Thompson Friday Forecast

April 17, 2020

From the Principal...Steve Morrill

Although the calendar says spring, our weather certainly doesn’t seem to want to cooperate. However, as we adhere to social distancing as best we can, having less than stellar weather might not be such a bad thing. With that being said, I do hope that our next week of spring will feel a bit more “Spring-like!”

I’d like to share a few of my observations after these two weeks of remote learning. I have come to find that, for me, focusing on the following considerations have afforded me the opportunity to maximize “remote learning.”

  • Developing routines in your day can lead to high levels of efficiency. This is true regarding remote learning and beyond that as well. I have learned that sticking to a routine helps to maximize efficiency and effectiveness in many areas of my life.

  • Try to work from a consistent place. I have found that working from the same place in the house allows me to get in the “mindset” of “it’s time to work.” This also allows me to have all necessary materials “on hand” for this work.

  • Be intentional about limiting distractions. When I’m at “work” at the dining room table, the TV is off, the phone is silent, and my own children are elsewhere in the house doing their remote learning. This secures a quiet environment so that I can focus to the best of my ability.

  • I’m a list person! I’m one of those people who develops a list either the night before or the first thing in the morning so that I can be as focused as possible during the work day. As the work gets completed, I cross things off my list, which is highly rewarding. Developing a list and being able to cross off completed items are “small wins” throughout the day that reinforce continued focus on the tasks moving forward.

These are just a few of the many considerations that I have been thinking about lately. I share them in hopes that we can all help model and support our middle schoolers as they continue to navigate this new, very different way of learning during this unprecedented time as we all work to “flatten the curve” of this virus. Have HOPE; we are making head-way!

Have a restful weekend; stay safe!


Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Lessons

We hope parents/guardians and students engaged in last week's SEL lesson focused on the use of positive self-talk. As we continue to adjust to remote learning and community health expectations, we realize adults and children alike are experiencing a sense of loss. Our efforts to support student growth and development include both academics and social emotional learning (SEL) standards. Both are critical to a child’s success and during times of stress, recognizing feelings and having strategies to deal with those feelings are essential. Each week, parents/guardians and students will be provided SEL information and lessons aligned with the five core competencies. This information will come to you through your principal's weekly newsletter. This weeks competency is:

  • Self-management: The ability to regulate one’s emotions, thoughts, and behaviors effectively in different situations. This includes managing stress, controlling impulses, motivating oneself, and setting and working toward achieving personal and academic goals.

We are asking students to identify and use strategies to manage emotions. Video clips and text is embedded to foster conversation. The challenges and uncertainty facing families and children are impactful on overall mental health and well being. We are hopeful the resources shared will be a support to parents/guardians and children. If you have any questions on the information provided or are seeking additional support for yourself or child, please contact Patti Palagi, Director Instructional Interventions ( or 331-228-6457).

Student Survey on Remote Learning

D303 is partnering with Northern Illinois University to gain insights from students (grade 4 and up) related to remote learning. This jointly created survey will be sent to students on Tuesday, April 21st. All aspects of student information will remain confidential. If you would like additional information on the survey, please contact David Chiszar, Executive Director Assessment & Accountability (, or Patti Palagi, Director of Instructional Interventions (

The survey will capture student insights connected to remote learning, social-emotional well being, and coping strategies/supports accessed during this unique time. NIU has established a partnership with D303 through their federal Project Prevent and Address Bullying grant. Our TMS students have been a part of NIU's research for the past two years. The survey for our 6-8 graders will include questions related to bullying when engaged in remote learning. We are excited to gain additional insights into students' perceptions of remote learning in order to assist us in directing our academic and social-emotional programming.

Fridays During Remote Learning

We want students to learn every day! Monday through Thursday our teachers will be providing lessons. Friday is a day to continue learning by completing lessons, catching-up on past or missing work, or doing enrichment lessons.

Please visit the website D303 Optional Remote Learning For Students to access enrichment lessons. In addition to the weekly SEL activity, the website houses a variety of optional learning experiences in the areas of math, digital citizenship, English Language Arts, college and career, and STEM. We encourage you to ask your child to engage in the SEL lessons before exploring the other choice options. Although these optional learning experiences were designed for use on Fridays, students are welcome to engage in the learning experiences on the website anytime.

Thompson Virtual Spirit Week - April 20th - April 23rd

Hello, Thompson parents and families! Student Council is hosting a virtual spirit week April 20-23rd! The pandemic going on has brought on a lot of hardship and a lot of people are in low spirits lately, so we believe that this spirit week can spread joy throughout our school-even if we can't be together at this time. We could really use your help in urging your kids attending TMS to participate in this virtual spirit week! Each day, there's a different theme or activity to take part in. Here's a short description on those days:

  • Monday (4/20): Show off a new hobby. Take pictures or videos of yourself trying something new!
  • Tuesday (4/21): Time out to Thank People- Make a poster/sign thanking the heroes that are going to work during this time!
  • Wednesday (4/22): Wellness Wednesday! Show how you're taking care of yourself in quarantine!
  • Thursday (4/23): Thunder Thursday! Who can wear the MOST TMS spirit wear or the most blue and gold?

Your child can submit their pictures for each day by posting them on Instagram and using the tag #TMSvirtualspiritweek

Thanks so much! We can't wait to see everyone's pictures!

Administrator and Office Assistance

Although the administrators and office staff are following the governor’s stay-at-home order, we are still available to answer questions and assist you when needed. Please call the main office at (331) 228-3100 or email one of the administrators. We are here for you!

Our Thompson teachers LOVE to read!

Enjoy this fun video created by our LRC director, Marie Legenski!

Spring Field Trips

Unfortunately, all field trips and track season are canceled for the remainder of the school year. If you paid in PushCoin the money was credited to your account. If you paid with a check or cash, a check from the school will be mailed to you. Please be patient as this will take a bit to issue these checks. If you have any questions, please contact Kim Walters.

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Elementary Intra-District Transfer Window

This message is a reminder to elementary school families that the Intra-District transfer window for the 2020-2021 school year opened on April 7 at 8:00 a.m.

For the 2020-2021 school year, ALL elementary students have been assigned to their attendance area school by the District. This includes elementary students currently attending a school on an intra-district transfer.

An Intra-District Transfer Request must be submitted online by 4:00 pm on Monday, April 20th. A link to the request form is posted on the District 303 web page.

If you are requesting a transfer for more than one child, a separate request must be submitted for each. Due to fluctuating class sizes at schools and each grade level, siblings are not guaranteed placement. If granted, transportation is the responsibility of the parents.

If you have questions about the process, please call the District office at 331.228.2000.

Thompson Yearbook

Every year, Thompson students publish a Thompson Yearbook. Students who decide to purchase a yearbook are given this keepsake at the end of the school year. Buying a yearbook is optional and not all students choose to own one. The price of the yearbook is $25.

Have you ordered your Thompson 19-20 Yearbook? You can check your PushCoin account to see if you have purchased one by going to 'transactions' and then adjusting the start date back to April 1, 2019. Contact Kim Walters ( or 331-228-6410) if you have any questions or need financial assistance. Or stop in the main office during conferences!

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Thompson PTO

Check out the Thompson PTO website by clicking on the button above!

Dates to Remember

  • Monday, April 20 - Thursday, April 23 - Thompson Virtual Spirit Week
  • Friday, May 22 - Last Day of School
District and School Newsletters

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Thompson Middle School

Mr. Steve Morrill - Principal

Mrs. Sarah Cann - Assistant Principal

Mr. Shane Darnell - Assistant Principal

Mr. Grant Montgomery - Assistant Principal

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