Herget Happenings

December 2022/January 2023

Principal's Message

December was a short busy month as we wrapped up the second quarter. Winter break is scheduled from December 23 – January 6. Teachers and students have been working hard; our students and staff have had many accomplishments during our first semester of school. Professional development continues to help our team dive deeper into teaching and learning with respect to dialogue. Our focus on curiosity, embracing complexity and finding joy along with our commitments (see Teaching & Learning section below) continue to drive growth for us all.

In this newsletter, please find sneak peeks of what's happening at school that we hope you find helpful. As we end 2022, I want to thank you for your commitment to HMS! It is our hope that the winter break provides a myriad of opportunities for you and your family to do things you might not be able to accomplish when school is in session. On behalf of the entire Herget faculty, we wish you a safe and cheerful holiday season!


Ms. Larry, Principal

Teaching & Learning

Hello Herget Families,

December will bring the end of our second quarter, and grades will be available to be seen in Home Access on Friday, January 13, 2023. If you are having trouble navigating Schoology or Home Access, please use the following link to our District Parent Portal to help you navigate those systems: https://www.sd129.org/parents/parent-portals. January brings not only a new year, but the time of year where we plan for course selection for the next school year. Sixth and Seventh graders will think about what electives they want in the 23/24 school year, and our Eighth graders will be picking classes for high school. There will be information following that shares dates and information for you and your child to look through in preparation for those upcoming choices.

Herget continues to be committed to creating a culture that demonstrates a clear…

Commitment to Learners

  • Relationships are important and matter to create environments where learners feel welcomed, safe and connected.

Commitment to Dialogue

  • High quality dialogue enables learners to generate ideas and think more deeply leading to transferable learning

  • Dialogue creates space for learners to expand and reinforce ideas that share and deepen their perspectives

  • The learning environment and culture of each classrooms encourage learners to make their thinking visible

  • Planned dialogue opportunities are created and modeled to intentionally challenge student thinking and understanding

Important Information from West High regarding the 8th grade registration for high school:

The holiday break presents a great opportunity to think about your future college and career goals. Talk to friends and family about what they did after high school, what they always wanted to be, and what they are doing now for a career. Take time to recharge and be thankful. We are so excited to see you all soon at the high school!

6th and 7th Grade Elective Option Google Site Link:


Dates, Events and Information to put on your radar…

  • Winter Break - 12/23/22 - 1/8/23

  • School Resumes - 1/9/23

  • No School - MLK Jr. Day - 1/16/23

  • No School - Non-Attendance Day - 1/17/23

2ND Quarter Report Card (RC2)

  • Second Quarter ended Thursday, December 22nd, 2022 (all assignments must be dated December 22nd or earlier).

  • Second Quarter Grades are due Tuesday, January 10th, 2023 by noon.

  • Second Quarter Grades available to students via HAC on Friday, January 13th, 2023

9th GRADE Registration Dates:

  • 1/20/23: Herget Student will go to West Aurora for High School Elective Expo.

  • 1/26/23: Class of 2027 Open House @ West Aurora 5:30-7:30pm

  • 2/3/23: 8th Graders will register for West Aurora High School at Herget

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Student Services

Greetings from Student Services!

It’s cold outside! Please remind your students to wear coats and use their lockers to house it during the day. No coats or blankets should be traveling to class with students. If your child is in need of a coat, we have them in Student Services, so encourage them to stop in and choose one to stay warm!

Tardy Reminders:
Tardies are starting to accumulate as we approach the end of second quarter on 12/22. Check in with your child to ensure that they are transitioning to class on time. It is important that they arrive on time to class to maximize learning as well as ensure a safe school environment. We use Hero to track tardies, so be on the lookout for emails from Hero when teachers log a tardy. A reminder on our Tardy Policy:

Tardy: 1-5 Warning
Tardy: 6 Phone Call Home
Tardy: 7-9 Detention (1 hour each)
Tardy: 10-12 Detention (2 hours each)
Tardy 12+: Parent Meeting, ISS, Administrative Review

Students should not be texting or calling parents to pick them up. Student phones should be turned off and put away during the school day. If a student needs to call home, they can head over to Student Services or the Main Office and complete the phone call there. If students are feeling ill, they should report to the nurse who will decide the next steps.

Bus Behavior:
We appreciate our bus drivers! All Herget bus riders should model the expectations of positive behavior on the bus including staying in their seat, using kind and appropriate language, keeping hands and feet to self and not damaging the bus in any way.

Green Sheets:
Does your student need to talk to someone? Encourage your child to fill out a Green Sheet. A Green Sheet is a green sheet of paper that students can fill out whenever they are interested in speaking with our clinicians: Mr. Verghese, Ms. Garcia, or our Restorative Practice Coach. Reasons to fill out a Green Sheet: someone is in danger or may be hurt, or they would like to talk about something that is bothering them. A clinician would be happy to listen and assist!

Important Numbers:
Main Office 630.301.5006
Attendance 630.301.5230
Nurse 630.301.5243
Student Services 630.301.5235

Thank you for your support!

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On Saturday, December 3rd the Herget 7th and 8th-grade choir hosted and participated in the West Aurora 5th grade Honors Choir Festival. This event combined students from all elementary and middle schools. During the morning students had the opportunity to work with each middle school choir director on selected songs. The day concluded with a concert performance for the public. Pictures and recordings can be found here.

The Herget Holiday Choir concert was Monday the 19th. This concert performance includes all three choirs: The 7th and 8th Grade, Early Morning Choir, and Harmonix. Some of the songs performed were “Jingle-bell Rock,” “Deck the Hall,” and “We Wish you a Merry Christmas,” as well as Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas is You”. Pictures and recordings can be found here. Enjoy.

Social Studies

The Herget Social Studies department just wrapped up another successful Veterans Day Program. Husky students had the opportunity to be immersed in a day of understanding and gratitude for the men and women that serve our country. Students were actively engaged in each of their classes with a variety of Veterans day activities.

The entryway was once again adorned with decorations. The students in Mrs. Eastlick’s class played a significant role in these decorations. However, it was not only Mrs. Eastlick’s class that played a significant role but also the Husky band members performed a Veterans Day ensemble. In addition, our Herget ⅞ choir had the opportunity to perform with the West High A Cappella choir. We are very proud of our Husky students for their participation in these special activities. We are especially grateful for the West High ROTC and their participation in our assembly. Students had the opportunity to see firsthand a Color Guard performance and an unarmed exhibition. We are extremely proud of the Husky students and their respectful behavior to honor veterans.

We are thankful and appreciative of the Herget community for taking the time to celebrate and honor the brave men and women that fight to keep our freedoms free.


Happy Holidays from the Herget Math Team!!!

As we close out Quarter 2 and go into our Winter Break we have continued to work on dialogue in math. We are all anxious to have some time off during the holidays, but unfortunately that can mean learning loss for many of our students. Please read the following article for ways to assist them over the break to come back strong in the new year. As usual, we would always recommend working on multiplication/division facts and integers.

Six Ways to Avoid Learning Loss Over Breaks

A "break" in school does not mean a break from learning

By Dr. Michael Tolmich, USATestprep's Science Content Team Leader; NextStepU 2021

For most students (and teachers), the long summer and winter breaks are a time to relax and forget about school. Unfortunately, many studies have shown that the learning loss for students during these long breaks can be very detrimental. Studies show even the short 2-3 weeks winter break can be a problem, so you can imagine how large the learning losses over summer can be. For example, Oxford Learning has found that due to long summer breaks:

- Students lose 2.6 months of math skills
- Students lose 2 months of reading skills
- Most of the achievement gap by the time a student reaches high school is due to learning loss over the summer.
- Teachers often must spend 6 weeks at the beginning of the school year teaching old material.

Just because it is a “break” from school does not mean it must be a “break” from learning. Studies have shown that investing just 2-3 hours per week can avoid learning loss over the breaks. Here are some ideas to try and fill these hours (and remember that more is better):

1. Reading: The best part about reading is that it is available to everyone, requires less parental planning and supervision and does not have to cost any money. Reading can also be done on vacations. Local libraries are great places to visit over the breaks, as many of them offer special programs. Even if there is nothing special going on, every child can find something that is interesting at the library. With technology, today’s kids can also read on their electronic devices if they cannot make it to the library. You can even create family or friend “book clubs” to encourage your child to read.

2. Museums: I know this may not be an option for all kids, but remember all we need is a few hours a week. Museums are an excellent place to stimulate the brain. Just do an Internet search for any local places that may offer programs for kids during the breaks.

3. Educational Apps or Programs: There are many different options available for learning using today’s technology for all levels and subjects. Practice math one day, and then read an online story another. There is enough online to keep anyone from getting bored. Just be careful to monitor what your kids think is “educational.”

4. Math Worksheets: There are lots of free worksheets online that you can download and print. Just target your child to do one or two sheets per week to keep their math skills sharp.

5. Projects: STEM is all about project-based learning. Maybe your child can help cook meals (measuring, reading recipes, concentration), or build a dog house (math, measuring, engineering). The projects do not have to be large or take a long time. See if you can challenge them to create a way to fold laundry more efficiently. The idea is to keep the mind working during these breaks.

6. Physical Activity: It may not always directly lead to learning, but it will help give your child more energy during the times when learning is taking place. Limit “screen time” and get outside. Many areas have community swimming pools or camps to keep your child active.

It is important for parents not to go overboard or overly pressure or push their kids during this time. They do deserve a break, so let them have it. The learning activities should be fun and enjoyable. We are not trying to create little Einsteins over the break. We just want to make sure they are keeping up with their peers.

About the Author
A former science teacher in Georgia, Dr. Michael Tolmich is now USATestprep’s Science Content Team Leader. He lives with his wife and their two sons in Tucker, GA.

How about some family fun trying to find the cost of everything purchased during the 12 Days of Christmas. You are probably already familiar with the song but in case you need a refresher, here’s how it begins:

The 12 Days Of Christmas

On the first day of Christmas,
my true love sent to me

A partridge in a pear tree.

On the second day of Christmas,
my true love sent to me
two turtle doves,
and a partridge in a pear tree.

On the third day of Christmas,
my true love sent to me
three French hens,
two turtle doves,
and a partridge in a pear tree…….

Examples of possible questions are:

What is the total number of gifts given?

  1. Is there an easy way to work this out?

  2. What is the total cost of the gifts?

  3. If the department store was holding a pre-Christmas sale and offered a 15% discount for all purchases, what would the new cost be? (This does not include performers, maids, lords, etc.)

  4. What if the discount offered only applied to live animals?

  5. The maids give a 10% when booked for more than two consecutive days (based on a 7.5 hour working day). What would their new fee be?

  6. The musicians charge a 10% Goods and Service tax and this must be added to the total cost.

  7. How many people arrive at the true love’s house on the twelfth day?

  8. What would it cost to feed all the people and the animals? (Internet would come in handy here!)

  9. Use some Christmas shopping catalogues to replace the gifts with something more appropriate for a modern true love and calculate the cost.

  10. Re-write the lyrics to fit your new list of gifts.

  11. What if there were 15/20/100 days of Christmas? How many gifts would there be? Can you find a pattern to help you work this out?





A partridge in a pear tree


One turtle dove


One French hen


One calling bird


A simple gold ring


One goose a-laying


One swimming swan


A milkmaid hired for 1 hour


One lady dancing


One Lord a-leapin’


One Piper piping


One Drummer drumming


Give these brain teasers a try…….

While we understand that you are busy with family and friends over the holidays, choose an activity that can be enjoyed by all! Thank you and please have a safe and happy winter break!

Math Intervention

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Reading Intervention

What did I just read?! – Monitoring Comprehension

We’ve all had this experience: You’re reading an article, a good book, a piece of mail, whatever. You’ve been reading it for several paragraphs now and you suddenly realize that you have no recollection of what you’ve been reading. You’ve read every word of every sentence and you haven’t even lost track of where you are in the text! Yet every other ounce of your brain’s immense processing power was somehow focused on the details of that house project you still have to finish or the story your spouse began telling you despite the fact that you’re clearly engrossed with your reading.

Monitoring comprehension is the act of determining whether or not you’re understanding what you are reading. The fact that we can all relate to the previous scenario only goes to show that even the most experienced readers can struggle to keep track of what they read. Luckily, environmental and self-inflicted distractions can be resolved with a simple change of scenery or rereading. But readers must first be able to recognize when their comprehension has been compromised. After readers establish where their break-down in understanding occurred, comes the difficult task of applying fix-up strategies to clear up the misunderstandings.

We can help readers prepare for comprehension challenges by asking them to make predictions about what they read, to create questions they want answered in their reading, to think about the main idea, and to create images in their mind of what they read. Setting a purpose for reading and being able to picture what an author is describing are the best ways to ensure text comprehension. A simple strategy that you can try with any reader who is finding these suggestions or rereading to be unhelpful in focusing on a text’s meaning is to ask them to leave physical tracks of their thinking during reading. Get a stack of post-its and ask your reader to write down any reactions or feelings that arise, notes about new information they encounter, questions about the information that is puzzling or missing, and connections that they can make between the text and their personal life experiences. Reviewing these interactions with the text when they have finished reading is certain to drastically improve their chances of comprehending.

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World Language

As we conclude Quarter 2, French A students are concluding the Leisure Activities unit. Students in the final weeks before Winter Break are voting on Holiday commercials. France is in the semi-finals of the World Cup.

French B students have finished the novel Brandon Brown wants a dog. As their final writing project, students wrote a letter to their parents about what animal they wanted and why.

We hope everyone has an enjoyable and restful Winter Break.

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Physical Education/Health


The Herget PE Department would like to wish everyone a wonderful Winter Break! Make sure to drink lots of water, even in the winter months, we need to make sure we are drinking enough water.

The Health students are wrapping up the Disease Research Projects in 8th grade; Drug Research in 7th grade and Body Systems in 6th grade. We have had a lot of interesting conversations around these topics!

The PE students have been busy in the fitness center and also working on documenting their fitness journey through a Google Doc. Conversations are centering around how to improve their physical fitness, and what activities will help this, all while having fun!

Fitness Testing will begin after Winter Break. Please contact your PE teacher for further questions.

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Winter sports registration is now open. The second half of winter sports includes 6th girls basketball, 7th girls basketball, 8th girls basketball, and 7/8 dance team. You can register online at https://il.8to18.com/herget/. You must register online and have an up to date sports physical on file in order to participate in practice and tryouts. You must attend each day of tryouts if your sport has them. Sports fees are $40 and will be paid after the coaches set rosters during the season. You can find the practice schedules under the resources section of the athletic website as we get closer to the start of the season.

6th Basketball – Coach Beetham (jbeetham@sd129.org) First practices: 1/10 6-7:30 PM, 1/12 6-7:30 PM

7th Basketball – Coach White (awhite@sd129.org) Tryouts 1/10 & 1/11 3:45-5:30. Practice 1/12 & 1/13 7:10-8:30 am.

8th Basketball – Coach Vernon (rvernon@sd129.org) Tryouts 1/10 & 1/11 3:45-5:30. Practice 1/12 & 1/13 3:45-5:30.

Dance Team – Workshop 1/10 & 1/11 - Tryouts 1/12 start at 3:45 leave when you are finished

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Library Media Center

Battle of the Books has officially begun!!! Students are able to choose their team of four, and together they are required to read 12 predetermined Rebecca Caudill titles by the first week of March. Rebecca Caudill books are those chosen by teachers in Illinois and are regarded as must-reads for middle school students. If students read three or more titles, they can vote on their favorite one this spring.

All middle schools in Illinois can participate and send their school’s vote in. Only ONE book will be awarded the Rebecca Caudill Book of 2023. We chose these titles for our Battle of the Books because we want to promote this student choice book award. The students have from now until the first week of March to read their three books. We will then start “battling” in the LMC during lunchtime. Mrs. Dieken will ask the teams a series of questions about the 12 titles. For every correct answer, the teams will receive points. If an answer is incorrect, no points will be awarded. After three rounds, our top four teams will compete against each other, regardless of which grade level they are in. The winner of the final four competition will be our Herget champion! Winning teammates will each receive a $25 Amazon gift card! Teams must be registered by December 22nd!

There will also be a staff Battle of the Books this year as well! Will the Studs (Mrs. Nicholson-Rigaud, Mr. Stauter, Mrs. Zollers, and Mrs. O´Connell) keep their winning title???

Health Office

Here at Herget we continue to promote healthy lifestyles. A healthy mind and body are needed for productive learning. Students who visit the health office are encouraged to describe their symptoms clearly and explain their needs. We talk about “letting your doctor know” when necessary. This is an important skill for our middle schoolers to begin to learn. Regarding doctor visits, health office staff are preparing letters to be mailed home with individualized notices for all eighth-grade students. Please take these notices with you when taking your student for his/her ninth-grade physical exam.

Coming soon is an updated and new version of the required school physical exam form. Ask your doctor about the IDPH school health requirement of a developmental emotional health screening during your students’ physical exam. As a reminder, students at all levels are excited to participate in sports. Remember that a valid school physical exam can be used for sports.

In working together to keep our students in compliance with public health requirements the official “go home” temperature is now 100 degrees. Herget nurses submit a weekly report to the Kane County Health Department with the number of students who have ILI (Influenza-like Illness) symptoms. The data gathered for this report is the number of students absent due to particular symptoms. When calling in your student’s absence please call 630-301-5230 and follow the prompts. Please list their specific symptoms such as the following:

  1. Fever of 100 degrees with cough

  2. Fever of 100 degrees with a sore throat

  3. Fever of 100 with cough and sore throat

Please don’t hesitate to call the health office with questions.

Take care,

Elizabeth Silva RN-CSN (630.301.5243)

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