Folks,

The period of time from April ‘til the end of the year represents a major growth period for your young adolescents and their schooling. The curriculum in every subject and in every grade ramps up a notch, taking advantage of the developmental growth that is occurring in our students. Our 6’s are gaining more confidence in their skill sets and are attacking challenging assignments, such as the book study of Lions of Little Rock, with vigor and enthusiasm. Our 7’s are deeply engrossed in the work that they see as purposeful, which fits nicely with the UN Sustainable Initiative PBL. And our 8’s respond well to challenge and choice as evidenced by their enthusiasm with our new Robotics unit. And of course, they are beginning to outgrow us—just when they should!

In this issue you’ll hear from our Deans on cultivating leadership in the middle years, and the MS/US Nurse (about allergies) as well as learn about grade level updates and community happenings. I encourage you to “Save the Date” for the annual D-E Spring Carnival and STEM Festival on Sunday, April 29 on Leggett Field, co-hosted by our Upper School (US) student clubs and the Parents’ Association, which is a free event open to D-E families of all ages. And in the meantime enjoy the photos above, of our Middle School String and Wind Ensembles, which performed together with the Upper School Symphony in a fantastic “Orchestra Extravanganza”here last Friday evening in Schenck Auditorium. For more on the arts at D-E, visit http://www.d-e.org/arts. And don’t forget to catch up with all our Middle School athletics teams which are now full ‘swing’ into the Spring 2018 season, at http://www.d-e.org/athletics!

Go Bulldogs,

Kathy Christoph

MS Principal

 

Grade Level Happenings
The sixth grade picked up right where we left off after a relaxing March break. April has been busy, and the pace will continue to pick up throughout the spring.

In Math 6, students have been working on circles, relating the circumference of a circle to its diameter and finding the circumference of a circle when given the diameter and radius. They have also been finding the perimeter of a semicircle and quarter circle and related shapes, as well as finding the perimeter of a compound shape made up of rectangles, triangles, semicircles and/or quarter circles.

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Community Happenings
Along with our many leadership opportunities available to our youngsters as outlined in the Dean’s Page this issue, we’ve experienced a wonderful increase of specialty groups for middle school students to join. Affinity groups, safe space groups, and specialty groups have mushroomed this year, all to the benefit of our young adolescents.

Affinity groups, or safe space groups, were formed this year because our middle school community recognized the need, and interest, for people to connect around their experiences as members of social identity groups, particularly those from historically marginalized or minority groups with respect to race, ethnicity and culture, religion, gender or sexual orientation.

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Dean’s Message: Cultivating Leadership
Have you ever wondered why there is not an elected student government in Middle School? In the D-E Middle School we want as many students as possible to have an opportunity to lead. We know that our students will be leaders in the world and want to help them feel empowered to take action and to help them develop their leadership skills. So, we offer a range of leadership opportunities throughout the year.  Some opportunities are offered up for wide volunteerism during Monday Morning Meeting, are created in HomeBase groups, or spring from projects in classes across the curriculum.  In other cases, deans or faculty members may reach out to students who have been nominated by their advisors.

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Nurse’s Corner: Beware, It’s Allergy Season!
Wow!  We go from cold temperatures and snow directly into allergy season!  Itchy eyes, stuffy noses and sneezing have made their appearances.

Spring allergies usually begin around mid-March with the rise of tree pollen. It usually reaches its peak sometime in April with its warmer temperatures and is followed by grass pollens in May and June.

For those with known spring allergies, if you have not already done so, begin taking your medications now, including eye drops.  This also applies to those affected by allergies later in the season as “pretreating” can lessen the severity of symptoms.

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