MHS/WES Newsletter

February 14, 2019

News from the Principal

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Our hearts and smiles are full today. It is such a joy to watch our children get excited about a simple holiday that brings about small acts of kindness. An abundance of positive energy and cheer are filling up our schools as I write.


Kindness Challenge

Today we had Brian Williams speak to our students about a massive 15 day kindness challenge. Brian speaks to over 100,000 students each year, he has documented over 1.5 million acts of kindness, traveled to Africa 14 times and collected over 500,000 pairs of shoes for needy children and families. He is the founder of Think Kindness, a non-profit that inspires measurable acts of kindness in schools

across the country.


THE CHALLENGE = KINDNESS EXPLOSION


At our assembly this morning, students were challenged to carry-out acts of kindness in the halls, classrooms, at home and throughout the community. Each student will receive a daily kindness challenge as well as some unique ways to document their acts. So don’t be shocked if you see a little more Kindness around the house.


To help us make an even bigger impact, we want to ask you to engage in conversation with your children about the subject of Kindness. Ask them about what they’ve done, acknowledge what they do, and encourage the simple life skill of Kindness.


Mark your Calendars!

The 18th Annual Ashburnham Westminster Community Benefit Hockey Game is scheduled for Saturday, April 6th. This year’s event benefits our very own Ella DiCenzo, from Mrs. Terry’s 1st grade classroom. Ella was diagnosed with Multi-systemic Smooth Muscle Dysfunction Syndrome (MSMDS), an extremely rare disease with less than 50 diagnosed cases in the world. The disease impairs the activity of smooth muscle throughout the body. This also leads to a variety of other health issues. Tickets to the hockey game will be available in our school offices soon. We hope you will join us for an afternoon of family fun, honoring this very sweet and special little girl.

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4th Grade News

4th grade continued their acts of kindness by writing thoughtful notes to each other. Each student wrote a small note to everyone in his or her class with some type of thoughtful comment. The notes were passed out in celebration of Valentine’s Day.


4th grade students have also officially started our State Fair projects! The first step was to write letters to locations in their assigned state, in order to find out more information. Thank you for sending in stamps so that we could mail these letters! It was great practice for the students to learn how to correctly address a letter. We hope to start seeing responses from these national parks and tourist spots soon!!


After vacation, we will be starting to work on learning our states and capitals! To study, students will focus on each of the 4 regions. Students will need to be able to match the states and capitals as well as fill in a blank map for each region. After we have studied each of the 4 regions in the United States, students will complete a final test by filling in ALL 50 states and capitals! Do you think YOU could??


In addition, students will continue to learn about energy after vacation. We are getting ready to begin our final project for the energy unit - the RUBE GOLDBERG machine! Please begin to save your recyclables (tissue boxes, cereal boxes, milk cartons, etc.) to help us prepare for this project!

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PTO NEWS!!!!


Hey parents and families! We’re only 2 weeks away from our Westminster Fun Run program…and we can’t wait! Check out this fun video to learn more about how our students will be running laps to help our school this year and all about how students will be learning to be true heroes through the new character theme, Mindspark Mystery Lab. Thanks so much for your support!


https://vimeo.com/279380471/467a72b20f


AND...........


We are still looking for Volunteers to help decorate the schools for the Fun Run. We will be meeting to decorate at 4:00 pm on February 26th. If you are able to help that day we’d really appreciate it! If you are able to help create decorations ahead of the 26th we’d love that help too. Please email Barb at barbd110202@gmail.com.


We also need Volunteers the day of the Fun Run, Friday March 8th from 8:45 am to 2:45 pm. You will be marking laps on the students’ t-shirts as they are completed. We’d love if you could help all day but if your schedule doesn’t allow that, we can fit you in for sure! Please contact barbd110202@gmail.com if you can help.


Thank you for your support!!

3rd Grade Colonial Day

The Colonial Day Team is looking for donations of old colonial costumes, or gently used boys' pants (Non denim), or girls' dresses/long skirts. There will be a bin in the WES office for collection. Thank you

Greetings from Kindergarten!!

Believe it or not… this past Monday we reached our

100th day of school in kindergarten!

Our students and teachers enjoyed celebrating this fantastic day through counting, singing, reading, games and more! Thank you to our amazing families who supported our counting at home as well.

We look forward to welcoming families into our classrooms, as we plan for our exciting “Read Across America Event.” Please remember to save the date of Friday, March 1st. You are invited to bring a cozy blanket and a favorite book. Please see your child’s classroom flyer for more information including specific times to attend.

We wish all families a safe, happy and healthy vaca

TECHNOLOGY NEWS!!!

It hasn’t felt like 2 months since my last newsletter, but here we are in the month of February. Each grade level is keeping me on my toes and everyone is working hard in the technology classrooms.


5TH GRADE:


In 5th grade, we have started a brand new unit called Ozobot Storyland. Within this unit the students are to create a winter story using 10 snowy prompts; such as a polar bear, chickadee, snowballs, a mouse, etc. After writing their stories, the students use a color sensored robot called Ozobot . They are to recreate their written stories onto a large white paper using a coded track for Ozobot to follow.

The last part of their lesson is to record their story using the iPad. I love how each story in unique and different.


4TH GRADE:


Thank you to Jack Marcy for another one of his wonderful and educational rock and mineral presentations. Mr. Marcy is a member of the CT Valley Rock and Mineral Club. These like minded members visit and explore places all around the world to increase their collections and to educate the youth in the field of rock science. It’s exciting to share that the CT Valley Rock and Mineral Club donated numerous specimens to fill our rock and mineral cabinet that has been recently moved to the new science room.

Not only does the 4th grade students get to learn and see a huge selection of his collection, but they also got to bring home some specimens to start their very own collection at home.


Lastly, you will be seeing some digital citizenship information coming home soon. Please discuss such information with your child. It is important that every student in MHS and WES follow the rules and responsibilities for them to be great digital citizens.


3RD GRADE:



Have you ever wanted to create your own book. Well, the 3rd graders are doing just that. We are learning about the wonderful state of Massachusetts. We are taking our newfound knowledge to create a mini state book using our Google docs.


2ND GRADE:


In 2nd grade, the student are learning about the world, its continents, and 5 major oceans. We are also learning about Microsoft Word and how to create a one page visual map, where we get can edit, insert word art and text, and learn the ability to print the document on their own.


(This document will be included in the 2nd grade magazine that will be showcased in April)


1ST GRADE & KINDERGARTEN



1st grade and Kindergarten started centers within the technology room a few weeks ago. Within these centers, the students learn about:


Center #1 & 2: Letters, words, spelling, and phonics using iPads and the app called Osmo Words

Center #3: Numbers and addition using using iPads and the app called Osmo Numbers

Center #4: Spatial orientation and building using the using iPads and an app called Osmo Tangram

Center #5: Lego Table and challenge cards. This center helps the student imagine and building based on the challenge card.

Center #6: Spatial orientation and drawing using the using iPads and an app called Osmo Newton

Center #7: Computer coding basics using the using iPads and an app called Osmo Coding

Center #8: Be a math teacher using addition cards, the marker board, and the app called number places.

Important Dates

  • February 18-22: No School-February Vacation
  • March 6: 1/2 day all schools-Staff Development
  • March 8: PTO Glow Run
  • March 21: 4th Grade Learners' Showcase 5:30-6:15 & 6:30-7:15
  • April 4: 5th Grade Learners' Showcase
  • April 6: Ash West Hockey Benefit to Benefit Ella DiCenzo at Cushing Academy
  • April 9: 2nd Grade Learners' Showcase 6:00-6:30 & 6:45-7:15
  • April 15-19: No School-April Vacation

Free Family STEM Night!!

Our FREE Family Fun STEM Night will be held Friday, March 15th from 6-7:30 PM at MHS! All children ages 4-7 (and any older siblings) are welcome to attend. Registration is required. Come with your family for some STEM learning Fun! This program is sponsored by a grant from Westminster’s Local Cultural Council For more information contact CFCE Coordinator, Jana Harrison at jharrison@awrsd.org.
Lexi Maillet, a para professional at WES, designed our new MHS/WES logo with the wolf and her pup to unify our two schools into one. She is an alumni of the school system and loved Art through her time at Westminster Elementary, Overlook and Oakmont. Lexi drew the wolves in watercolor and the picture was sent to Northeast Promotion & Apparel in Leominster where they transformed her picture into embroidery. Check out the website below of all the items and the easy order form. We Got School Spirit!!
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