What’s up This Week (version 1) (That means there will be more to come!)

topperMiddleUpcoming Dates

  • January 31 – Early Release Day for students. Students will be released at 11:15 am
  • February 1 – Teacher Workshop Day, no school for students.
  • February 4 – Report Cards go home with students
  • February 4 – Maine Integrated Health Survey administered to students
  • February 6 – Faculty Meeting in the Library at 2:30
  • February 8 – School Dance sponsored by the 7th grade in the GMS Gym 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Early Release Day – Students

On Thursday, January 31st, students will be dismissed at 11:15 and teachers will spend the afternoon engaging in professional development activities. The students will attend one of the two presentations of the annual school Talent Show. The schedule for attendance at the show will be:

8:05 – 9:30 – 6th Grade and Harraseeket
9:35 – 11:00 – 8th Grade, Little River & Stroudwater

Teams are asked to schedule your activities for non show times.

Early Release Day – Teachers

The Professional Development activities for teacher will focus on Curriculum. Each Chair of the individual Curriculum Committees has forwarded along some expectations.

ELA – We will have a presentation from a representative form Academic Merit. Academic Merit is a system of online tools that facilitates the process of aligning the instructional and assessment practices with the Common Core.

Math – The Glencoe representative will be here to review the progress we have made with the new series and to answer any questions about the online assessment module.

Science – Jane has communicated with the science folks about next steps, but here are the important ones for consideration:

*Best vehicle for sharing the Framework?
*Scientific Inquiry and Engineering Design… how are they different and where do they overlap?
*Where are the opportunities for cross-disciplinary teaching?
*What can happen this year to accommodate it? Next year?
*Where is engineering is our curriculum?
*What are our next steps once the NGSS are released?

Social Studies –Continue to work on developing the common units for grades 6 -8. Review the Vision for the College, Career and Civic Life (C3) Framework for Inquiry in Social Studies Standards. This is a guidance document for states to use in enhancing their standards for rigor in civics, economic, geography and history in K-12.

This document is available in the Maine DOE website here: http://www.maine.gov/education/lres/ss/standards2.html

Visual & Performing Arts – Please check with Susie as I am sure that you will all be continuing your work on assessment and SBR.

World Language – Please Check with Polly Brann on specifics.

Health & PE – Please check with Kim Slipp.

MLTI Free Rice Challenge

The iTeam has paired up with MLTI in the MLTI Ricebowl Challenge, but we need your help! We need a BIGGER Team! We are asking all GMS Students, Teachers and Parents to join our team and help the fight for World HUNGER! It’s as easy as filling a bowl of rice to sign up, (Your user name must be ME1858yourfirstname: example ME1858joe). The ME1858 is how they will track Gorham Middle School Rice Donations. Start answering questions correctly to add grains of rice to our team’s total. For every question answered correctly, freerice donates 10 grains of rice! The challenge started Jan 21st and continues through February 6th. A great way to spend your EI/CAL, Advisory or Free Time is with Free Rice! Sign up now and check out all the new categories!

You must click play for our team every time you go into freerice.

Share this link with your family and friends! The bigger our team the better we will do!
Free Rice Challenge

Does Your Child Have a SpillIt Account?

The latest bit of social media to come to the fore at GMS is a site called SpillIt. This site asks a very simple question, “What do you like about me?” Now, if ever there were a question that an adolescent should not ask, this is it, especially in a forum such as this. It is giving permission for kids to be unkind to each other without any consequences…almost.

I am as big a proponent of using social media to educate as there is, and the activity on this particular site has me worried. It appears that the people who created this site did not understand what they were putting into the hands of young people.

This is how they promote the site:

Picture 18

I am not really sure of the intelligence of these folks, but it is easy to see that they have absolutely no understanding of the adolescent. This is an invitation to a torture chamber. Anyone who has an understanding of basic human nature and the understanding of the modern adolescent, knows that this opens the poser of this question “What do you think of me?” to a veritable litany of slams and derogatory comments.

Parents, please ask your child if they know about this site or if they have an account, you may want to monitor their use very closely.

Speaking of Bullying Behaviors

I came across this cartoon in the Sunday paper this week that really highlights what Mrs. Hanley and I find to be the case in several (not all, by any means) cases where kids get physical with each other. Mrs. Hanley and I have a running “tally” of if we had a nickel for each time a student told us “we were only kidding!”, we’d probably be millionaires by now! enjoy:


Amanda Ripley and the Camden PopTech Conference

MEATBALLThis past October, PopTech came to Camden, Maine with a whole collection of speakers, much like the TED speakers we have come to know. Amanda Ripley is an author and a contributing writer to Time Magazine and Atlantic Monthly. She offers in this speech some interesting insights into how we measure our success as a school and what we might think about doing differently. I think if you view this video, you will get a better idea of the value of what we do.

Unfortunately, I can’t download this directly, so here is a link to the video: Amanda Ripley

3 thoughts on “What’s up This Week (version 1) (That means there will be more to come!)

  1. HUGE fan of “Big Nate.” I read this one last week and found it hilarious. Reminded me of the old days of me seeing this in school and now seeing kids STILL try to pull the “we’re only kidding” card.

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