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Raise the Bar April 15, 2016

School spring vacation is here ! There are only 43 days left in the current school year.  With the state assessment exams and so many end-of-year activities this is always an exciting and busy time of year for our students and staff members. Please enjoy the upcoming vacation with family and friends as we gear up for our final term.       

The Freetown-Lakeville Regional School District FY 17 budget presentation from the annual Public Hearing remains posted on our website for your review. The school committee and administration are working hard to restore staffing positions, address class size numbers, and to continue initiatives in the following areas: technology, instructional materials, security, and capital projects.  This commitment must be balanced with the fiscal parameters established by both towns. The latest FY 17 budget presented to the school committee was a 4.28 % increase from the FY16 budget.  The school committee will vote on a budget number to present to both towns at their April 27th meeting.  We will continue to work on a fiscally responsible budget that provides staff support and the necessary resources for all our children.        

The Assawompset Elementary Facility Study Sub-Committee will hold their next meeting on Tuesday, April 26, 2016. The group conducted a tour of the facility this week that was taped by LakeCam to give all community members the opportunity to see the building. The next meeting will start at 7:00 p.m. in the cafeteria. We continue to examine some of the proposed work from the recently released Existing Conditions Report of AES as we look toward next steps in the process.    

The FLRSD voted to remain a School Choice District for the 2016-17 school year, but did identify grades 4, 6, 9, and 10 as the only grades to accept new students with a total of 16 slots open. The district currently has 43 school choice students attending the five regional schools.  The deadline for submitting applications is today, Friday, April 15, 2016.  All pertinent information on this topic including all forms may be found on our website www.freelake.org    

Our next school committee meeting will be Wednesday, April 27, 2016 at Apponequet Regional High School beginning at 6:30 p.m.  Please enjoy the upcoming spring school vacation April 16-24, 2016.  Our last day of school is currently, Thursday, June 23, 2016.   I appreciate your support for all our schools and I look forward to our continued drive toward excellence.   If you have any questions please do not hesitate to call at 508-923-2000 ext. 1703 or e-mail me at rmedeiros@freelake.org.

“The greatest danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low and achieving our mark” – Artist - Michelangelo                

Apponequet Regional High School

Hello Laker Nation,

The first Quarter 4 grade update will be available on Friday, April 15, 2016, at 3:00 pm.

Come join the ARHS Players for their Spring Musical “Cinderella!”  Show dates and remaining show times are as follows:  Friday, April 15, 7:00 pm and Saturday, April 16, 1:00 pm and 7:00 pm.  Tickets are $12.00 for adults, $10.00 for seniors and students, and $8.00 for children 10 years of age and under.

Congratulations to Chad Gaucher and Wes Pinto, as well as to Sophia Gaucher and Sarah Milligan.  These four ARHS winter athletes were selected as members of the Boston Globe All Star Boys and Girls Basketball Teams.  

A special thank you to Mrs. Lori Palazzi Gonsalves and her son, Cory, who shared their family narrative with our grade 9 and 10 students on Wednesday, April 13, during AO and who will return on  May 16th for our grade 11 and 12 students.  Mrs. Gonsalves and Cory, who spoke at our school-sponsored parent/guardian community gathering in January, are residents of Taunton and their story is one that most certainly resonates. Please visit the Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/CorysCause/ or watch their video at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2DTd0Da9yOU&nohtml5=False

Twenty-three students from ARHS’ Theatre class, accompanied by Mr. Ledwith, Mrs. Levin and Mrs. Patraiko, recently attended a performance of William Shakespeare’s MacBeth at the Zeiterion Theater in New Bedford.  The performance was presented by “Shakespeare & Company,” a performing/educational organization from Lenox, MA, and included a question and answer session.  Students indicated that they enjoyed the performance   www.shakespeare.org www.zeiterion.org

Arismendy Belen, Devin Christiansen, Victoria Ingargiola and Cameron Shippee were members of the Festival Chorus at the Senior Music Festival sponsored by the Southeastern Massachusetts School Bandmasters Association (S. E. M. S. B. A.). Students were selected through an audition process; the festival consisted of two days of rehearsing and a Saturday afternoon performance.  S. E. M. S. B. A. is an organization of thirty three area high schools, whose primary mission reads: "raising the standard of, and promoting greater community interest in school music in Southeastern Massachusetts." www.semsbama.org

You may see some familiar faces at the Red Sox game on April 15th!  That is because approximately forty students, Mr. Rosa, Ms. Ross and Mr. Pollino will be in attendance.  In addition to watching the game, these members of the ARHS community will meet with Red Sox Business Managers and they will tour Fenway!

Students in AP Environmental with Mrs. Kirk engaged in a field experience this week. They visited SEMASS, the energy-from-waste facility, in West Wareham.  While there, students toured the facility and observed what they have studied in class.

ARHS hosted the 30th Annual Massachusetts Physics Olympics.  Eight teams from six different schools competed in a variety of physics events.  Congratulations to the team from ARHS, comprised of Nathan Sylvia, Abby Keith, Owen Tower, Aaron Connolly, and Kyle Woodward!  The team earned a 3rd place finish overall.  Within the individual events, the team held the top score in Physics Bowl 2, second place for the Physics Themed Mobile and third place for the Audio Analysis and Physics Pictionary events.    

On Saturday, April 9th, the following students competed in the Massachusetts History Day competition: "Mademoiselle: Transforms Social Norms" - Senior Group Exhibit

Leilah Johnson & Chloe Owen/"78 Million & Counting: The History of HIV/AIDS" - Senior Group Website Cameron Patrick, Mason Marag, Matthew Lewis & Chase Rogers/ "Belgian Congo: Illuminating the Dark Continent" - Senior Individual Exhibit

Elizabeth Lownds. Congratulations to Liz Lownds for earning an Honorable Mention award for her exhibit.  This has been the most active National History Day program at ARHS to date. Ninety-six students participated in the program by choosing a topic related to the national theme and conducting extensive history research. In addition, for the first time, ARHS offered community service credit to students who participated in National History Day outside of class requirements. Thirteen students successfully earned credit for their hard work.  It's never too early to begin planning for next year's theme: "Taking a Stand in History".

Best wishes to our twenty four students, Mr. Powers and Mrs. Hartley who will embark on the second phase of this year’s French Exchange this week.  Our group departs on April 19th and will return on May 1st. We wish them all a safe and wonderful learning opportunity.  Stay tuned for exciting details and many photos upon their return.  Prior to the group’s departure, members were visited by Agent O’Neill, a US Air Marshall, and Trooper Greg Keane.  The two offered important information related to safety.

ARHS hosted the final NHS Honor Bowl of the 2016-2017 school year. Advisors and students from ORR and GNBRVT competed.  In Round 1 ORR beat GNBRVT and in Round 2 ARHS’s Abby Carchio, Nate Sylvia, Michaela Arguin and Kevin Arnold competed against ORR. ORR won the round but it was an excellent match. In round 3, ARHS’s Megan Medeiros, Cameron Shippee, Owen Tower and Kelly Emerson competed and defeated GNBRVT. ARHS’s Honor Bowl contestants will be competing against ARHS faculty and administration. Stay tuned for more information!

NHS members were helpers at Freetown Elementary School's Spring Fling. They manned craft tables, worked with elementary students and their families, and helped with clean up.  

The 3rd Annual ARHS Art Show is coming up.  Stay tuned for details. In preparation, students in Art classes designed and presented potential advertisements for the event.  After the votes were counted, Leah Berbine’s poster was the winner! Lauren Pettey came in 2nd and Kayla Darling took 3rd.

Our AFES students, as well as students interested in studying abroad, attended a presentation by a Japanese visitor.  Kimiko Waku, Regional Representatives Committee, Representative of Kini Region, from the AFS Intercultural Program spoke to our students, shared her videos, demonstrated origami and answered questions about engaging in an AFS visit.  Katie Muldoon, our Global Prep Scholarship Winner, was in attendance as she will be visiting Japan this summer.  ARHS student Sloane DeMelo also offered the group information about her year as a student in Japan.

Free Math and Biology MCAS tutoring is available.  Students in grades 9 or 10 seeking assistance with Math MCAS preparation are welcome to attend on Mondays, from 1:53 - 2:53 pm, in Room 111.  Students in grade 9 seeking assistance with Biology MCAS preparation are welcome to attend on Thursdays, from 1:53 - 2:53 pm, in Room 132.  If you have any questions, please contact your Guidance Counselor at (508) 947-2660.  

For our athletic calendar, visit www.southcoastconference.org.

Upcoming Events:

April 14 - 16 Spring Musical - Cinderella

April 15 - Grade Update

April 18 - 22 School Vacation

April 28 - Annual Art Show Reception

Freetown-Lakeville Middle School

Museum of Science:

On Thursday, April 14 the Museum of Science presented its Heat and Temperature Traveling Program to the entire 8th grade.This advanced presentation illustrated core ideas about heat energy and transfer. Through live demonstrations, students learned the differences between the three main mechanisms of heat transfer: conduction, convection, and radiation. Students explored the definitions of heat and temperature, discovered that all elements have specific melting and boiling points, found out that light or even water can incinerate a piece of paper, and learned ways to differentiate between two cryogenic liquids.  This presentation relates to our 8th grade standards and was paid for thanks to the Freetown-Lakeville Education Foundation.

National Junior Honor Society and Friends of Rachel:

NJHS and the Friends of Rachel are returned to the Lakeville Senior Center on Thursday for another afternoon of bingo, board games, and technology help.  Students provided homemade goodies to the seniors as well.  

Student Government:

SGA will be fundraising in May with Smencil sales.  

Be on the watch look-out for spirit week information following May MCAS dates.

Math MCAS Dates:

May 10 and 11 Grade Six

May 12 and 13 Grade Eight

May 16 and 17 Grade Seven

 

Science MCAS Dates:

May 18 and 19 Grade Eight (only grade tested)

Socials Sponsored by the PTO:

June 9 Grade Six

May 20 Grade Seven

June 11 Grade 8

 

George R. Austin Intermediate School

The spring weather is finally coming our way.  Students are very anxious to be out for their spring break next week as teachers work very hard to keep them motivated.  We wish all of you a happy, healthy and safe spring vacation and look forward to the end of the year ahead where many great things will take place!  Students have the spring Luau to look forward to, chorus and band concerts, the story telling festival, the spring book fair and, the end of the year Survivor Day!  The Intermediate School will also be hosting our very first informational night on May 5th for parents of incoming fourth graders.  Where has the time gone?  Let’s welcome each day and cherish the time left in our fourth and fifth grade years!    

The next PTO meeting will be on Monday, May 16 @ 7:00 in the GRAIS cafeteria.

The dates for testing in the spring are outlined on our website and are below:

The dates for MCAS testing are:

May 10 & 11, 2016 - 5th Grade Math

May 12 & 13, 2016 - 4th Grade Math

May 17 & 18, 2016 - 5th Grade Science & Technology

 

4th Grade ELA & Social Studies:

4th Grade ELA: Students have enjoyed working on their Hurricane Survival Kits after reading all about the Superstorm Hurricane Sandy. They had to choose at least 8 items to include in their kit and explain why they chose the items. We also have finished up our Unit 3 Benchmark which included some great writing by the students when responding to fiction and non-fiction texts.

4th Grade SS: The United States tour continues as most classes are traveling west in our exploration of all the states have to offer. Students are understanding how the climate, landforms/water, products & natural resources as well as landmarks and culture change from state to state and region to region.

4th Grade Math & Science:

Fourth grade students have been working on finding equivalent fractions using multiplication, division, and fraction models. They have been learning to compare and order fractions and turn a mixed number into an improper fraction and vice versa. We are also continuing to work on measuring and drawing angles using a protractor. Remember your benchmark angles: a right angle is 90 degrees, a straight angles is 180 degrees, and a full circle is 360 degrees. Students have also been working on adding and subtracting angles to compose or decompose a larger angle.

5th Grade Math:

In fifth grade math, students are learning to extend what they already know about finding areas of rectangles to find the volumes of rectangular prisms. Students have learned that volume is the amount of space inside a solid figure. It is measured with cubic units. We can quickly find the number of cubic units that could fill a rectangular prism by multiplying the prism's length by the width by the height.

5th Grade ELA:

The fifth grade ELA teachers are very proud of the perseverance and dedication the students showed during the MCAS testing period. The students worked very hard and definitively put forth their best effort! Great job fifth graders! During the week before April vacation we will be starting to read our extended test, Girls Think of Everything Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women. This text will further explore the Reading Street Unit theme "What do people gain from the work of inventors and artists?" Lastly, the students are working towards completing their opinion essays in writing.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

April 25 - 29 - School buy one get one free book fair

April 28 - Storytelling Festival for Parents

April 29 - School Wide Annual Luau - Drop off event - If your child is getting picked up by someone other than yourself a note needs to be sent to the office by Wednesday, April 27th stating the person’s name, your student’s name and homeroom. Please make sure that person brings a valid I.D. with them.

Assawompset Elementary School

Grade 3 MCAS Prep:         April 5, 12, 26, May 3,11*, 17 (* Wednesday)

Grade 3 MCAS dates:

ELA- April 6 and 7 Math-May 18 and 19

Parents please be mindful about making every effort to have students present on those days. We do have a few make up days set aside for illness but our window for administering this assessment is limited.

Classroom Chatter

Kindergarten:

Our question of the week was “What kind of adventures can you have in the city?” We read Abuela, the Spanish word for grandmother. While riding on a bus with her grandmother, a little girl imagines that they are carried up into the sky and fly over the sights of New York City. We continued our focus on the vowel Ee and sight words here, go, and from. In math we were counting like crazy as we worked with our hundreds chart and practiced counting from 1 to 100 by ones.

Grade One:

Our question this week was “What do animals do when the seasons change?”  We learned that some animals hibernate while others migrate.  In addition, we discovered that many animals eat a lot in the summer while others collect food in the fall to prepare for the winter.  Our main selection was a play so the children enjoyed acting it out as they read.  Our phonics skill this week was comparative endings -er, -est and our comprehension skill was drawing conclusions. We hope you all have a wonderful vacation! :)

Grade Two: This week, Second grade is going on a field trip to Soule Homestead Education Center in Middleboro where they will be making butter and learning about composting. The students are starting a new unit in reading this week titled “Responsibility”. They will be reading a literary nonfiction story about the daily life of firefighters.  In math, the students continue to explore measurement.

Grade Three:

Students continue to read Charlotte’s Web during their ELA block, and are doing various comprehension and vocabulary activities that go along with the novel.  Students also took ELA MCAS this Wednesday and Thursday.  We are very proud of their hard work and efforts!  In math, third grade students continue to work on the unit that looks at measurement and data.  The focuses of this unit include time/elapsed time, liquid volume and mass, measuring to the nearest ¼ inch, and analyzing/making various types of graphs.   Students continue to explore more about electricity and magnetism in science through hands on activities and the use of their science notebooks.

Library:

Kindergarten: April is National Poetry Month and we are reading selected poems from Shel Silverstein’s Where the Sidewalk Ends.

1st: In first grade, we are continuing to work on a research project about Dinosaurs.  Students are coming up with 5 questions and are given the chance to research their top 2 questions. They will be using the Britannica Online Encyclopedia to find their answers. They are doing a great job!

2nd and 3rd : We are finishing up our Scavenger Hunt using the following reference sources: Encyclopedia, Almanac, Atlas, Thesaurus and Dictionary. It is challenging and they are persevering through!

ART

Kindergarten children finished cats with Ms. Dmitruk.  They used oil pastels to make cat bodies covered with squares and rectangles.

Grade one students are building dinosaurs!  They used a dice game that helped them choose the parts of the body.  They will be completed in oil pastels.

For grade 2, between rehearsals and hand prints, we haven’t had time to do our projects this week!

The third graders continue to work on their tiles!

MUSIC

K: The K children learned the song, My Best Friend, and kept the beat on unpitched percussion instruments. They also played a rhythm game with popsicle sticks.

1st: The 1st grade children worked on the song, Apple Tree, and played a few different rhythm patterns on unpitched percussion instruments. They also had a little extra time to play Dot freeze Dance.

2nd: Congratulations to the 2nd grade children! They did a fantastic job with their Ocean Celebration performance!!

3rd: The third graders learned to play Hot Cross Buns on the recorder for their next assessment after April vacation.

Physical  Education:

All grade levels will continue with their yearly fitness testing this week.   Students have worked on numerous stretches, exercises, and fitness stations throughout the year, which should prepare them for this testing. At the end of the testing, students will receive a paper with all of their fitness testing scores.

Grades 1-3: This week, students will finish the shuttle run (to test agility).  By the end of the week, students will move onto Sit-Ups (to test Core Strength).

Kindergarten:  Students will be introduced to a different fitness test each week.  Students will get a chance to try each test, however data will not be recorded.

A gentle reminder that Assawompset is a Peanut Safe school. Children may not bring in nuts or products that are made with nuts.

This includes: peanuts, all tree nuts and products like Nutella.

Products like Sunbutter are safe alternatives and are allowed at AES. If you do send a Sunbutter (sunflower seed butter) product it would be helpful if you include a note in your child’s lunch stating so.

Freetown Elementary

Spring Fling: Thank you to Lisa McLaughlin and the entire FES PTO for sponsoring the Spring Fling! Many families attended and had a wonderful time!

Senior Breakfast: FES was pleased to host a Freetown Senior Breakfast on Wednesday. Thirty-one seniors from the community joined us for a delicious meal prepared by the FES cafeteria staff, Miss Janet and Miss Linda along with Andrea Faye, Director of Food Services. We were also joined by Superintendent Medeiros and FLRSD School Committee Members Bob Clark, Jean Fox and Steve Owen. Many thanks to our second and third grade helpers as well as Lisa Cloutier and Shelly Fournier for volunteering their time to help with this event!

Art Show: The FES Art Show is scheduled for Thursday, May 19 from 6:30 - 7:30. Please mark your calendars! Every student will have at least two pieces of art on display during this incredible event.

Poetry Week: When we return from vacation, the FES staff and students will be celebrating Poetry Week. There will be poems to read during lunch, a “Poetry Slam” and a school-wide Poem In Your Pocket virtual assembly on Friday to complete the week! Thank you to the FES Poetry Week Committee for all their work!

Lunch Cards: FES will be switching to a scan card system for lunch following the vacation. If your child purchases lunch daily or periodically, it may be helpful to load funds onto the card to facilitate purchases. Parents may either pay online or send cash or a check to school and the money will be added to your child’s account. There is no service fee for cash/checks sent directly to school.

Kids Pan Mass Challenge: An informational flyer was sent home with students today regarding the Kids Pan Mass Challenge being held in Middleboro in late May. (Preschoolers will receive their flyer on April 25.) Last year 125 children participated and raised $15,000. The goal in 2016 is for 250 participants to raise $30,000.

 

Spring Vacation: Vacation begins at the close of school on Friday, April 15 and resumes on Monday, April 25. Have a safe and restful vacation!

Classroom and Teacher News:

Preschool: This week we explored our senses, talked about spring, reviewed shapes and finished up learning about Eric Carle. We created our own pussywillows, pond animals and caterpillars. We also took some time to talk about the importance of and the ways in which we can help to take care of our Earth. We started to talk about recycling and will continue with that theme after vacation. Our afternoon students had 2 presentations this week.  On Wednesday, we saw a presentation entitled, Dragons & Dreams put on by Sciencetellers. It was full of experiments, imagination and fun.  On Thursday, we gathered in Mrs. Bacon’s room to talk about the children of the world. We watched a 15-minute multicultural parade depicting traditional songs, costumes and dances from countries from around the globe. We learned the Polish birthday song and learned a short Latin American dance called the Cumbia. We talked about how, while we are all very different around the world, we all have something in common – this planet Earth as our home.

Kindergarten: The students are continuing to practice sight words, decoding skills and comprehension skills. They wrapped up our 4th unit in Reading Street discussing types of adventures to have in the city. In math, the students began a new unit on measurement and in writing, the students continued with opinion writing. The students had many discussions and completed many activities about “being green” and Earth Day.

Grade 1:  It was a review week in first grade. The concepts taught in Unit 3 were reinforced and then the students took their unit benchmark assessment. We are all working on our Poetry Unit as well. We have discussed, Acrostic, Concrete, Couplets and Silly poems thus far! The kids are enjoying the poems and we are thrilled to see their enthusiasm and creativity. All classes are growing plants and watching lady bugs go through their life cycle so there are lots of wonderful science activities going on. In math, we are learning how to put shapes together.

Grade 2: In language arts, we continued with our Poetry Unit.  The children have been reading and writing many different poetic forms including, Rhyming Couplets, Acrostic, Haiku, Cinquain, Diamante, Shape, Sensory and Free Verse. Their enthusiasm and creativity has been amazing! In mathematics, we continued counting and showing money amounts along with making change. In social studies, we are traveling through Asia. In Writing/Science, the students are finishing their research projects.  

Grade 3: After vacation we will be starting Unit D in Reading Street by reading “The Man Who Invented Basketball.”  In writing, we will be editing our informative articles and writing a cinquain poem.  Measurement will continue in math with area and perimeter.  Our study of the  American Revolution will begin in social studies! We hope everyone has a great vacation!

Specialists:

Music: Kindergarten and First Grade students had fun working with rain sticks in music class this week. They learned about learned how to make a gentle rainfall using the instruments while review their musical dynamic and tempo terms. Second graders put together beautiful ensemble performances of “I’ve Got a Dog”. Using pitched and unpitched percussion instruments, they played ostinato patterns. The worked on ensemble balance, while playing with expression and dynamics. Third graders are presenting their small group recorder performances where they were tasked to learn a song completely through reading notation.

Art: Kindergarten experimented with using unusual tools for painting such as scissors, string, and matchbox cars.  After, we discussed how a paintbrush is a more effective tool for painting. Grade 1 completed their crayon resist wild things inspired by Maurice Sendak’s “Where the Wild Things Are.”  Grade 2 is learning about form as an element of art. They are creating paper mache animal masks. Grade 3 completed their people in motion drawings. They added the final details in the middle and background to give the illusion of space in their picture.  

Physical Education: Second and Third Grade students used their dribbling and shooting skills to earn letters in a fun game of Scrabbleball. They then took those letters and made words crisscrossing horizontally and vertically making a Scrabble layout. The groups were able to see the words made by the rest of the groups at the end of class. Kindergarten and First Graders practiced their basketball skills in stations, and completed laps to add to their walking club papers. As a school we have walked just over 630 miles so far this year.

Important Dates:

Monday, May 2, 2016 - Bingo for Books at 6:00

May 2, 2016 - Book Fair from 7:00 - 8:00

Thursday, May 5, 2016 - Grade 3 Parent Night at GRAIS

Wednesday and Thursday, May 18 & 19, 2016  - MCAS Mathematics (Grade 3)

Thursday, May 19, 2016 - Art Show from 6:30 - 7:30

Friday, May 20, 2016 - Freetown Family Night at Fenway Park at 7:05pm