December 13, 2017
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Hartford Memorial Middle School Newsletter
Week of December 8, 2017


It does not look or feel much like December right now.  M blocks are still taking kids outside every day (and some kids are still participating in shorts and t-shirts...oh to be a middle schooler again!)  But it really is December and we really are just a few short weeks (and a vacation) away from the halfway point in the year.

So let me share a few highlights with you.  Recently two of our teams had the opportunity to go and see Wonder--a new release movie based on a well-loved middle school novel.  There were lots of tears and lots of profound reflections from students.  Our sixth grade band and chorus students also went this week to see Northern Stage’s production of The Little Mermaid.  We love having a chance to bring students to see staged theater, especially in our own backyard.  The 8th graders have begun visiting the HACTC as part of their impending transition to high school--those visits are always both exciting and the beginning of the first butterflies as students start to actually picture themselves making the leap across the parking lot.  All of these are just the highlights that have taken students outside the building.

Within the building we have seen students making big growth on their STAR testing from earlier this fall to now.  It is awesome to see the look of pride on a student’s face when he or she sees how their hard work is paying off.  We’ve also had the chance to witness students taking great leaps or trying new things in their education--from performing their first book talk to a class, to experimenting with hoverboards and the science behind it, to working toward greater social justice in our community, to individually designing projects in STEM.  As education continues to change, our goal is to make students partners in the learning process so that everyone is engaged and develops their own passions for learning.  I love seeing this play out in the hallways, classrooms, and community at HMMS!

Tristan Upson                                                                


HHS Screening of Star Wars

The Hartford High School Athletic Council is hosting a free screening of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens in anticipation of the release of Episode VIII: The Last Jedi.  The free screening will be in the high school auditorium from 6-9pm on Thursday, December 14th.  Refreshments will be sold at the event.  Costumes and (appropriately handled) lightsabers are encouraged.  The movie is rated PG-13.  See this flier for more information.

Second Round of STAR Testing

We are in the midst of the second round window for our STAR testing.  STAR is a reading and math assessment that students take on the computer in their classes three times a year to help us track student progress.  We use the data from the testing to make adjustments to classroom instruction, pinpoint needs for intervention and enrichment for individual students, and help to individualize learning for the needs of each kid.  We know students perform better on assessments when they are well rested and fed, so you can help us out by making sure your children get to bed on time and have breakfast in the morning!

HMMS Read-A-Thon is Here!

Every year between the Thanksgiving and Holiday breaks HMMS holds its annual read-a-thon.  During read-a-thon, students spend the first ten minutes of class reading.  As a school, we keep track of how many books are read during this time.  We also have daily trivia questions, and there are lots of book giveaways!  This year, the read-a-thon will also correspond with the HMMS book fair, so keep your ears and eyes open for more information about that!  We are always excited to see just how many books we can read at HMMS during this month.  Help your kids stock up on book ideas, and make sure they come with a book each day to dive into reading!