The Marie Murphy Update

6 November 2020 Edition

Straw Rockets Take Flight!

The photos separating articles in today's newsletter come from Mr. Ogden's 6th grade science straw rocket lab. Students applied the scientific method - problem, research, hypothesis, experiment, data collection, conclusion, repeat - to launch rockets at a fixed target. Closest to the bullseye wins...although with greater knowledge of the scientific method, aren't we all winners? I think so.
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7th Graders Learn About International Economic Development

Each year, the 7th grade team creates a variety of opportunities for the students to learn about different careers through a series of presentations done by Marie Murphy parents.


This year's first presentation took place on Friday, November 6. Mrs. Lynn Pikholz discussed her work in international economic development in the United States, her native country of South Africa, and Southeast Asia in Bangladesh. Sharing stories of her work to create real opportunities for all people to be successful, Mrs. Pikholz helped students understand the basis of "success" is health, peace, and stability. Working off of that foundation, Mrs. Pikholz described how economics, education, and job opportunities serve as contributing factors for success and opportunity. With a strong international component to her work, Mrs. Pikholz discussed how entrepreneurship and ingenuity are helping Africa develop some of the fastest growing economies in the world. Her work helps creates financial opportunities to develop more opportunities for ingenuity and entrepreneurship so that growth can take place.


Today's discussion, as well as future career opportunity presentations, give 7th graders a first-hand look at a variety of careers and employment paths. Thank you to Mrs. Pikholz for sharing her time, experiences, and expertise with our students!

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Staying Safe...And This Has Nothing To Do With Covid!

While school safety this year has focused on six feet distances, face masks, hand sanitizer, and desk shields, it's important to remember that school safety prior to Covid had a multitude of components that we have employed, and are continuing to practice, every year.


Bus Evacuation

Typically conducted in PE classes, our bus evacuation education this year came in the form of a video produced by the Illinois State Board of Education. Shown during Monday's PE class and followed up with discussion, Mr. Henley and Ms. Bialk taught students the correct protocols and procedures to evacuate the bus in the event of an emergency.


Fire Drills

Fire drills will take place this year with an emphasis on evacuating the building quickly & quietly, while maintaining social distance. Students will learn what to do if they are with a teacher, and more importantly, what they should do if they find themselves without a teacher, when the fire alarm goes off.


Lockdown Drill

Working in coordination with the Wilmette Police Department, Marie Murphy will conduct a lockdown drill the week of November 16. Upon the "lockdown" call over the loudspeaker, teachers will visually sweep the hall to gather any students and lock their doors. However, instead of huddling silently in the corner of the room, which will compromise social distancing, teachers will have the kids remain in their seats and engage in a discussion about the responses and options specific to their classroom in the event of a lockdown emergency. The Wilmette PD will still move to every classroom, unlocking doors, signifying the end of the drill.


These drills are important part of keeping all students safe; please be sure to ask your child about them.

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Remote Extra Curricular Activities to Begin at MM!

In the next few weeks, opportunities for students to participate in several remote clubs will become available. Keep an eye out for information regarding:


  • Book Club with Ms. Stotz
  • The Hangout with Ms. Janssen
  • History Remix with Ms. Hernandez & Ms. Ortega
  • Homework Club with Ms. Mishinger & Ms. Rose-Epstein
  • Roots & Shoots with Ms. Rachmiel
  • Sign Language Club with Ms. Mishinger
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Staying Safe...And This Has Everything To Do With Covid!

As the numbers of confirmed Covid cases continue to rise throughout Cook County as well as New Trier Township, this is a good opportunity to remind everyone of the steps to help keep you, your child, and our school community healthy.


Flu season, increased time indoors, and more travel as the holidays approach require a more focused, thoughtful effort on everyone's part to keep themselves and others healthy and safe.



  • Masks, social distancing, handwashing...we've got these down, right?


  • Exposure: In the event that you or your child were in "close contact" with someone who has been diagnosed with Covid, please do not send your child, or their siblings, to school. Instead, please contact the MM office at 847-251-3617. Nurse Welter can help guide you through the protocol and contract tracing procedures to determine if, and for how long, quarantining is needed. When in doubt - stay home. Every class, every day can be zoomed to students remotely so staying home does not mean having to miss out on learning opportunities.

  • Diagnosis: In the event that you or your child are diagnosed with Covid, please, please, please stay home. This goes for any siblings as well. Contact the MM office at 847-251-3617 so Nurse Welter can help walk you through the protocol, conduct contact tracing, and determine a return to school date.


We have had a very successful and healthy opening of the school year; it's not an accident. It's the result of thoughtful, proactive protocols and procedures, responsible decision making by all of families and staff, and open, honest communication between home and school. As Covid numbers increase, maintaining these behaviors that have kept us safe is imperative.

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SEL Support In New Trier Township

New Trier High School and the Family Action Network (FAN) present numerous outstanding presenters and topics throughout the year. Check out their upcoming events below.

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