Monday Memo (A Day Late!)

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Upcoming Important Dates

  • March 13 – Faculty meeting in the Library beginning at 2:30 pm. Food Provided by the 8th Grade.
  • March 14 – PIE Meeting in the GMS Library at 6:00 pm.
  • March 19 – 8th Grade Parent Night in the Gorham High School auditorium beginning at 6:30 pm.
  • March 20 & 21 Tooth Fairies Return
  • March 21 – Organizational meeting for the Celebration of Middle School 6:30 GMS Library
  • March 28 – Presentation for school of Peter Panic. Schedule forth coming.
  • March 29 & 30 – The GMS presentation of the school musical Peter Panic
  • March 28 & 29 – Parent Teacher Conferences
  • April 4 – CPR Training at GMS, please see Teresa for details.

Encouraging the Young Writer

Each of us is a writer of some sort (some better than others as evidenced by this exhibit!), but we are all writers, none the less. It is a skill that we all must master to some degree in quillour life and we know from the evidence that writing evolves over the years. One need only receive a text from a friend or loved one to know that this is not your father’s writing.

April 10th is Encourage the Young Writer Day in America and we are putting together a program for our students that will expose them to several methods of writing and people who use writing in their lives every day. So, I am looking for all the help I can gather as we plan our next early release day. This topic of Encourage the Young Writer is far different tha any other day we have planned, and more difficult. So far, we have commitments from the Maine Writers Alliance, a couple of reporters from local newspapers and a couple of published authors. We really need quite a few more folks to present to small groups of students for about 45 minutes on how writing impacts what you do for a living.

The date of the early release day is April 11 and it runs from 8:00 until 11:00. The format of the day is 45 minute workshops presented to 3 or 4 groups of 20 or so students. If you know someone, or you are interested in participating in the day, please give me a call at 207-222-1228 or email me at robertr@gorhamschools.org.

Notes from our Nurse

NurseThe Tooth Fairies will be returning to GMS on March 20 and 21 to perform 6 month check ups on those students they saw in the fall. Please check with Teresa Merrill for the time of your child’s appointment.

Also, Teresa will be conducting another class in CPR for those interested or need to have their CPR certification renewed. You can check the School News section on First Class to sign up. The training will take place on April 4th.

Restorative Schools

ssfaHeaderLogoSchoolOn February 1st, the entire school enjoyed a presentation from Chuck Saufler from Safe School for All. In his presentation, Chuck enlightened us on how the adolescent brain works (or not!) when kids are placed into certain situations. I know from the comments of our faculty that this talk was insightful and thoroughly thought provoking for us. In fact, many of our staff had the same reaction to Chuck’s information as I did, “Oh, so that’s why they do that????”

Providing a safe school environment for all of our students is not something that automatically happens because we want it to, it requires all of us to be thoughtful and purposeful in our dealings with our peers, our students and our community as a whole. We must work to acculturate the idea of safety within our community constantly an consistently with all stakeholders.

Our Code of Conduct, as we all know, is far more than just words on our walls, these are the words that represent the very fiber of all that we do with our kids. We use the Code each and every time we address our students’ behavior, and we all use these words to guide our interactions with each other and with our students. Our question now is to determine how we make our new learning about adolescent behaviors more prominent in our own behaviors.

Over the next several months, we plan to re-visit the information we gained from Chuck and talk about how we can better incorporate his ideas into our everyday life at GMS. I plan to add this topic to some faculty meetings for whole group discussion. In the meantime, if you have some suggestions, please feel free to stop by the office or drop us an email with your ideas.

T’aint Season

You know, t’aint winter and it t’aint spring! Some people mistakenly refer to this time of the year as mud season, but I kind of like t’aint because some years we never really get to the mud stage. However, this season we will probably get very deep into the mud season (pun definitely intended) since we have about 2 inches of rain predicted for the mid week.

It is also the season that our students decide that it’s too warm for winter jackets and boots. However, we all know that this is also the time that kids need to protect themselves from the dramatic swings in the weather. Many of our students ride the bus to and from school and they think that they can “tough out” the time before the bus arrives to pick them up with just a spring weight jacket, or, for that matter, no jacket at all, just a T-shirt. The weather that we had in the morning may in no way resemble the weather we have in the afternoon. We just want to protect our kids from the colds and flu that come from going to those internal temperature extremes.

8th Grade Celebration

We held our first organizational meeting with a tremendous turnout of parents to help us graduation-clip-art-2put this very special evening together. We have set up some committees to handle all of the tasks for the different events of the night. We discussed several possible themes for the night and had some really great ideas that would make this year different from previous years.

There is still much to do for this evening and we will have several other meetings before the big event. One item we did not spend a great deal of time was the idea of fund raising. We did talk about the costs involved with this night, and we do have a dance scheduled to raise some funds.

Our next meeting will be Thursday night, March 21st in the GMS Library beginning at 6:30 pm. I hope to see everyone there.

Parent Teacher Conferences

Teachers/Advisors will be sending home information about Parent/Teacher conferences to meeting-451-95-115-80-cbe held at the end of the month. Our “official” time frame for the conferences will be from 1:00 pm to 8:00 pm on Thursday, March 28th and on Friday, March 29 from 8:00 am until 2:00 pm. However, you may meet with your child’s Teacher/Advisor at a time that is mutually agreeable. Also, it is important for you to remember that you can arrange to meet with all of your child’s teachers at anytime you deem necessary.

Finally, as we have in the past, conferences are set up for parents to meet with the Advisor of your child. If you feel the need to meet with any of your child’s other content area teachers, you may also arrange to do this at this time, or at anytime.

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