East Granby High School Newsletter

January 2014 by Principal David Peling Sr.

A Letter From The Principal

January 14, 2014

Dear Parents/Guardians,

There is a shift taking place at EGHS. Our students and faculty are making ever better use of technology in ways that are transforming our day to day practices in our classroom. When I first came to EGHS as an administrative intern six years ago, instruction was largely what one might call “traditional.” Teachers were typically in front of the classroom, and they, the teachers, were often doing most of the work. This style of instruction has its merits, and is known as direct instruction. Recent research in education has indicated that higher levels of student achievement can be achieved when there is a mix of instructional methods, including direct instruction, group work, and working alone. The shift of “who is doing the work” has largely moved from the teacher to the student. Additionally, technology has created new opportunities for students to create, collaborate, research, and write in ways that were unimaginable a generation ago. Today’s classroom is very different place. We live in a digital world and our classrooms are increasingly reflecting that reality.

The new teacher evaluation system calls for frequent observations of teachers during instructional periods. Over the past two weeks I have observed every faculty member at EGHS and I am deeply impressed by the teaching and learning that I have witnessed. It is commonplace at EGHS to see technology being integrated across all disciplines for instruction, student assignments, and assessment. Chrome books and laptops are constantly being utilized in our classes. For the most part, students appear to have much higher levels of engagement in the learning process. Yes, we sometimes run into technological “glitches” but that is part of the learning process for faculty and students alike. Research indicates that higher levels of engagement directly correlate to higher levels of student achievement.

All of this technology is not without risks. Please see the information below from our school librarians regarding some of the dangers for teens on the misuse of social networking.


David Peling Sr.

Principal EGHS

Europe Trip Spring Break 2015

Grand Tour of Italy

Spring Break 2015 trip to Italy, including Venice, Florence, Assisi, Pompeii, Capri, and Rome

Dear Students and Parents/Guardians,

We are excited to announce a ten day trip for Spring break, to Italy from April 17-26, 2015.

We are going to Venice, Florence, Assisi, Pompeii, Capri, and Rome. This trip will be led by Principal, David Peling & Sarah Carney, both of whom have extensive international experience living, teaching and traveling abroad. Our hope is that our backgrounds in European History (Mr. Peling) and art history (Ms. Carney) will make this a unique and rewarding experience for our students.

Our trip is being facilitated by EF Travel, a student travel group that operates out of Boston. EF is the largest student travel organization in the country. It has been our experience that travel of this nature can be a life changing experience. Our goal, in taking the time to organize and run these trips, is to provide this same kind of opportunity for as many students as possible.

The cost of the trip can be broken down as follows:

EF Price

(Flights, hotels, 2 meals per day/comprehensive insurance, excursion to Capri) $3245

We will collect an additional $200 per student to pay for tipping and buses to and from JFK.

Total Trip Cost: $3445

This price is locked in until the last day of February 2014. After that time, the price will increase monthly. Students that enroll in this period can enroll in monthly payment plan of $225 per month.

We are announcing this now so that families, if they choose, can take advantage of the benefit of paying off this trip over a longer period.

Click Here to see the itinerary

If you go to EFTOURS.COM you can see the itinerary in detail. Tour # 1516902TV

There are two ways to enroll:

  1. Call EF at 1-800-665-5364

  2. Go to EFTOURS.COM

  3. Enroll in Tour # 1516902TV

Best Regards,

David Peling and Sarah Carney

Congrats to the following students...

December Student of the Month - Ashley Bakes

Congratulations to Amanda Samuel! Amanda plays the oboe and placed FIRST in the Musical Club of Hartford's annual competition. Students can earn scholarships based on how they place in the competition. She will receive a $500 scholarship. Way to Go! The Awards Concert for prizewinners will be held at the Westminster Presbyterian Church, 2080 Boulevard, West Hartford, on Sunday, January 19, 2014 at 2 p.m. Admission is free.

Congratulations to Emily Calano, Bryan Chester, Carolyn Mollica and Amanda Samuel, they have been accepted to the UMASS Honor Band! Congratulations to Annika Carlson who has been selected as an alternate!

Congratulations to Katia Semyanko, Carolyn Mollica, Melanie Klucznik and Jackie McDougall who be participating in the chorus and band in the Northern Regional Festival at New Britain High School on January 17th and 18th!

Congratulations to the East Granby Girls' Basketball team and their coaches Mr. Doherty and Ms. Miramontes for taking second-place honors in the Enfield Rotary Classic Girls' Basketball Tournament. Congratulations to Samantha Daleb, Hannah Dumas and Kayla Johnson for being named to the All-Tournament Team!

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Parking Fees are due for Semester Two on or before January 27, 2014. The fee is $20 per vehicle. Please see Mrs. Testerman in the office.

EGHS Baseball Bottle and Can Drive - Saturday, February 8th - Free pick up available! Just put your returnables out at the end of your driveway and we will pick them up starting at 9am. Help the boys go to Spring Training Camp! You may also drop off the returnables at the EGHS from 9am to 3pm. Questions or comments should be directed to springflower@cox.net. Sponsored by the Parents of EGHS Baseball.

Math League Contest on Tuesday, January 14th

Early Release at 12:30 pm on Friday, January 17th - Teacher In-Service

No School on Monday, January 20 - Martin Luther King Day

Snowball is January 25th from 7-11pm at the East Granby Community Center. Tickets are $20 per person and are on sale during lunch periods.

Mid Year Exams are coming up and are scheduled for January 21-24. The following schedule will be in place...

Tuesday, January 21st

Period 1 - 8:00 am - 10:00 am

Period 2 - 10:15 am - 12:15 pm

Wednesday, January 22nd

Period 3 - 8:00 am - 10:00 am

Period 4 - 10:15 - 12:15 pm

Thursday, January 23rd

Period 5 - 8:00 am - 10:00 am

Period 6 - 10:15 am - 12:15 pm

Friday, January 24th

Period 7 - 8:00 am - 10:00 am

Make-up Exams - 10:15 am - 12:15 pm

Kids and Social Media Sites...what’s HOT, what’s NOT!

While many of our students still use Facebook and Twitter, others are turning to trendy, new social media sites with names like Pheed, Vine, Kik, and Ask.fm according to a recent blogpost on Common Sense Media. This site, whose motto is ‘Parenting, media, and everything in between’, is a great way for parents to keep on top of the latest news about gaming, movies, music, and online resources that our kids are accessing.

As the blogpost suggests, knowing the basics about the latest social media sites, including the problems that can arise from using them, “can make the difference between a positive and negative experience for your kid.”

It’s important to make informed decisions about which sites your children have access to, as the video below from KSTP-TV in Minneapolis-St. Paul demonstrates.

The Student Council donated $146.22 to the local food pantry this year with their "Change for Change: Fill the Jar Fundraiser". Students offered spare change at lunches, dances, and during the morning to help our local community.

By Kathleen Phelan and Emma Cordiano

Financial Aid help is available at "College Goal Sunday" - Sunday, January 26th - www.collegegoalsundayct.org

FAFSA deadlines are in February please see FAFSA websight for details. www.fafsa.ed.gov

Questions? Call your student's guidance counselor at (860)653-2541, Kathleen Phelan ext 402 or Emma Cordiano ext 403.



By Stefanie Mullane and Bernice Duffy

Spanish I and II students will be recording their mid-term exam speaking sections on Vocaroo.com and submitting their material digitally this year. Students have been trained on this website program and are encouraged to use the Library Media Center, Mrs. Mullane and Mr. Cayer as resources if help is needed.

The students in AP Spanish have completed a unit on modern and ancient architecture. They focused on the works of Santiago Calatrava, a distinguished Spanish architect who is also known as the guru of New Age contemporary architecture. Each of the students did a presentation on the various structures of Calatrava, also renowned for his contributions to Ground Zero. When Calatrava unveiled his design for a luminous glass-and-steel transportation hub for ground zero in January 2004, government officials touted it as a 21st-century version of Grand Central Terminal.


By Madame Ash

The French students have all joined together to create the first known Trivial Pursuit Game using just information on 39 different French speaking nations. They are still compiling the information, building the board and pieces, and producing the over 500 game cards, but stop after February break to learn the answers to the fascinating questions posed below!
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By Mari-Jo Scandura

Students in Entrepreneurship created a 30 second video using Animoto to summarize what they learned in our unit about Entrepreneurs in a Market Economy and What Affects Price. Click on the link below to view Nick Arsenault’s video.

Lincoln Tech will be visiting our Financial Literacy class. Students will be researching careers and creating a budget. Also, students in i-Lead are learning how to create a Google site to organize and present current topics. Topics include hunger, homelessness, recycling, bullying and animal rights.

By John Cirillo

The As Schools Match Wits team competed on the WGBY TV 57 television program which was aired on December 7th and 9th. I will be taking two teams of students to the "Blender Bowl" competition at Holyoke Catholic High School on January 18th. Students tentatively scheduled to participate are Geoff Hartman, Jessica Grabinsky, Sarah Velcofsky, Connor Reardon, Lily Gaudreau, Casey Tobin, Robbie Glassman, and Sai Chintalpely.

Music Department

By Alison Chaloux and Brianne Gilbert

Middle School Winter Concert - Wednesday, January 22nd @ 7:00 pm

Save the date! The annual HS Pops Concert is Friday, March 14th at 7:00 pm. This year's theme is Rock & Roll! Pops Concert ticket order forms are due February 14th. We are also looking for local business owners to purchase ads for our program. Contact Alison Chaloux or Brianne Gilbert if you are interested at (860)653-2541.

High School Spring Concert - Thursday, June 5th @ 7:00 pm

Middle School Spring Concert - Tuesday, June 10th @ 7:00 pm

The Middle School and the High School Bands will both march in the East Granby Memorial Day Parade on Monday, May 26th at 10:00 am.

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Tech Ed

By Tim Testerman

We glued up our last table top for our Assnuntuck Community College 3-D classroom/lab today. After five months of planning and work, it's now fully operational for 11 students at a time. We even built a teaching station which will have lockable storage in the future.The light at the end of this tunnel is finally visible. It has taken focus, skill building and great persistence from about 6 woodworking students to make this happen. Without their help, and the help of our custodian, Craig Cody, this 300 hour project would have taken me more than the school year to complete. I'm extremely grateful for their hard work every day of every week. Projects like these tell me that we are encouraging the growth of "the right stuff" in our student population. I'd hire any one of these kids to work for me and never regret it. They've been super! If you get a chance, drop by and see our new classroom "within a classroom".

Murals and sound reduction are next. In fact, the murals may help solve a lot of our problem with sound. Jacob Seelen won the Technology Education mural contest and his design will occupy the prized space. Kyle Twarkins and Samantha Berger made strong showings and will also have their murals in our lab. Helping them paint their large panels will be about 10 other students. I hope the mural work can begin in early February. News on that to follow......

Physical Education News

By Linda DeFlaun

Hopefully everyone enjoyed their holiday break and didn't become total couch potatoes! There are only few classes left for those students taking Physical Education this first semester. Before reviewing for the final exam, as well as taking it, classes are playing badminton, pickle ball, and nitro ball.

There is a lot of research that shows how exercise can stimulate the brain. Final exams are coming up. Exercise stimulates the brain....... finals are coming........ get my drift? Go out for a walk, participate in a sport, go to the gym, shovel snow, run around........... do something physical. You'll feel better, sleep better, and most likely be happier with your grades.

Child Development

By Laura McCabe

In Child Development 1, Toddler Time has been progressing well, with only one week left . The little children are a joy to work with and learn from. The students have planned fun activities for example teaching the children some yoga poses.

Architecture and Interior Design

By Laura McCabe

The Architecture and Interior Design class is completing final touches of the design project in the Science Hallway, an East Granby tree mural. Each year, the students come up with a plan to improve the functioning or atmosphere of a space in the school as one of their projects.


By Laura McCabe

Foods classes are looking forward to preparing and presenting their final meal next week. A lot of learning and work have brought students to this point, it is quite a challenge to manage their time and complete this task.

East Granby Clubs and Activities

East Granby High School's Spectrum is a diversity club which meets Thursdays after school in Mrs. Downes' room. The club explores the variety of interests and backgrounds of it's members through activities, games, and food. We are a fun and welcoming group, and new members are always welcome.

The Connecticut Youth Forum is a group of high school-aged students from 40 high schools and community groups who come together year round to exchange ideas and learn from one another. At monthly meetings, 100-150 teenagers gather at different schools for an open, moderated discussion and interactive activities based on a relevant topic.

Through Youth Forum, opportunities are also available to join the Leadership Network, to plan Youth Forum activities, to attend Connecticut Forum events at the Bushnell and attend round table discussions with prominent Connecticut Forum panelists. East Granby Youth Forum students participated in a work site meeting at Stanley Black and Decker in New Britain on December 19, 2013. They interacted and explored the topic " Triumphs and Resolutions". New participants are always welcome.

Library News

By Paxton Berardy

Please help East Granby Middle/High school library raise funds to purchase library books and media equipment using the Cartridges for Kids recycling program. Cartridges for Kids is a year-round recycling program that pays schools and non-profit organizations cash for cell phones, laser & inkjet cartridges, laptops, MP3s, PDAs, and tablets.

The program, launched in 1999, has since helped fund-raise millions of dollars and saved countless tons of recyclable materials from landfills nationwide.

Please drop off any appropriate recycling items (listed above) to the middle school or high school office. If you have any question about the program or items to be recycled in it please contact the librarian Paxton Berardy pberardy@eastgranby.k12.ct.us