FWHMS Family Newsletter

Connecting Families to School - February 2018

Grade 6 Happenings

This is a great time of year to check your child's supplies. Many of the supplies, especially pencils, are gone or running low. Kindly replenish these throughout the year. Donations of boxes of tissues, cleaning wipes or hand sanitizer is greatly appreciated in all of our classrooms.

Students returned from winter break with the answers from the family interviews they completed during the month of December. The first few weeks of January were spent in the computer lab crafting narratives for the Family Memory Project. Our goal for this project each year is to promote a positive interaction between your child and an older relative. Based on the narratives students have shared, we believe we achieved our goal. The personal history, family stories, and heartfelt comments in each narrative show just how important family relationships are to children. We are looking forward to February 13th to display the finished projects at our Family Memory Wax Museum. The event will be held during the honor roll breakfast beginning at 8:15 a.m. All family members, including the relative who was interviewed, are invited to attend. At this event you will have a chance to view your child's finished product, as well as the other students' narratives. An informational letter was sent home Friday, February 2nd with specific details regarding this event.

Grade 7 Happenings

In English, we had a great time studying the play A Christmas Carol: Scrooge and Marley. The students learned about drama, language skills, character types, and methods of characterization. This unit is wrapping up with an Instagram Project. Students are using the play to identify methods of characterization while using visuals and their knowledge of social media to explain how methods of characterization can bring a character to life. We are looking forward to seeing the students finished Instagram feeds. As the quarter comes to an end, students are gearing up to present their Independent Novel Projects. There projects are worth a test grade, and we are assessing the students knowledge of the independent novel they read during quarter two as well as their public speaking skills. Students did a great job with their projects and presentations during first quarter, so we are really looking forward to seeing what they come up with this quarter.

In Math, we completed our Algebra Unit, solving real-world examples of equations and inequalities and learning how to interpret the solutions. Also, students were introduced to arithmetic and geometric sequences, which they will see again in our upcoming study of functions. Next month, we begin our unit on Ratios and Proportional Relationships, which focuses on ratios, rates, unit rates, proportions and percent applications. If your child has difficulty in math, they can always practice their math skills at IXL.com (all students have an account through the school) as well as the various math games on any of the Jeopardy websites.

In Science, students are exploring the forms and transformations of energy in our everyday lives. Through the use of lots of hands-on investigations and demonstrations as well as visual interactives, the students get to see that energy is not limited to electrical appliances or what "gets us going" in the morning. As January winds down, the students will get to choose and create one of four energy projects to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the forms and transformations of energy. Perhaps, they will be inspired by renowned artist Rube Goldberg and his crazy inventions, teach younger children all about energy by writing a short illustrated story or publishing the Sunday newspapers' Fun Page, or perhaps, a few brave souls will perform an energetic Rap or Song for their classmates on the topic of energy!

In Social Studies, we are learning about Greek culture. We began the unit talking about Ancient Greek religious practices, with students creating a poster on the 12 major Greek gods. We will be learning about the founding and importance of the Olympics, and the different types and authors of Greek plays. The second half of the chapter involves science in Ancient Greece, and students will be learning about the roles that figures like Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, and Hippocrates played in the formation of science and math. Throughout the chapter, students will begin assembling a timeline encompassing the major events we have studied so far this year. When we wrap up this unit, we will move on to studying Alexander the Great.

As always, be sure to check the homework page on the school website to keep up with daily work, even if your child is absent.

Grade 8 Happenings

It’s hard to believe we are at the beginning of 3rd quarter. Where is the time going? With so much more to learn!


Students have crossed “the pond” and are now commencing with the study of our own American History! Colonial projects are underway and our Historians are discovering how and why people settled in North America, the challenges they faced and obstacles they overcame. From here, we will explore and analyze the causes and effects of the French and Indian War and the Road to Revolution that became its result.


In math, we are beginning to expand our algebraic knowledge into Geometry concepts. Students will be working with algebra within angles, triangles, and polygons, and working with similar figures before moving on to Transformations. An upcoming project on Tessellations will get the students using translations while using their creativity to make a math masterpiece.


Students will learn a multi-step and complex literary technique (The Hero’s Journey) by reading different genres of literature. They will also read the novel The Giver by Lois Lowry. We will also focus heavily on interpreting literature and responding in the form of an expository paragraph.


Weather, like it or not, it happens. We will be investigating aspects of weather maps and weather prediction. They will learn some basic chemistry; starting with atoms, mixtures and compounds, physical and chemical properties and the theory of particle motion. The students will participate in many hands on activities before finishing the unit with chemical reactions.

The Middle School years are certainly one with many challenges. Please take a moment and review our newsletter information and find some helpful hints on how you can help your students make it through this time with success. As always, if you should have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

What Every Parent Needs to Know:

Did you know that your 8th grader can?

Stay after school for extra help with teachers Monday-Thursday
Math: Tuesday (8 Purple) and Thursday (8 Gold)

ELA: Wednesday (8 Gold and 8 Purple)

Science: Thursday (8 Gold and 8 Purple)

History: Monday (8 Gold and 8 Purple)

  1. Come get extra help during any study period?

  2. Make corrects on assessments and/or retakes (per teacher discretion)?

  3. Pass in work late for adjusted credit?

“Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” Theodore Roosevelt

Ways to Keep your 8th Grader Motivated towards Achieving success

*Communicate with your child about what is going on in school.

*Make sure they set aside time each night for homework.

*Have your child double check the homework cite or teacher homework cite.

*Encourage technology to be used as a tool for their education.

*Remind your child that STUDYING is homework.

*Encourage your child to make up their work when they are absent from class.

Coming soon to 8th Grade!

*Holocaust Museum and Speaker-May

*Washington DC Trip-June

*8th Grade Field Day and Farewell Dance-June

Physical Education Happenings

Second quarter rolled on with a new group of students experiencing the new HMS physical education curriculum for the first time and enjoying themselves throughout the diverse and varied offering of activities. Similar to how a gourmet chef prepares a food tasting, activities were presented as mere samples, and students were challenged to truly "taste" all of the unique flavors before casting a judgment on whether they enjoyed the particular sample (activity). Stepping outside of their comfort zone is a theme all students become familiar with in P.E. as it is there where they can truly grow and learn new skills and strategies of play. Rather than serve up only the most traditional P.E. sports and games, students voyage through over forty different activities within the quarter and are exposed to the expansive worlds of fitness and physical activity. The goal is simple: allow students to experience as many types of physical activity as possible in hopes that they will have the knowledge and confidence to explore at least one more thoroughly in the future and just maybe develop an appreciation or interest throughout their lifespan.

Below is a great quote from a blog which summarizes the value of a complete and comprehensive phys. ed curriculum. The link is attached below to learn more about how P.E. reflects the values and goals of modern society:

“Physical education is the most effective means of providing all children and youth with the skills, attitudes, values, knowledge and understanding for lifelong participation in society.” The Declaration of Berlin 2013 – UNESCO’s World Sports Ministers Conference (MINEPS V)


Wellness Happenings

Grade 6

During the first month of the new quarter students will be learning about decision making and SMART goal setting. During the Decision Making unit, the District’s School Resource Officer, Dave Loudon, will be co-teaching the peer pressure and ways to say “No” lessons. While learning about the importance of setting goals, students will set a long- term goal. The goal of the class is that all learners will be health literate and will possess knowledge and skills to improve the quality of their lives. If you ever have any questions, please contact me at mblanchard@bmrsd.net.

Grade 7

We will be exploring the following areas during the month of February: Self- Esteem, Body Image, and Analyzing Ads. The Essential Questions for the first area of study are, “What do you base your self- worth on?” “How does the media trick us into buying their products?” and “What is perfection?” The goal of the class is to provide authentic learning experiences to students so that they will be health literate.

Grade 8

During this month, students will learn about the impact of choices including informed decision making, emotional decision making, Teen Brain Development: Behavior, Problem Solving, and Decision Making. Students will learn about the potential consequences of choosing to text or drink while driving. The District’s School Resource Officer, Dave Loudon, will be co-teaching lessons about alcohol, Opioids, and addiction later in the month.

Music Department

Mr. Marcotte, Mr. Martins and Mrs. Ryan would like to give a shout-out to the band and chorus students who will be trying out for the Massachusetts Central District Music Festival. Try outs are Saturday, February 3. in Grafton. Good luck to all of you. You have worked very hard!

Guidance News


A monthly column that addresses either questions submitted or simply shares articles that might be of interest to student guardians. This column is brought to you by FWHMS Guidance. If you would like to submit a question, please send us an email to BMIGNANELLI@BMRSD.NET OR SRIELLY@BMRSD.NET.

Instilling Self-Sacrifice

On February 8, 2018, it will be the 75th anniversary of the sinking of an Army transport ship, the Dorchester, which was carrying American soldiers through the icy North Atlantic about 100 miles off the coast of Greenland on their way to serve in World War II. More than 900 people were on board. Before the night ended, over 600 soldiers lost their lives. Among the men of the ship were four military chaplains from four disparate religions. They were Father John Washington, born in Newark, New Jersey, who was Catholic; the Rev. Clark Poling, born in Columbus, Ohio, who was ordained in the Reformed Church in America; Rabbi Alexander Goode, born in Brooklyn, New York, who was Jewish; and the Rev. George Fox, born in Lewistown, Pennsylvania, who was Methodist.

Survivor accounts shared that while the ship was sinking the chaplains were doing what Chaplains do: provide comfort, guidance and hope. They helped lead and calm the men in the dark of the hull toward evacuation roots, and they encouraged courage. These men also gave up their life vests for others. (http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/03/opinion/greene-four-chaplains/)

In honor of the self-sacrifice of these chaplains and all veterans and their families, it seems appropriate to consider how we can instill self- sacrifice in our children. Children who are raised to understand and value self-sacrifice benefit, as does the world they all live in.

The following are recommendations copied and edited from Charles Fay, Love and Logic:

Teach them to serve you and their family

Are your kids working hard to serve you or are you doing all of the work? Children should be expected to do their fair share of work around the house. A parent is not the maid, butler or limo driver.

Teach them to look at insides not just outsides

Teach children to understand that even people who look like they have everything together are still struggling with something. Looking at the possible bigger picture and attempting to understand what is going on at the heart level results in less people being offended. Instead, they are more likely to experience empathy and to serve by extending a listening ear and a helping hand. Understanding and practicing this can be difficult for children, in order to help, view this as a lifelong process that will gradually rub off on them as they grow and become adults.

Expect tangible mini acts of service

Do you or your child offer a seat to the elder or pregnant women standing on the train?

Are your kids holding doors open for people? When in line are they offering someone to go ahead of them? Are they offering to carry something for someone who is struggling?

Are you modeling these mini acts of service? Are you finding ways for your kids to follow your example?

Allow boredom

Children should not be entertained 24/7. This only leads them to believe they are the center of the universe? It Is it good for kids to be occasionally bored while you shop, talk or take some alone time. Many young children carry instant boredom-prevention devices. Phones, and tablets constantly entertain. Might this practice be contributing to the number of young people who have absolutely no impulse control skills?

Limit exposure to popular media

Are the relationships portrayed in most media, the kinds we want our kids emulating? Watching these show with your child and having discussion about why certain behavior is inappropriate is one thing. … a steady, unsupervised diet of on-screen narcissism and negativity is certain to make our job of raising selfless kids much harder.

Community service as a privilege not a punishment

True community service it’s intended to be an opportunity (a privilege). It’s intended to be seen as an opportunity to be part of something important, needed, and noble.

Research has demonstrated that kids who serve in their community are far less likely to get involved in high-risk activities such as drug use, sex, gang involvement, etc. They’re also more likely to do well in school.

In honor of our veterans and their families, might we give some careful thought to how we could raise young people who understand selflessness and the fact that the best way to feel good about oneself is to serve?


Health Office News

Vision and Hearing Screenings

During the month of February, I will be giving state-mandated vision and hearing screenings to all seventh grade students. These tests are not diagnostic. However, they may indicate a problem with vision or hearing. If I have any concerns, I will send home a letter requesting a follow-up evaluation by your child’s medical doctor or a specialist. If you would prefer for your child to be excluded from these screenings, please send in a written note by Monday, February 5.

Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Sue Wiegers

School Nurse


508-876-0193, option 3


Parents Volunteers are needed for the 7th and 8th grade dance on Friday, February 9th from 6 pm to 8 pm. Click this link to sign up: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D4FACAF22A7FF2-stuco

Volleyball Marathon- February 16th from 8 am to 2 pm

This is our biggest fundraiser of the year! We need everyone's help to gather pledges and to collect the funds in order for them to continue to support/sponsor the following for our students:

  • In-house assemblies
  • 3D printer supplies for Makerspace
  • Field trip donations to help off set the cost
  • Books for our One Book, One School summer reading book
  • Sponsoring many of our after school clubs
  • Socials
  • and much, much more

In order to make this event successful, we need many parent volunteers. You can sign up at: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D4FACAF22A7FF2-volleyball

Five Guys Fundraiser - February 5th - 5 pm to 8 pm - Lincoln Location

Click here for flyer for more information. No coupon or flyer needed. Just give our school's PTO name when you place your order.

All pledge sheets (and donations if collected ahead of time) are due in the main office by Thursday, February 15th in order to play on the 16th

Grade 8 Washington, DC Trip Information

There will be one of two parents meetings to discuss information for Washington DC on February 27th from 6:30-7:30 here at the Middle School Library. An additional meeting will be schedule for later spring prior to departure.

Dates: June 10th to 13th

Payment #3 of $148.75 is due on 3/9/18 (if you are using the payment schedule).

Cost: Price $595.00

Trip price includes: Bus, Hotel, Meals,-Dinner on the way down and dinner on the way back ($30.00 for both) is not included in the meal cost, t-shirt and museum ticket cost.

**Make checks payable to: Hartnett Middle School

Payment Plan Schedule

Payment #3 148.75 Due Date: 03/09

Payment 4 148.75 Due Date: 05/15

**Fundraising questions - please contact Mrs. Curt Hoard: tcurt@bmrsd.net

** Trip insurance is available if you would like to purchase it. Click on this link https://nta.aontravelprotect.com/index.jsf . The tour operator location number is: 386016. The estimated cost for a basic plan is $59.00 and $79.00 for an enhanced plan. Please check with the insurance company for actual prices.

Scholastica Refund Deposit Policy:

Calendar Days Before Departure Date

30 or more

Scholastica Travel Inc will retain 20% of the trip deposit. Each individual or group will receive an 80% refund of money deposited with Scholastica less any nonrefundable prepaid reservations.

14 to 29

Scholastica Travel Inc will retain 25% of the trip deposit. Each individual or group will receive a 75% refund of money deposited with Scholastica less any nonrefundable prepaid reservations, contingent on the group or individual being paid in full.

13 or less

Scholastica Travel Inc will retain 50% of the trip deposit. Each individual or group will receive a 50% refund of money deposited with Scholastica less any nonrefundable prepaid reservations, contingent on the group or individual being paid in full.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Trip Itinerary: A variety of Smithsonian Museums, Arlington National Cemetery for the wreath laying, Monuments and Dinner Cruise along the Potomac.

2. Chaperones-teachers will be chaperoning this trip-as they have done in the past.

3. Meals are included (in the price) with the exception of the meal going to DC and the meal returning from DC.

4. Hotel Rooms typically consist of 4 per room (this is always subject to change).

5. Parent Meeting will be scheduled late winter, early spring to cover any additional questions, discuss finalized information for the trip, medical concerns and communication lines.

6. Please email Mrs. Finnegan: kfinnegan@bmrsd.net with any questions.


This year, we have partnered with Jostens to bring you a high-quality, full-color 2017-2018 yearbook. Yearbooks can be ordered online by clicking here, or printing and filling out this form and returning it to the main office with payment.

8th Graders Baby Photos Wanted

Attention 8th grade parents! We are looking for baby pictures of your 8th grader for the yearbook. If you have a digital picture, you can upload it directly to the Josten's website using this link: https://images.jostens.com/409703603. If you do not have a digital picture, students can bring their baby picture to Mrs. Tasker in the library. Pictures will be returned the same day they are brought in. Any questions please email Mrs. Tasker at stasker@bmrsd.net.

Photos Wanted

Any family who has pictures of school related events (socials, sporting events, STEM competitions etc.) is welcome to email the pictures to the HMS Yearbook at emailhmsyearbook@gmail.com. Please include a short description of the picture(s) in your email.

Random Acts of Kindness Week

You are invited to celebrate our Random Acts of Kindness Week. Kindness Rocks is our school theme this year, and we are happy to remind our school community to be friendly, considerate, thoughtful, and caring- all attributes of a kind person- every opportunity we can.

Random Acts of Kindness Week will begin on Monday, February 11- and run through Friday, February 16. Why not celebrate this week as a family, and have fun while being extra kind. The theme for this year’s RAK Week is, “ Kindness Starts With One- Who’s Your One?”


Our new homework page for this year is:


Please note: TeacherWeb (previous homework website) is shutting down as of 12/31/17. In order to make the transition easier, we are not using it at the start of this school year so that we do not have to change it in the middle of the school year.

If your child needs help, teachers are available Monday to Thursday to help your child for 15 minutes after school. If you book an appointment, they are available for 30 minutes. Please email your child(ren)'s teacher to book an appointment.

Community News - Blackstone Public Library - YA Librarian Mrs. DelVecchio

The Blackstone Public Library has a new YA Librarian, Mrs. Karen DelVecchio. Library happenings for students will be share each month.

Adventure: Dig into Clay with Pied Potter Hamelin

Star Wars Symposium

Young Adult Comic Book Creation

Pay Online for School Lunch

You can pay for your child's school lunch online at myschoolbucks.com or download the app. You will need your child's ID number to enroll.

You can view the account balance, see what was purchased, and schedule automatic payments if you wish.

Calendar of Events

Thursday, February 1st

  • ACCESS Testing

Friday, February 2nd

  • Report Cards Distributed

Monday, February 5th

  • Candy Grams Selling Begins at All Lunches - Sponsored by StuCo
  • 5 pm to 8 pm - Five Guys PTO Fundraiser - Lincoln Location - No Coupon or Flyer needed

Friday, February 9th

  • Candy Grams - Final Day
  • No One Eats Alone Day - all lunches
  • JLine Dance Company Whole School Assembly - Sponsored by HMS PTO
  • 6 pm to 8 pm - Snowball Winter Dance - For 7th and 8th graders - Sponsored by StuCo
Monday, February 12th
  • School Spirit Week Begins - Sponsored by StuCo
  • Random Acts of Kindness Week Begins - Sponsored by PBIS Club

Tuesday, February 13th

  • 8 am - Grade 6 Wax Museum and Honor Roll Recognition
  • 10:30 am to 3:30 pm - Otis Spunkmeyer DC Trip Fundraiser Pick Up
  • 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm - Girls Basketball Home Game

Wednesday, February 14th

  • 8 am - Grades 7 and 8 Honor Roll Breakfast
  • Candy Grams delivered

Thursday, February 15th

  • 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm - Boys Basketball Home Game
  • 4:45 pm to 5:45 pm - Girls Basketball Home Game
Friday, February 16th
  • 8 am to 2 pm - Volleyball Marathon - Sponsored HMS PTO Their Biggest Fundraiser of the Year
Monday, February 19th to Friday, February 23rd
  • Winter Break
Tuesday, February 27th

  • 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm - DC Trip Informational Night for Parents
Friday, March 2nd
  • After-school Programs Winter Session Ends (not counting make-up classes due to snow days)

Be sure to visit our school web site to view our school events calendar.

ABC's of Student Success

B is for Bedtime

Awwwww, Mom! Already? Sound familiar? On average children need 8 to 10 hours of sleep each night. Sleep is important for many reasons. Lack of sleep can cause kids to be hypersensitive, impatient, or cranky. It is more difficult for kids to concentrate and learn when they are tired. Some doctors even believe that during sleep the brain "files away" what is learned during the day. Encouraging quiet activities - such as reading - just prior to bedtime offers a transition that helps children relax.


Math @ Home

Math Printables

If your child is struggling with math skills, you can help by visiting www.schoolexpress.com. You'll find a huge selection of worksheets by clicking on 16,000+ Free Worksheets on the visit our site drop down menu in the top right corner. Then click on mathematics and the topic of your choice.


Parent Pointers

Focusing on the Importance of Learning
  • Talk positively about the importance of an education.
  • Let your child see how much you enjoy and value learning
  • It is okay if you don't have all the answers to your child's questions, but it is important to show that you know how to get the answers.
  • Learning builds confidence and a child who is more confident is more open to new opportunities to learn.

School-wide Ongoing Fundraisers

BoxTops - You can find the tops on participating products. Cut out the top and have your child bring it to school. We earn 10 cents for each top collected. Visit www.boxtops4education.com for a listing of products.

Stop & Shop A Plus Program - Register your rewards card to help us earn $$. Log on to www.stopandshop.com/aplus to register online USE SCHOOL ID: 07080 or dial 1-877-275-2758 to register your card over the phone.

Big Y Education Express Program -

1. Visit bigy.com and log in or create a myBigY account with your Big Y Silver Savings card.

2. Select “Join Education Express”.
3. Select your school.
4. Look for the Education Express logo on items in their weekly circular, online and on signs in our stores.
5. Purchase these specially marked products and your school earns points. They redeem the points for the supplies they need.

Amazon - Please click here to shop on Amazon.com. A small percentage of what you purchase will go to the Hartnett Middle School PTO to help support field trips, assemblies, special events, and after school programming. It is the same Amazon.com you may use, with a small percentage supporting middle school students.

It is the policy of the Blackstone-Millville Regional School District not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, religion, national origin, homelessness, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, or disability, in its educational programs, services, activities, or employment practices; as defined and required by state and federal laws. Further information may be obtained by contacting Dr. Janis LaPorte at 508-876-0190 or jlaporte@bmrsd.net.