FWHMS Family Newsletter

Connecting Families to School - December 2018

Reminder: Healthy Start begins at 7:10 am for early drop offs.

Chromebook Initiative Rollout FAQ

Form to Complete by Parent and Child:


When: December 12th in all history classes

Students will receive a Chromebook and a charger. All Chromebooks are insured by the school district. If you wish to buy your own case you may, but it is not required.

District Safety Protocol Reminder

We know that the holiday season is a hectic one, where people can be coming and going- always in a rush. However, as a community, we have to be sure that we are paying attention to what matters most - the safety of our children. That is why we wanted to take some time to remind our families of a few of the protocols we have in place to help us do so. We know that they may take a few extra moments, but in the end - they are worth the time they take.

  • First, please be prepared to answer a few important questions when entering your child’s school - and be prepared to show identification for the purpose of dismissing or speaking with your child.

  • If your child is going to be absent, please inform the school, as soon as possible. If we do not hear from a parent or guardian, the school will need to contact our school resource officer to perform a physical safety check.

  • Lastly, if you call the school and ask for information regarding your child, please be prepared to wait or even receive a call back. We cannot share any information over the phone until we have confirmed who we are speaking with ensuring we have authorization from the parent or guardian to communicate with the person requesting the information.

We thank you again for your understanding and your cooperation.

Parent Portal Right to Your Device

Did you know that you can have Parent Portal updates sent to your phone? First, download the Follett Notifications app by Follett School Solutions, Inc. Next, type in Ma-blackstone-millville.myfollett.com/aspen Lastly enter your username and password. For the notifications you can set the grade threshold that you want to be notified. If you choose 100 as the threshold, you would be notified of every graded assignment.

Any questions, please call the school and speak with Mrs. Rielly.

Attendance Matters

Big picture

November Attendance Rate

6th grade - 94.5%

7th grade - 94.2%

8th grade - 93.9%

Total Number of Tardies for November - 120

Total Number of Early Dismissals for November - 118

Attendance Rate for School Year - 95.7%

Total Number of Tardies for School Year - 428

Total Number of Early Dismissals for School Year - 310

Winter Clothing and Blanket Drive

The National Junior Honor Society will be sponsoring a winter clothing and blanket drive during the month of December. Please send in gently used coats, mitten, gloves, hats and scarves. We will also accept gently used comforters and blankets. Items may be dropped off in the front office or brought to the collection table in the lobby.


The Frederick W. Hartnett Middle School yearbook is now on sale. Click here to order online, or click here to print out the form and return it, with payment, to Mrs. Tasker in the Library Media Center.


Are you someone who loves to ski or snowboard? If so, then this club is for YOU! The Ski/Snowboard club travels to Wachusett Mountain every Sunday for 6 weeks starting January 6, 2018. The club takes a coach bus which leaves the middle school at 3:00 pm and returns at approximately 9:00pm.

There are options available for renting equipment, ski/snowboard lessons (offered at a variety of levels), and use of the Terrain Park for anyone interested.

Fees for the club:

-A MANDATORY bus fee ($120 for 6 weeks)

-Lift badge fee to ski/board ($120 for 6 weeks)

-Additional fees for rentals, badge insurance, lockers, etc .

Click here to view flyer and how to register through Wachusett Mountain. Bus fee is paid through the school. Make bus fee checks/money orders payable to Hartnett Middle School.

Grade 6 Purple and Gold Teams

A very heartfelt thanks to all sixth grade parents for allowing your child to attend the field trip to Nature’s Classroom. We appreciate your financial and parental support as this trip would not have been able to happen without all of your help. The students had a great time and memories were made as well as friendships. We appreciate and look forward to your continued support throughout the school year.

Please remember to replenish your child’s supplies like pencils and glue - they make great stocking stuffers!:)

We are always appreciative and accepting of donations of the following items:

tissues, hand sanitizer, paper towels, cleaning wipes. Thank you!

Grade 7 Gold Team and Grade 7/8 Purple Team

On November 8th and 9th, the seventh grade traveled to the Hockomock YMCA in North Attleboro Massachusetts to participate in a two-day team building program that emphasizes anti-bullying, perseverance, and coping skills. Upon arrival, students were engaged in some quick large group activities to get them warmed up, and without them realizing it, students were randomly divided into groups that they stayed in for the remainder of the day. The first day of activities focused on team building and as students moved from station to station, they slowly moved from working as individuals to working as a team. It was truly amazing to watch this transformation, especially as some students began to emerge as leaders within their team.

The second day was just as exciting as students moved onto the high elements on the ropes course and continued to build their team building skills. After a safety lesson that included how to get into a harness and secure it, how to properly affix a climbing helmet, and how to communicate with the belayer (the YMCA staff member who secures the climber), students were given the opportunity to climb an element. The encouragement students displayed toward their peers that were frightened about climbing was incredible. It’s certainly one moment that you need to experience in order to understand the excitement generated by the students! We truly appreciate the time and effort the staff at the YMCA takes to coordinate the activities for such a large group as ours! We would also like to thank Mrs. Horgan for volunteering to chaperone this year’s trip.

In November, Parent-Teacher Conferences took place, and we had many parents sign up to meet with their child’s core teachers. If you were unable to sign up but would like to meet and discuss your child’s academic performance, please contact Mrs. Hannon hhannon@bmrsd.net for 7 Gold or Mrs. Dansereau ldansereau@bmrsd.net for 7/8 Purple to schedule a team meeting. 7 Gold is available to meet on Wednesdays and Fridays from 10:35-11:05 AM. 7/8 Purple is available to meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:35 to 11:05 am.

All 8th grade students recently received information regarding the Washington D.C. trip scheduled for June 9th to the 11th. If your child did not share that letter with you, please contact Mrs. Dansereau (ldansereau@bmrsd.net) for a copy of the information.

Quarter one report cards were distributed on Tuesday, November 13, so please make sure you have reviewed the report with your student. If your child needs extra help or needs to make up work, after school help is available Monday through Wednesdays until 3:00 p.m. and NJHS tutoring is available on Thursdays until 3:00 p.m. Please make sure students are picked up promptly at 3:00 PM.

As always, please be sure to check our Homework Page to see all teachers’ homework for the week. We try our hardest to have this updated by the end of the day on Mondays.

Grade 8 Gold Team


Experience “real” events and scenarios is one way to have students become informed citizens and develop a better understanding of how their government works. Mrs. Finnegan’s 8th Grade Civic students have been working hard developing proposed Congressional Bills. They have been applying their knowledge of how the Legislative Branch functions and applying it to real life situations. I believe that we have quite a few prospective members of Congress among us.


Algebra students are loving solving systems of equations! (no joke!) After a little more practice using the 3 methods to solve systems, we will be venturing into linear inequalities, and systems of linear inequalities. If time allows before vacation we will begin our unit on exponent rules.

Extended Algebra students have almost finished the unit on graphing linear equations. Ask them anything about the slope or y-intercept of linear equations. After a chapter test we will be exploring the idea of rational and irrational numbers before the winter break.


Students have been working on understanding what causes the Seasons (Earth-Sun systems) and introducing the Moon with its effect - particularly on the Tides. Our next unit will be focused on recognizing the components that produce weather events (Perhaps we’ll even being able to forecast the “1st Snow Day”?)


Students will read and analyze the non-fiction article “Jurassic Ark” by Virginia Gewin. Students will then write a multi-paragraph response after independently reading the article. Lessons will be focused on the construction of a expository paragraph and the development of a thesis statement in response to essay questions.

Español Happenings

November 2018 La Clase de español - For all classes, please check Señora Riedel’s website for information and remind and Google classroom codes. Señora Riedel Spanish

6th Grade: So far this quarter your students are learning the correct pronunciation of the Spanish alphabet, hopefully they can sing it to you! The students also learned many classroom phrases and commands, so they know what to do when I ask them to do something in Spanish.

7th Grade: So far this quarter your students have learned how to have basic conversations in Spanish, they can introduce themselves and others, as well as tell you what they like. They are learning how to understand the spoken language and answer questions in Spanish.

8th Grade: This quarter, your students have learned how to introduce themselves and others, indicate what they (and others) like and dislike, as well as describe themselves and others with adjectives. The students are hearing more Spanish everyday, and are going to be working in groups to perform skits to demonstrate their knowledge and language skills.

6th Grade GEM class: So far this quarter the students are learning where in world Spanish is spoken. We have learned all of the countries, their capitals, and location. Students have chosen countries to research and present to the class. We have discussed what makes a good presentation, and they are keeping all of their information on the Google Classroom.

Wellness Happenings

Grade 6

Students will be focused on goal setting and time management in the coming weeks. Students will be able to answer questions such as, “Why set goals?” “What are the three most important characteristics needed to reach my goals?” How do I prioritize my to- do- list?” and “What do I need to know to manage my time?” Please check grade book as grades are posted regularly.

Grade 7

Students will be completing an eating disorder unit by participating in a Socratic Circle discussing ways to help someone who might have an eating disorder. In the next unit, students will learn about the importance of sleep for mental/ emotional, physical, and social well-being. Students will explore why sleep is essential, and whether school should start later. More information will be forthcoming in the next wellness news update.

Grade 8

Students will focus their attention on mental health issues, and the signs and symptoms.They will learn about the stigma of mental illness and why getting help is so important. Research suggests that social media can have a negative impact on the mental health of youth. Students will research and form an opinion supported by their research on the question, “Should parents set limits on screen time use including TV, social media, and video games?” An update will be emailed to you the second week of December.

Science/Technology News

On Friday, December 7th, we will be hosting the Hour of Code with guest speakers from Amazon. They will be in all science classes in all grades as well as Mrs. Grace's rotation classes.

The Science-Technology classes are continuing their study of "Internet Safety". The students just finished learning about cyber-crime and are now learning about website dangers, and what to do if they think their computer has become infected by malware. The classes are learning how a computer works, and what appropriate behavior online looks like. They are reviewing these topics through a game called Carnegie Cyber Academy, which can be downloaded for free from the internet.

The next unit the Science-Tech students will experience is programming with "Scratch", a free program from MIT. The students will use drag and drop software to animate a story on the Scratch program.

The Science-Tech GEM class is continuing developing their city infrastructure. They have been creating their cities using the SIM City software, and have begun to create their 3-D models of their cities. The students will present their projects to the class using google software.

Music Department News

The members of the HMS chorus and bands would like to invite you to our winter concerts. The 7th and 8th grade bands will perform on December 19th. The 6th grade band and Chorus will perform on the 20th. Both concerts begin at 7:00 pm in the BMR auditorium with free admission. We hope to see you there!

Health Office News

Vaping – The New Look of Nicotine Addiction

Vaping has become an epidemic with our youth and many parents are wondering how concerned they should be if their child is vaping or if they catch their child vaping. Vaping is the act of inhaling and exhaling the aerosol (often called vapor) produced by an e-cigarette or similar battery powered device. According to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, almost 24% of Massachusetts high school students report currently using e-cigarettes and nearly 50% of students have tried them at least once. FDC Prevention Works reports that electronic cigarettes, or “vapes” are now the second-most commonly used drug by teens, lagging only behind alcohol. An e-cigarette is a portable nicotine delivery device designed to mimic the physical and sensory experience of a cigarette without looking like one. They can also be used to deliver marijuana and other substances.

Flavors are the leading reason that youth are using e-cigarettes (vapes), and the nicotine in these products lead to sustained use. Vapes give users a flavored nicotine without the smell and smoke that cigarettes have. Most e-cigarettes contain pre-filled pods with flavored liquids and juices. It is reported that there are almost 8,000 flavors to choose from. Some of the flavors available are sweet mango, blueberry, apple pie, bubble gum, cotton candy and chocolate.

Many teens believe that vaping, or smoking e-cigarettes is harmless. This is not true. Both e-cigarettes and regular cigarettes contain nicotine. The nicotine content of one pod is equivalent to one pack of cigarettes. Nicotine is highly addictive and research suggests that it may be as addictive as heroin and cocaine. According to the Centers for Disease Control, nicotine can harm the developing adolescent brain and cause long term effects such as poor attention, learning difficulty, lower impulse control and mood disorders. Also, the chemicals found in the aerosols inhaled and breathed in as secondhand vape are known to cause cancer and permanent lung disease.

E-cigarettes are cheaper than cigarettes and easy to get. They come in many different sizes, types and color and are made to resemble everyday items that can easily fit in a pocket or the palm of a hand. Some are very discreet and actually look just like a flash drive for a computer. They are easy for teens to hide at home or school. As a school nurse what I find concerning is that many youths who would never smoke are vaping. They think it is harmless and are unaware of the potential addiction to nicotine and the dangers of exposure to the harmful chemicals found in the aerosol. Attached are two handouts from Getoutraged.org. One is on frequently asked questions about vaping and the other has tips for talking with your child about vaping. You can also go to www.getoutraged.org for more information. Please talk with your child about vaping. Remember, even if it seems like your child is not listening, they are.

Tips for talking with your kids about vaping

FAQ about Vaping

Please feel free to contact me for more information or any questions you might have.

Sue Wiegers BSN, RN, NCSN

School Nurse


508-876-0193, option 3

Guidance News



During lunch duty several weeks ago, a student, sitting among 6 other students asked me how I felt about a particular political figure. Before I could answer, an argument and put-downs began amongst the group. I was asked to take sides on who was right or wrong. Even though I had an opinion that sided with the one group over the other, I chose to focus on the fact that the bigger issue was the lack of respect they were giving one another because they disagreed. The following week was the week of the pipe bombs being mailed, the synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh and so many other attacks and deaths across our country. All of those incidents were because someone felt like they were right and others were wrong and they chose to use violence to disagree.

We can learn a lot from conversations where we don't see eye to eye — if we can listen and talk rationally, that is. Unfortunately, many of us either shy away completely from disagreements or lose it when things don't go our way. We as adults in our children’s lives need to teach what “Respectful Disagreement” looks like.

Role modeling “Respectful Disagreement”

  1. Don't make it personal. If you get upset, it can help to remember you're mad at the idea or concept that is raised, not the person.
  2. Avoid putting down the other person's ideas and beliefs. If you've ever been on the receiving end of someone's tirade or put-downs, you know how valuable using respectful language and behavior can be. So instead of saying what you might be thinking ("That's a stupid idea!"), try: "I don't agree, and here's why." Resist the temptation to yell, use sarcasm, or make derogatory comments and you'll have a much better chance of getting your point across.
  3. Use "I" statements to communicate how you feel, what you think, and what you want or need. Using "you" statements can sound argumentative and threatening.
  4. Listen to the other point of view. Being a good listener is a way of showing that you respect and understand the other person's perspective. That makes it more likely he or she will do the same for you. When the other person is talking, try to stop yourself from thinking about why you disagree or what you'll say next. Instead, focus on what's being said. When it's your turn to talk, repeat any key points the other person made to show you listened and heard what was said. Then calmly present your case and why you disagree.
  5. Stay calm. This is the most important thing you can do to keep a conversation on track. Of course, it's a huge challenge to stay calm and rational when you feel angry or passionate about something — especially if the person you're talking to gets heated. You may need to be the mature one who manages the conversation.

Respect goes beyond difficult conversations, of course. Being helpful and considerate to others in our everyday actions helps all of us establish a foundation for those times when we might disagree.

-modified from 5 Ways to (Respectfully) Disagree, https://kidshealth.org/en/teens/tips-disagree.html

Washington DC Trip Information - Payment #1 due Jan 15th

Departure Date/Time:

Sunday, June 9th

5:30 am - Students will need to arrive at the school

6 am - Depart from the middle school

Students are scheduled to arrive in DC (traffic allowing) at approximately 2:15pm and will begin touring immediately.

Return Date/Time:

Tuesday, June 11th

1 to 2 pm - Depart Washington DC

Time to Be Determined - Arrive at the middle school - As the bus gets closer to the school, students will text/call home to give an accurate arrival time



Trip price includes:

Bus, Hotel, Meals, Museum Costs

Additional Costs

**Students will need to bring an additional $30.00 on 6/7/19 (CASH-NO CHECKS) for dinner on the way down and dinner on the way home.

Payment Plan Schedule

**Make checks payable to: Hartnett Middle School

Payment #1 195.00 Due Date: 01/15

Payment #2 195.00 Due Date: 03/08

Payment #3 195.00 Due Date: 04/12

**Any fundraising questions, please contact Mrs. Curt Hoard at tcurt@bmrsd.net

Tour Company Information - Capital Tours

Food Allergies and Dietary Restrictions

In an attempt to address the increasing number of requests by school representatives and parents to help with students that have allergies to certain foods and other dietary restrictions, Capital Tours, Inc. will provide to schools or parents the contact information for food service establishments so that alternative menu items can be prepared. Where food courts or buffet style restaurants are used parents may find choices that will allow for students to have a well balanced meal and avoid foods that might cause a problem.

However, neither Capital Tours, Inc. nor its representatives can guarantee or certify that foods are prepared without additives to which students will react negatively and, therefore, Capital Tours, Inc. will not assume liability for any reaction to foods prepared by restaurants used on tour. Clearly only the preparers of foods at the various restaurants can attest to the ingredients. Also, we must rely on the good judgement of teachers and affected students to choose their foods wisely at venues where choices are available.

Trip Insurance Information

Deluxe Protection Plan

Travel Insured International



Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Trip Itinerary - A variety of Smithsonian Museums, Arlington National Cemetery for the wreath laying, Monuments and Dinner Dance.

  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.

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


The HMS PTO is happy to offer Hartnett Middle School gear through Josten’s School Store. The store will be open all year. Click here for the link.

Important dates:

January 11th - 6th Grade Social 6pm-8pm

6th graders are welcome to join their classmates for a night of games, pizza, and fun! Cost is $10.00 per student.

Coming in March

7th Grade Rockin' Lock In Glow Night 6pm-10pm

7th Graders are invited to a night of fun! Games, a DJ, pizza and snacks, and a lip sync battle. Cost is $35.00 per student.

More information on both events to follow!

Homework Website

The homework website is a link on the FWHMS website. It is a place for parents and students to view nightly homework Click here to view the new site directly.

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

Friday, December 7th

  • Mad about Plaid - Wear a plaid sweater day
  • Hour of Code in all science classes

Tuesday, December 11th

  • Progress Reports are available on the parent portal

Wednesday, December 12th

  • Rudolph Day - Dress like Rudolph by wearing antlers and/or a red nose
  • Chromebook distribution in all history classes

Thursday, December 13th

  • Frosty the Snowman Day - Dress like Frosty by wearing a hat and scarf

Friday, December 14th

  • Candy Cane Day - Dress like a candy cane by wearing your stripes

Monday, December 17th

  • Festive Sock Day
  • PBIS Compliment Project Begins
  • 5 pm - School Council Meeting
  • 6 pm - PTO Meeting

Tuesday, December 18th

  • Red and Green Day

Wednesday, December 19th

  • Tacky Sweater Day
  • 7 pm - Winter Concert - 7th and 8th grade bands

Thursday, December 20th

  • Holiday Hat Day
  • Holiday Luncheon with the Great Gift Giveaway at all lunches
  • 7 pm - Winter Concert - 6th grade and 7th/8th chorus

Friday, December 21

  • PBIS Compliment Project Ends
  • PJs Day
  • Early Dismissal - Half Day

ABC's of Student Success

P is for Parent Involvement
Research shows that students with parents who are involved in their education have higher achievement. You can get involved in your child's education by:
  • reading with your child each night. Regular reading improves many skills. It reinforces that reading is a valuable and pleasurable activity.
  • volunteering at your child's school. Call your child's teacher for ideas about how you can help from home or at school.
  • attending school acitivies. Be your child's number one fan!

Math @ Home

Calculating Coupons

Involve the family in making a grocery shopping list. Mark checks or tallies next to each items to indicate how many are needed. This helps children learn how to collect data. Choose coupons that match the items on the list. Discuss how much money will be saved on various items by using those coupons.


Parent Pointers

Emphasizing the Importance of Reading
  • Parents who read usually have children that read.
  • Reduce screen time and increase reading time.
  • Set time each day where you and your child will read.
  • Read aloud with your child using expression that shows you love to read and you enjoy reading to them.
  • Share with each other what you have read.

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.

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.

FWHMS Communication and Happenings

School website (http://www.bmrsd.net/frederick_home.aspx)

Our website is the main hub of information. The following is key information you will find:

  • Daily Intercom Announcements
  • Monthly School Calendar
  • Homework Page
  • Monthly Family Newsletter Links
  • After-school Program Information/Registration
  • BMR Athletes Information/Registration Details
  • Staff names and emails

OneCall will be used in the following ways:


For Emergency only - such as unplanned early dismissals or information on an emergency in the building. They will be sent after 3:30 pm and end before 8 pm.

Roboemails - On Tuesdays and Fridays only (as needed)

For standard communication - such as portal access to progress reports, report card distribution, the monthly newsletter release, registration information for sports/after-school clubs, field trip information, and other information as needed. The emails may be by whole school or by grade level depending on the communication needs.

Social Media - Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat

We use all our social media to share special happenings after they have happened so that families can see what we are doing. You can find us on all platforms at @fwhms2003

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.