Holiday Concert
Monday, Dec. 18th, 7-9pm
59 Straight Lane
Grades & the Growth Mindset for Parents
Hour of Code (12/4-12/10)
Please review the resources included and support our school's efforts to promote coding in our schools.
A Long Walk to Water
When our students at Island Trees Memorial Middle School enter seventh grade English classes, they begin the year with a novel called A Long Walk to Water. It is the story of the journey of one of the Lost Boys of Sudan, Salva Dut. The Lost Boys are a group of young boys who were forced to flee their homes and country (on foot, through the African wilderness) as a result of civil war in their villages.
As an exciting addition to our curriculum this year, we are lucky enough to have a guest speaker, Sebastian Maroundit, also a Lost Boy of Sudan, come to speak to our seventh and eighth grade students. Sebastian has created an organization called Building Minds in South Sudan. Their mission is to rebuild schools in war-torn, poverty, and famine stricken South Sudan, as well as to promote gender equality in education. Because of the ongoing war in South Sudan, education has suffered greatly.
We have been raising funds for Sebastian to put toward his future endeavors in his native country. Bricks made from red construction paper will continue to be sold for $1 each during all lunch periods. Every brick purchased will be displayed in our school and we are hoping to add enough bricks to build a school building display for Sebastian’s visit on December 8. We would love it if you could encourage your children to purchase bricks during their lunch periods to contribute to this worthy cause. Feel free to purchase your own bricks as well! Thank you for your support!
Stay Connected: Intramurals as a Means to Connect to Our School
The Mission of Common Sense Media:
Common Sense is the leading independent nonprofit organization dedicated to helping kids thrive in a world of media and technology. We empower parents, teachers, and policymakers by providing unbiased information, trusted advice, and innovative tools to help them harness the power of media and technology as a positive force in all kids’ lives.
Common Sense Media helps families make smart media choices. We offer the largest, most trusted library of independent age-based and educational ratings and reviews for movies, games, apps, TV shows, websites, books, and music. Our Parent Concerns and Parent Blog help families understand and navigate the problems and possibilities of raising children in the digital age.
No Place for Hate
With public displays of hate on the rise, it is more important than ever for schools to commit to programs that clearly define expectations in behavior for all members of the community. Whether you are a student, educator, or family member, you have a role to play in combating bias and bullying as a means to stop the escalation of hate.
Island Trees Memorial Middle School is excited to announce our partnership with the ADL's No Place for Hate Movement. No Place for Hate is a self-directed program helping all of the stakeholders take the lead on improving and maintaining school climate so all students can thrive. To be designated No Place for Hate, a school must complete the following:
- needs assessment
- formation of a No Place for Hate committee
- signing of the Resolution of Respect
- one A WORLD OF DIFFERENCE® Institute anti-bias or bullying prevention training program (optional in some regions)
- design and implementation of three school-wide anti-bias or bullying prevention activities
We look forward to your support and ideas as we work with our students and school community to promote respect, understanding, and positive interpersonal behaviors.
Read Every Day Initiative
Read Every Day Initiative
Island Trees Memorial Middle School requires all students to have a book of their choice with them at all times. Teachers often set aside 5-10 minutes of class time to silent reading in order to promote reading stamina and skill development.
We also have students read whenever there is any downtime in class. Most importantly, teachers very often to read with their students. This has really had an impact on students reading because they see our love as well. We have had kids make quick review posters for other classmates who might need an idea of a book to read.
Paint Buckets & Percussion with Mrs. Wilson
Designing Cars & Exploring the Laws of Physics
Building Games in Mr. Norton's Technology Classroom
If You Are Looking For...
The Daily Bulletin
Home-School Connection Newsletter
Let's Stay in Touch
Follow us @Islandtreesmms for updates on so many great events in our classrooms, playing fields and stages of Island Trees MMS.
Our middle-level students are increasingly drawn to this visual medium, and it is our goal to meet them where they are. Follow us on Instagram for a visual look at our school--from the classrooms to our concert halls.
It is our hope that this online newsletter provides important updates and serves as another strong link between home and school. Please reach out to Mr. Keegan if there are other resources that you believe would strengthen our communication.
We are on Remind
Please follow the sign-up instructions on the handout below.
Please also feel free to follow this link to join our Remind group
Contests & Competitions
Please encourage your child to participate in competitions and contests that speak to his/her passions and interests.
Are you a middle of high school student who is making a difference through volunteering? Apply for a 2018 Prudential Spirit of Community Award and you could win $1,000 and a trip to Washington, D.C., in late April!