Stoughton High School - January 2020

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Bilten sa a disponib nan plizyè lang. Sèlman woulo liv anba bilten an, chwazi tradwi, epi chwazi nan yon gran varyete lang.

Welcome 2020!!!

Dear SHS students, may the coming year bring along new hopes and new opportunities. May you learn from your past mistakes and accomplish your targets for the future with your strength and dedication. I am Wishing you all a very successful and Happy New Year 2020.

Below, you can read about the different things students have been doing in all of our departments at Stoughton High School throughout the month of December. We hope that you enjoy the rest of the article.

Alan Bontya

Assistant Principal

SHS English Department

The English department has been working diligently with a multitude of different texts, topics, and projects!

9th Grade:

Ms. Goldberg and Ms. Chapman’s 9th grade students have almost made it through the entirety of To Kill a Mockingbird. Throughout the unit, students have had the opportunity to practice their close reading, annotation, and synthesis skills. Students have been doing a wonderful job of arriving each day with engaging thoughts and completed homework trackers. In order to explore the themes of prejudice, justice, empathy, and identity, students have completed a variety of assignments this term. Recently, students composed a poem made up entirely of text taken from To Kill a Mockingbird. Another assignment asked students to take on the perspective of one of the characters and compose a letter or a diary entry.

In Mrs. Wasik and Ms. Kelly’s 9th grade classes, students are embarking on their journey through William Shakespeare’s famous tale, “Romeo and Juliet.” To introduce the language and rhythmic patterns, students explored modern song lyrics turned into sonnets and had fun guessing the titles. In Ms. Hastings’ class students are using the text to discuss the impact that maturity and rational decision making have on young adults and adults alike.

In 9 Honors, students just finished their Of Mice and Men unit strong with a photo project where they took original photos from their everyday lives that connect with the themes of Steinbeck’s novella. They also participated in their first Socratic Seminar where they were asked to analyze the novel through a formal and intellectual conversation with their peers.

Mrs. Furioso's and Mr. Norman's 9 College classes are bidding a sad farewell to Verona, Italy as we wrap up our "Romeo & Juliet" unit. Students are mourning the deaths of characters via a "Blame Game" essay in which they assign guilt to various characters and intangibles. Following this composition--and a well-deserved Winter Break--we will dive into the Great Depression with Of Mice and Men. Students will explore such themes as the burden of being a caretaker, the futility of hopes and dreams, and humankind's constant (and often unfulfilling) quest for companionship. A very uplifting unit of study!

10th Grade:

Ms. Brown and Ms. Ruschioni’s 10th graders are analyzing the theme of human nature and the dichotomy of good and evil within society through a synthesis between Lord of the Flies and secondary sources that evaluate the outcomes of different psychological studies.

Ms. Hastings’ 10th graders are unpacking the importance of slang and the power of language in today's society using Salinger's Catcher in the Rye.

11th Grade:

Mrs. Furioso's and Mr. Norman's 11 Honors classes are finishing up their examination of masculine archetypes via the novels The Things They Carried and The Body with some culminating assessments. In Mapping the Masculine, students selected a character from Things and matched him with a character from Body that best represents their likely childhood personality. Simultaneously, students worked on individual compositions examining both texts.

The American Studies Program traveled to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston to view The Art of Americas exhibit. Students participated in a scavenger hunt where they were able to see works created by Frieda Kahlo, Georgia O'Keefe, John Singer Sergent and more.

Ms. Ruschioni's AP Language and Composition class is reading, analyzing and discussing The Autobiography of Malcolm X as an iconic example of rhetoric dealing with the complex and controversial issues of race and class, while connecting it to today's world.

12 Honors:

Some of the 12 Honors students have just finished researching and creating posters for complex and different literary theories and perspectives. They have started the next unit reading and analyzing Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. For this unit, students will be in charge of leading and facilitating class discussion in partners and creating an engaging activity to explore the text with the whole class.


In Writing Seminar, students are in the middle of their rhetoric unit where they are using rhetorical appeals to create and pitch a marketing campaign. Students also practiced their argumentative skills through a Speed Debating exercise.

In Film as Lit. students are examining how different film techniques like mise en scene, sound, and camera movement (to name a few) contribute to the development of the overall theme of the importance of rebellion and resistance in Pan's Labyrinth.

The Sci-Fi and Horror elective finished up our haunted houses (in terms of the novel we read, haunted IKEA) unit and are moving into our final unit, "Cosmic Horror." Students will read about slimy, tentacled horrors seeping through thinning inter-dimensional barriers to prey upon unsuspecting humans. We will read, The Mist and then create their own terrifying monsters.

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SHS Mathematics Department

In Sports in Math, students have been working on defining consistently through multiple variability measures. Students learned how to compute mean absolute deviations and standard deviations. They used these values to answer the question "has revenue sharing helped competitive balance in baseball?"Students completed a simulation to determine if there is less variability in winning percentages between 1997 and 2007 using an online applet. They worked on the project in groups and created posters to display their work.

We continue to enjoy our new space and ability to provide small group instruction more easily. The student collaboration space continues to be utilized throughout the day. The furniture in the classrooms make group work easy to do!

We have some staff changes within the math department. We wish Mr. Gabo Garcia well as he moves on to another endeavor. We appreciate all that he has offered to the students while he was here. He has been a great colleague and we will miss seeing him daily. We wish him all the best! Ms. Margo Jones is going out on maternity leave. We wish her all the best! We are happy to welcome Mr. Paul Meoni to fill in her absence. He will be a great addition to the department.

SHS Science Department

Happy Holidays from the Science Department! December is being cut short by winter vacation, but classes have made the most of their time. The Science of Energy classes are going to be taking part in ECYBER mission identifying alternative energy sources that could be used in Stoughton. The Biology students just finished discussing protein synthesis and are starting the human anatomy unit. Chemistry students are learning about polyatomic ions and beginning to build chemical formulas. Physics investigated the conservation of energy and how it relates to Newton’s laws of Motion. Pictures of a demo using a bowling ball to show momentum are shown below. Forensics science is in the middle of a fingerprint analysis unit. Students are determining fingerprint patterns and testing how different surfaces hold fingerprints. Engineering has been investigating green building designs. AP Sciences are starting to gear up for the Science Fair which will be held on March 11, 2020.

Semester courses will only have a few weeks left upon our return in January. Anatomy performed a dissection of a fetal pig to observe the internal organs. This rounded out the digestive system unit and helped to introduce the Urinary System. Oceanography has finished talking about ocean chemistry and its physical properties and has been investigating the marine biomes. Astronomy utilized the inflatable Planetarium to study the stars and planet placement.

In addition to our classes, the science department is supporting many student groups. Science Olympiad competed in Events at Bridgewater/Raynham High School. We would like to congratulate Charlie Morgan and Cara Perry for placing second in the Ornithology Event. HOSA (A Group for Students interested in Health Fields) hosted HOSA week December 2-6th. Students made cards for Pediatric hospital patients, created a HOSA wall poster, and wore colors to support the club. In addition, HOSA sponsored a Career Panel on December 19th. In addition, a student organized Environmental Club is being organized and starting to plan events.

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SHS Social Studies Department

Following our December professional development day, Social Studies teachers have been creating inquiry-based learning opportunities for their students. This month, 10th graders used the inquiry-model to learn more about Andrew Jackson's Indian Removal Act and the Trail of Tears. Using the inquiry-model and the resources provided through NewsELA students were able to pursue their interests and pose new questions to explore.

Students in AP Government were encouraged to register to vote. Registration forms were provided, the history of voter registration was explained, and students were given a chance to fill out forms. Congratulations to these civic-minded students for exercising one of their responsibilities as citizens!

Three SHS sophomores won awards for the Voice of Democracy contest sponsored by the VFW and judged by the Stoughton Historical Society. Samantha Tran won first place. Ella Anderson won second place and Anish Tran won third place.

Sociology classes completed their Culture unit by collaborating with Mr. Shuel's EL students to discuss their cultures and immigration experiences. Sociology students asked questions about holidays, high school, entertainment, and cultural traditions in their home countries. Sociology students were curious to know what their new friends thought America would be like before moving here and were highly entertained to learn many expected Stoughton High to be like "High School Musical." Some students shared personal stories about the challenges they have faced as immigrants. Students rotated in small groups to allow everyone the opportunity to participate in the dialogue. By the end of the experience, most students found they had a lot more in common than they anticipated and were eager to see each other again. Sociology classes are now studying "Identity" in their final unit of the semester. (Photos attached)

SHS World Languages Department

Latin I students have just completed studying positive and negative commands. Latin II is practicing with Passive Voice verbs and studying the Adventures of Hercules. Mr. Babb's Advanced Latin - Poetry classes are practicing with various tenses of Indirect Statements and are studying the Return of Odysseus. Mr. Gorman's class begun reading Vergil's Aeneid in Advanced Latin Poetry. Students will read the entire poem in English and selections from the text in Latin.

Ms. Turnbull and Mr. Silva's Spanish 1 classes celebrated the holiday season by creating poinsettias out of felt. Poinsettias flower during the winter in southern Mexico and have been a part of hispanic culture dating back to the Aztecs.

Spanish 2 classes have created fake Instagram posts highlighting their vacations while using authentic language to describe their activities. Students have been playing games such as Jenga and Spoons in order to learn regular and irregular preterite tense forms. Spanish 3 Honors classes are learning how to express vocabulary surrounding extended family members. They should be able to name everyone's relationship in their family in Spanish.

Students in Señora Scanlon's classes are learning the card game Mano nerviosa on the last day of school before vacation. Ask them to teach your family how to play it. Bonus points if the whole family plays n Spanish!

AP students have been watching a documentary on Guatemala and the masacre of indigenous Mayans in the 1980s. The information they are learning ties into other groups of peoples throughout Latin America who have struggled and continue to struggle due to the choices of the rich elite. They continue writing essays and recording cultural discourses in preparation for the AP exam in May.

French 1 students pitched their ideas for French restaurants in the town of Stoughton. In French II, we have been learning how to express what we are going to do (le Futur proche) and what we just did (le Passé récent), as well

as how long we have been doing things (depuis). In French IV, we are reading short stories from the "Petit Nicolas" collection, and students are writing scripts for movie versions of their favorite four stories. In French V, students are presenting individual holidays from the francophone world and leading their classmates in games for vocabulary acquisition for each holiday's specific traditions.

In Chinese 1 students are learning restaurant vocabulary and studying different Chinese foods. Chinese two students are learning how to tell directions in Chinese. Ms. Turnbull and Ms. Sun are excited to plan a field trip for our Chinese students this spring.

ASL recently finished learning about signs used to identify common locations around the town. In conclusion of this unit students had to reiterate in ASL a story that was signed by the teacher. The goal was not to sign it back sign for sign but to see how much of the story students were able to understand and reiterate back to the teacher through sign. For future news... ASL is looking forward to Def Familia a Deaf motivational speaker coming in January.

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SHS Business Department

When students in the Sports & Entertainment Marketing class wrapped up their unit on customer relations, target marketing, and product development, they embarked on an exciting project requiring them to apply their newfound skills as they developed, created, and fabricated their own, original board games. Drawing upon individual preferences and passions, students designed trivia games, games of skill, and games of luck incorporating regular board game play as well as dice, cards, and Virtual Reality. The project required students to creatively brainstorm ideas, research the current market to ensure their proposal was unique, and then to create written documents both from a professional marketing perspective relative to their preferred target markets and in the form of game play directions and rules that would appeal to their intended audiences. The projects culminated with a day of "testing" among classmates and a short presentation where each class section voted for their favorite. These games were then shared with local toy and game company executives for professional feedback from the "real world." Students were actively engaged with the assignment with some spending hours in class as well as outside of class perfecting their prototype models. We wouldn't be surprised if a few of these games found their ways to store shelves in time for the 2020 holiday season!
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SHS Fine Arts Department

December has been an eventful month for Fine Arts students! The Marching Band kicked off our holiday season in early December, performing in Stoughton’s annual Holiday Parade of Lights. Later that evening, Jazz Voices, Stoughcatos, and Jazz Combo performed a festive set for an appreciative audience at the Winter Warmup at O’Donnell Middle School. We had our Winter Instrumental Concert the following week with excellent performances by the Concert Band, Symphonic Band, and Tuesday Jazz Band (first performances in the new auditorium for all of those ensembles!). Our Winter Choral Concert was on Wednesday of the following week and featured Concert Chorus, Select Treble Choir, Treble Chorale, Symphonic Choir, and Jazz Voices. The very next day, Jazz Voices and Stoughcatos hit the road for their annual holiday caroling tour, performing for Stoughtonians all across town at the Jones School, Senior Center, Library, O’Donnell Middle School, and Town Hall.

The day after our Winter Instrumental Concert, we were pleased to welcome the Saxyderms to share the stage with our Tuesday Jazz Band. The Saxyderms, a professional 14-piece saxophone and percussion ensemble, played an eclectic program of classical and pop music, including a performance of Frank Ticheli’s Cajun Folk Songs which included several Stoughton student musicians.

We were pleased to have several SHS students be accepted into honor ensembles for 2020: Sandra Awad (Soprano), Nicolle Santos (Alto), Alexia Thomas (Soprano), Aiden Dion (Tenor), Zachary Mandosa (Trumpet), Emily Riker (French Horn), and Terann Selman (Clarinet). Congrats to all of these students!!

Visual art students have had a busy December. The Portfolio class is currently working on hand-drawn animation projects, and several students have already been accepted to college art programs at Endicott, MassArt, Lesley, Wentworth, and UMass Dartmouth. Students submitted entries for the 2020 Scholastic Art Awards show and we are excited to find out the adjudication results early in 2020! Face painting on Spirit Day was a huge success for National Art Honor Society and we want to thank everyone who reached out to help us on that day. NAHS students are in the planning stages for their induction projects, which must be completed by April (shortly before the induction ceremony). Art Club had their annual holiday party at their after-school meeting last Wednesday, and a festive time was had by all.

Four Photo II and III students were selected to take part in the 2nd Annual Griffin Museum of Photography Secondary School Photography Exhibit at Regis College’s Carney Gallery. Nick Totino, Corey Baptista, Bithialine Gustin, and Morgan Lessa will all show their work. The exhibit will run from January 5th through January 12th 2020. An opening reception will be held on Sunday, January 5th from 1:00-3:00pm.

SHS Special Education Department

During the holiday season, students in Ms. Sweeney’s class had fun making their own gingerbread houses with their peer mentors from Mr. Warren’s period 5 class.
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SHS Physical Education and Health Department

The Phys. Ed. class to highlight this month is our freshman class!!

In many of our 9th grade PE classes, students worked on creating their own PE games. They worked in small groups and together, using the equipment that we have available, created a game that could be played in a Phys. Ed. setting. Over the next few classes, once the games were reviewed by one of the teachers, many of the groups had the opportunity to teach the class how to play their creation! We had a wide variety of games that included: Human Fuse Ball, VolleyBasketball, Scooter Hockey, and Scooter Football.

10th Grade Phys Ed

Sophomores, this month, were involved in multiple Badminton and / or Pickleball Tournaments. We were able to play multiple team Round Robin tournaments in class and each class ended with a final champion. Great job to all that played!!


The junior classes continued to work on fitness, much of which is geared towards core strengthening. While the senior classes have been involved in basketball games, aerobic football, and floor hockey.

Grade 9 Health:

Goal setting has been a major focus this month in our freshman health classes. Students were asked to reflect on previous goals that they had set for themselves and determine if those goals were reached. Then they were asked to think of their future and what goals they can set for the present that will help them reach a long term goal 5-10-15 years from now. Part of goal setting is learning how to form and action plan, identify support around them, and also recognizing obstacles that may come up and how to get around them, in order to achieve any goal they set for themselves.

Grade 10 Health:

Sophomore classes were learning all about substance abuse in some classes, and then talking in depth about Nutrition in others. This is a great time of year to discuss how increased stress can lead to harmful substance abuse, and unhealthy eating habits.

School Counseling Department


In October, Stoughton High School administered the PSAT to all ninth, tenth and eleventh graders during the school day. PSAT results help educators and students predict performance on the SAT, commonly required for college acceptance. In addition, students can use their PSAT results to obtain free personalized practice for the SAT. Educators can also use PSAT scores to help them make decisions about recommending students for future Advanced Placement courses.

PSAT results are now available for all students grades 9-11. To access their scores, a student needs to log onto their collegeboard account at If a student does not yet have a collegeboard account, they can create one. Once logged in, click "PSAT/NMSQT, PSAT 10, and PSAT 8/9 Scores” to get the PSAT scores. Then they will be taken to a page that shows their results.

Free personalized practice for the SAT is offered through Khan Academy, also on the Collegeboard website. Juniors planning to apply to four-year colleges can register now to take their first SAT test in March or May of 2020.

Submitted by Barbara W. Meyer, School Counselor


Juniors and Parent/Guardians of juniors, mark your calendars! Junior College and Career Night will be held Wednesday, February 5th at 6:30-8:00PM in the SHS Auditorium. A panel of college, military and technical school representatives will provide information on: Points to consider in exploring colleges and careers; Return on Investment (ROI); And important planning tips, tools and steps to take now to optimize opportunities, whether pursuing college or a career right after high school. SHS School Counseling will provide information about parent, student and counselor roles the college application process. Don’t miss this opportunity to understand timelines, procedures and resources.


Stoughton High School is seeking community members interested in supporting college and career planning. Specifically, we are looking for parents and community members in STEM or Humanities fields as well as those in licensed trades who are willing to collaborate with Stoughton counselors and students in the development of authentic career learning experiences.

The Board will meet for the first time on Thursday, January 23rd from 6:30 to 7:30PM and again on April 7th in the Stoughton High School College and Career Center. Please consider participating in whatever capacity your schedule allows. Sign up here.

A Message from SPS Health Services

Please join us for an informative free session on anxiety and its impact on our youth. Jane Hardin, M.Ed. of Ribas Associates will be presenting this meaningful event.

The Impact of Anxiety on Learning A Presentation for SPS Parents/Guardians of Children in Grades PreK-12

Tuesday, January 21st, 2020 6:30-7:30pm

O’Donnell Middle School Learning Commons

211 Cushing Street, Stoughton

Free child care will be provided. If you need child care, please RSVP to SPS Parent Engagement Coordinator Jeff Wolff at
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Upcoming Events

January 2 - School Reopens

January 17-24 - Midyear Exams

January 21 - The Impact of Anxiety on Learning Presentation - OMS Learning Commons 6:30pm

January 27 - SHS Showcase Night 6:30pm

January 27 - End of Term 2

January 28 - Start of Term 3 and Semester 2

Stoughton High School - Contact Information

Here is some important information about contacting Stoughton High School.