OJ DeJonge Middle School

May 2022

From the Principal's Desk

Greetings Oriole Students and Families,

The month of May brings about opportunities for reflection and celebration as we wind down the 2021-2022 school year! As always, there is much to celebrate at OJ DeJonge Middle School!

The first week of May annually brings about Teacher and School Staff Appreciation Week. While I am incredibly biased in this statement, I happen to think that the faculty and staff at OJMS are the best middle school staff along the lakeshore! This amazing group of educators is dedicated to creating fun experiences for all students to learn while also working hard to build meaningful relationships with our students. The work of our team here at OJ is nothing short of spectacular and I could not be more proud of the work that we do each and every day.

It was exciting to welcome our Parent Advisory Committee back into the building as they once again were able to host a luncheon to show gratitude for our staff. The staff definitely felt the love as we were greeted with a “Taco Tuesday” feast of epic proportions! Thank you to all family members that helped make this event a success!

Another aspect of the school year to celebrate in the month of May is the end of the state summative testing window. Our eighth grade students participated in the PSAT 8/9 assessment as well as M-STEP assessments in both science and social studies while our sixth and seventh graders have taken the M-STEP in both English language arts and mathematics. Traditionally, students at O.J. have far outpaced other schools in our region and state on these assessments and I would expect this year to be the same. Our students have put forth great effort on these assessments and we all are incredibly proud of them!

In an effort to increase physical activity opportunities and to create safe routes to school, students from OJMS and Ludington Elementary School participated in the annual Bike to School Day event on May 4. There were approximately 50 students from OJ that biked from Oriole Field to OJMS that morning, and well over 100 students at LES biked to school as well. Many thanks go to OJMS health and PE teacher Alison Helminski for her work in coordinating this event for Ludington Area Schools. We are also extremely grateful to our community partners at the Ludington Police Department, Mason County Sheriff’s Office, Michigan State Police, Mason County Road Commission, and Pere Marquette Fire Department for their assistance in creating a safe environment for our students to ride their bikes to school. We are proud to live and work in a community that truly supports our schools and students!

As we wrap up the 2021-2022 school year, our faculty and staff are working hard to prepare for the 2022-2023 school year. Our work involves planning for multiple opportunities for students to participate in experiential learning such as project-based learning, developing new tools and systems to help families at home in support of their child’s learning, and bringing back some of the events from years past to welcome families back into our building. We are also working to build on the successes of the year such as our immense progress in our Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) programming so that we can continue to have a positive trajectory in all that we do.

Our team will continue to communicate with families over the summer to highlight the events that we will be hosting to start next school year. Throughout the summer, our main communications will come from the LASD webpage, the OJ Parent Facebook page, and via Twitter @OJ_Orioles.

Lastly, I would be remiss if I didn’t wish the LHS Class of 2026 well as they matriculate from OJ to the halls of Ludington High School. This current group of eighth graders has been nothing short of outstanding and I will definitely miss them. Always know that you’re welcome to visit and let me know how you’re doing! I look forward to seeing all of your success in high school and beyond!

With Oriole Pride,

Mike Hart


Social Studies: China Unit

7th grade students in Social Studies went through an interactive unit on China. They were put into 5 different "singhs" and completed the unit as a team. Below you will see one of the projects they worked on: making a banner that represents their singh.
Big picture

Earth Day Art

During the week leading up to Earth Day, we talked about what it was and different ways we can make a positive impact on our environment. Students were asked to draw or write something about Earth Day. The drawings were then scanned into the new GlowForge 3D Laser printer (obtained through an Oriole Foundation Grant) and engraved on 4" wooden squares. Next, students stained their squares in various shades of blue and green. The squares were assembled to create a pixelated Earth image and mounted on reclaimed wood donated by Steve Hull. It was finished off with an engraved quote from Jane Goodall: "What you do makes a difference and you need to decide what kind of difference you want to make."

Physical Education: Bike Unit

Mrs. Helminski led her PE students in a unit on bikes! They learned about the different components of the bikes, and an ABC checklist to do before you ride. Kids also learned about proper helmet fit, rules of the road and hand signals.

Students were able to ride bikes both on campus and at Cartier Pathways to practice learning turns, figure's and slow and steady balance rides. It was a great experience for learning to navigate different terrains.

As you can see, this was a popular and well loved unit!


Students in 7th grade science have been studying wave energy. Spring toys (slinkies) were used for lab to see the waves in action. They worked with wave properties such as amplitude, wavelength, frequency and wave speed. If you have a 7th grader at home, make sure to ask them about sound and light waves too!

News from LASD Athletics


Mark your calendar now for Thursday, June 2, 2022 from 5-8 pm. These physicals are for CURRENT LASD 6th through 11th grade students (next 2022-23 school year 7th - 12th grades).

  • Last name A - L will be at the Spectrum Pediatrics office at 907 E Tinkham Ave.
  • Last name M - Z will be at Spectrum Health Family Medicine at 922 Lawndale (behind Oakview Medical Care Facility).

A consent to perform the physical and a physical form with health history and signatures are required. These can be picked up in the athletic office, main high school office, OJ Sports Board, Central Business Office, and will also be available that night at both locations. A parent must be present if forms are not signed ahead of time.


You MUST have your contacts or glasses with you that night for the physical to be completed. If you have questions, please contact the Athletic Office at 845-3811.

Please check the lasd.net website/athletics or lasd.net calendar for the most up to date information on spring sports. Things change daily. Please call the athletic office at 845-3811 with any questions or concerns or email us at athletic@lasd.net.



27: Half Day K-12

30: No School K-12, Memorial Day


8: Half Day K-12, Secondary Exams

9: Half Day K-12, Secondary Exams/End of Tri 3/Last Day of School!


6: First Day of School!