At A Glance Archive

May 19, 2017

Dear Parents/Guardians,

 

As you know, all HMS students in grades 5 through 8 participate in a standardized assessment, the NWEA-Measure of Academic Progress (MAP), every fall and every spring. This test is taken online. We use the scores from this assessment internally to gauge our students’ progress and academic growth from year to year. The scores provide evidence of growth from fall to spring, and highlight any areas where students may require support. Our teachers talk with students about their growth on these assessments privately; these conversations are focused on goal setting.

 

The MAP scores are only one source of information about student progress. Daily work, classroom assessments, projects, classroom conversations and conferencing offer a more complete picture of our students’ academic functioning and progress. The spring MAP testing will take place next week. .


Schedule for upcoming MAP Assessment:


        5th Grade

Math 5/25 @ 11:10-12:30

Reading 5/26 @ 11:10-12:30


6th Grade

Math 5/23 @ 8:10-10:20

Reading 5/24 @ 8:10-10:20


7th Grade

Math 5/23 @ 9:40-11:30

Reading 5/24 @ 9:40-11:30


8th Grade

Math 5/25 @ 8:10-10:00

Reading 5/26 @ 8:10-10:00


Make Up testing will take place in the computer lab starting the week of 5/30.


As always, it’s important for students to be well rested and well fueled for these assessments.


Your child’s spring results on the MAP assessment will be put into PowerSchool as they were in the fall. You’ll be able to access the results by logging into the PowerSchool parent portal and clicking on the link “Measures of Academic Progress.” We’ll let you know when the scores are posted.

 

Please let us know if you have any questions.

 

Thanks very much-

 

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team



May 19, 2017

Dear Parents/Guardians-

We’re pleased to announce that the HMS Library will hold its Spring Book Fair from Tuesday, May 30, through Friday, June 2. It will be open during the school day, with special EVENING HOURS on Wednesday, May 31, from 5:30 - 7:00 p.m. This is a chance to stock up on summer reading, while also supporting the HMS Library! Proceeds help fund special HMS projects like Teen Read Week, Makerspace, Harry Potter Week, and more. We’re looking forward to seeing you at the Spring Book Fair!

Sleeping Beauty comes to the HMS stage: Please join us for the 5th grade play, Sleeping Beauty, which will be held on Saturday, May 20th, at 11:00 am and 7:00 pm, in the HMS Cafe. Enjoy this wonderful fairy tale put on by our talented actors and crew and expertly directed by Betsey Reinsborough!

Budget Update:

The Yarmouth School Committee presented its proposed budget to the Town Council on March 16th. You can view the proposed budget presentation here and access more detailed information on our Business Office webpage.

Maine requires a two-step voting process to determine the school budget. In Yarmouth, that process provides citizens a chance to set the proposed budget by voting at Town Meeting. This will be followed by a referendum on the budget on election day. These dates are as follows:

June 6 Town Meeting 7:00 p.m. – Harrison Middle School

June 13 Budget Referendum 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. at Robert W. Boyd AmVets Hall

Dates to Remember

May 20th-11:00 am and 7:00 pm-Two performances of the 5th grade Play Sleeping Beauty, held at HMS

May 24th-6:00 pm-7:00 pm-5th Grade Great American Night

May 24th-6:30 pm-7:30 pm-HMS 4th to 5th Step-Up Night, in the HMS cafe.

May 25th-7:00 pm-School Committee at the Log Cabin

May 29th-Memorial Day-NO SCHOOL

 Thank you for your support of these exciting end of the year events! Please let us know if you have any questions or if we can help in any way.

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team



May 5, 2017


Dear Parents/Guardians-


This is an exciting time of year for our middle school students. They’re fully engaged with culminating projects and presentations. The spring concert season has begun and spring activities and sports are in full swing. It’s wonderful to feel the continuing high energy and enthusiasm of our students and staff!


Standardized Testing : A few weeks ago, students completed the Maine Educational Assessment (MEA standardized testing). Students will have the essay portion of the MEA to complete next week. This is a shorter piece of assessment that takes about 90 minutes.


Essay Testing Schedule:


Grade 8:  Wednesday, 5/10     

Directions-8:10-Testing from 8:20-9:20


Grade 7:  Thursday, 5/11   

Directions-12:10-Testing from 12:20-1:20


Grade 6:  Wednesday, 5/10

Directions-8:10 Testing from 8:20-9:20


Grade 5:  Friday, 5/12

Directions-8:00-Testing from 8:10-9:20  


As always, it's important for students to attend school well rested and well fueled for this experience.


Dates to Remember:


May 9th-6:30 p.m.-5th/6th Grade Band and Chorus Concerts at the YPAC


May 10th-6:30 p.m.-7th/8th Grade Band and Chorus Concerts at the YPAC


May 11th-7:00 p.m.-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin


May 20th-11:00 am and 7:00 pm-Two performances of the 5th grade Play Sleeping Beauty, held at HMS


May 24th-6:00 pm-7:00 pm-5th Grade Great American Night


May 24th-6:30 pm-7:30 pm-HMS 4th to 5th Step-Up Night, in the HMS cafe.

 

May 25th-7:00 pm-School Committee at the Log Cabin


May 29th-Memorial Day-NO SCHOOL


*Please note-we will not hold a dance on Friday, May 12th. We’ll survey our incoming 7th and 8th grade students to gauge their their interest in dances for the coming school year.


Think Sun!


Thanks very much-


Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team



April 24, 2017


Dear Parents/Guardians of Incoming 5th Graders-


Welcome to Frank H. Harrison Middle School! For many of you, this will be at least your second child’s experience at HMS. For others it will be the first time your child has attended the middle school. The academic, social, emotional, and physical growth of the students during the next four years is truly a thing of awe!


We’re looking forward to seeing you at our annual 4th to 5th Parent Night on Wednesday, May 24th, from 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM, in the middle school cafeteria. Tom and I will welcome you to this evening. Laura Mike, School Counselor, will share the services she provides for all students. We’ll take you on a tour of the HMS Website, and, at 7:00 PM, the 5th Grade Team will join us to share 5th grade information, expectations, and their slide show, which will give you a glimpse of life at HMS. Our 5th grade teachers work in three teams of two teachers.The teams are: Kelly Conley and Karen Jagolinzer, Gina Rollins and Rich Smith, and Liz Greely and Marti-Jo Shaw.


Middle school students may feel a sense of “competing forces” during these years. We share the following information, written by Paul George, a national middle school expert, to shed some light on the middle school years and the developmental range of feelings students experience:


  • The desire to be accepted by peers, to be part of the group, competing with the desire to stand out as someone unique.

  • The need to stake out one's own beliefs competing with the reluctance to depart from beliefs that have been held since early childhood and are reflective of our parents' values.

  • The need to explore relationships with the opposite sex competing with the fear of rejection, which often accompanies those explorations.

  • The desire to have adult heroes and heroines competing with acceptance of newly discovered flaws in adults.

  • The need to be "cool" and worldly and throw off childish views competing with the need to hang on to an idealism that holds hope for a better world.

  • A strong need to find supportive relationships among the peer group competing with a reluctance to break the long-standing, supportive family relationship.

  • The desire to accept "the promise" - the belief that success in school is a ticket to successful adulthood - and engage as fully as possible competing with the desire to reject the dream as an empty promise, and to commit to what makes sense outside of school.

  • The attraction of the adult world and the desire to exercise the new powers of the body and mind competing with the comfort of childhood habits and the protective cushion that adults provide for children.

  • The expectations associated with one's state of physical development competing with one's actual level of social and/or intellectual maturity. The 13-year-old girl, for example, who is as physically mature as a 20-year-old may be treated as if she were 20, while emotionally and socially she is a child. Or, the boy who is slow to mature physically may feel left out or behind.

  • The need to turn outward to peers and the attractions of social relationships competing with the need to turn inward, to respond to new emotions- strong, subjective moods, feelings, and sensations.


It may feel daunting to reflect on these “competing forces”. Research and the expertise of our faculty tell us that these forces lead to the skills, knowledge, and dispositions necessary to prepare our students for an ever-changing world. These competing forces are also exactly what endears our 10-14-year-old students to all HMS staff!


The middle school years can feel like a wonderful and exciting roller coaster ride for your child. You’ll be sitting right beside them, so hang on and enjoy. Tom and I have both worked at the high school level and we know that all students continue the ride and exit prepared for the adventures to come.


The process to prepare the students and parents for the transition to the middle school has already begun with the selection of band and/or chorus classes for the 2017-2018 school year. The transition process includes a 5th grade panel visit to YES to share the middle school experience with our  new students and a 4th grade visit to HMS so our incoming students can get to know the teachers and the building-both will take place later this spring.


As a middle school, we place concentrated effort and support on the academic, social, emotional, and physical well being of our students. We assure parents that each child will be safe, challenged, know more than one adult well, and have regular communication about their child's progress and school events. As a continuous learning organization, we value parental feedback when we’re doing our jobs well and when you want to share ideas for areas of improvement. The teamwork between students, parents, and all members of the HMS learning community helps us to achieve the extraordinary.


The building is open for most of the summer if you or your child would like to spend some time at HMS before the 2017-2018 school year begins.


We look forward to seeing you on May 24th.


Thank you,


Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team




April 13, 2017


Dear Parents/Guardians-


As the warmer weather approaches we want to remind our students about the HMS Dress Code. Thank you for reviewing the attached information with your child(ren). Please let us know if you have any questions.


Budget Update:

The Yarmouth School Committee presented its proposed budget to the Town Council on March 16th. You can view the proposed budget presentation here and access more detailed information on our Business Office webpage. You’ll have another opportunity to share your input about the budget at the upcoming Town Council Public Hearing on May 4. This meeting will take place at 7:00 pm at the Log Cabin.                       


We welcome your opinions and encourage your participation at these meetings. Maine requires a two-step voting process to determine the school budget. In Yarmouth, that process provides citizens a chance to set the proposed budget by voting at Town Meeting. This will be followed by a referendum on the budget on election day. These dates are as follows:


June 6 Town Meeting 7:00 p.m. – Harrison Middle School

June 13 Budget Referendum 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. at Robert W. Boyd AmVets Hall


Our Lost and Found has once again taken on a life its own. It's growing as quickly as the students! For your convenience, the Lost and Found is displayed on tables in the lobby. Please stop by sometime before Thursday to take a look. As always, if the student's name is on the clothing, we’ll reunite the item with its owner. These items will be donated during the April break.


Book Drive-The Student Leadership Team at HMS will be holding a Book Drive on April 24th - May 5th.  New or gently used books for all ages would be greatly appreciated.  Donated books will be delivered to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Portland, Tedford Housing/Family Shelter, and the Yarmouth Food Pantry.  Books can be dropped off or brought in by your child. Thank you for your support with this effort!


For Parents/Guardians of Current Sixth Grade Students: A Message from our School Nurse
New changes to the Maine State immunization requirements include an additional Tdap vaccine (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis). Students will be required to provide proof of the Tdap vaccine before entering 7th grade. This new requirement is effective for the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year. If I do not already have documentation of your child's Tdap booster in my records, I will contact you by email after April break. Please feel free to contact me in the meantime if you have questions or concerns. Thank you-Kristina Truesdale, HMS School Nurse-kristina_truesdale@yarmouthschools.org


Due to the upcoming “No School Day” on April 14,  and Spring Break the following week, this issue of At-A-Glance includes four weeks of Dates to Remember, instead of the usual two.


Dates to Remember:


April 13th-7:00 p.m.-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin


Friday, April 14th through Sunday, April 23rd-Spring Break-NO SCHOOL


April 25th-6:30 p.m.-8:00 p.m.-8th Grade Parents Meeting:  Transition to High School Program - Yarmouth Performing Arts Center


April 25th-7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.-PTO meeting held at Woodhull Public House


April 27th-7:00 p.m.-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin


April 28th-6:00 p.m.-Mystery Murder Dinner Theater at HMS-sponsored by our PTO


May 1st-6:00 p.m.-Music Boosters Meeting at HMS


May 3rd-6:30 p.m.-Spring Jazz Concert at HMS


May 9th-6:30 p.m.-5th/6th Grade Band and Chorus Concerts at the YPAC


May 10th-6:30 p.m.-7th/8th Grade Band and Chorus Concerts at the YPAC


May 11th-7:00 p.m.-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin

                                   

Whatever your plans for the upcoming week, we’re wishing you a happy, healthy, sunny, relaxing Spring Break!


Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team



April 12, 2017

Class Choices


Dear Parents/Guardians,


We’re continuing our work on the placement process for the 2017-2018 school year. During the week of April 24 Laura Mike, school counselor, will be in classrooms helping students to electronically register for Band, Chorus, and Spanish or French.


The following information should help you to assist your child(ren) with this process. These decisions are important so we ask that you guide your child(ren) in their choices. If you have a question, please contact teachers, school counselor, or administration.


The choices include:

  1. All students decide whether to take Band and/or Chorus. Students who do not take Band and/or Chorus will have a study hall during that time.

  2. Grade 5 students will decide to take a quarter of French or Spanish.

  3. Grade 6 students will decide to take the first half of a high school level French 1, Spanish 1 or Study Hall.

  4. Grade 7 students will decide whether to continue with the second half of French I, Spanish I or Study Hall.


The following information provides more details about these choices.


1) All students will be asked to select or not select to take Band and/or Chorus for the 2017-2018 school year.


2) Students in grade 5 are introduced to French and Spanish. For 6th grade, students choose either quarter of French or a quarter of Spanish. At the end of the 6th grade students will choose a high school level French I, Spanish I (a two-year sequence in the 7th and 8th grade) or Study Hall.


Again, if you have a question, please don’t hesitate to contact teachers, school counselor, or administration.


Thanks very much-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team

                   


March 31, 2017


Dear Parents and Guardians-


The HMS staff believes in a culture that celebrates achievement! Our students and staff have received recognition for a wide variety of accomplishments this year. Our students exemplify our core values, engaging in fundraising and environmental efforts, along with working to educate our community about kindness, tolerance and mindfulness. They have also won acclaim for their academics and their talent as musicians, artists, and actors. Our staff has been recognized for their professional development as educators, and for their accomplishments as authors and musicians. We're proud to share these celebrations with you on our HMS NEWS Blog.


In other news, please make note of the following information:


Yarmouth School Budget Update:

The Yarmouth School Committee presented its proposed budget to the Town Council on March 16th. You can view the presentation here and access more detailed information on our Business Office webpage. We wanted to let you know about two upcoming opportunities to share your input about the budget:


April 6            Town Council-Public Hearing I-First Reading-7:00 p.m.-Log  Cabin

May 4             Town Council-Public Hearing II-Second Reading-7:00 p.m.-Log  Cabin

                                   

We welcome your opinions and encourage your participation at these meetings. Maine requires a two-step voting process to determine the school budget. In Yarmouth, that process provides an opportunity for voters to set the proposed budget by voting at Town Meeting. This will be followed by a referendum on the budget on election day. These dates are as follows:

                   

June 6 Town Meeting 7:00 p.m. – Harrison Middle School

June 13 Budget Referendum 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. at Robert W. Boyd AmVets Hall


April is Alcohol Awareness Month: 5 Tips from Casco Bay CAN for Monitoring Your Teen to Help Prevent Underage Drinking

Tip 1: Limit Access- If you have alcohol in your home, keep track of it and lock it up

Tip 2: Network-Get to know the parents of your teen's friends

Tip 3: Enforce Rules- Enforce your rules consistently and tell your teen what behavior you expect from them while they are out

Tip 4: Check in Often-Ask your teen where they will be and check in with other parents

Tip 5: Be Up and Be Ready-Wait up and look for signs of use


Dates to Remember:

April 3-6:00 p.m.-Music Booster's Meeting at HMS

April 25-7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.-PTO meeting held at Woodhull Public House

April 11- 6:30 p.m.-6th Grade World's Fair in the HMS Gym

April 13-7:00 p.m.-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin

Friday, April 14th through Sunday, April 23rd-Spring Break-NO SCHOOL

April 27th-7:00 p.m.-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin

April 28th-6:00 p.m.--Mystery Murder Dinner Theater at HMS-sponsored by PTO


Please let us know if you have any questions about this information or if we can help in any way.


Thanks very much-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team



March 23, 2017

Placement Information

 Dear Parents/Guardians,

We are in the midst of our annual placement process for the upcoming school year. We’re committed to creating balanced classroom groupings, which are integral to providing positive learning environments and equal opportunities for all students.

An extraordinary amount of time, care and thought is put into placement by those who know your children as individuals and learners. We go through several different steps of this process, which ensures input from staff members working with our students. Given the complex nature of the placement process, and the number of variables we consider, we are unable to honor specific requests for teaching teams and/or placing students with friends.

We recognize that placement for the coming year can be an area of anxiety for children and parents.  With that in mind, we’ve developed a variety of Step-Up Day activities, which provide all students with a chance to spend some time with their grade level teams for the upcoming school year. We’ll share more information about this in the coming months.

  

We also recognize that students’ and/or parents’ thoughts about the best fit for placement may differ from the placement assigned. We strive to teach our students about the power of growth mindset and resiliency, and how to develop coping strategies they can use when things turn out differently than they hope or imagine. Supporting our children to learn from these opportunities will make them stronger and more confident. We appreciate your partnership with this essential work.

 

Thank you for your support.


Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team

 

March 17, 2017

Dear Parents and Guardians-

We're hoping for some snow-free, warmer, sunny days ahead-we could all benefit from practicing some Mindfulness until that happens! HMS students and staff are continuing to learn about the many positives related to Mindfulness. Susan Parr recently provided a workshop about Mindfulness for HMS parents. The article Eight Ways to Bring Mindfulness Into Your Family outlines ways for families to engage in Mindfulness practices at home.

Please Note These Upcoming Special Events:

HMS 7th & 8th Graders Present: INTO THE WOODS JR
-Show times: Saturday, March 18th at 11am & 7pm in the HMS Cafeteria -Tickets available at the door-Students $3, Adults $6
We hope you can join us for this special event!

The Music Boosters Present: The 7th Annual Yarmouth's Got Talent Event

All talent is welcome to audition - music, dance, arts, magic, comedy, or any creative endeavor that will wow the audience!

Auditions-after school:

K - 4: March 21st at YES

5 - 8: March 27th at HMS

9 - 12: March 27th at YHS

Event Date: Friday, March 31st

Cash prizes based on audience vote. One first prize for each age group. Official rules and entry forms can be found at YarmouthsGotTalent.org

MEA Testing-Thanks to Laura Mike, HMS School Counselor, for sharing the following information:

State testing season is upon us! As always, it's important for students to attend school well rested and well fueled for this experience.

Students will complete two test sessions each day:

Grades 5 and 8 will complete their MEA testing in Mathematics, Reading and Writing/ELA on Tuesday, 3/21, Wednesday, 3/22 and Thursday, 3/23.

Grade 6 will take these assessments on Tuesday, 3/28, Wednesday, 3/29 and Thursday, 3/30.

Grade 7 will complete MEA testing on Tuesday, 4/4, Wednesday, 4/5, and Thursday 4/6.

For future planning purposes:

MEA Science for grades 5 and 8 will take place after the April break, on Wednesday, 4/26.

The MEA Essay for grades 5 & 8 will be completed on Tuesday, 5/9. Grades 6 & 7 will complete the Essay on Wednesday, 5/10.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION:

Parent Portal: Second trimester grade reports will be available on the PowerSchool Parent Portal on the afternoon of Tuesday, March 21st. The portal does not close as teachers are entering final grades, comments and standards for the trimester report. We want to remind you that all grade information will be edited during this time (in case you log on to check grades) so the information on the portal will be in flux until the afternoon of March 21st.

HMS Sports Physical Clinic is closed for March 28, 2017. All the appointment slots are filled. This year we could only accommodate 20 appointments because we had fewer medical students volunteer than in the past (some had scheduling conflicts due to all their UNE snow days).

DATES TO REMEMBER:

-Monday, March 20th-6:00 PM-6:30 PM-Spring Sports Parent/Student Information evening at HMS.

-Thursday, March 23rd-7:00 PM-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin -Monday, March 27th, at 6:00-5th Grade Play Parent Information night-HMS Cafe

Thank you for your support of our work with your children. We appreciate your communication and your involvement with our school.

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell


March 3, 2017

Dear Parents/Guardians-

We were happy to welcome your children back to HMS this week. We hope you enjoyed the warmer weather over the break-an exciting sign of what’s to come! As we move toward the spring months we want to share information about three upcoming events, along with the other “Dates to Remember” listed below:

The Music Boosters Present: The 7th Annual Yarmouth's Got Talent Event -A K - 12 Student Competition 

 All talent is welcome to audition - music, dance, arts, magic, comedy, or any creative endeavor that will wow the audience!

 Auditions-after school:

K - 4: March 21st at YES

 5 - 8: March 27th at HMS

9 - 12: March 27th at YHS

 Event Date: Friday, March 31st

 Cash prizes based on audience vote. One first prize for each age group. Official rules and entry forms can be found at YarmouthsGotTalent.org

 School Physicals- Information from Kristina Truesdale, HMS School Nurse

School physicals will be held at HMS on Tuesday, March 28th. They are performed by UNE medical students with oversight by our school physician, Dr. James Donahue. If your child plans to participate in a school sport during the coming year, s/he will need to provide documentation of a physical before the first practice. This school physical will meet the requirement of our athletic participation policy (physical exam every two years) at no cost to you. You may choose to get your child’s physical with her/his physician to fulfill this requirement. For your convenience, the permission form is attached so you can print it and complete the form. You may also request a hard copy or pick one up at the front office. Please return the form by Friday, March 27th. You may want to email me if you send the form back to school with your child - then I can follow up. (These forms often go mysteriously missing!)

Lock Down Drill

In keeping with best practices that promote the safety and the well-being of our students and staff, we’ve scheduled our second (and final) Lock Down drill for this year for Thursday, March 9, at 2:10 (this drill had to be postponed due to the snow day on February 9th). As I mentioned in our October newsletter, this is the third year our district has participated in these drills. As we did before the first drill, our staff will discuss the lock down protocol during advisory groups and in classes/homerooms. Students will be well versed in the "dark, quiet and low” protocol. Members of the Yarmouth Police Department will join us to critique our procedures and provide feedback.

 DATES TO REMEMBER:

 -Monday, March 6th and Tuesday March 7th-3:00 PM to 8:00PM-8th Grade Registration Conferences at YHS

 -Thursday, March 9th-7:00 PM-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin

 -Thursday, March 16th-7:00 PM-PTO Meeting at YES

 -Saturday, March 18th-11:00 AM and 7:00 PM-7th/8th Grade Play-Into The Woods-Two shows at the HMS Café-Tickets sold at the door-$3.00 for students and $6.00 for adults.

 -Monday, March 20th-6:00 PM-6:30 PM-Spring Sports Parent/Student Information evening at HMS.

 Please see the Casco Bay Tip of the Month, which is attached.

 We look forward to connecting with you at some of these upcoming events!

 Thanks very much-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team



February 10, 2017

Dear Parents/Guardians-

Apparently winter has decided to make an appearance just as we’re heading toward spring! We hope you and your children will enjoy the variety of activities made possible by the fresh snow pack.

As we continue our work on growth mindset, I wanted to share the brief article Use adversity to your advantage.” – The Principal of Change from George Couros. His perspective is important for students and adults. It’s essential for all of us to recognize and celebrate our growth and the challenges we’ve worked through to reach specific goals and achievements in our lives.

We’ve had many exciting and rewarding events at HMS during the last several weeks. We completed our Geo Bee and Spelling Bee, held our first annual Harry Potter Night, and a Reader’s Celebration for our 2nd and 6th grade

students, provided a Mindfulness workshop for parents and participated in District II Honors Choral and Band festivals, along with Math Team and Speech and Debate meets. Please peruse the HMS NEWS Blog for more information about these and upcoming events.

If you’re a parent of an 8th grade student you’ve received information about the upcoming transition activities that you and your children will attend. Please let us know if you have questions about this.

Thursday’s storm postponed our second and final Lock Down drill of the year. We’ll let you know the date and time of this drill once it’s rescheduled.

The end of the school day continues to be a very busy time at HMS! Thank you for assisting us by making a plan with your child for after school, before the start of the school day.

Please stop by and look through the Lost and Found before the winter break. These items will be donated during the week of February 20th.

We wanted to share the most recent Casco Bay CAN tip, which we hope is useful:

Encourage Healthy Coping Skills

As a positive influence on your teen’s life: -Talk and listen
-Promote journaling
-Teach them to problem solve

-Help with organizational skills
-Encourage sleep, healthy eating habits and exercise

Dates to Remember:

-Wednesday February 15th 6:30 PM-8:00 PM-Eighth Grade Parent Information Night-held at Yarmouth High School’s Yarmouth Performing Arts Center (YPAC)

-Thursday, February 16th 7:00 PM-PTO Meeting at YES
-
Monday, February 20th through Friday, February 24th Winter Break-NO SCHOOL

-Wednesday March 1st and Thursday March 2nd 2:45 PM-8:00 PM-Eighth Grade Transition Conferences at HMS

-Thursday, March 2nd 6:00 PM-Active Parenting Class in the HMS Conference Room

Wishing you a wonderful, upcoming break!
Thanks very much-


January 27, 2017

Dear Parents/Guardians-

We want to thank the PTO, Yarmouth Education Foundation, Yarmouth Alumni Association, and the First Parish Church for sponsoring the film Screenagers, which was shown at the YPAC and HMS this week. We appreciate the on-going dialogue about the time our students spend using various forms of technology and the impact this has on them. The article, Researchers Find Ideal Screen Time for Teens, offers further information/insight into this issue.

Along with our efforts to find the appropriate balance with the use of technology, we’ve had conversations with many of you about middle school students sharing less information about school as they grow and mature. This is an expected part of the developmental process as students this age strive to become more independent. The article, 25 Ways to Ask Your Kids ‘So How Was School Today?’ Without Asking Them ‘So How Was School Today?provides some creative questions and ideas to keep the conversations going with your children.

In keeping with best practices that promote the safety and the well-being of our students and staff, we’ve scheduled our second (and final) Lock Down drill for this year for Thursday, February 9, at 2:10. As I mentioned in our October newsletter, this is the third year our district will participate in these drills. As we did before the first drill, our staff will discuss the lock down protocol during advisory groups and in classes/homerooms. Students will be well versed in the "dark, quiet and low” protocol. Members of the Yarmouth Police Department will join us to critique our procedures and provide feedback.

Dates to Remember


Monday, January 30-School Committee Meeting, First Budget Workshop-6:00PM at the Log Cabin

Tuesday, January 31-Cumberland County Spelling Bee-Cape Elizabeth Middle School, 14 Scott Dyer Road, Cape Elizabeth, ME. Registration will begin at 5:30PM and the Bee will start at 6:30PM. The snow date will be Wednesday, February 1st at the same time.

Monday, February 6-Music Boosters Meeting-6:00PM in the HMS Band Room

Monday, February 6-Parent Information Athletic Night for Indoor Track and Swimming-6:00PM in rooms 102 and 110 at HMS. This meeting for athletes and parents.

Monday, February 6-School Committee Meeting-Second Budget Workshop-6:00PM at the Log Cabin

Thursday, February 9-School Committee Meeting-Regular Meeting-first reading of the budget- 7:00PM at the Log Cabin

Please keep us posted with any questions and/or input about your child’s year thus far.

Thanks very much-
Joan Adler and Tom McDowell 

 

January 13, 2017

Dear Parents/Guardians-

Happy New Year-we hope 2017 is off to a wonderful start for you and your families! Our students and staff have had a busy January since returning to school.

This year, HMS educators are studying best practices related to formative assessment. Howard Pitler explains that formative assessment, “is designed to give teachers useful information on where students are in their learning and what modifications need to be made in teaching and learning. Both teachers and students should view formative assessments as useful feedback to the teaching and learning process.” Our staff is using Monday afternoon meetings to delve into instructional strategies, examine how we ask questions, techniques to facilitate student discourse, question focus statements, goal setting and reflection, and the different technology options available to support this work.

Our students welcome to the new year included participation in a school-wide assembly to honor our visitors from Japan. We’re excited about our new partnership with the Casco Bay Japan Exchange program and the valuable learning opportunities it provides for us. You can learn more about this program by checking out our HMS News Blog (or clicking on HMS NEWS Blog underneath my contact information below). You can sign up for the blog by entering your e-mail address in the upper right hand corner of the blog and clicking “submit”.

We’re pleased to let you know about the upcoming Mindfulness Presentation for Parents. This presentation will be held on January 26th, from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM, in the HMS Library. Registration is required. Please contact Susan Parr at susan_parr@yarmouthschools.org to sign up; space is limited.

We want to thank the Yarmouth K-8 PTO, the Yarmouth Education Foundation, the Yarmouth Alumni

Association and The First Parish Church for their collaboration to bring the film Screenagers: Growing up in the Digital Age to our community.

The film will be shown on January 25 at 6:00 pm, at Yarmouth High School (the film will go until 8:00 PM). This is a FREE event, but tickets are required. Students (age 10 and up) are invited to join their parents for this community event. There will be a short break-out session after the film facilitated by The Family Leadership Center of Yarmouth. For further information please click here.

A second showing for students will be held in the HMS cafe on Thursday, January, 26, at 3:00 PM.

With the arrival of the colder weather students may choose to remain at HMS until their after school activities to begin. To support safe practices, students must remain in a setting supervised by a teacher when they are in the building after school hours. Students can work in the library, in adherence with the guidelines for this work time, in a classroom with a teacher, in the Computer Lab, or at one of the tables in the main office. The conference room is also available for students on Tuesday-Friday afternoons. Students need permission from Tom McDowell or me to work in this room.

Additionally, students can attend intramurals after school. -Fifth grade intramurals are held on Tuesday-
-5th or 6
th grade intramurals on alternating Wednesdays -7th & 8th grade intramurals on Thursdays.

Please check the HMS calendar for information on intramurals. A full list of after school activities is available here.

Students who are not in a supervised setting after school will lose their privilege to stay in the building during this time.

Dates to Remember:

Monday, January 16-Martin Luther King Day-No School

Thursday, January 19-7:00 PM-PTO Meeting at YES

Wednesday, January 25-6:00 PM to 8:00 PM Screenagers: Growing up in the Digital Age at Yarmouth High School

Thursday, January 26-10:00 AM to 11:00 AM-Mindfulness Presentation for Parents in the HMS Library Thursday, January 26-7:00 PM-School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin

Thank you, as always, for your input, and engagement with our schools. It’s a pleasure to watch your children grow and progress throughout the school year.

Sincerely,

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell HMS Administrative Team


December 16, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians-

The December break and holidays will be here shortly. We’re surprised by how quickly the fall months have flown by! Your children’s growth and continued progress is not a surprise to us : )

In keeping with our wish for a happy, healthy holiday for all, we thank you for your attention to our morning drop off and afternoon pick up routines, which are designed to keep everyone safe.

Morning Drop Off:

1. After pulling around the small circle to the stop sign, proceed to the next stop sign or behind the next automobile before dropping your child off. Please share any plans for the day with your child before you reach the drop off, which will help to prevent traffic back up.

2. Buses dropping off students will have their flashing lights on, but will be far enough back for you to pull out for drop off.

3. Please respect the Bus Only zone by not driving around the large circle until after 7:45 am.

Afternoon Pick Up:

1. The buses will be lined up for pickup with lights flashing; do not pass them.

2. We ask that parents picking up students after school make plans to meet their children in one of the two upper parking lots. This will enable the buses to move around the circle as they need to during this time. Please do not park in the "No Parking" zone across from the parking spots closest to the building.

3. Please respect the Bus Only zone by not driving around the large circle until after the buses have left in the afternoon.

4. Students who are being picked up by their parents need to wait until the buses have departed. Students and parents should not walk between buses.

5. Please let the office know if you need to pick up your child before the buses arrive at HMS due to an afternoon appointment. We're happy to facilitate that process.

6. We request that students are dropped off and picked up in the designated zone. Please do not use the basketball court or delivery area.

We do ask that you drive around the circle when dropping off and picking up students. This helps with traffic back up and the safety of our students walking who are walking to or from school.

Important Note: Please be mindful of the 4:20 late bus arrival at HMS. If you need to pick up your child at that time have them meet you in the upper parking lot so the bus can navigate the circle without impediment. Again, this practice supports the safety of our students, parents, and staff.

Lost and Found: We also ask that you stop in to check out our Lost and Found, which is growing hourly now that the cold weather has arrived! These items are located on several tables in the lobby and front hallway. They will be donated to charitable organizations on December 23rd. As always, we will reunite items that have identification with their rightful owners. We encourage you to put your child’s name in all belongings brought to school.

Maine Integrated Youth Health Survey: This school year, 7th and 8th grade students in Frank H Harrison Middle School will be asked to take an anonymous health survey. The data from this survey is used at the school, county and State levels. It supports grant funding, assessment of student needs, and the design and evaluation of health related programs. You will receive more information on this survey closer to the time of survey administration in February and will have the opportunity to review its contents. You have the choice of whether or not your child will take this survey. Your child will also have the option of whether or not to participate in the survey on the day it is given.

Dates to Remember:

-5/6 Winter Concert-December 19th-6:30 PM at the YPAC-The band concert will start at 6:30 PM-The chorus concert will start at 7:30 PM

-Winter Break-No school from Friday, December 23 through Monday, January 2nd-Back to school on January 3rd.

As we head into the winter break and the holidays we’re grateful to be part of this wonderful community. Your children provide us with daily examples of the kindness and generosity of the season.HMS staff participated in our annual Giving Tree event. The beautiful ornaments disappeared in the blink of an eye as individuals and teams pitched in to ensure a happy holiday season for everyone.

We wish you all much happiness, time with family and friends, and a beautiful holiday season. Best Wishes-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team


November 30, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians-

In the past, HMS dances have been a popular activity with our seventh and eighth grade students. The dances are also a source of fundraising for our school. We've been monitoring the attendance at dances, which has declined over the last several years and has continued to drop this fall. We're now losing money given the cost of the D.J.

We know that interest in these kinds of school events (dances, activity nights) can wax and wane. With that in mind we're going to spend some time talking with our students about the school activities that interest them so we can determine our next steps.

Given the on-going low attendance at our school dances we're going to cancel the dances scheduled for December 16, January 20, February 10, March 17, and April 7.

We will hold the last dance of the year scheduled for May 12th. Please let us know if you have any questions.

Thanks very much- Joan

December 2, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians-

Our teachers and students are having productive, on-going conversations about Growth Mindset-the idea that all of us are capable of stretching ourselves beyond what we think is possible and the positive growth that occurs when we believe we can do this.

Mike Hagerty and Janice Medenica recently shared some wonderful resources about this powerful concept. We encourage you to watch these videos with your children and discuss the ideas presented.

Introduction to Growth Mindset

Changing a Fixed Mindset to Growth Mindset

It's hard to believe that we're coming to the end of the first trimester! Grades will close on December 2nd. First trimester reports will be available on the PowerSchool Parent Portal on December 9th. The portal does not close as teachers are entering final grades, comments and standards for the trimester report. We want to remind you that all grade information will be edited during this time (in case you log on to check grades) and that final reports will be completed by 2:45 PM on December 9th.

We're excited to fill you in on the Hour of Code, which will take place during the week of December 5th. All students will participate in the Hour of Code in math classes. The Hour of Code takes place each year during Computer Science Education Week (December 5-11). Computer Science Education Week is held annually in recognition of the birthday of computing pioneer Admiral Grace Murray Hopper (December 9, 1906). The Hour of Code started as a one-hour introduction to computer science, designed to demystify "code", to show that anybody can learn the basics, and to broaden participation in the field of computer science. It has since become a global movement reaching tens of millions of students in 180+ countries.

Dates to Remember:

-Jazz Concert-12/8/16-6:30 PM-HMS Cafe

-5/6 Winter Concert-12/12/16-6:30 PM at the YPAC-The band concert will start at 6:30 PM-The chorus concert will start at 7:30 PM

-7/8 Concert-12/14/16-6:30 PM at the YPAC-The band concert will start at 6:30 PM-The chorus concert will start at 7:30 PM

-Lock Down Drill-12/16/16 at 8:20 AM

-HMS Blood Drive Hosted by the 7th Grade Science Classes-12/15/16-2:45 PM-7:30 PM at HMS

-PTO Meeting-12/15/16-7:00 PM at YES

-Don't forget to check out the latest stories on the HMS NEWS blog (linked below my name).

As we approach the end of the first trimester we want to recognize and applaud our students' efforts and perseverance with new learning. We're proud of all they've accomplished, and of their continued growth as individuals and learners.

Thanks very much-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell HMS Administrative Team

11.18.16

MAP Assessments

As you may know, all HMS students in grades 5 through 8 participate in a standardized test, the NWEA-Measure of Academic Progress (MAP), every fall. We use the scores from this assessment internally to gauge our students’ progress and academic growth from year to year. The scores provide evidence of growth from fall to spring, and highlight any areas where students may require support. Our teachers talk with students about their growth on these assessments privately; these conversations are focused on goal setting.

The MAP scores are only one source of information about student progress. Daily work, classroom assessments, projects, classroom conversations and conferencing offer a more complete picture of our students’ academic functioning and progress.

As in past years, students took the Reading and Mathematics MAP assessment this fall. This test is taken online. The results give teachers a baseline for where their students are performing. All students will be re-assessed in the spring to give teachers a measure of the progress/academic growth that has been made throughout the year (some students may be re-assessed in January to check on progress).

Your child’s results on the MAP assessment have been put into PowerSchool. You can access the results by logging into the PowerSchool parent portal and clicking on the link “Measures of Academic Progress.”

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Thanks very much-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell HMS Administrative Team

11.18.16

Dear Parents/Guardians-

We hope this finds you well as we head into this exciting time of year. HMS students and staff are focused on health and wellness as the pace of life ramps up with the approaching holidays.

Along with taking time for ourselves to decompress and stay active, there are several things we can do to maintain our health during this season. Students and staff participated in our annual flu vaccination clinic at HMS as a first step toward this goal. The next line of defense is to practice good respiratory hygiene. We’re encouraging our students to: 

-Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you sneeze or cough, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you don't have a tissue cough or sneeze into your sleeve.

-Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. 

-Wash your hands with soap and water often.

-Lastly, stay home when you are sick.

These easy steps can go a long way to keeping us all healthy!

In keeping with best practices that promote the safety and the well-being of our students and staff, we’re planning a Lock Down drill for Friday, December 16 at 8:20. This is the third year that our school will participate in this drill and the first of two drills scheduled this year. Our staff will discuss the lock down protocol during advisory groups and in classes/homerooms. Students will be well versed in the "dark, quiet and low” protocol. Members of the Yarmouth Police Department will join us to critique our procedures and provide feedback.

We’re excited to congratulate Cathy Flanagan on receiving the YMCA Staff Excellence Award! Please see this story and more information about life at HMS on our NEWS blog and follow us on Twitter.

Dates to Remember:

November 18: 7/8 Dance-6:30 PM to 8:30 PM, pick up promptly at 8:30-sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser.

November 23, 24, 25-Thanksgiving Break

Wednesday, 12.7-Cookie Dough delivery date-details soon.
 
We wish all of you a wonderful Thanksgiving that includes time to slow down, relax and enjoy the company of family and friends. We’re grateful for the opportunity to partner with you on behalf of our students.

 Thanks very much-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team
 

November 4, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians,

The last few weeks have included diverse and engaging learning experiences for our students. Our 8th graders led the Mock Election, which enabled all students and staff to participate in a school-wide vote. They also skyped with author Watt Key in order to learn about the writing process. Our 5th and 8th grade buddies worked together on a monster drawing activity, which focused on the executive functioning skills necessary to follow clear, specific directions (ask your children about this!), while 6th grade students presented book talks and edited their narratives. Seventh grade students are beginning work on their Genius Hour projects; more to come on this powerful, student-led initiative. We encourage you to learn more about all of these activities by accessing HMS Teacher Pages, exploring our HMS NEWS blog and following us on Twitter.

*HMS Magazine/Cookie Dough Fundraiser: Turn in dates are November 7 and November 14. Thank you for your support and for keeping these important dates on your radar screen!

Please note the attached Casco Bay CAN November Tip of the Month.

Dates to Remember:

November 5: Hockey Booster’s Yard Sale-8:00AM-11:00AM at YES

November 5: 6th grade play, Bye Bye Birdie, performances at 11:00AM and 7:00PM, at HMS. Ticketsavailable at the door. Please join us for this exciting event!

November 11: Veteran's Day - No School
November 12: Yarmouth Education Foundation Blue Jean Disco Featuring Motor Booty Affair-

6:00PM to 11:00PM at AMVETS Hall, North Road

November 14: Winter Sports' Night for Alpine and Nordic Ski Team-6:00PM at HMS

November 16: Hannaford Gift Card Load Date

November 17: Monthly meeting of the Yarmouth K-8 PTO, 7:00PM, at YES. Be involved. Have a Voice. Join the fun!

November 18: 7/8 Dance-6:30PM to 8:30PM, sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser.

HMS teachers have appreciated the opportunity to meet with you and your children during the fall parent/teacher/student conferences. We thank you for your on-going commitment and support of our school!

As always, please be in touch with any questions or feedback.

Thanks very much-
Joan Adler and Tom McDowell HMS Administrative Team


October 21, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians-

Your children continue to impress and inspire us with their curious minds and thoughtful questions. They've taken full advantage of some interesting and exciting learning opportunities during the past month, which included field trips to:

-Wolfe's Neck Farm to look at the reproductive system of a chicken and how eggs are created (Thank you, Blair Currier, Kelley Damboise and Cheryl Lambert for making this first ever Health Sciences field trip possible!)

-Popham Beach to participate in the national Coastal Cleanup Day

-Mt. Apatite to study geology

-The Yarmouth Historical Society, coupled with a walking tour of Yarmouth

-On-going work at the Yarmouth Shellfish Nursery, and transect walk at Sandy Point

We appreciate our teachers' focus on these community connections and all that they bring to our children's understanding of the world around us.

Given the importance of these experiences, we're grateful for your on-going support with our HMS Magazine and Cookie Dough Fundraiser, which makes many of these trips possible. Our fundraiser is under way; we'll be providing you with updates moving forward.

We're excited to let you know that Barbara Ellis, 6th grade math and science teacher, has been recognized by the Maine Department of Education as a finalist for 2016 Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching Mathematics and Science (PAEMST)! We congratulate Barb on this outstanding achievement. Please see further information about this posted at HMS NEWS.

In other news, the HMS Library will be holding a Book Fair from Monday, October 31 through Thursday, November 3! It will be open daily from 8:00 - 3:00 for students. A special evening Book Fair event is scheduled for Tuesday, November 1st from 5:30 - 7:00(with free refreshments and a drawing every half hour!). Proceeds from the Book Fair will go to the HMS Library which, in turn, will benefit every child at Harrison Middle School.

Our Lost and Found continues to grow by leaps and bounds! Please stop in to check out these items to see if any of them belong to your child. Please encourage your children to do the same. Any unclaimed items will be donated to Goodwill on October 31st.

Upcoming Events:

Friday, 10.21 from 6:30 pm-8:30 pm-7th/8th Grade Dance. Pick up promptly at 8:30

Monday,10.24 at 6:30 pm-Girl's Basketball Parent Information Night in the HMS Band Room

Friday, 10.28, 6:00 pm-8:00 pm-First Annual PTO sponsored Fifth and Sixth Grade Halloween Costume Party Activity Night time and Halloween Party Please see attached information.

Saturday, 11.5 at 11:00 am and 7:00 pm-6th Grade Play: Bye Bye Birdie

Saturday, 11.12, 6:00PM to 11:00PM-Yarmouth Education Foundation, Blue Jean Disco for parents, at AMVETS Hall North Road

Thank you for your continued attention to the traffic patterns that keep our students safe during drop off and pick up times.

Finally, there's always a lot going on in our HMS community. Please check out our HMS NEWS blog and Twitter Feed for updates.

We thank you for sharing your wonderful children with us!

With Thanks-
Joan Adler and Tom McDowell HMS Administrative Team


October 6, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians,
The weather is finally reminding us that we're headed into the sixth week of school. Our students and staff appreciate the cooler, more comfortable temperatures outside and inside our building!

Thank you for attending our Open House events for each grade level. We hope you found this time with your children's teachers useful as we continue to share information about the new school year.

We'll be highlighting our students' academic pursuits throughout the year, along with our focus on the affective end of education. HMS staff continue to model and create learning opportunities and discussions around our district's core values (attached for your conversations with your children).

We've noted exceptionally kind and supportive behavior from our students during the first few weeks of school. We're communicating our appreciation to them when we see examples of this, which include 6th, 7th, and 8th graders assisting our 5th graders and students new to the building with directions, positive, supportive interactions between 8th and 5th grade buddies, students making sure to clean up the cafe before the next grade enters for lunch, and polite and respectful interactions during structured and unstructured times.

Please remember to check the Lost and Found tables, which are now full of sweatshirts and jackets as a result of cold mornings and warm afternoons! We make every effort to return labeled clothing to the correct owner.

Please complete the Student Information page, available on the parent portal, if you have not already done so.

The HMS Annual Fund Raiser – sales of magazines and cookie dough – will begin shortly. While we encourage students to participate the choice is theirs and yours. This fundraiser supports many of the enrichment activities that we're committed to having our students experience
during their time at HMS. A limited list of these activities includes:

Lewiston Public Theater
NOAA Weather Center in Gray
Mt. Apatite
Capoeira (Brazilian martial arts dance) performance in Newburyport, MA Boston Freedom Trail
Boston Museum of Science
Tsongas Mills
8th Grade Celebration
Author visits
Assemblies
Artists
Legenda Literary Magazine
Southworth Planetarium
Destination Imagination
Colonial Craft Days

Traffic Safety: Thank you for your attention to our pick-up and drop off routines. Your help with
this has made these times safe and predictable for our students.
We do ask that you drive around the circle when dropping off and picking up students. This helps with traffic back up and the safety of our students walking who are walking to or from school.

We’re focusing on skateboard and bike safety with our students. Thank you for talking with your child about the importance of staying on the side walk (as opposed to skateboarding or biking in the road) on the way to school, and proceeding with caution around pedestrians.

October is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month. Casco Bay CAN Region schools are uniting to promote the health and well-being of youth in our communities. Region school
leaders feel that it is important to work together in preventing and reducing youth substance
use in our schools and communities.

The Talk Early, Talk Often, and Keep Talking campaign supports our shared vision to encourage positive youth development. This campaign, brought to you by Casco Bay CAN (Create Awareness Now), focuses on how parents can talk to their student to prevent youth substance use. It also offers parents the opportunity to attend a facilitated Table Talk session to learn

more about local trends in youth use and parent tips.

The campaign theme this year encourages parents to Talk...They Hear You. As parents you are the most influential factor in your preteen/teen’s decision making. Youth who learn the risks of
drugs and alcohol from their parents are 50% less likely to use than those who do not.

    • Talk to your (pre)teen regularly about your expectations that they not use drugs or alcohol.
    • Make sure alcohol and drugs are not available to youth in your home. Lock up and track for safety.
    • Talk with other parents to make sure alcohol and drugs are not available to youth in their homes.
    • Get to know the parents of your (pre)teen’s friends and share contact information to stay informed.
    • Keep the conversation going as youth get older, their risk for use increases and it may affect their plans for college, military, or professions that require licensure / certifications.

Visit www.cascobaycan.org to learn more about attending a Table Talk and parenting tips on raising a substance-free (pre)teen.

Dates of upcoming Events
-Friday,10.7-Teacher In-Service
-No School for students
-Monday-10.11- Columbus Day-No School
-Wednesday, 10.12
-Hannaford Gift Card Load Date
-Thursday, 10.13, at 6:30 pm-Ice Hockey Parent/Player Information, in the HMS Café
-Tuesday, 10.18, at 8:30-10:30 am-First Active Parenting Class (six weekly sessions), HMS Conference Room
-Tuesday, 10.18 and Wednesday, 10.19 beginning at 2:45 pm-8th Grade Parent Conferences -Thursday, 10.20 beginning at 2:45 pm-World Language Conferences
-Thursday, 10.20, beginning at 7:00 pm-PTO Meeting at YES
-Friday, 10.21-Picture- Re-takes
-Friday, 10.21, 6:30 to 8:30 pm-7th/8th Grade Dance-pick up promptly at 8:30 pm

Thank you for your on-going communication and feedback. We appreciate your questions and thoughts and we love hearing about the information your children are sharing with you!

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell-HMS Administrative Team


September 23, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians-

The first three weeks of school have flown by! We're enjoying getting to know your children. : ) They're settling into the new school year, and the learning is reciprocal as they teach us about themselves as individuals and learners.


We extend our thanks and appreciation to the Yarmouth Education Foundation and our PTO. Both organizations continue to enrich our schools. Thanks to grants made possible by the YEF, our students are creating and collaborating in our library's new 4 C Studio and our 7th grade scientists are hard at work at the Shellfish Nursery.

Our PTO has already made it possible for our 8th grade students to create their tie-dyed t-shirts, which they wear on field trips throughout the year. Our 6th graders will be going on an exciting field trip later in the year, also due to the efforts of our PTO (stay tuned for more upcoming information about this trip).

We'll be providing more information on both of these organizations on our HMS NEWS Blog (currently under a bit of construction) throughout the year.

Important Events:

-Tuesday, September 27th to Wednesday, October 19th-Close Buy Catalog-For the 6th year, our school will be working with Close Buy Catalog, a local-goods fundraising catalog featuring products from local Northeast businesses. The sales support local vendors and family businesses in our community, and teach our students about the importance of supporting the local economy!

This sale will raise funds for the Yarmouth PTO which supports and coordinates activities, such as field trips, speakers, and visiting authors for our students. 30% of our sale comes back to our schools! Please read the attached letter for more information about this wonderful opportunity.

-Monday, 10.3-6:00 pm-Music Boosters Meeting

-Thursday, 10.6-10:00-11:15-HMS Flu Vaccine Clinic -Friday,10.7-Teacher In-Service-No School for students -Monday-10.11-Columbus Day-No School

-Friday, 10.21-Picture-Re-takes

Please remember to check out the HMS Tweets at the bottom left of our Homepage
We enjoyed seeing you at our HMS Open House events, and we continue to appreciate your input about your child's experience so far this year.

Thanks very much-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell HMS Administrative Team

Joan Adler


September 21, 2016

Dear Parents/Guardians

As always, we're vigilant about school safety, and focused on the practices that will ensure smooth and efficient traffic patterns during pick up and drop off times.

Given our growing numbers we've noted additional information below that will support our efforts. Thank you for your attention to these guidelines.


Morning Drop Off:

1. After pulling around the small circle to the stop sign, proceed to the next stop sign or behind the next automobile before dropping your child off. Please share any plans for the day with your child before you reach the drop off, which will help to prevent traffic back up.

2. Buses dropping off students will have their flashing lights on, but will be far enough back for you to pull out for drop off.

3. Please respect the Bus Only zone by not driving around the large circle until after 7:45 am.

Afternoon Pick Up:
1. The buses will be lined up for pickup with lights flashing; do not pass them.

2. We ask that parents picking up students after school make plans to meet their children in one of the two upper parking lots. This will enable the buses to move around the circle as they need to during this time. Please do not park in the "No Parking" zone across from the parking spots closest to the building.

3. Please respect the Bus Only zone by not driving around the large circle until after the buses have left in the afternoon.

4. Students who are being picked up by their parents need to wait until the buses have departed. Students and parents should not walk between buses.

5. Please let the office know if you need to pick up your child before the buses arrive at HMS due to an afternoon appointment. We're happy to facilitate that process.

6. We request that students are dropped off and picked up in the designated zone. Please do not use the basketball court or delivery area.

Thank you for your attention to these guidelines and your support keeping the HMS community safe. We appreciate partnering with you on our students’ behalf!

Best, Joan



Wed, Sep 14, 2016 at 9:44 AM

Dear Parents/Guardians,

Please complete the HMS Student Information Sheets online, using the PowerSchool Parent Portal. You can access the Portal by visiting this link: https://powerschool.yarmouth.k12.me.us/public/home.html. This page has four tabs of information. It's designed to replace the hard copy of the Student Information sheets that we sent home a couple of years ago. Yarmouth High School will be using the same process.

To view/edit student information click on "Student Information" in the left-hand sidebar. The Student Information page will allow you to review and update your child's information, as well as update permissions for the 16-17 school year.

When you have verified that all information is correct across the four tabs please click the box indicating you reviewed the information and click Submit at the bottom of the page.

Viewing/editing Student Information can only be done using your parent account. If you do not have an account yet please visit the PowerSchool Help Page to learn how to set one up. If you have any difficulties please watch the help video posted on this page.

Please have this information updated by Wednesday, 9.28. It's important that we're able to contact you if the need arises.

Thanks very much for your support with this process. Joan


September 9, 2016
 

Dear Parents/Guardians-

It’s been very exciting to have your children back with us this week!  They’ve filled our classrooms with wonderful stories about summer adventures, thoughtful questions about new learning, and positive, kind interactions across our HMS community. We’ve heard great feedback from them about the first few days of the school year; we’re all looking forward to the year ahead!

We have a busy couple of weeks coming up at the middle school.

Please note the events listed below, which can also be found on the HMS Calendar:

Monday, September 12, at 6:00 pm: 6th Grade Play Information Night in the HMS Café

Monday, September 12, at 6:00 pm: Music Boosters Meeting in the YHS Band Room

Tuesday, September 13, at 3:00 pm: 7th Grade Maine Laptop Initiative (MLTI) Take Home Meeting in the HMS Cafe


Tuesday, September 13, at 5:30 pm: 5th Grade Open House, which will begin with an overview of technology in the HMS Cafe. The agenda is on the HMS Calendar.

Wednesday, September 14, at 5:30 pm: 7th Open House, which will begin with a 7th Grade MLTI Take Home Meeting in the HMS Café. The agenda is on the HMS Calendar.

Thursday, September 15, School Photo Day-students who want to purchase photos should bring their completed photo flyer to school on Thursday, 9.15.

Thursday, September 15, at 6:00 pm: 7th Grade MLTI Take Home Meeting in the HMS Café

Thursday, September 15, at 7:00 pm: PTO meeting at the YES Library

Friday, September 16, at 9:00 am: 7th Grade MLTI Take Home Meeting in the HMS Café


Friday, September 16, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm: 7th /8th grade Dance in the HMS Cafe (pick up promptly at 8:30)

Monday, September 19, at 5:00 pm: 7th Grade MLTI Take Home Meeting in the HMS Café

Tuesday, September 20, at 6:30 pm: 6th Grade Open House

Wednesday, September 21, at 6:30 pm: 8th Grade Open House

We look forward to partnering with you on your child’s behalf. Please keep us posted on how things are going. We invite you to browse through the HMS NEWS BLOG and Twitter for a close up look at our HMS community.

Thanks very much-

Joan Adler and Tom McDowell

HMS Administrative Team


June 3, 2016

Dear Parents,

On May 26, the Yarmouth School Committee approved the change of school day start and end times beginning with the  2016-17 school year. The new daily schedule will be as follows:

Yarmouth High School and Harrison Middle School
Start time:  8:00 a.m.                End time:  2:45 p.m.

Yarmouth Elementary School and Rowe School
Start time:  8:40 a.m.                End time:  3:30 p.m.

These times will be in effect at the start of the school year in September.  We are hopeful that this notice will provide parents and staff with time to make the necessary schedule adjustments.

Several frequently asked questions include:
  1. With this twenty-minute push, what happens to bus schedules?  Bus schedules will be adjusted to reflect this twenty-minute adjustment.  Each year we evaluate our bus runs based on the location of student residences.  Most bus runs will simply be pushed back twenty minutes, but minor adjustments are always necessary once the residency map is considered. Those schedules will be released by August 1.
  2. Will the high school still have “late start Wednesdays”?  Yes – the Wednesday schedule at Yarmouth High School will begin one hour later than the regular school day, running from 9:00 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.
  3. Will our student-athletes, musicians, and club members just have more morning practices, rehearsals, and meetings?  No – The recommendation from the Start Times Task Force is to ensure that we avoid scheduling morning events to any greater extent than the current practice, taking into account facilities constraints for some programs.
  4. Will there be an option for younger students to be cared for at school prior to the start of each school day?  Maybe – There is a possibility that we will be providing an option for a limited number of parents of K-4 children to access childcare at one of our schools or at an off-site location through Yarmouth Community Services.  We will be exploring several options and will communicate any solutions prior to the end of this school year.
We will be working on several logistical and programmatic pieces to further answer these and other questions that this change will raise. We appreciate the work of the Start Times Task Force, the participation of parents and students in the district-wide survey, and the input from community members at recent School Committee meetings.

Upcoming Events:
June 6: Music Boosters Meeting at 6:00PM in the HMS Band Room
June 7: Town Meeting at 7:00PM in the HMS gym
June 8: 8th Grade Civil Right's Night at 6:30PM
June 9: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM in the Log Cabin
June 14: K-8 PTO Meeting at 7:00PM in the YES Library
June 17: Last Day of School - Students dismissed at 11:00AM

As the warmer weather arrives and the school year ends, students find themselves with much more free time and the desire to be outside and active.  Unfortunately, this is also a time of year when “exploring” or “hiking” may result in children or teenagers walking near or on railroad tracks.  Please remind your children that this is a very dangerous and illegal activity.  Maine Operation Lifesaver has a helpful website that provides a wealth of information and educational activities to help you reiterate the dangers of playing near train tracks
(http://www.maineol.org/).  We encourage you to take a look at the site and impress upon all children the importance of staying off the tracks.


May 20, 2016

Dear HMS Parents,

School Budget
being considered by voters June 7 and June 14
On May 5, the Yarmouth Town Council adopted a school budget for Fiscal Year 2017 that must now be approved by the voters in a state-mandated, two-step voting process.  
  1. Citizens are first invited to attend the Town Meeting on Tuesday, June 7 at 7:00 p.m. at Harrison Middle School to vote on each of the articles of the budget.  
  2. Voters are then provided the opportunity to cast a ballot in a town-wide referendum to approve the budget as set by the Town Meeting. The referendum will be held on June 14, from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Robert W. Boyd AmVets Hall.  
Please refer to the district website for more budget information.  We hope to see you on June 7!

This Saturday, May 21st, the Harrison Middle School 5th Grade presents "Willy Wonka Jr." There will be a matinee at 1pm and an evening performance at 7pm. This one hour long musical is fun for the whole family! Tickets are $2 for students, $5 for adults, and $10 for an immediate family of any size! Tickets will be available at the door at HMS the day of the show. Don't miss this sugary spectacle!

Upcoming Events
May 25: Hannaford Gift Card Due Date
May 26: 5th Grade Great American Night at 6:00PM
May 26: 4th Grade Parent Step-Up Night at 6:30PM
May 26: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM
May 30: Memorial Day - No School

Enjoy the leaves and buds popping out to give us color once again.


May 6, 2016

Dear HMS Parents

"The end of the school year is is doing that funny thing where it ramps up and up and up. It's as if we are ascending to the highest height of the roller coaster, just before we plummet so very suddenly to the end. The view from up here is glorious!" from Charlotte Agell's BlogPost-Footnotes from Room 104.

Charlotte and Bob Gross, our Gifted/Talented teachers ask, "Are you curious about GT services in our district?" The Yarmouth School District is committed to addressing the academic and emotional needs of gifted students. Through our GT Services, we provide gifted students with the opportunity to achieve, to be self-directed, to accept responsibility, to develop creative and critical thinking skills, to pursue individual and alternative solutions, and to value inquiry and lifelong learning. Students may be supported in small groups or in the classroom through differentiated work. The GT teachers collaborate with the classroom teachers. For more information, please visit the Instructional Support website where you will the GT/Chapter 104 link.

In the springtime many students forget the policies we have regarding laptops and sports. For your information...Students should never bring laptops onto a playing field, court or track. Laptops do not belong on the bus when they travel for away games or meets. Students may store their laptops in the HMS Main Office, in a locked locker in the locker room, or in a coach's locked vehicle for off-site practices. We appreciate your support in protecting the laptops.

Upcoming Events:
May 8: Mother's Day
May 10: 5/6 Spring Concert at 6:30PM
May 11: Nurse's Day
May 11: 7/8 Spring Concert at 6:30PM
May 12: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM
May 13: 7/8 Dance (sponsored by HMS)

What is that shining on our school? I know I've jinxed it and the rain will return all too soon but I needed to celebrate.

Enjoy,


April 8, 2016

Dear HMS Parents,

Your Town Council will be hosting two Public Hearings, April 14 and May 5, for parents to become more informed and provide feedback about the 2016-2017 Yarmouth School Department Budget. These meetings begin at 7:00PM at the Log Cabin.

Once again the Lost and Found has taken on a life its own. It's  growing as quickly as the students. For your convenience it's displayed on tables in the lobby. As always, if the student's name is on the clothing, we will reunite them.

Due to the upcoming No School Day on April 15 and the Spring Break the following week, this issue of At-A-Glance includes four weeks of Upcoming Events and not the usual two.

Upcoming Events
April 12: 6th Grade World's Fair at 6:00PM

April 13: Hannaford Git Card Due Date

April 14: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM

April 15: NO SCHOOL
April 18-22: SPRING BREAK

April 26: 8th Grade Parents' Meeting: Transition to High School Program -  6:30-8:00 PM in the Yarmouth Performing Arts Center.

April 28: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM

April 29: Murder Mystery Dinner Theater at 6:00PM in the HMS Cafe

May 2: Music Boosters Meeting at 6:00PM

May 4: Hannaford Gift Card Due Date

May 5: HMS Jazz Cafe at 7:00PM

May 5: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM

I have been signing a number of Planned Family Absences for in and out of country. Whether you stay local or travel, I wish you a sunny, healthy, relaxing Spring Break.


March 25, 2016

Dear HMS Parents,
 
You might enjoy and appreciate this article during the transition time from winter to spring, as well as other times too.
http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/03/16/the-best-way-to-fight-with-a-teenager/?smid=nytnow-share&smprod=nytnow&_r=0
Upcoming Events

March 26:
This Saturday, March 26th, is the 7th/8th Grade presentation of the musical "Aladdin Jr.!"  There will be a matinee at 1pm and an evening performance at 7pm. Don't miss your chance to see this fun, fast-paced musical. Tickets are $2 for students, $5 for adults, and $10 for an immediate family of any size! Tickets will be available at the door the day of the show.
 
March 28: Spring Sports Information Night at 6:00PM. This meeting is for athletes, parents and coaches. It is an expectation that athletes and parents attend this meeting. The purpose is to understand participation requirements and the Honor Code.
 
March 29: 5th Grade Play Parent Information Night at 6:00PM in the Cafeteria. Auditions are March 30 and 31 from 3:30PM to 5:00PM.
 
March 29: Public Forum on School Start Time at 6:00 p.m. in the Yarmouth High School Cafeteria. As part of the Yarmouth School Department’s five-year strategic plan, the School Committee is committed to reviewing the school day schedules for all of our students.  To date, a Start Time Task Force has been formed with membership from parents, teachers, administrators, and students.  The members of the Task Force have been reviewing research articles, considering data from surrounding communities, and analyzing responses to the district-wide survey that was conducted earlier this school year.  The next step in determining how we should respond to all of this data is to conduct a Public Forum at which members of the community – including staff, parents, and students – will have the opportunity to share their thoughts, questions, and suggestions for improving the educational experience for Yarmouth’s students as it pertains to school start times.
 
April 4: Music Boosters Meeting at 6:00PM in the Band Room.

April 5: Sports Physicals will be held at HMS on Tuesday, April 5, 2016. This school physical will meet the requirement of our athletic participation policy (physical exam every two years) at no cost to you. Students will bring home permission forms today. For your convenience, a form is attached for you to print and complete. Please return by Friday, April l.
April 8: 7/8 Dance from 6:30PM to 8:30PM sponsored by HMS.

 
April 9: GATHER Dance Party Saturday - April 9th at 8:00 PM. A portion of the proceeds will support the Yarmouth Music Boosters. This event is open to the public, so please help to spread the word.

From the HMS PTO: Great gear for the Middle School crowd!
Spring School Spirit Flash Sale!
5 Days only.
Check out these awesome offerings delivered just in time for Spring Break.
Checks and Cash to your school office or to PO Box 262, Yarmouth ME 04096
Questions, please email us and please share this email with your Yarmouth friends.
 
As I wrote this, snow was falling outside. As a representative of the HMS ski and snowboard students and staff, let it snow or think spring. And, as I finalize this to be sent out, we have a two-hour delay for ice. You've got to love Maine.


March 11, 2016

 
Dear Parents,
 
If you have not heard or read, Joan Adler has been appointed the principal of HMS. Joan began at HMS as an instructional strategist. She next became the HMS assistant principal. We were not necessarily grooming Joan to be principal, but the interview process clearly defined her integrity, compassion and pursuit of excellence. Joan is one educator when asked, “How have you practiced the act of continuous improvement lately?” that has several fresh examples. Please join me in congratulating Joan.

2016-2017 Course Selection
You received this information last week. This is a reminder that students in grades 5, 6, and 7 will make band, chorus and world language choices for next year. Please chat with your child(ren) so that they are prepared to make these choices.

Parent Portal
The second trimester ends on Wednesday, March 16. Reports will be completed by March 23 at 2:25. Between now and March 23 teachers will be making changes/updates so Parent Portal: GradeBook will be in flux should you be during this time.
 
Upcoming Events
March 18: 7/8 Dance sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser.
 
March 21: The MEA (Maine Educational Assessment)
The Federal Government requires schools that receive federal funding to assess their students once a year. Last year, the state of Maine Department of Education (DOE) selected Smarter Balance as their assessment tool.  This year, the department has chosen EmPower ME as the assessment tool.  EmPowerME is an on-line test that has been developed by Measured Progress and aligns with Common Core.  It will take students approximately 6 hours to complete the assessment.  (This is reduced from 9 hours last year.) 
 
HMS students in grades 5 - 8 will be completing the MEA (Maine Educational Assessment) testing between March 21 and April 14 in Mathematics, Reading, Writing/ELS and Read/Write. Fifth and eighth grade students will start their testing on 3/21 and end on 3/24.  Sixth grade students will start their testing 3/28 and will end 3/31.  Seventh grade students will start their testing 4/4 and end 4/7.  Make-up sessions for students who miss any section will be held before 4/14.
 
Students in grade 5 and 8 will complete the MEA: Science 4/25 - 5/6.  The testing schedule for this assessment has not been developed yet.

March 21: Spring Sports Information Night at 6:00PM. This meeting is for athletes, parents and coaches. It is an expectation that athletes and parents attend this meeting. The purpose is to understand participation requirements and the Honor Code. Spring sports begin on April 4.

We prefer to have all paperwork completed for the coaches by the March 21st meeting:
  1. (Step 1) Log into Powerschool, go under Sports Information and select the "Sports" tab.  Go in and check off which sports your child will be participating in. 
  2. (Step 2) Select the "Medical History" tab and complete the medical history/insurance section. Please select the box at the bottom that shows that you agree with the terms and conditions and then finally hit the submit button at the bottom of the page to save your information. Please remember that you need to log in through your parent account and not through your child's account.
  3.  (Step 3) We also need to receive a letter from your child's physician with the date of her most recent physical exam along with a statement stating that they are in good physical condition and able to play sports. Physicals are good for two years; you can see this date under the Sports tab.
This letter can be mailed to the HMS office at: 220 McCartney St.  Yarmouth, ME  04096; scanned to: Liz_Reinsborough@yarmouthschools.org or Faxed to us at 207-846-2489.
 
March 24: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM
 
We wrapped up Spirit Week today - students and staff displayed limitless spirit all week long. A fund raiser was included to support the Muscular Dystrophy Association and Crohn's Disease Research. Students and staff were very generous.
 
We concluded with an assembly with Michael Trautman from Firehouse Arts called BODY TALK  which teaches how to understand what you and other people are saying without words - perfect for middle school students.
 
Have a wonderful weekend.


February 26 2016

Dear HMS Parents,

We are beginning the application process for our three retirements, Diane Reynolds, Health; Elaine Fletcher, Art; and Marsha Newick, 7th Grade Language Arts and Social Studies. These veteran educators have continually cared for and educated Yarmouth students for countless years. Their passion for teaching and compassion for students have been exemplary.

We will also be hiring an additional 8th grade math/science teacher due to the enrollment from the 7th to the 8th grade class. This will give us six core teachers at each grade level. 

The 2016-2017 School Calendar was approved at last night's School Committee Meeting. It's available on the District and School Web Pages.

Healthy Lunch Contest

During the month of March the Nutrition Program will be running a school lunch participation contest.  As you may know there have been a lot of changes to school lunch over the past few years and Let’s Go! has been helping to promote these changes.  You can watch their short PSA about giving school lunch a second chance HERE

 

In the first week of the contest we will be getting the word out as well as getting feedback from students about the existing menu. The second week we will be collecting new recipe ideas and cool recipe names.  We are almost certain to get a few “lobster” requests, but we are also excited to hear of others. We love names like x-ray vision carrots and so we’ll be asking for name ideas for items such as our smoothies and the new strawberry parfait lunch option. In the third week students will get to taste test some of the new recipe ideas they submitted and vote as to which one makes it on the menu in April.  As the month progresses each grade will be competing for the highest overall lunch participation percent.  At the end of the month the winning grade will be announced and every student in that grade will receive a ticket to the Sea Dogs. The tickets will be handed out by a professional ball player on the team as well as Slugger the mascot!  Tickets are for the April 17th home game where students are allowed to “Run the Bases” post-game.  


Upcoming Events

February 29: Music Boosters Meeting at 6:00PM

March 1 and 2: 8th Grade Transition Conferences from 2:30PM to 8:30PM at HMS

March 2: Hannaford Gift Card Due

March 7: Music Boosters Meeting at 6:00PM

March 8: K-8 PTO Meeting at YES beginning at 7:00PM

March 8 and 9: 8th Grade Registration Conferences 4:00PM to 8:00PM at YHS

March 10: 2016 Blood Drive at 2:30PM

March 10: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM

March 11: Music Booster Performance Fund Raiser: Yarmouth's Got Talent at 7:00PM at the YPAC.

I hope you find the remaining winter months and weather to your liking.





February 12

Dear HMS Parents,

HMS has a very engaged book group culture; whether it's mathematics, reading, inquiry, pedagogy or leadership we are as curious as our students. For example, the HMS School Improvement Team (SIT) has been reading Simply Better: Doing What Matters Most To Change The Odds For Student Success. By the title you can understand why we choose this read. An upcoming group will be reading The Unstoppable Writing Teacher - Teachers will learn strategies to address and overcome common obstacles we all face in writing instruction.

I also draw your attention to http://hms.yarmouthschools.org/ HMS News. This segment of our webpage, managed by Joan Adler our assistant principal, is an outstanding source that celebrates our student and staff accomplishments.

We all know how busy mornings can be.  If you’re finding yourself crunched for time, why not leave breakfast to us? The cafeteria is open every day from 7:20 to 7:40 offering homemade whole grain muffins and fruit smoothies. There is also an assortment of healthy snacks available including graham crackers, yogurt cups, granola bars and fresh fruit. Additional information can be found on the Nutrition Website.

Upcoming:
February 15-19: Winter Break

February 24Eighth Grade Parent Information Night - 6:30-8:00 PM, Yarmouth Performing Arts Center (YPAC) at Yarmouth High School

February 25: School Committee Meeting in the Log Cabin at 7:00PM - Please join us to support the school budget.

February 26: 7th/8th Grade Dance from 6:30 to 8:30. Sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser.

I wish you and your children a wonderful break. Hopefully you can have loads of family time. You may find this helpful from Casco Bay Can:

February Tip of the Month: Encourage Healthy Coping Skills
  • Talk and listen
  • Promote journaling
  • Teach them to problem solve
  • Help with organizational skills
  • Encourage sleep, healthy eating habits and exercise
  • Set a good example



January 15, 2016

Dear HMS Parents,

For the next five faculty meetings we will be learning more about Executive Functioning Skills. Middle school students need more assistance with organization, work completion, misunderstanding-I don't know what to do, etc. There are reasons why students aren't prepared or cannot follow directions and we'll learn more about why and what to do to help them.

We read that EF "is that neurologic process which keeps us organized, drives us to establish priorities and helps us anticipate and plan for the future. Learning how to use these skills in the classroom and in life is probably the single most important skill children learn in school."


If you think your child would have an interest in the Maine Senate Honorary Page Program please see the attached document.

MIYHS 2015 Survey Results - In February 2015 our 7th and 8th grade students participated in the Maine Integrated Youth Health Survey. These students are now in the 8th and 9th grades. This is an every other year survey; we took the survey in February 2013, 2011, 2009, etc.. The 2015 results show:
  • 97% feel safe - up 1% from 2013
  • 8.6% have been in a room with secondary smoke - down 1.3% from 2013
  • 2.7% have tried marijuana - down 0.4% from 2013
  • 35.4% have had more than a few sips of alcohol before age 11 - up 35.4% from 2013
  • 25.4% said they would not get caught drinking by their parents - up 11.7% from 2013
  • 5.4% feel that their parents feel it would not be wrong to have 1-2 drinks a day - up 5.4% from 2013

This is an appropriate segue into an upcoming workshop: Be In The Know....Youth Perspective On Substance Use & How We Respond - Join Casco Bay Can on Wednesday, January 20, from 3:00-4:00 PM at the Cumberland Town Hall. The focus is how to reach teens and what teens are saying about drugs and alcohol.

If you wonder how HMS responds, we consult with the district's substance abuse for intervention strategies, share this information with Health Science teachers, and invite the YHS BOLD (Building Our Lives Drug & Alcohol Free) Team to meet with 7th and 8th grade students during advisory groups. 

Upcoming Events

January 18: No School

January 22: 7/8 Dance from 6:30 to 8:30PM sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser

January 28: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM in the Log Cabin

Now that the January "thaw" is over let's have some real winter☺



December 4, 2015

Dear HMS Parents,

"The bad news is that time flies. The good news is that you're the pilot." Our students and staff have navigated the HMS Clippership to the end of the first trimester. It seems impossible that grades close today and will be published next Friday, December 11. During next week teachers will be updating PowerSchool:Power Grade to reflect student progress for the first trimester. If you are a frequent viewer, you will notice these ongoing updates.

It's difficult to express the excitement generated at HMS when we first catch a glimpse of the blue and white balloons! This can only mean one thing-a visit from the Yarmouth Education Foundation. Congratulations to the following YEF grant recipients:
  1. Angie Turgeon and Kristina Walsh-Alternative Seating Choice for Increased Focus and Work Production
  2. Merry Stuhr and Joan Adler-Glass Whiteboards Encourage & Inspire Student-Generated Questions
The HMS community is incredibly grateful to the Yarmouth Education Foundation for their ongoing support, commitment and dedication to our students and our work.

Casco Bay Can is promoting a healthy, safe and substance-free holiday season and suggest the following:
  • Plan family outings- create or maintain traditions that they can look forward to
  • Include youth in holiday planning and preparations- they will feel appreciated
  • Spend time together playing games- turn off cell phones, TVs and computers
  • Volunteer at a local organization- giving back is a gift for both the volunteer and the recipient

Upcoming Events:

December 7: Music Boosters Meeting in the HMS Music Room at 6:00PM

December 10: School Committee Meeting in the Log Cabin at 7:00PM

December 13: PJO BIG BAND SWINGS THE HOLIDAYS  At the Yarmouth Performing Arts Center, Yarmouth High School. 3:00PM Sharp.  $10 Suggested Donation. Join an 18 piece big band—The Portland Jazz Orchestra (with Yarmouth Educator and Drummer Brad Ciechomski)—as they swing their way through a SUNDAY afternoon. The PJO will blaze through jazzy holiday classics, creating a wall of sound. Donations go to support THE YARMOUTH MUSIC BOOSTERS. Bring your friends. Pay at the door. Refreshments available.

December 16: 5/6 Winter Concert at the YPAC beginning at 6:30PM.

December 17: 7/8 Winter Concert at the YPAC beginning at 6:30PM.

December 18: Grade 7/8 Dance sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser

I have one favor to ask - Think Snow. Many students and staff are anxiously waiting for the first snow to enjoy. However, I am not looking for enough to have a "snow day"! Another however, when we have a snow day parents/students will be informed by a Power Announcement email. To learn how to subscribe to text notifications from tv stations go to: http://hms.yarmouthschools.org/home/news-and-announcements/stormclosingnotifications-1

I hope you are finding some rest and peace between the holidays.

November 20, 2015

Dear HMS Parents,

We are all thankful throughout the year for family and friends but Thanksgiving calls more attention to both; it's a wonderful time to express these feelings.
I wish you all a very happy Thanksgiving with family and friends who are family.

In light (no pun intended) of the time, cold and flu season is upon us again. There are several things we can do to prevent the spread of germs that cause respiratory illnesses. Many students and staff participated in our annual flu vaccination clinic at HMS. That's the first step. The next line of defense is to practice good respiratory hygiene. We are encouraging the students to: 
  1. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you sneeze or cough, and then throw it in the trash. If there is no tissue available then cough or sneeze into your sleeve.
  2. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. 
  3. Wash your hands with soap and water often.Lastly, stay home when you are sick. These easy steps can go along way to keeping us all healthy!
The Yarmouth School Department Technology Team wishes to help inform parents about some of the potential pitfalls that they may encounter. Parenting in the digital age provides some challenges that often may feel difficult to manage.  We hope you'll find the resources useful as you navigate these challenges with your children.

Sexting, the practice of sending and receiving sexually explicit images through mobile devices, is a topic that has been seen in the local and national news lately. Earlier this month 
as much as a quarter of the students at Saint Dominic's Academy in Auburn, Maine and hundreds of students at Canon City High School in Colorado were found actively trading nude photographs of middle and high school students. In each of these situations, students used their mobile phones to play a game that would be won by collecting the largest number of nude photos.

While the easy solution would be to collect all of your children's devices and destroy them, there are better options for parents. Educating yourself about ways that teens use/abuse mobile technologies is a good place to start. It's essential that we all talk openly with our children about our expectations of their behavior using online services and mobile devices. The Atlantic has a great article this month articulating the different ways that parents monitor teen use of devices and services and how that may impact their children down the road.

CommonSense Media has great resources for parents on such topics as screen time, social media use, cell phone parenting, and more. They have recently shared some great resources on sexting and how teens hide these images from their parents.
We do not believe that we have this sort of game happening in our schools at this time. It would be naive to think that sexting is not happening at all throughout our schools. Please continue to have discussions with your children about how they use their devices and help mentor them as they navigate these challenges. Digital citizenship/footprint is something that we work into our classes as often as possible. It's essential that parents help support their children with these issues at home. Hopefully, these resources will help.

Let me begin this one with a disclaimer: HMS is not promoting professional athletic events, however, we do promote education. This is an opportunity to learn more about concussions which are more prevalent at HMS than I can remember from past years. The Maine Red Claws, NBA D-League affiliate of the Boston Celtics, and the Maine Concussion Management Initiative (MCMI) are proud to announce their 2nd annual Concussion Awareness & Prevention event to be held on Sunday, November 22nd before the start of the Red Claws game. Come get your questions answered by experts in the field and learn about the important signs of a concussion and the best way to prevent them from happening. The MCMI is dedicated to improving the safety of Maine’s youth through science, education and community working together to prevent and manage concussions.
When:                  November 22nd, 2015
Where:                 Portland Expo – 239 Park Ave, Portland, ME
Event Time:        11:30am (Doors will open at 11am)
Game Time:       1pm
*MUST HAVE TICKET TO RED CLAWS GAME TO ATTEND EVENT*
For discounted tickets, please contact Devan Knight at 207-210-6655 ext. 208, or
dknight@maineredclaws.com.

From your HMS PTO: The Great Pie Event: Tuesday, November 24, 2015

It is time for the annual pie-drive, when we show our gratitude to our Yarmouth Schools

with Thanksgiving Pie.This is a long-standing and remarkable tradition; every Teacher, Ed-tech, Bus Driver, and Nutrition Worker receives a pie. Everyone! Be involved by baking or purchasing a pie for delivery on Tuesday, November 24.  


Two ways to participate:

1: Drop a pie at school. We suggest a pie plate that does not need returning (or label it).  


2: Purchase a Pie. You may also send in $10 to your School’s office (labeled PTO Pie Event). The PTO will purchase a freshly baked pie at the Yarmouth Hannaford.  


Visit www.Yarmouthpto.org to sign up or directly on Volunteer Spot at http://vols.pt/CMfDWL


Cookie Dough delivery has been rescheduled to December 2.

Upcoming Events:
November 20: 7/8 Dance at 6:30PM to 8:30PM sponsored by Mike Hagerty
November 21: 6th Grade Play Performance at 1:00PM and 7:00PM
November 25-27: Thanksgiving Break
December 3: HMS/YHS Jazz Cafe at 7:00PM in the HMS Cafeteria

To borrow from Michael Altshuler-
“The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot.”  Enjoy that awesome navigation.





October 8, 2015

Dear Parents,

I hope you are enjoying the sunshine and cooler temperatures. The days are much better for teaching and learning as the school can heat up during the warmer days. In our second month of school students have adjusted to the routines of the classroom, corridors and cafeteria. Open Houses have been completed so students, teachers and parents should be on the same page. From the Student/Parent Handbook: We like to think that we are doing everything perfectly, and sometimes, in spite of our best efforts, things don't go exactly as planned. If you ever find yourself with a question, concern or complaint, please call the school. The best route is to talk first to the person most closely involved. For example, in the case of a classroom question, talk with the teacher. You will find that everyone has the same goal in mind - the best educational experience for our students. If additional information or correspondence is necessary, please give a guidance counselor or a building administrator a call.

Please remember to check the Lost and Found when you are visiting the school.  We now have three tables full of sweatshirts and jackets, a result of cold mornings and warm afternoons.  Two of the tables are in the main lobby with a third one in the hallway heading down toward the cafeteria. We make every effort to return labeled clothing to the correct owner; however, most of the clothing is nameless

Student Information Forms are still available on the Parent Portal for your updating and submitting.

The Influenza Vaccination Clinic is scheduled for Thursday, November 5, during the school day.  Students will be bringing home paper copies today. The forms are also attached; we need the forms back by Friday, October 16.

The annual HMS Fund Raiser – sales of magazines and cookie dough – is under way. Students are encouraged to participate but it is their choice. This is a limited list of the fund raising effort:

Merrill Hall Auditorium

Portland Stage Company

Boston Freedom Trail

Boston Museum of Science

Tsongas Mills

8th Grade Celebration

Portland Harbor History Cruise

Authors

Assemblies

Artists

Legenda magazines                                      

Gulf of Maine Research Institute

Southworth Planetarium

Destination Imagination

Colonial Craft Days

Another fundraiser that supports the students is the PTO Fundraiser, which does not cost you any extra money! You set a record for participation last month.  Just purchase a Hannaford gift card from Yarmouth PTO and let Hannaford give our schools a 5% donation!

As a thank you for your support, the PTO will enter anyone who participates this month into a raffle for a $25 Hannaford gift card!  

Here is how the program works:

  1. If ordering a new card, complete the new card order form.  If reloading an existing gift card, write the gift card number on the memo line of your check.  Please make all checks payable to Yarmouth PTO and place in an envelope marked “Hannaford GCP”.
  2. Send in with your child to school, drop off at the school office, or mail to Yarmouth PTO at P.O. Box 1319, Yarmouth, ME 04096.  All checks must be received by noon on October 14th.  Any checks received after the load date will be held for the following load.
  3. A Hannaford gift card for the full amount you requested will be sent to you on October 15th by your preferred method. If you are reloading a card, you will receive an email the afternoon of October 15th confirming that your card has been reloaded.

Casco Bay CAN Tip of the Month – October is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month.

Talk Early, Talk Often and Keep Talking (See Attachment)

  • Start the conversation early with children
  • Talk to youth regularly about your expectations
  • Lock up/track alcohol and drugs at home
  • Get to know the parents of your teens friends
  • Keep the conversation going with your teen


Picture re-takes will be taken on Thursday, 10.29, starting at 7:50. Students must bring their photo packet from the first picture day with them in order to get their picture re-taken.
 

Dates of Events

October 9: No school for students. Inservice for teachers.

October 12: No school – Columbus Day.

October 13: K-8 PTO at 7:00 PM in the YES library.

October 15: World Language Conferences beginning at 2:45 PM.

October 20: 8th Grade Fall Conferences beginning at 2:45 PM.



September 25, 2015


Dear HMS Parents,

Maine Education Assessment (MEA)
The Maine Department of Education released the results from last spring’s statewide assessment, the Maine Education Assessment (MEA). The students reports will be sent to schools during the first week of October. As soon as the reports arrive we will send them to parents.


This assessment raised the bar for students, with rigorous questions challenging them to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding. Students were required to apply critical thinking skills to challenging tasks and to attend to detailed directions. The students were outstanding, putting forward a tremendous effort. We do have cause to celebrate their efforts, as well as, that of their teachers. The state scores each school based on the percentage of students who Met the Standard or Met the Standard with Distinction. HMS was the highest scoring middle school in Maine on the mathematics portion and second highest in ELA (English Language Arts).

National Substance Abuse Prevention Month

October is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month and Casco Bay Region schools are uniting to promote the health and well-being of youth in our communities. As school leaders we feel that it is important to work together in preventing and reducing youth substance use in our schools and communities. The Back Each Other Up campaign supports our shared vision to encourage this positive youth development.


This campaign, brought to you by Casco Bay CAN (Create Awareness Now), focuses on how parents can work together to prevent youth substance use. It also offers parents the opportunity to view sample parent-to-parent conversation starters, learn about support contacts within the community and attend a facilitated “Table Talk” session to learn more about what other parents are doing to prevent youth substance use.

 

The campaign this year encourages parents to Talk Early, Talk Often, and Keep Talking. As parents you are the most influential factor in your child’s decision making.  Youth who learn the risks of drugs and alcohol from their parents are 50% less likely to use than those who do not.

Talk to your (pre)teen regularly about your expectations that they not use drugs or alcohol.

Make sure alcohol and drugs are not available to youth in your home. Lock up and track for safety.

Talk with other parents to make sure alcohol and drugs are not available to youth in their homes.

Get to know the parents of your (pre)teen’s friends and share contact information to stay informed.

Keep the conversation going as youth get older, their risk for use increases and it may affect their plans for college, military, or professions that require licensure / certifications.

For more information visit www.cascobaycan.org or your local library for books on parenting tips and tips for raising a substance-free teen donated by Casco Bay CAN.



Library

From time to time, the library is not open after school.  Please watch the calendar on the HMS website, as well as the Daily Bulletin.  We will have any after-school closings announced well in advance, although sometimes situations occur that cause us to cancel on short notice. On the following dates the library will be closed: October 2, October 13-16, October 21-22, October 30, November 2-5, November 18 and December 16.


Close Buy Catalog
Please take a moment to check out the exciting offerings in this year's Close Buy catalog, featuring local goods which make perfect gifts for yourself or others! Orders will be shipped to school for free, in time for the winter holidays, or ship directly to others for a small shipping fee. And the best part: our schools receive 30% of the sales.

Sale ends October 4th so shop soon! Go to www.closebuycatalog.com and be sure to enter "Yarmouth PTO" at checkout. Feel free to forward to family and friends that may want to support our schools as well while shopping for original, local goods. Anyone can order and have items shipped to your child at school (if they check out under child's name) or else shipped right to themselves.

Spread the word, happy shopping and as always, thanks for supporting your PTO.

Lost and Found
With the cold mornings and warm afternoons, the Lost and Found is rapidly gathering sweatshirts and jackets! Please remember to write your child's name on the tags in their clothes so that we can return them to their owner.   Please remember to write their name in their lunchbox and on their water bottles, as well. Please check the Lost and found tables on BOTH sides of the doors to the sixth grade hallway.

Dates of Events
September 28: Destination Imagination Information Meeting in the HMS cafeteria at 7:00PM.
October 1: 6th Grade Open House at 6:30PM.
October 5: Music Boosters Meeting at 6:00PM in the Band Room.
October 8: World Language Conferences at 2:45PM.
October 8: School Committee Meeting at 7:00PM in the Log Cabin.
October 9: Teacher Inservice - No School for Students

Enjoy the change in weather - hiking, picking apples, fairs, and of course, lawn work.


August 31, 2015

Dear Parents,

Welcome back to At-A-Glance; this is sent out every two weeks on a Friday at 2:25 PM. This would have gone out last Friday but PowerSchool was off-line for an upgrade. The purpose is to give you a snapshot of events upcoming in the next two weeks, as well as, other important information. You can always look on our webpage for events scheduled for the entire school year.

On September 1, 2, and 3 all staff will be back for inservice. We will continue our work with the Common Core State Standards, differentiation, inquiry and digital citizenship. These three days are instrumental in helping staff shift gears and be well prepared for the students' return.
 
At 6:00 PM on September 1, athletes, parents and coaches will meet. It is an expectation that athletes and parents attend this meeting. The purpose is to understand participation requirements and the Honor Code. We ask that parents log into the PowerSchool Parent Portal (please don't use your child's log in information) to fill out the information for Athletic Registration and Medical Information and submit (both are on the left).
 
Of course the big event is the opening of school on September 8. At this moment in time we will open with 500 students.

Student photos will be taken on September 10 beginning at 7:50 AM.

The School Committee has a meeting at the Log Cabin on September 10 beginning at 7:00 PM.

While recently reading the Portland Press Herald I came across two references to the end of summer. One author  remarked "With five days of August left, I can't get used to the idea that I let the season get away from me." I do hope that this does not reflect your feelings about this summer. And, another author suggested, "Savor summer's end, think soup." The soup of late that we have had is the fog and humidity; I look forward to a HMS lunch of grilled cheese and tomato soup.


June 5, 2015

Dear HMS Parents,
 
This is the final At-A-Glance for this year; we'll be back on August 28. I hope you enjoy the summer months with family, friends, and barbeques.

We hope you will participate in the final step of the 2016 school budget approval process: 
After approval at Town Meeting, the budget referendum will be held on Tuesday, June 9 at the Boyd AMVETS center between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. We encourage all voters in town to stop by to cast their ballot on that date. 

HMS is on Twitter. To follow us visit https://twitter.com/YarmouthHMS and click Follow.


Bag Lunch - On the last day of school, June 17, students will dismissed at 11:00. A bag lunch is available to any student who would like to purchase one. The June menu on the nutrition website will have the order form.

All items not claimed in the lost and found will be donated to Goodwill on June 26th.
 
Upcoming:
June 9: PTO at 7:00 pm in the YES library.
 
June 10: 5th Grade Boston Field Trip leaving at 7:15 am, returning at 6:15 pm: Rollins and Smith classes.

June 10: 8th Grade Civil Right's Night at 7:00 pm.
 
June 11: 5th Grade Boston Field Trip leaving at 7:15 am, returning at 6:15 pm: Conley,  Greely Jagolinzer and Shaw classes.
 
June 12: School Committee at 8:00 am. at the Log Cabin.
 
June 12: 4th Grade Step-Up at 9:50 am.
 
June 12: 8th Grade Step-Up at 11:45. Students will end their day at YHS.
 
June 15: Yearbook Assembly at 7:50.
 
June 16: 8th Grade Field Trip to Range Pond leaving at 8:00 am and returning at 2:10 pm.
 
Thank you for another successful year at HMS. You sent us children who were eager to learn and we saw significant academic, social and emottional growth. It's always a bitter-sweet time as we bid farewell to our 8th grade students and welcome a new group of 5th grade students.


May 22, 2015

Dear Parents,

We are in the testing mode with required state standardized assessments. It does take time and leaves less for making news, so this is an At-A-Glance light.

However, it's Memorial Day on Monday and there is a parade in town featuring the YES, HMS and YHS bands.

We are continuing placing students for next year. Student 2015-2016 schedules will be available on PowerSchool on June 22.

We hope you will participate in the final two steps of the 2016 school budget approval process:  

1. The Yarmouth Town Meeting will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 2 at Harrison Middle School.  Please come and cast your vote on the school budget, which will then be sent to referendum.

2.  After approval at Town Meeting, the budget referendum will be held on Tuesday, June 9 at the Boyd AMVETS center between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m.  We encourage all voters in town to stop by cast their ballot on that date. 

Upcoming events include:
esday, Ju
May 25: Memorial Day - No School

May 28: Grade 5 Great American Night at 6:00 PM

May 28: 4th Grade to 5th Grade Parent Night at 6:30 PM

May 28: School Committee meeting at the Log Cabin at 7:00 PM

June 2: Town Meeting at HMS at 6:00 PM

June 4: Hannaford Gift Card Money due

May 8, 2015

Dear HMS Parents,

Several staff members have joined a HMS Book Group to read  I Read It, But I Don't Get It - Comprehension Strategies for Adolescent Readers by Cris Tovani. She shares six signals for students to look for when reading. You might find these useful when asking your child(ren) about their reading. Instead of "How is it going?" maybe "What do you see when you read?

Six signals to look for when they read:  
  1. The voice inside the reader’s head isn’t interacting with the text. Readers have two types of voices in their head as they read.  One is them reciting the text. The other has a conversation with the text, in a sense talking back to the words on the page. Sometimes it asks questions. It can agree or disagree with the content. This voice interacts with the ideas on the page. When readers only hear themselves saying the words, they are confused or bored and won’t remember what they have read.
  2. The camera inside the reader’s head shuts off. Good readers have a video camera playing inside their head as they read. When the camera shuts off and the reader can no longer get a visual image from the words, it is an indication that meaning has been interrupted.
  3. The reader’s mind begins to wander. Good readers catch themselves when they are thinking about something unrelated to the text. Thinking about something far removed from the material is a signal that readers must reconnect with their reading.
  4. The reader can’t remember what has been read. Good readers can usually retell some part of what they have read. If they can’t remember anything at all, it is a signal they need to go back and repair meaning.
  5. Clarifying questions asked by the reader are not answered. Good readers ask literal questions to clarify meaning.  When these questions don’t get answered, it is an indication that the reader needs more background knowledge or is not focused on the text.
  6. The reader reencounters a character and has no recollection when that character was introduced. Good readers keep track of characters and know who they are.  When a reader reencounters a character and has no recollection who that character is, it is a signal that the reader wasn’t paying attention and needs to repair something that has caused meaning to break down.

Not to begin too early but the last day of school is Wednesday, June 17. Students will be dismissed at 11:00 AM. We will be offering a bag lunch for sale - RSVP please.

MEA testing begins next week with Grades 5 and 8. Please remind your child(ren) to bring ear buds, headphones, etc.; they are needed for the English-Language Arts part of the test.

May 14: Assembly with Julia Clukey, a 2010 Olympian in the sport of luge and training and competing for the 2018 games. The presentation includes topics about setting goals, overcoming adversity and making good decisions.

May 15: 7/8 Grade Dance from 6:30 to 8:30 PM.

May 16: Community Begins Here: Public Works Open House, 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM, at 56 North Road. Equipment displays, Food Drive for Yarmouth Food Pantry, Door Prizes, Free Food.

May 17: The Football Boosters and Coaches will be hosting a Football Info Night in the HMS cafeteria from 5:30 – 7:30pm for the current 6th and 7th grade students.

The sun and warm weather have re-energized students and staff for the remaining few weeks of school.



April 24, 2015

Dear HMS Parents,

It's the final day of the spring break; I hope that parents and students enjoyed the time together.

This spring, our 5-8 students will be taking a series of different standardized state tests, that have replaced the former NECAP (New England Common Assessment Program). For many years, students have taken these standardized tests in the fall and spring. The replacement is called the Maine Educational Assessment designed by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. In addition to this assessment students in Grade 5 and 8 will take the MEA Science assessment that has been given for many years. I will be sending you an informational letter next week.

The Lost and Found will be donated on May 8. Please feel free to check out the piles in the main lobby. Clothing with student names will be returned to the students.

Upcoming:

April 28: 8th Grade Parent Night in the YPAC at 7:00 PM. You are invited to a program designed to answer your questions about transition to high school.

April 30: Jazz Concert in the HMS Cafeteria at 6:30 PM.

May 5: 5/6 Spring Concert in the YPAC at 6:30 PM.

May 6: 7/8 Spring Concert in the YPAC at 7:00 PM.


April 10, 2015

Dear HMS Parents,

We are nearing the process for developing the Yarmouth School System's Strategic Plan. The final Community Forum begins at 6:30 PM on April 13 at YHS. If you would like the most current update, please go to this website https://sites.google.com/a/yarmouthschools.org/yarmouth-school-department/contact-information?pli=1,
which contains agendas and minutes from all of our meetings.

Attendance and Education: Research has clearly shown that regular attendance has a significant effect on student’s success as a learner. Instruction is built upon prior knowledge, and each day that a student misses school, s/he is missing pieces of instruction that are needed to support future learning. It is difficult, and almost impossible, for teachers to go back and recreate the instructional experience for a student who has missed a particular day of instruction. Thank you for being diligent about your child/ren's attendance.

Casco Bay Can is sponsoring a Drug Take-Back Day on Saturday, April 25 from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM at the Yarmouth Police Station. Often times, drugs end up in our waterways if disposed of improperly by flushing them down the toilet or washing them down the drain. Unwanted or expired prescription drugs can be dangerous if left in the medicine cabinet. The Drug Take-Back program is an opportunity to safely dispose of potentially dangerous prescription drugs, protecting families from potential misuse and also protecting our rivers, lakes, groundwater, or other water sources. 
 
Yet once again, we heartily thank the HMS PTO and parents for the wonderful luncheon on Friday, April 3, organized by Kathy Dettmann.

The first annual School Quality Survey
will be open through Monday, April 13, and the results will be shared through our Annual Report. Students at Harrison Middle School will  complete the student portion of the survey at school. Please click on this link http://goo.gl/forms/x21uIPWDhe to begin the survey.

SCHOOL CALENDAR

Community Forum for Yarmouth School System's Strategic Plan is 6:30 at YHS on April 13.

HMS School Physicals: Medical students from the New England College of Osteopathic Medicine, supervised by Dr. James Donahue, will be providing physicals to students at HMS on Tuesday, April 14th. If your child plans to participate in a sport during the coming year, she/he will need proof of a physical exam in order to play. This school physical will meet the requirements of our athletic participation policy (physical exam every 2 years) at NO COST TO YOU.

No school on April 17, as well as, the week of April 20 to 24 for Spring Break.

Whether you travel or stay locally, we all hope that you enjoy your time with family and friends.


March 27, 2015

Dear HMS Parents,

The Harrison Middle School athletic participation numbers show an upward numbers trend. In other words, each year for the past three years have shown an increase in the number of students who participate in the HMS athletic program. There is significant educational research stating that participation in the extra-curricular program supports and encourages students to be academically successful. If we added in participation from the non-athletic extra-curricular HMS offerings, the numbers are that much higher. We do have an involved and academically successful student body.

Upcoming Events:

March 30 - April 3: Makerspace- During the week of March 30-April 3, the HMS Library will briefly take on a new look as Makerspace makes its now-annual appearance for fifth grade students.  The books will still be there, but the tables will be filled with wood scraps, drills, ping pong balls, discarded phonographs, and everything in between.  Makerspace began with a YEF grant in 2013, giving students an opportunity to MAKE, CREATE, TINKER, CRAFT, BUILD, PLAY, & COLLABORATE.  Past Makerspaces at HMS have been very successful, and we expect the same to be true this year!. The HMS Library will not be open after school the week of March 30th through April 3rd due to MakerSpace. 

March 30: Healthy Choices-Casco Bay CAN in collaboration with Falmouth and Yarmouth school districts invite parents and students to hear from Chris and Kathi Sullivan through a powerful presentation on healthy choices.  Chris is a former NFL player and his wife Kathi lost their daughter in tragic accident several years ago. They will emphasize how to effectively communicate with youth, the skills needed to live drug and alcohol free and their own life lessons. The presentation will be at Falmouth High School on Monday, March 30th from 6:30-7:30 PM.

April 1: Active Parenting Class with school counselor, Laura Mike, at 6:30 PM.

April 3: Teacher Luncheon sponsored by the 5-8 PTO.

April 3: End of Third Quarter

April 7: K-8 PTO Meeting at YES at 7:00 PM.

April 8: 6th Grade World's Fair at 6:30 PM.

April 9: Hannaford Gift Card Money due at noon.

April 9: School Committee Meeting at Log Cabin at 7:00 PM.

April 10: 7/8 Dance sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser at 6:30 to 8:30 PM.

At-A-Glance in Advance: Beginning May 11 through the end of the month students will be taking the Maine Educational Assessment. Each student will need headphones; these can be any headphones with a mini-plug connection (like the ones used on cell phones, iPods, etc.) It's essential that students bring these for the assessment.



March 13, 2015


Dear HMS Parents,

I hope that you are enjoying the extra day with your children.

We began the Inservice Day with a session on Executive Functioning - A set of capacities housed in the frontal lobe of the brain that help us plan and complete tasks, control emotional behavior and sustain attention. Our focus was:
  • Identify the cause - which executive skill is contributing to the problem? We went into greater depth with the 11 EF skills.
  • Think about the way to teach the skill? Staff discussed how to do this.
  • All EF skills develop at different stages. EF skills take 25 years to fully mature and develop.

The following are EF resources:

Executive Skills in Children and Adolescents by Peg Dawson and Richard Guare
SOAR Study Skills: A Simple and Efficient System for Earning Better Grades in Less Time by Susan Woodcock Kruger
Executive Function in the Classroom by Christopher Kaufman
Executive Function in Education by Lynn Meltzer
Smart but Scatttered by Peg Dawson and Richard Guare
Brain Rules by John Medina

In the next two weeks:

March 18 - Active Parenting Class at 6:30.

March 19 - Trimester Two grades available at 2:25. This week teachers are entering comments and final grades for the 2nd trimester.There are usually a lot of changes in PowerGrade during this time. If you are checking and have a question, I suggest that you wait until the end of the week at 2:25 when all comments and grades are updated and accurate to ask any question that you might have.

March 23 - Spring Sports Information Night at 6:00.

March 25 - Active Parenting Class at 6:30.

March 26 - Hannaford Gift Card Money Due at 12:00 Noon.

March 26 - School Committee Meeting at 7:00.

March 27 - 7/8 Dance at 6:30.

February 13, 2015

Dear Parents,

If you ski downhill or through the woods, ice skate, toboggan, snowshoe, snowmobile or look forward to moving snow from one place to another, we have the winter for you. Some of our families have said enough is enough, we are going to warmer climates during the winter break. The rest of us are staying home or going to the mountains to enjoy this snow. Currently the last day of school is June 17 with March and April yet to weigh in on that date. But, who's complaining; it's Maine and we love it.

February 14 is Valentine's Day. The HMS PTO celebrated this today with "sweets and treats" at HMS before we left for the winter break.

February 16-20 is the Winter Break so there is no school.

February 23-27 is HMS Spirit Week. You can find more information at http://hms.yarmouthschools.org/ under the School Calendar.

    Monday:  Dress in Blue & White (Spirit day)
    Tuesday: Dress Wacky (hair & clothing)
    Wednesday: Dress in the style of your favorite Foreign Country/Culture
    Thursday: Dress like a Mainer (plaid/flannel clothing, LL Bean boots/clothing, fishing/lobster clothing)
    Friday: Dress Like someone you like or admire (book character, movie character, superhero, your favorite teacher, a police person,  etc.....)

February 24 is the Human Development Preview for 5th grade parents beginning at 6:00 PM.

February 24 is Parent Information Night, 7:00-8:30 PM, Yarmouth Performing Arts Center (YPAC) at Yarmouth High School for 8th grade parents.  You are invited to come to hear about the entire transition process for your son or daughter and to learn about the academic program at Yarmouth High School. For more information check http://hms.yarmouthschools.org/ under the School Calendar.

February 26 is the Active Parenting Class at 6:30 PM. If you are interested, contact Laura Mike, HMS School Counselor.

February 26 is the School Committee Meeting at the Log Cabin at 7:00 PM.

February 27 is a 7/8 Grade Dance sponsored by Mr. Hagerty, 7th grade teacher, as a fund raiser.


January 30, 2015

Dear Parents,

I cannot remember the last time that school was canceled for two consecutive days; at this moment in time the last day of school will be Tuesday, June 16. I suppose we should not be alarmed as February is Maine's snowiest month closely followed by March.

Morning Drop-Off is always important but with the snow piling up it becomes that much more important. Please follow these procedures to maximize safety:

  1. After pulling around the small circle to the stop sign, proceed to the next stop sign or behind the next automobile before dropping your child off.
  2. A school bus dropping off students will have its flashing lights on, but far enough back for you to pull out for drop off.
  3. Please respect the Bus Only zone by not driving around the large circle until after 7:25.
Indoor Track and Swimming Information Night - February 2 at 6:00 PM at the middle school. This meeting is for athletes, parents and coaches. It is an expectation that athletes and parents attend this meeting. The purpose is to understand participation requirements and  the Honor Code.

Speech and Debate Meet - Wednesday, February 4 at @ Cape Elizabeth Middle School. The team will be dismissed at 2:15 and return at 6:30.

Hannaford Gift Card Money - due by noon on February 5.

DII Honors Vocal Festival - On Friday, February 6 at Portland High School students practice. On Saturday, February 7 the concert will be at 3:00 at Portland High School.

K-8 PTO Meeting - February 10 at 7:00 PM in the YES library.

Cumberland County Spelling Bee - The date of the County-Wide Spelling Bee is February 11th, with a snow date of February 12th. The time: 6:00-8:30 PM at the Falmouth Middle School.

School Committee Meeting - February 12 at 7:00 PM in the Log Cabin.


January 16, 2015


Dear HMS Parents,

We are proud to share that Morgan Cuthbert, 7th grade mathematics/science teacher has been selected as a Finalist for the 2015 Shell Science Teaching Award. The next and final step in the judging process is the site visit that will take place on February 2, 2015 with members of the Shell Science Teaching Award Judging Panel.

Martin Luther King Day: January 19 - No School

Speech and Debate Meet: January 20 at NYA

Geo(graphy) Bee: January 21 at 1:40. The finalists from the 7th and 8th grade will compete to become the school champion.

School Committee Meeting: January 22 at the Log Cabin at 7:00

7/8 Dance: January 23 in the HMS cafeteria - Sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser.

5/6 Math Meet:  January 27 at the Holiday Inn by the Bay from 9:00 to Noon.

Speech and Debate Meet: January 28 at Cape Elizabeth Middle School from 2:15 to 6:30.

DII District Instrumental Festival: On Friday and Saturday, January 30-31, select 7th and 8th grade instrumentalist from HMS will attend the District II Honors Instrumental festival. We are proud to have students accepted into this festival and know the experience will be a wonderful one for both students and music teachers alike.

Polar Plunge:Yarmouth Swim Boosters would like to invite any students interested to their Polar Plunge on January 31st: 10:00 AM at Sandy Point Beach.

For more detailed information about the above, please consult the School Calendar on the HMS website.


January 5, 2015

Dear HMS Parents,

It is a Happy New Year - PowerSchool is up and running after being down since last week. This Power Announcement should have gone out last Friday.

Anyway, Happy New Year and welcome back to HMS. If you made a resolution or two, may your resolve be as powerful as your resolution. Casco Bay Create Awareness Now (CAN) shares these:
  • Eat nutritious foods- Have well-balanced meals containing proteins, vegetables and whole grains for carbohydrates. Plan and prepare your meals with youth.
  • Exercise regularly- Aim to exercise thirty minutes a day, five times per week. Have set times for everyone to exercise together.
  • Get enough sleep- Most adults need 7-8 hours of sleep each night, youth need even more with 9-10 hours each night. Limit TV, video game, cell phone and computer time and set a time for lights out.
  • Regular checkups- Have regular checkups to help find possible problems before they start and help your chances of living a longer, healthier life. Be sure youth are on a regular checkup schedule every year.
  • Enjoy alcohol-free activities- Show youth that you can have fun without alcohol. Plan family outings or take time to play a game with them.
  • Spend time with family/friends- Have a daily connection with a family member or close friend. Youth will see that consistent interpersonal relationships lead to a happier life.
Winter Sports Night: Monday, January 5 at 6:00 PM for 7/8 Boy's Basketball in the Band Room. This meeting is for athletes, parents and coaches. It is an expectation that athletes and parents attend this meeting. The purpose is to understand participation requirements and  the Honor Code. Team tryouts are January 5 & 6 at 4:00 PM.

Speech & Debate Meet: Wednesday, January 14 at 3:00 PM at NYA. Parents will pick up at 5:00.

School Committee Meeting: Thursday, January 8 at 7:00 PM at the Log Cabin.

Community Forum on Strategic PlanningMonday, January 12 at 6:30 at Yarmouth High School. At this meeting we will unveil the process by which we will develop our five-year plan. Attendees will participate in small-group discussions, sharing their thoughts on the schools’ strengths, challenges, and opportunities. This is the first of two public forums we will hold on this topic, with the second coming later in the spring.

PTO Hannaford Gift Card Money: Due on January 15 by 12:00 PM.

HMS Blog: HMS News (Blog) is another great source of information with text and pictures.  HMS Newsletter (Blog) address: http://hmsnewsletter.blogspot.com/





December 5, 2014

Dear HMS Parents,

And I thought Thanksgiving came quickly, this is the final At-A-Glance for 2014; whoever said that time flies was not kidding. Even so, the teaching and learning that has been accomplished this fall is remarkable. This past Wednesday I "covered" an 8th grade math class while the teacher observed and learned from another 8th grade math teacher - this innovative technique is well supported by educational research and was organized by our math lead teacher. So, the students were immersed in finding the areas of regular and irregular shapes, a building block leading to the Pythagorean Theorem. This is just the tip of the iceberg that I see everyday at HMS.

Back to time, the Winter Break begins on December 22 and lasts until January 2. School will begin again on January 5. Casco Bay Can (Create Awareness Now) shared this December Tip of the Month designed to keep youth engaged this holiday season:

    Plan family outings- create or maintain traditions that they can look forward to
    Include youth in holiday planning and preparations- they will feel appreciated
    Spend time together playing games- turn off cell phones, TVs and computers
    Volunteer at a local organization- giving back is a gift for both the volunteer and the recipient

Portland Jazz Orchestra: As a fundraiser for the Music Boosters, the Portland Jazz Orchestra (PJO) will perform Duke Ellington's Jazz Nutcracker and other holiday favorites at YPAC on Sunday, December 7 @ 3pm.  The PJO is anchored by drummer and HMS teacher extraordinaire Brad Ciechomski!  Other details: Doors will open at 2:30pm. Tickets are $10.00 at the door. The concert will be approximately 2 hours with an intermission. Refreshments will be available. Students, parents, faculty and family are invited.

5th/6th Grade Concert: Tuesday, December 9, at 6:30 at the YPAC.

PTO Meeting: Tuesday, December 9, at 7:00 at YES.

7th/8th Grade Concert: Wednesday, December 10, at 7:00 at the YPAC.

School Committee Meeting: Thursday, December 11, at 7:00 at the Log Cabin.

7th/8th Grade Dance: Friday, December 12, at 6:30 to 8:30, in the HMS Cafeteria. Sponsored by Mr. Hagerty as a fund raiser.

5th Grade Communication Meeting: December 16, at 6:30, in the HMS Library. If you missed the 8th, 7th or 6th grade meeting, please feel free to join us.

HMS Blog: HMS News (Blog) is another great source of information with text and pictures.  HMS Newsletter (Blog) address: http://hmsnewsletter.blogspot.com/

YEF Grant Award: Pneumatics & Hydraulics: Harnessing the Power – Grade 6 STEAM (HMS) Students will be engaged in harnessing fluid power with 22 new innovative Fischertechnick Education Pneumatics kits. By working in pairs, the students will experience hands-on experiments with their models to learn pneumatics and hydraulics in a meaningful way.


November 21, 2014

Dear Parents,

It came quickly, but it is next week - Happy Thanksgiving. Two of my favorite quotes are: As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. ~John Fitzgerald Kennedy and What we're really talking about is a wonderful day set aside on the fourth Thursday of November when no one diets. I mean, why else would they call it Thanksgiving? ~Erma Bombeck.

Parent Portal: Grades close for the first trimester on November 25th. First trimester reports will be available on the PowerSchool Parent Portal on December 2nd. The portal does not close as teachers are entering final grades, comments and standards for the trimester report. Please be aware that all grade information will be edited during this time and that final reports will be completed by 2:25pm on December 2nd.

Annual Pig Race: The HMS Annual Pig Race that celebrates the end of the magazine/cookie dough/photo fund raiser is scheduled for November 25 at 1:40. The two highest selling advisory groups from each grade race until a winner is declared. Mrs. Conley and Mrs. Jagolinzer represent the 5th grade; Mr. Dehetre and Mrs. Haugevik represent the 6th grade; Mrs. Grover and Mrs. Mike represent the 7th grade; and Mrs. Fletcher and Mrs. Stuhr represent the 8th grade.

Thanksgiving Break: There will be no school on November 26, 28 and 28 for the celebration of Thanksgiving.

Lost and Found: We have huge piles of items that have accumulated on the four tables in the main lobby of the school. We do reunite students with clothing that has their name on it. After November 25, we will donate remaining items to Goodwill.

Communication: Our communication focus groups continue. We invite you to join us for a conversation on one of the grade-level evenings listed below. We'll continue to talk about what is working well and what could be improved:

December 2: We would like to meet with our 6th grade parents.
December 16: We would like to meet with our 5th grade parents.

Please feel free to join us on any or the evenings listed above, if you cannot make the grade-level specific meeting.

HMS Blog: HMS News (Blog) is another great source of information with text and pictures.  HMS Newsletter (Blog) address: http://hmsnewsletter.blogspot.com/

Speech & Debate Meet: Ms. Mike's Speech and Debate Team will have a meet at Cape Elizabeth Middle School on Wednesday, December 3, from 3:30 to 5:30.

Jazz Night: The Annual Jazz Night will be held on December 3rd at the HMS Cafe. We turn the HMS Cafe into a "Yarmouth Jazz Club" for the night. The 6th Grade Jazz band, 7/8 Jazz band and YHS jazz band will be playing music in the blues and swing styles. This December Jazz night adds the YHS group to our usual line up and offers an extra special treat for the HMS musicians and parents to hear what awaits them at YHS! The concert will begin at 7PM, with doors opening at 6:30PM. Seltzer/soft drinks will be available along with some crunchy snacks.  The concert will last about one hour, ending close to 8PM.

PTO: The K-8 PTO has three fund raisers up and running: School Directory, Hannaford's Gift Card and Innsbrook Gift Wrap. All K-8 schools have information, if you would like to participate.

Wellness: This past summer the USDA took a major step forward in releasing the Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards for all foods and beverages sold to students during the school day in vending machines, school stores, snack carts and a la carte lines, as well as through fundraising. These standards are now in effect and apply all around your school campus. An over view of the program can be found HERE .  To summarize, the first ingredient has to be either a whole grain, fruit, vegetable or protein food.  The package, not the serving size, must contain less than 200 calories.  There cannot be more than 200 mg of sodium.  The total fat content must be less than 35% of the calories.  And the total sugar must be less than 35% of the weight of the product.   To see if your snacks meets use this calculator HERE.

GMRI: The 5th Grade will be visiting the Gulf of Maine Research Institute located in Portland along the working waterfront during the first week of December.  While there students work in peer teams and rotate through four 20-minute activities at interactive digital kiosks that guide them through hands-on experiments and scientific investigations.  Students take team photographs, collect digital data and record videos of their hypotheses and conclusions.

7/8 Play: 7th and 8th grade students: Auditions for the 7th/8th grade play, The Magical Land of Oz, will be held on Monday, 12.1, in the conference room in the main office, and Wednesday, 12.3, in the cafe. Both auditions go from 2:30-4:00. Students need to attend one audition. Please stop by the main office to pick up the forms you need for the audition.

Book Group: A HMS book group recently read Building Resilience in Children and Teens: Giving Kids Roots and Wings. Although the book was written with parents as the audience, we found it a wonderful resource. The framing question was: "If we could immunize children from all disappointments and stress, would they ever have the chance to experience the satisfaction of facing a challenge, recovering, and discovering that they are able to cope with tough situations?"

11.7.2014

posted Nov 7, 2014, 11:23 AM by Bruce Brann

November 7, 2014

Dear Parents,

We are closed on Tuesday in celebration of Veterans' Day. We are moving quickly into November, the leaves are relentlessly falling, the days and nights are becoming cooler, and we can begin anticipating snow and possibly snow days. We may use Delayed Start as opposed to having no school on a snow day. If we use Delayed Start, school will begin at 9:40 - a two-hour delay - and end at 2:25, the usual end of the day.

MAP (Measures of Academic Progress): In September and May all students take the NWEA MAP in mathematics and reading.  The assessment in the fall provides teachers with a baseline for student performance.  Re-assessing in the spring measures student progress/academic growth.The latest results from this fall are available on PowerSchool.

HMS Blog: HMS News (Blog) is another great source of information with text and pictures.  HMS Newsletter (Blog) address: http://hmsnewsletter.blogspot.com/

Winter Kids: For all Maine 5th, 6th and 7th Graders - See how much fun winter can be! Skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, tubing and more. Try them all with a WinterKids Passport. WinterKids helps kids develop healthy, lifelong habits through fun, outdoor winter activity. Apply on line at WinterKids.org or pick up an application at school.

HMS Civil Rights Team: The HMS Civil Rights Team attended the Civil Rights Team Project Middle School Student Training on October 28. The theme was, "All students should feel safe, welcome, and respected in school." The day consisted of several activities: 1) Identity Inventory: What are some of the more important pieces and parts of your identity - the things that are important in terms of understanding/knowing you - the things that make you YOU. 2) Bias Behaviors: What are some things that might happen in school that would make it so that students did not feel safe, welcome, or respected based on their (or their love ones) Race and skin color, Religion, Gender, National origin and ancestry, Disabilities, and Sexual orientation. 3) Learning Gender: People think that girls/women are supposed to be...People think that boys/men are supposed to be...and Unlearning Gender: Ways that YOU show that these things aren't always true. and, 4) What do you notice in these ads? The HMS Civil Rights Team will plan several activities this year with the theme of feeling safe, welcome, and respected in school, because, unfortunately things happen so that not all students feel this way.

Lost and Found: Due to the recent cool mornings and warm afternoons that we have been experiencing,  MANY coats, jackets and sweatshirts have been left out on the playground and soccer fields. Please look through the huge piles of items that have accumulated on the TWO tables in the main lobby of the school. We do reunite students with clothing that has their name on it.

Yarmouth Music Boosters: The Portland Jazz Orchestra (PJO) will be performing Duke Ellington's Jazz Nutcracker and other holiday favorites at YPAC on Sunday, December 7 @ 3pm.  Doors will open at 2:30pm.  Tickets are $10.00 at the door.  The concert will be approximately 2 hours with an intermission.  Refreshments will be available. The PJO is anchored by PJO Jazz Drummer and HMS Teacher extraordinaire Brad Ciechomski!  Students, parents, faculty and family are invited.

Communication Survey: If you tried to open the Communication Survey results in Safari from the previous At-A-Glance, it would not open because of a temporary problem with Safari and the google doc. Please find the Survey results attached.

Fund Raiser: For parents who ordered cookie dough, we expect the delivery on Wednesday, November 19. When the date is confirmed we will let students and parents know the pick-up day and time. Thank you for the support; we continue to have coupon booklets available in the office.

Yearbooks On Sale: The 2015 HMS Yearbook pre-orders will be accepted starting November 17-21 during lunch from 10:45-12:15. Students will receive an order form from their homeroom teacher. The $25 payment can be made by check (payable to HMS), cash, or on-line at: http://jostensyearbooks.com  Order forms can be completed on-line, or submitted to the HMS Office on an on-going basis until spring. The cost will increase after March 31, 2015.  Students will receive their yearbook the last week of school. If you have questions, contact Mrs. Allen (holly_allen@yarmouthschools.org) or call 207-846-2499.

Technology: We will be hosting a team from Washington County, Maryland (not Maine) on Monday, November 10th. They will be at HMS between 8:30-10:30am. They are looking at going 1:1 and would like to see it in action at HMS. HMS recognized as an Apple Distinguished School for the past six years.

October 24, 2014

posted Nov 5, 2014, 10:44 AM by Mike Arsenault   [ updated Nov 7, 2014, 8:31 AM by Bruce Brann ]

October 24, 2014

Dear HMS Parents and Guardians,

We appreciate the value of spending the first few weeks of school establishing expectations and procedures for teaching and learning. Students and staff have moved from expectations and procedures into academic routines and we are firing on all cylinders. And, as our Superintendent reminds us, " Highly qualified staff, motivated students, and engaged parents are our greatest resources, complemented by significant instructional technology, community investment in education, and well-maintained, updated facilities."

School Safety: We are planning a Lock Down on October 29. This is part of our Emergency Management Plan to be prepared for an intruder inside of the building. The Yarmouth Police Department will join us to provided feedback on the procedure. During a lock down students stay in place and keep "low and quiet". All rooms have black out shades to use so that no one can see into the classroom. Rowe, YES and YHS will also have a lock down drill this fall.

Picture Retakes: Picture re-takes will be held on Thursday, November 13th. Students who want to have their picture re-taken have to bring their original packet/pictures to the re-take session. Students who are new to HMS need to bring an order form to the photo session. These forms are available in the main office.

Communication: We want to thank all of you who responded to the communication survey. We value your feedback and want to hear more through focus groups. In addition, I am planning to review our website this year and am looking for parent input as well. We welcome you to join us for a conversation on one of the evenings listed below. We'll talk about what is working well and what could be improved:
November 4: We would like to meet with our 8th grade parents.
November 18: We would like to meet with our 7th grade parents.
December 2: We would like to meet with our 6th grade parents.
December 16: We would like to meet with our 5th grade parents.
Bus Loop: For the safety of the students, please access the bus loop only in the morning after 7:30 and in the afternoon after 4:30. Our buses need full access to the loop to make the turn to drop-off and pick-up students. In addition, no one should be parking on the circle during school evening events in order to give access to emergency vehicles.

HMS Blog: HMS News (Blog) is another great source of information with text and pictures. Recent posts include 6th grade students studying geology, Bountiful Bowl, Maine Skaters Medal, and The European Green Crab. You can subscribe to the HMS Newsletter by filling in your email address and submitting; it's on the top right. HMS Newsletter (Blog) address: http://hmsnewsletter.blogspot.com/

New Club: The Yarmouth Education Foundation funded a grant to HMS to create a video production club. The grant included new video cameras, wireless microphones, lights and more. Students will be filming events taking place at HMS and throughout the community. All students at HMS may participate in the Yarmouth Digital Media Club. You do not need to have any movie making skills to join. Meeting Times:Tuesdays  from 2:30 - 4:00 PM in Room 206. Advisor: Mike Arsenault  To check out all the activities at HMS go to http://hms.yarmouthschools.org/activities.

Student-Teacher Interns: Stephanie Hill and Patrick Fulford from UMO will join us on October 27,  for 10 weeks. Stephanie will be working with Stephanie Robison, 6th grade language arts and social studies teacher, and Patrick will be working with Brian Skilling, 5th-8th physical education teacher.

Civil Rights Team: On October 28, the HMS Civil Rights Team will attend a day-long workshop sponsored by the Office of the Attorney General Civil Rights Team Project. This year's workshop will focus on the concept of identity. How we see ourselves? How do others see us? And what does this have to do with civil rights.
Community Forum: Casco Bay Create Awareness Now (CAN) is excited to bring you a multi-community forum for parents on social hosting laws and liabilities. The panel of presenters will provide parents with information on: Maine Laws on Social Hosting, Legal Issues / Liabilities, Youth Violations and Local Trends in Alcohol / Drug Use by Youth.
When: Wednesday, Nov. 5 from 6:30-7:30 PM
Where: Falmouth High School
FREE Multi-community event
For more information: www.cascobaycan.org

Fund Raiser: Coupon booklets are available in the HMS office. $20 cash or check made payable to HMS. Coupons good through 12/2015.
A sampling of what the coupon book contains:
Free movie & discount tickets to Cinemagic (Westbrook & Saco IMax)
Discount tickets to Regal Cinema
Free Adult All Day Lift w/purchase of Adult ticket to Mt. Abram
$10 off ski tickets at Lost Valley
Free Children's Train Ticket on Narrow Gauge Railroad
Free tickets with purchase of one adult ticket to The Gold Room Comedy Club
Free enrollment to Snap Fitness ($50 value)
Discounts at:
Big 20 Bowling Cent
er, Spare Time Bowling, Vacationland Bowling
Maine Rock Gym, Maine Indoor Carting
Jiffy Lube and Sparkle Clean Car Wash
Discounts for restaurants (specific locations):
Rustler's; Pat's Pizza, Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse, Dimitri's Brick Oven Pizzeria, India Palace, Thai 9 Restaurant, Jewel of India, Johnny Rockets, Mister Bagel, Subway, Dairy Queen, Friendly's,  Blue Wave Grille, Dunkin Donuts,  etc.
There are also discounts for National companies such as: Sears, Sherwin Williams, Hertz, Dick's Sporting Good, Bed, Bath & Beyond, The Children's Place and Sam's Club

 

Thank you,


Bruce Brann, Principal
Frank H. Harrison Middle School
220 McCartney Street
Yarmouth, ME 04096

October 10, 2014

posted Nov 5, 2014, 10:43 AM by Mike Arsenault

Dear HMS Parents and Guardians,

Another HMS school year has had a wonderful beginning; the transition from summer to school was seamless - maybe somewhat painful given the farewell to summer, but seamless.

Our 73 staff members welcomed 491 students this year. In the early 90's our enrollment was up to 550 and then it reached a low of 430 at the beginning of the 2000's. We are growing again.

I plan to send these HMS At-A-Glance emails to you every two weeks to provide the highlights of upcoming events. For much more detailed information please refer to our website, and contact us, if you have any questions. Website address:http://hms.yarmouthschools.org/

We have been using Power Announcement and PowerSchool to send our emails to you. Both have their technological challenges. As we figure this all out, please bear with us.

The HMS Newsletter (Blog) is another great source of information with text and pictures. Recent posts include Ovarian Cancer Awareness, Elaine Fletcher's featured art work, 6th grade students launching rockets, the PTO donation of t-shirts to the 8th grade, and more. You can subscribe to the HMS Newsletter by filling in your email address and submitting; it's on the top right. HMS Newsletter (Blog) address: http://hmsnewsletter.blogspot.com/

Columbus Day is October 13; it's a no school day.

Teen Read Week is October 14-17. Teen Read Week is an annual event held nationwide every October.  It's purpose: to celebrate reading!  At Harrison Middle School, this means a Literary Cafe for our teens (7th and 8th graders).  For one special week our library is transformed into a cafe-like setting, complete with lamp lighting, jazz music, food and READING!  Parents bring a wide variety of goodies - from apples to muffins - for students to enjoy while also devouringa book.  We look forward to our 9th year of celebrating in this delicious way!

Influenza Vaccination Clinic is October 14. For questions about the vaccine clinic at our school, please call Kristina Truesdale @ 846-2499.

Fundraiser Turn-In day is October 17. Our use of the money has included various assemblies; a trip to Boston for the 5th  grade; Southworth Planetarium for the 6th grade; Maine Audubon, Portland Stage Company, Lowell Historical Society, and Shakespeare presentations for the 7th grade; and Portland Stage Company, Portland Waterfront and Range Pond for the 8th grade. In addition, other classroom connected opportunities frequently pop up with guest presentations by authors and others.

Flex Time is October 20. Staff meet after school every Monday of the month, except one, for professional development that improves teaching and learning. The focus this year is differentiation, Common Core State Standards, Digital Citizenship, and the Inquiry Model.

Winter Sports Night is October 22 at 6:00 PM for only Girls Basketball and Ski Team participants and their parents. The purpose of the meeting is to understand participation requirements and  the Honor Code.

Fundraiser Turn-In day is October 24. This is the final Turn-In day.

7/8 Dance will be held on October 24, in the HMS Cafeteria from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM. The cost is $5.00. Dances are for Frank H. Harrison Middle School 7th and 8th grade students and Yarmouth 7th and 8th grade student residents attending other schools.

I hope you enjoy the upcoming long weekend.


Thank you,


Bruce Brann, Principal
Frank H. Harrison Middle School
220 McCartney Street
Yarmouth, ME 04096

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