A North Merrick Minute

An e-newsletter from the North Merrick Schools: Fall 2021

Update from the Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Cynthia Seniuk

We have had a wonderful start to the new school year with a robust return to in-person instruction and instrumental music, library, physical education, and art lessons. We are scheduling a mix of virtual and real-life meetings, events, and field trips to best meet our needs. The WINGS program is again being offered in the format of after-school virtual modules in anticipation of moving to in-person instructional experiences in December, while this fall's Parent University will be presented in a new, fun game show format. And I'm sure you join me in looking forward to the book fairs, fall festivals, Halloween parades, and faculty-sponsored Trunk or Treat. Through the sharing of creative ideas and collaborative thinking, North Merrick schools are moving forward on a positive and proactive path for the 2021-22 school year.

Students Receive Mindfulness Journals to Start Off the New School Year

Before the start of school, North Merrick teachers held "Meet and Greets" with students at each of the three schools and handed out copies of My North Merrick Mindful Moments Journal. The journals tie in with the districtwide mindfulness practices. Students are encouraged to write their thoughts and feelings in their journals every day. Notes Dr. Seniuk, "As the mental health and wellness of our students are at the forefront of our priorities, the journals will help students to express themselves and help to lessen any possible anxiety they may have."

Closing Circles Added to Complement Morning Meetings

Before class is ready for dismissal at the end of the school day, North Merrick teachers are taking a short pause to make time for Closing Circles. As part of the Responsive Classroom approach to social-emotional learning, Closing Circles are a perfect complement to the Morning Meetings the district initiated last year at the start of the school day. In Closing Circle, students can recap the day to reflect on and celebrate their accomplishments and end on a positive note as they transition to after-school activities.

Marine Science Trips for Grades 2 and 3 to Short Beach

North Merrick second grade students took their traditional field trips to Short Beach to observe marine life this month as part of their science unit of study. The program was also extended to the third grade classes this year to provide them with the experience they missed last year due to pandemic restrictions. Dr. Dan McCann, who facilitates the hands-on marine science program, said he received many thanks from third grade parents to include them. Brenda McCann, co-facilitator, added, “Some of the third graders did their research on horseshoe crabs last year and were very knowledgeable about them, and the students used related vocabulary appropriately when describing the shoreline.” All the students enjoyed the day at the beach, working together, and learning about the Long Island ecosystem.

NEW! Sixth Grade Leadership Program

As the oldest students in their schools, North Merrick sixth graders are being recognized as student leaders and peer mentors in a new program this year. Sixth grade students may "apply" for a variety of "jobs" in their buildings, such as lunch buddies, school greeters, book levelers, and members on the safety patrol or science squad. The science squad supports the marine science curriculum for the second grade by helping to maintain the classroom fish tanks. Dr. McCann held orientation meetings with members of the science squad, providing them with a very comprehensive checklist they are following!

North Merrick Faculty Association Hosts Trunk or Treat!

Friday, Oct. 22nd, 4pm

1075 Merrick Avenue

Merrick, NY

Faculty will decorate their car trunks so that North Merrick children can safely trick or treat! Please bring a bag for the goodies as well as a non-perishable food item for donation to the Bellmore-Merrick Community Cupboard. All children must be accompanied by an adult.
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Parent University: Virtual Family Game Show

Tuesday, Oct. 26th, 7pm

This is an online event.

Help North Merrick School District beat the high score! Participate in a high-tech, virtual game show that feels like you are live on TV! It's family fun that involves collaboration and creativity. Register here.
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