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February 28, 2020

News & Notes

Winter Hill Eighth and First Graders Explore Sounds & Vibrations through Music

First grade students at the Winter Hill Community Innovation School (WHCIS) recently had an opportunity to learn how sound makes matter vibrate and how vibrating matter makes sound by exploring a collection of instruments. Eighth graders used a variety of instruments to demonstrate the concept to their younger peers. Eighth graders explained what their instruments were, then showed the first grade students how each instrument makes sounds, including loud and soft, high and low. As they were learning about the instrument and how it works, first graders looked for ways in which they either saw or felt the vibrations. Students were able to look inside a piano and observe the strings vibrating. They felt the drums vibrating and were able to stop the sound by touching the cymbals. They played the xylophone and were able to hear how the smaller bars make higher sounds than the larger ones. And, they were able to slide their finger up the strings on a string instrument to make higher sounds and watch the strings vibrate at different speeds depending on how thick or low the string was. This novel partnership provided WHCIS first graders with an opportunity not only to learn about sounds and vibrations, but also to explore the beauty of music-making in a unique way.

SHS Students Present Projects at 2020 Science and Engineering Fair

The 2020 Somerville High School Science and Engineering Fair took place Wednesday, February 12th. Each project followed the scientific method and/or engineering design process to investigate a scientific question of the students’ choosing. 57 students from grades 10 – 12 participated in the event, where their projects were scored by judges from Tufts University. Students who placed 1st-3rd automatically qualified to participate at the 2020 Massachusetts Region IV Science & Engineering Fair to compete with students from 17 other area schools on Friday, March 6th at Tufts University Breed Hall. Winners were as follows:  

  • 1st Place - Samantha Eatough
  • 2nd Place - Rio Hunter Black; Era Haxhimali
  • 3rd Place - Hiba Khouti & Manal Khouti; Patrick Walsh, Carmen Raftery, Louise Casparriello; Kevin Wen; Emily Howley
  • Honorable Mentions - Aidan O’Sullivan & Matteus Anell; Leensyn Rivera Asmen; Kevin Arbaiza.

Reading Buddies Support Literacy and Encourage Kindness at the East Somerville Community School

By Valquiria Gouvea, Grades 7 and 8 Social Studies Teacher, ESCS

Our Reading Buddies activity happens on half-day Wednesdays. It’s a collaboration of all teachers in Kindergarten and first, seventh, and eighth grades. The seventh grade is paired with first grade and Kindergarten with eighth grade. All students have their book bags and the older students ask which book their younger buddy would like to read. Sometimes the younger student reads to the older buddy and sometimes it’s the other way around. It is the highlight of our day to observe the kindness and attention our older students provide to our younger students.

West Somerville Math Club Team Places in Top 10 at Mathcounts Competition

Earlier this month, the West Somerville Neighborhood School four-member middles grades team of Samuel Pahk, Aneurin Hullah, Sahai Virk, and Ultraviolet Gates participated in the 2020 MetroNorth Chapter Mathcounts Competition. Under the guidance of their coach, Elizabeth Gates, the WSNS team posted an impressive performance, finishing 9th out of 20 teams, in the competition. Learn more about this event in a recent article in The Somerville Times: https://www.thesomervilletimes.com/archives/97562.

What's Happening  

SHS Art Major Foundations Class hosts Public Art Exhibition at SPL – Wednesday, March 4

SHS's Art Major Foundations Class will be hosting their first Public Art Exhibition at the Somerville Public Library on Wednesday, March 4, 2020. Students from the Art Major Foundations course will host from 9:10-9:45 am. The artwork will be on display for the month of March in the Library's Auditorium. These Foundations students applied and were selected to exhibit. Their group show is titled" "Paint The Music". Each student selected their own song, interpreted the sound, lyrics harmonies and melodies into a visual language of painting, and created an original composition on top of a vinyl record. Students also incorporated a variety of Highlander Habits in this Art Project including: Collaboration, Professionalism, Critical and Creative Thinking, Emotional Wellness and Post-Secondary Readiness. Please join in celebration their success next Wednesday, March 4th, at the Somerville Public Library!

SHS Latin Dance Night – Thursday, March 5, 6-8:30pm

Students and families – do you love to dance? Do you want to learn some awesome Latin dances? Please come to the SHS Latin Dance night, which will be held in the high school cafeteria Thursday, March 5, from 6-8:30.There will be dancing, dance lessons, and food.  All proceeds will support the SHS service-learning trip to Puerto Rico. Tickets are $10 per adult, $5 per student. All ages welcome. Tickets can be purchased ahead of time by scanning the QR code; tickets will also be available at the door. For more information, please contact Steve Ensdorf (sensdorf@k12.somerville.ma.us) or Alicia Kersten (akersten@k12.somerville.ma.us).

Parks & Recreation 2020 City-Wide Swim Meet – Sunday, March 8, 9am-noon

The 2020 Parks & Recreation City-wide Swim Meet takes place on Sunday, March 8, 9:00am to noon at the Kennedy Pool (5 Cherry St.). Students in grades 1-8 who signed up to compete will be competing in age-appropriate categories (1-5 and 6-8) in the backstroke, freestyle/crawl stroke, breaststroke, or butterfly events. Stop in for this free family event and cheer on your favorite swimmer(s).

Save the Date – 2020 Summer Camp and Activities Fair – Tuesday, March 10, 5:30-7pm

The 2020 Summer Camp and Activities Fair takes place on Tuesday, March 10, 5:30-7:00pm at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross St.). Somerville families are invited to stop by to learn about summer camps, recreational activities, and other summer learning opportunities in Somerville and the surrounding community. Program representatives will be on hand to share information and answer questions about their respective programs. This is a free family event. Pizza will be available for purchase at the event. Question? Visit https://somerville.k12.ma.us/ActivitiesFair to learn more, or call (617) 629-5476.

Somerville Public Schools Job Fair – Saturday, April 4, 10am-1pm

Have you ever thought about working for Somerville Public Schools? Join us for the annual SPS Job Fair on April 4, 2020 from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm at the East Somerville Community School, 50 Cross Street, Somerville, MA 02145. This will be an opportunity to meet representatives from district departments and schools and to learn more about our district. We encourage attendees to bring multiple copies of their resume. Please visit the Human Resources page to learn more about this and other job fairs: https://somerville.k12.ma.us/SPSJobFairs.

Upcoming School & District Events:

Visit www.somerville.k12.ma.us and click on the “calendar” link at the top of the page for a list of upcoming activities in our schools and in our District this month.

  • Monday, March 2, 9:15am: Tufts Lord Barnum Players perform Romeo and Juliet for Argenziano 4th and 5th graders, at the Argenziano School (290 Washington St.); sponsored by the Argenziano PTA Arts Council
  • Monday, March 2, 6:00-8:00pm: Somerville SEPAC Workshop on Meeting the Needs of Children with Autism, at the West Somerville Neighborhood School Cafeteria (177 Powder House Blvd.)
  • Tuesday, March 3, 6:30pm: El Sistema Somerville March Concert & Celebration, at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross St.)
  • Wednesday, March 4, 9:00am-1:00pm: Argenziano 5th Grade Field Trip to Longfellow House in Cambridge
  • Thursday, March 5, 8:30-11:00am: Argenziano 6th-8th Grade Cyber Safety Workshop at the Argenziano School (290 Washington St.)
  • Thursday, March 5, 2:45-5:15pm: Brown School Parent/Teacher Conferences (201 Willow Ave.)
  • Thursday, March 5, 5:15-5:45pm: Brown School PTA Meeting (201 Willow Ave.)

Upcoming School Committee Meetings:

Find the complete School Committee schedule, agendas and meeting minutes (as approved) online at www.somerville.k12.ma.us/school-committee.

  • Monday, March 9, 6:00-7:00pm: Rules Management Subcommittee Meeting at the City Council Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Ave.)
  • Monday, March 9, 7:00-9:30pm: Regular School Committee Meeting at the City Council Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Ave.)
  • Wednesday, March 11, 7:00-8:00pm: Finance and Facilities Meeting of the Whole at the Central Office Main Conference Room (8 Bonair St., 2nd floor)
  • Monday, March 23, 6:00-7:00pm: Educational Programs and Instruction Subcommittee Meeting at the City Council Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Ave.)
  • Monday, March 23, 7:00-9:30pm: Regular School Committee Meeting at the City Council Chambers, Somerville City Hall (93 Highland Ave.)
  • Wednesday, March 25, 6:00-7:00pm: Finance and Facilities Meeting of the Whole at the Central Office Main Conference Room (8 Bonair St., 2nd floor)
  • Wednesday, March 25, 7:00-8:00pm: Long Range Planning Subcommittee Meeting at the Central Office Main Conference Room (8 Bonair St., 2nd floor)

Somerville Family Learning Collaborative Workshops, Events, and Resources:

Find a complete list of SFLC events and workshops at www.somerville.k12.ma.us/families.

The Somerville Family Learning Collaborative (SFLC) enhances the capacity of families and schools to support children’s learning and well-being by collaborating with community partners and promoting welcoming, responsive schools and programs. Take a look at the work and impact of the SFLC “by the numbers” in this 2018-2019 report.

In This Together: A Support Group. Somerville Public Schools and City of Somerville employees who have young children are invited to this free support group. Join other working parents, fellow school and city employees, to share ideas, frustrations, resources, and more. This group is facilitated by Amy Bamforth, LICSW and will meet one Friday a month from 3:00-4:00pm: February 28, March 27, April 17, and May 22 at the SFLC Center in the Cummings School Building (42 Prescott St.)

Early Childhood Health and Mental Health. Join Somerville’s Early Childhood Advisory Council (ECAC) on Tuesday, March 3, from 10:00-11:30am for a conversation on the “Landscape of Somerville’s Early Childhood Health and Mental Health” with early childhood advocates, providers and partners. SFLC Center at the Cummings School Building (42 Prescott St.)

Summer Camp and Activities Fair. Learn about summer camps, recreational and learning opportunities for Somerville youth at this informational fair co-sponsored by the Somerville Family Learning Collaborative and SomerPromise. Representatives from various organizations in Somerville and the surrounding area will be on hand to share information and answer questions. Tuesday, March 10, 5:30-7pm at the East Somerville Community School (50 Cross St.)

Basic Rights: Understanding the IEP. Join the Somerville Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SSEPAC) for a workshop presented by the Federation for Children with Special Needs. The workshop focuses on the Individualized Education Plan (IEP), how a plan is developed, the IEP process, and why a plan is important in supporting a student with special needs. Thursday, March 12, 6:30-8pm at the West Somerville Neighborhood School (177 Powder House Blvd.)

Looking Ahead:

  • Monday, March 9, 3:00pm: SHS Spring Sport Medical Clearance & Screening – Softball @ 3pm, Baseball @ 4pm, Ultimate Frisbee @ 5pm (freshmen and new players), at Somerville High School (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Tuesday, March 10, 3:00pm: SHS Spring Sport Medical Clearance & Screening – Boys’ Outdoor Track & Field @ 3pm, Boys’ Volleyball @ 4pm, Girls’ Tennis @ 5pm, at Somerville High School (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Tuesday, March 10, 5:30-7:00pm: ESCS School Improvement Council Meeting at the East Somerville Community School Library (50 Cross St.)
  • Tuesday, March 10, 5:30-7:00pm: Argenziano School Council Meeting at the Argenziano School (290 Washington St.)
  • Tuesday, March 10, 6:00-7:30pm: Winter Hill School Governing Board Meeting at the Winter Hill Community Innovation School (115 Sycamore St.)
  • Wednesday, March 11, 3:00pm: SHS Spring Sport Medical Clearance & Screening – Girls’ Outdoor Track & Field @ 3pm, Crew @ 4pm, Boys’ Tennis @ 5pm, at Somerville High School (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Wednesday, March 11: Half-Day Wednesday for PK-8 (PK dismissed at 11:30am; K-8 dismissed at noon)
  • Wednesday, March 11: Next Wave/Full Circle Roller Skating
  • Wednesday, March 11: WSNS PTA-Sponsored Spirit Day at the West Somerville Neighborhood School (177 Powder House Blvd.)
  • Wednesday, March 11, 8:30-11:00am: SHS Annual Choral Festival at the Somerville High School Auditorium (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Thursday, March 12, 3:00pm: SHS Spring Sport Medical Clearance & Screening – Boys’ Lacrosse @ 3pm, Girls’ Lacrosse @4pm, Ultimate Frisbee @ 5pm (returning athletes), at Somerville High School (81 Highland Ave.)
  • Thursday, March 12, 6:00-8:00pm: Somerville SEPAC Basic Right Workshop – Understanding the IEP, at the West Somerville Neighborhood School Cafeteria (177 Powder House Blvd.)
  • Friday, March 13 (tentative): SHS Sophomore / Junior Semi-Formal event
  • Friday, March 13, 8:15-9:00am: WSNS PTA-Sponsored Coffee Hour in Room 222 at the West Somerville Neighborhood School (177 Powder House Blvd.)
  • Friday, March 13, 8:30-11:30am: Argenziano 4th Grade Field Trip to Boston Symphony Hall
  • Friday, March 13: Brown School Museum of Science Overnight event

Community News & Events

Debate Spaces. Somerville middle schoolers (grades 6-8) are invited again this year to participate in workshops to help them become powerful public speakers and debaters. Hosted by Debate Spaces, an award-winning, Harvard-affiliated non-profit, workshops will take place on February 29th, March 14th, and April 11th, 10-2:30 p.m. at Suffolk University. Past workshops have included students from the Argenziano and East Somerville Community School. Students will participate in skill-building games, a debate round, and community activism projects. Most students attend all three sessions though it is possible to attend only one or two. Scholarships available. No prior public speaking or debate experience is necessary. For more information, visit www.debatespaces.org, or email info@debatespaces.org.

Somerville Education Foundation (SEF) - Celebrating the Arts, Friday, March 13th, 6:30-9:30 p.m. Tired of winter? Come on out with your friends and celebrate the arts at SEF's first fundraiser night at Warehouse XI in Union Square! See mini performances by Somerville High School's dance team and Highlander Theatre Co. Entry ticket: $20 in advance on Eventbrite or $25 at the door. Details, updates, and ticket link at https://www.facebook.com/events/893110277874566/ Questions? Email: somervilleedfoundation@gmail.com

The Boil Down at The Growing Center. The Friends of the Community Growing Center’s volunteers have been busy tapping local sugar maple trees and collecting their sap across the Tufts University campus. Join them on Saturday, March 7, 10am-12pm for the Boil Down – a FREE event for all – and experience the process of boiling sap into maple syrup! Taste fresh local syrup, learn how to make your own, and connect with other folks in the community! The Boil Down will take place at the Somerville Community Growing Center, located at 22 Vinal Ave., just outside Union Square. (Rain date is March 14, 10am-12pm). Learn more about The Growing Center at www.thegrowingcenter.org.

Silent No More. The Adi and Jerry Greenberg Foundation and CICA presents a No Limits Production of Silent No More on Saturday, March 7th, 7:30pm at the Regent Theater (7 Medford St. in Arlington, MA). The production features a collection of inspiring life stories by individuals with hearing loss. Tickets are $25. For seat reservation for ASL Interpreters and Captioning, please email rsvp@nolimitsfordeafchildren.org. For more information, visit http://regenttheatre.com/details/no_limits_presents..._silent_no_more.   

The Duhamel Star. Is there someone in the Somerville Public Schools that you would like to celebrate? The Duhamel Education Initiative (DEI) invites you to recognize them with a Duhamel Star – a certificate of appreciation given as a donation to DEI in the honoree’s name. You can express your gratitude with a personal message and grow student engagement in SPS through your donation to DEI’s grant fund. Duhamel Stars can be purchased at any time. For more information and to order a Duhamel Star, visit www.duhamelsomerville.org/duhamel-star.html#/.

Somerville Parks & Recreation. Check out the Somerville Parks and Recreation Department website (www.somervillerec.com) for information about their February Vacation Floor Hockey program, and other programs and events available this winter. A full list of classes, clinics, events, youth and adult league sports, and activities, as well as cost for each is available at http://www.somervillerec.com/info/activities/default.aspx?type=activities.

Girls Who Code Club @ Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Want to build your own cool apps? Dana Farber Cancer Institute is hosting a Girls Who Code Club for 3rd-5th graders on Thursdays, 5-7pm from March 12-May 14. The Club meets at 450 Brookline Ave. in Boston. Register at hq.girlswhocode.com, Club Code is MA15225. The free curriculum for 3rd-5th graders centers around the book “Learn to Code and Change the World”. Facilitators are DCFI women who code.

City & District Employment Opportunities

Consider joining a winning team! Current city and district opportunities include:

  • Talent Acquisition Manager, Personnel Department, City of Somerville
  • Assistant Purchasing Director, Purchasing Department, City of Somerville
  • Culinary Coordinator, Somerville Arts Council, City of Somerville
  • Traffic Engineer, Engineering Department, City of Somerville

Visit https://www.somervillema.gov/jobs for a complete listing of current open positions in the City of Somerville.

  • Boys Ultimate Frisbee Coach, Athletics Department - Somerville High School, Somerville Public Schools
  • Long-term Substitute Teacher – Social Studies, Somerville High School, Somerville Public Schools
  • Full-time Lead Teacher, Community Schools Afterschool Program, Winter Hill Community Innovation School, Somerville Public Schools
  • Assistive Technologist – SPED Alternative Learning Environment, Special Education Department, Somerville Public Schools

Visit https://www.schoolspring.com/jobs/?employer=16902 for a complete listing of current open positions in the Somerville Public Schools.

 


Archive of this year's CONNECTIONS e-Newsletter: