Spartan Herald February 2019
Building Community Empowering Learners Inspiring Creativity
Schmucker Community Events
Hello Schmucker Families,
Welcome back! We were glad to have students back at Schmucker today after our three eLearning days. Please encourage your child to reach out to their teachers if they have any questions about their eLearning assignments.
February will be a very busy month! Students and families can always check events on our Schmucker Google Calendar, but here are a few highlights for the month.
- The Penn Chinese Club is hosting a Chinese New Year Celebration this year in the Schmucker IMC on February 6th from 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm. There will be Chinese food and other activities.
- PTO's Let Loose Your Lincolns fundraiser is currently running. Students have until February 8th to bring back the entry form with a Lincoln ($5). They can drop their donation in box in the main office. There will also be a drawing for ND tickets on February 8th on WSMS.
- Head over to Portillo's, located at 5120 N. Main Street in Mishawaka, from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM on February 7th for our school restaurant night. Click here for a link to the flyer. 20% of the proceeds will benefit Schmucker Middle School!
- Open gym for all grades, 6th grade basketball open gym, and weight lifting are a few of our intramurals that are currently in session. Click here for more details.
- Ski club, 5 Star, and art club are a few after school clubs that are in session now. Students should listen to WSMS announcements and check the weekly student newsletter for more details.
- Our SMS Student Council is finishing up their toothbrush and toothpaste drive this week. They will be donating these to the Center for the Homeless.
We have many ways for our students to be involved at Schumcker and we encourage all of our students to try a club or sport!
With your child in mind,
Updates about ILearn
As we move forward to testing season in the spring, we want to share some important resources with families about ILEARN.
The IDOE has created a collection of helpful resources for families. Click here to go directly to the ILEARN for Families page.
Recently, he IDOE office has developed several short videos to share with parents and educators about assessment systems and transitions to support assessment literacy.
- How is Indiana considering building a system of assessments?
- How is Indiana integrating technology with assessment? Watch this 3-minute video to find out more about Assessing with Technology!
Strategies for Success
Bring your Chromebook fully charged each day.
Be in attendance every day from April 22nd - May 17th.
Leave your cell phone in your locker or at home.
Get at least 8 hours of sleep the nights before testing.
Eat a nutritious breakfast and lunch on testing days.
Keep a positive attitude.
Manage your time well
Scan test before you begin.
Answer easy questions first.
Review work when all complete.
Do your best!
One Book One School
February 7 - Chinese New Year's Celebration, 4:30-5:30pm, SMS IMC
February 7 - PTO Portillo's night (was rescheduled from 1/30)
February 8 - Teacher Job Fair, 12pm-6pm
February 14 - 4.0 Breakfast for 2nd Grading Period, 8am
February 15 - Recess Day
February 18 - Recess Day
February 20 - Band Concert (6/7/8th Grade), 6:30pm
February 27 - Choir Concert, 6pm
Check out all events on our Website calendar: SMS Calendar
PLEASE READ OUR NOVEMBER PTO NEWSLETTER BELOW:
4.0 PRINCIPAL'S HONOR ROLL BREAKFAST
8th Grade Parents
February 1 - Selection notifications for Summer PE (selected students will be emailed - Students still must REGISTER if they are selected.)
February 5 - Receive OFFICIAL pink course selection sheet with teacher recommendations
February 8 - Pink course selection sheet due to Social Studies teacher
Week of 2/11 - Schedule classes with school counselor
February 14 - Deadline to register and pay for Summer PE (at Penn High School) if chosen for lottery
Feel free to email your student’s counselor if you have questions as these dates approach.
Stacy Eck (Last names A-K) email@example.com
Andrea Hoover (Last names L-Z) firstname.lastname@example.org
6th Grade Social
Drop off/Pick up Information
The Schmucker Administration Team, along with Safety and Security Director Mike Seger, would like to remind all parents about our procedures when dropping off or picking up your student at SMS. In order for drop-off line to work as intended, parent should enter the car rider line by coming onto PHM property off of Jefferson Blvd. At that point, families should fall into line as it wraps around our property (football field). What needs to be avoided is the u-turns being performed on none P-H-M property. In order for SMS to maintain a positive relationship with our neighbors, we ask for help your help when bringing your child to and from school.
Also, we encourage all families to utilize P-H-M Transportation when possible.
EXPANDING YOUR HORIZONS
For more information: "Click Here"
SMS will pay for up to 30 girls to attend this conference. Please complete the online registration and email Mrs. Dean-Null when complete. Please select "My school is paying for me" on the online registration form.
Important Message from Technology
Recently we've had parents express concern that their student has "hacked" their grades in Home Access Center and the grades that parents are shown by their students are not the actual grades they have earned in class. If you are concerned that your student's grades are too good to be true, please read on to confirm that what you are seeing is accurate:
What is Going on?
Like many electronic forms of communication, Internet web pages are documents that are formatted to be read by your computer or phone's web browser. And like all electronic documents they can be edited. You can see this yourself right now. If you are using the Chrome web browser and press the F12 key (function 12 at the top of the keyboard) A window will open up that shows you the "code" behind this current web page. Editing anything in that window will change what you see on the web page. Some savvy students have used this feature to edit their grades web page to look more favorable, then showing their parents the edited web page and passing it off as the real thing. When parents find out the truth they are worried and concerned, and rightfully so!
So how can I be sure of what I am looking at?
Here are a couple things you can do to be sure that you are seeing the right grades:
- First, the easiest method is to check those grades yourself with your own login, and do not rely on your student to show them to you. If you go to the Home Access Center link from our home page using your parent login, you can be pretty sure you are going to see the proper grades.
- If that is not an option, try these steps:
- Use the refresh button: If your student's Chromebook is your method for checking grades, hit the refresh button (the circular arrow button) in the web browser and simply reload the page. Edited pages are automatically changed back to the original page once reloaded.
- If your student is super duper savvy, they may have saved a copy of the web page on their Chromebook locally so that even a refresh will still show the improper grades. Sneaky Sneaky! make sure that the address bar of the page you are reading starts with "https://hac.phmschools.org/HomeAccess" (all of that!) and not something that begins with "file://"
- Finally, if you are still unsure if you are seeing the full story, please email or visit your student's teachers or principal and they can assist you and confirm that you are seeing correct information.
A note from your school counselors
Students always have access to the electronic Counselor Request form. A link to this form is in the student's Weekly Newsletter and can also be found on Schmucker's website, under the Guidance tab. If a student needs to see a counselor or if you believe a student should speak with a counselor, please have the student complete this form. Once a student completes the form, we are able to schedule a meeting. Depending on the issue, we will meet with the student immediately or the same day. Other times, we will meet with them in the days following the submission. It can be hard to guarantee a counselor is available if a student is sent to the office, so often submitting a form is the quickest most effective way for all students to be seen in a timely manner. But of course, in crisis, we will always make sure a student is taken care of. Please contact Andrea, Stacy, or Gretchen with questions!
Saturday Open Gym is back! The SMS gym will be open on the following Saturdays from 9:00 - 11:00 AM: Feb. 2, Feb. 9, Feb. 23, and March 9. Get your friends together and come to play. That first Open Gym date is TOMORROW! Don't miss this great opportunity. For Saturday Open Gym, you need to enter and exit door A - the main office door.
6th Grade Basketball Open Gym is still running every Tuesday and Thursday before school from 7:30 - 8:50 AM.
Weightlifting continues every Tuesday and Thursday after school from 4:00 - 6:00 PM. We have had some dedicated participants hitting the weight room, but there is always room for more.
Early-Bird Open Gym is starting again! This intramural event is for ALL grades, and the first date will be Friday, Feb. 8 from 7:30 - 8:50 AM. Get a group of friends together and start your day with some energetic play!
REMIND Alerts are available for SMS Intramurals! You can get free text and/or email alerts with updates and announcements about SMS intramural events.
Text: Send this message: @smsintr To this number: 81010
Email: Send a blank message to: email@example.com
Direct Link to sign up: https://www.remind.com/join/smsintr
The Schmucker National Junior Honor Society would like to welcome it's newest members to our chapter. On Wednesday, March 6, one hundred new 7th and 8th graders were inducted into NJHS. Dr. Thacker, Mrs. Dean-Null, and keynote speaker, Sheriff Bill Redman, were there to offer words of encouragement to these young leaders of our community.
In early November, three teams from Schmucker Middle School went to Daman Products in Mishawaka to prepare for Fluid Power Action Challenge Day. After learning about fluid power, the sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students spent time over the next eight weeks engineering their prototypes. Challenge Day is a timed event where the teams have to rebuild their working hydraulic or pneumatic machine using just wood, paper, tubing, syringes, and glue. The machine must be able to pick up objects and move them, one at a time, to various targets on the board. It might sound easy, but each board has varying heights and obstacles that teams need to overcome.
On January 18, our three teams participated in Challenge Day at Notre Dame Stepan Center. Throughout this hands-on learning experience, students learned about the basics of fluid power, teamwork, coordination, and organization, as they experimented and designed their own unique machine. Here are some pictures of the teams at work during Competition Day.
Robotics Tournament Results
The teams will compete again at a combined middle school/ high school tournament next Saturday, February 2nd, in Plymouth.
Congratulations to Ethan Jacobson and LJ Benak for being selected to the Indiana Junior All State Band. Also, congratulations to Steven Sutton for being named an alternate. Junior All State is open to band students in the state of Indiana in grades 7, 8 and 9. They submitted a recording in November and they were two of only 90 students in the entire state to be selected. They performed at the Indiana Music Educators State Conference in Fort Wayne on Saturday January, 19.
Some of our students had the pleasure of participating in ISSMA Solo and Ensemble at Clay High School in South Bend this past Saturday (1/26/19). We had two piano soloists, two vocal ensembles, and seven vocal soloists perform. Students were given ratings and feedback from the judges with a score to determine the rating for their performance. The top performance score is Gold, followed by Silver, and Bronze.
Below are the results for our Spartan performers!
Alex Wagler - Gold Rating
Ansar Fitwi- Gold Rating
Joanna Rajkumar - Gold Rating
Carolyn Gutierrez - Gold Rating
Christopher Gomez - Gold Rating
Thurston Micinski - Gold Rating
Trae Harris - Gold Rating
Alyssa Delrio - Silver Rating
Ryleigh Schantz - Silver Rating
Ensemble Schulte - Gold Rating
Ensemble Janowsky - Silver Rating
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 11, 2019, 7:00 P.M.
Discovery Middle School PTO in Partnership with Discovery Middle School presents “An Evening of Vocational Options and Saving for College.”
Please join us at Discovery Middle School for presentations about the College Savings 529 Plan and by Elkhart Area Career Center. The programs at the EACC are available to all Penn High School students. A complete listing of classes and programs are outline in the Penn High School Program of Studies just use the “Cntrl F” function to search the pdf document for the Elkhart Area Career Center.
PARENTS OF ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS (ELLS)
21st century scholars
Free $$ for college!
The 21st Century Scholars program is need-based assistance which will help students have the ability to go to college who otherwise may not be able to afford it. The program can save you and your family thousands of dollars on higher education past high school, as well as connect you and your student to other great resources.
The deadline for this opportunity to enroll is JUNE 30 of a student's 8th grade year. Once this date has passed, students cannot enroll while at the high school. Please take the time to visit http://scholars.in.gov/parents/enroll/ to learn more about the program and enroll your student right away before this opportunity is no longer available. Email or call your child's school counselor if you have further questions.
WSMS is recorded to Youtube ALMOST every day. (Technology!) If you would like to watch our daily announcements, check it out!
Here is the link to the channel if you want to publish it to parents.
How Your Child Can Connect to Schmucker Happenings
1. Each morning students produce a newscast on WSMS that highlight upcoming events.
2. Every Monday students are emailed a Student Newsletter. This publication includes the weekly menu, important dates like athletic events and clubs, and important announcements and reminders.
Check out the P-H-M website for an online listing of non-school events & activities agencies have asked us to share with P-H-M families:
Families Can Get help with Lunch & Textbook Fees
Protected by Raptor
Canvas is a LMS (Learning Management System) that is used in PHM. Teachers can put content online for students, make announcements and provide assignments. All parents are enrolled in the Canvas course of their students as observers. As observers, you can see the content, but are not able to interact with it. Please access the links below to learn more.
To keep you organized, you can also download the Canvas app for your phone or tablet.
9:00am - First Bell
9:05am - Classes Begin
4:00pm - Dismissal
4:10pm - Bus Departure