November 2, 2017


This week, our middle and elementary students and families celebrated our annual Halloween parade.  Our preschoolers had a blast carving and exploring pumpkins.

If you missed all of the fun photos,you can see them here. Preschool photos are here. Or if you haven’t had a chance to watch the video of our teachers and staff dancing to Weird Al Yankovic’s Eat It, you can see it here. 

We have another amazing video of a giant tub of popcorn dancing its way through the preschool playground.  

I love that our middle school students come to our elementary/preschool campus to join in the festivities.  They were back the very next day connecting with their buddy classes in Kindergarten and 1st grade.  And they had been over to South last week supporting our fifth graders in their production of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

Fourth and fifth graders have recently visited the North middle school campus to  use our fantastic maker space and to utilize all that our expanding school has to offer.

Teacher and staff dancing to Eat It!
We love that our two campuses are becoming ever increasingly connected, and that our sixth and seventh graders have these important connections with the lower school.

In an NPR article from last week , researchers continue to claim that that students who go to a stand-alone middle school fare worse academically, socially and emotionally, compared to the kids who get to be the oldest students at K-8 schools.

A new paper in the Journal of Early Adolescence reinforces this message. The study found that starting a new school in either sixth or seventh grade hurts students' perceptions of their own reading ability and motivation to work hard in English language arts.

The study tracks nearly 6,000 students from Kindergarten through eighth grade. The authors compared the performance of students who attended a K-8 school to those who left for a middle school in sixth grade or seventh grade. They focused on outcomes by eighth grade to rule out the negative impact that may have come merely from making the transition to a new school itself.

One of our parents told me an interesting story this week from when she was driving seventh graders between campuses. The students were moaning about an assignment.  When the parent asked them how their first grade buddies were, instantly the mood changed. They exclaimed “Oh! They are so cute!” and, “I’m so happy. My buddy likes me.” They shared stories of first graders asking seventh graders to come play with them at recess and the seventh graders having to explain gently that they couldn’t today.

The parent observed that the middle school students “are so kind when they are with the little kids and they have a chance to step up in a leadership role.”

Now about that giant popcorn….

…this is must-see-TV!  School chef and events coordinator Dacia Horn made herself a fabulous homemade costume out of foam core and house insulating foam.  Watch the excitement of the preschoolers (and their teachers!) as she comes dancing across the playground.  Legendary! 

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