21 Apr

Event Reminders

A few event reminders:

  • The last D-E 360° Summer Connections Open House is this Saturday, April 22. Save the dates for Summer Connections 2017, in session from June 26 – August 4. The Summer Open House is a great opportunity to learn about “Enrichment” offerings in arts, athletics, business/entrepreneurship, STEM, and more. Intensive “Immersive” program offerings are also available. Click here or visit d-e.org/summer for details. Call 201-227-3144 or email de360info@d-e.org with questions.
  • D-E Spring Carnival is this Sunday, April 23, “RAIN or SHINE”! This FREE admission annual event is for all D-E families. Volunteer for “D-E Fights Hunger” (aka community service food packing), from 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM in Modell’s Sports Complex. Volunteer online sign-up is here or Email gunams@d-e.org.  From 12:00 – 3:00 PM, enjoy activities hosted by D-E Student Activities and a NEW! STEM Festival in Hajjar STEM Center, featuring 3D Printing, Robotics demonstrations, “dry ice” ice cream. For more details click here or visit http://www.d-e.org/news.
  • Save the date & celebrate Cinco de Mayo in style on Thursday, May 4: the 8th Annual Fiesta Mexicana is for all D-E families and is held to support efforts for teacher education training in Mexico. Click here to learn more.
21 Apr

Grade Level Updates

In the World Language classes, our 6th graders are learning about clothing vocabulary and creating presentations in the target language about their favorite outfits for each season.  Our 7th graders are learning about boot verbs in the present tense. They are creating family trees which will include a creative narrative describing their artwork. Some of our 8th graders are learning the irregular past tense “el pretérito” and learning how to order a variety of food items from a comprehensive menu list. Others are learning the future tense and creating an invention “Mi invento del futuro” that will help to conserve our planet. Our 7th  Latin students are finishing editing their PBLs. They are also learning the tense systems based on the infinitive and perfect stems. Also, they are learning how to use the perfect and imperfect tenses together. They are singing the third declension and studying Roman theater.

In Studio Art 7, the young artists are busy creating Disney-themed sculptures for the Spring Arts Festival. In Studio Art 6, we have launched the City Design Remix PBL. Today we welcomed Matthew Bilow, a local architect, who visited with the students to speak about and show real world examples of collaboration and design process.

In Social Studies, our 7th graders did a UNHCR-designed refugee simulation on Graham Field.  By experiencing this unique group exercise in which they took on different types of refugee personna (see photos above) , and through their work illustrating a children’s refugee book documenting one refugee‘s story, the students can share the moving stories, struggles, and challenges that refugees face today.

Our 8th graders enjoyed a visit today from The Seeing Eye, which was facilitated by Ms. Sims’ HomeBase as part of their service learning projects (see photos above).   The students clearly enjoyed learning about this worthwhile organization, which trains and provides service companions to people with significant vision loss. At the end of the presentation our students presented the representations with a donation check.  Happy smiles and wags all around!


21 Apr

Message from Kathy Christoph, MS Principal

It continues to be an amazing year of learning for our Middle School students! With our small class sizes and such wonderfully engaged students, we are able to deliver a personalized curriculum and a rich array of experiences that fit the nature of our students and stretch them to reach new academic heights. Thank you for your continued support of Dwight Englewood and of education in general; your involvement is a huge factor in your child’s success.

The last of the cold weather is finally beginning to disappear and the newness, warmth, and freshness of a new spring season is beginning to unfold. The entire school community is energized by the promise of warmer temperatures, new growth, and beautiful weather!

As we move into spring, all three grades are taking a look at Mindset and how we can affect our own change.  Students will explore fixed and growth mindsets.  Hands on activities, as well as group discussions, are a part of this unit and allow students to consciously develop a growth mindset, which will lead to greater success in life and a healthier sense of self. Students will also be preparing for their Student as Learner Conversations that will be taking place in May.  These conversations take place with the HomeBase Advisor and they are an opportunity for your child to reflect on what type of a learner they are and to lead a conversation with their Advisor.  Student leaders will be sharing pointers and suggestions during the first two weeks of May with their peers in HomeBase.  This is a wonderful experience for both our students and their advisors to reflect on the past year and to celebrate and identify strengths.  Students walk away with a better sense of their learning style, having had an upbeat and engaging conversation.

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The cast and crew of the Middle School play, “LIKES”,  is gearing up for their May 5th & 6th performances.  Reserve your tickets today –Click here for the “LIKES” ticket order form.

The Middle School Arts Council will be helping promote the play, upcoming Middle School Arts Festival and end of year Talent Show. And our Chorus classes are finetuning their numbers, as well as their costumes.

The Middle School Health and Wellness team is geared up and ready to end the year in a positive fashion through exciting courses that they will be offering such as Sticks and Rackets, Cooperative Games, and Creative Games. The Health and wellness team will also be completing the spring edition of the Fitness Gram assessment in which students are measured for flexibility, cardiovascular endurance, as well as muscular strength and endurance (upper body and core). The scores of the spring testing will be compared with the results of the fall analysis, and then given out to each student to share with their parents.

Write Night is fast approaching! The English Department has invited interested Middle and Upper School students to share their work at our traditional spring edition of Write Night, Wednesday, April 26 at 4:45. Because April is National Poetry Month, we like to devote this event to poetry. The group starts out enjoying cookies and juice for a bit, and then we’ll start sharing at 5:00. We should finish by 6:00 or a little after, in plenty of time for the late buses. This is a wonderful opportunity for our budding poets to publicly share their works.  See above for photos from earlier-held poetry readings, including the 8th Grade Poetry reading in Imperatore Library this week. And if you have an opportunity to walk through Umpleby Hall, you’ll notice lots of poetry up on our walls and in the stairwells.

Lastly, a note that next Thursday, April 27th, the GSA (Gay Straight Alliance) of the Upper School will be running our Middle School Assembly. The assembly, much like the Black History assembly, will consist of some personal reflections, some LGBT definitions and history, a couple of spoken word performances, and video clips. This assembly will help our students better understand one aspect of how our school embraces diversity.  As Josh Goodman wrote, “When heterosexual and cisgender youth learn about gender and sexual diversity, they are more likely to accept or embrace LGBTQ people. More acceptance and less bullying, besides being good in their own right, also mean that LGBTQ youth may feel safer coming to school and may experience better academic outcomes.”  Click here to read more from the national organization GLSEN.

Hug your child, and go Bulldogs!

Kathy Christoph
MS Principal

13 Apr

A Reminder from the MS-US Nurse

Dear D-E Parents/Guardians,

This is a gentle reminder that all medications for MS/US students must be deposited with me in the MS/US Nurse’s Office, for distribution during the school day, including over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.  

D-E School Medication Forms, that authorize the administration of over-the-counter and any other medication that is to be given at school, at any time, can be found at www.d-e.org/enroll

This policy for proper procedure for medication administration is referenced in the 2016-2017 D-E Middle and Upper School Student Handbooks.  Handbooks were distributed earlier this year; to download a PDF of the Handbook(s) please go to www.d-e.org/middle

The only exceptions are medications for asthma (inhaler), for other potentially life-threatening illnesses (insulin) or a life-threatening allergic reaction (epinephrine). For additional information on NJ State legal statute covering these rules, please click here.

Let’s all work to maintain a safe environment for all students! Please contact me if you have any questions.

Be well,

Sara Schulman
MS/US Nurse

13 Apr

What’s Happening in Classrooms

6th Grade:  April promises to be a busy month in sixth grade! In science, students were treated to a visit by Immunologist (and D-E parent) Dr. Julie Rubinstein. Dr. Rubenstein and one of her colleagues spoke with our students about their work at adaptive technologies, mainly with the immune system (see photos above from their class visits).  The students also will be finishing up the Human Anatomy unit with their Human “X-Ray” drawing project and a frog dissection. Then, the students will be learning about Newton’s Laws of Motion and taking a trip to the U.S.S. Intrepid for a flight lab. This trip is scheduled for April 20.

In Math 6, students will be starting a unit on circles. Students will review diameter and radius, construct circles, and relate the area of a circle to its diameter and radius. Then, students will determine the circumference or area of a circle when given its diameter or radius, and figure the perimeter and area of semicircles and quarter circles and related figures. In Advanced Math 6, students will be answering the question: “What is the steepest set of stairs on the D-E campus?” Students are working in groups, deciding how to explore, implement ideas, and represent their findings. In Hyper Math, students are working on linearity and systems of equations. They are also working on a project to find the relationship between the length of a pendulum and its period. Since they are doing multiple time measurements, they have to do some statistical analysis (calculating the mean and standard deviation of their measurements) to decide how accurate their measurements are.

In English, students started a new novel this week called Lions of Little Rock by Kristin Levine. It takes place in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1958, the year after the Little Rock Nine. The students will be finding their own themes in this novel, and eventually they will be writing their second analytical essay about the themes they track.  In social studies, students will be finishing up their Greek Timeline Projects and then they will begin the study of the Minoan and Mycenaean cultures of Bronze Age Greece. This study will culminate in the first social studies essay of the year. As a grade, we will also be participating in service learning work this month. Students will learn about food issues facing the state of New Jersey through workshops, and then they will be helping to build a garden for the Center for Food Action in Englewood. This work will be a nice connection to our Identity Unit.

7th Grade: Our science classes completed their unit on experimental design. This week they wrote formal lab reports and included a graph from Excel using skills learned in math class.  In English, students performed their poems for their classmates and teachers during our Poetry Café in Hulst House and Hajjar Auditorium (see photos below). 

In math, students continue to work on equation solving and writing equations from given real world situations.  Students are also creating graphs to accompany their articles for social studies.  In social studies, students are now working on writing their Global Goals articles after spending the past couple of weeks developing ideas and researching. With these articles students are hoping to in at least some way answer the question, “are we moving towards a better world?”

8th Grade:  In celebration of April as National Poetry month, the 8th grade is preparing for Poetry Day in the library. Students will choose a poem to study and analyze and then recite for their classmates. In Math class, they are learning about linear equations and polynomials in preparation for their SciTube projects for science class. Each student is considering the statement, “Our Planet, Our Problem,” and designing experiments or models that reflect different natural problems that affect our Earth.  Finally, in history class students are studying the events leading to the Holocaust. The final project for this unit will use survivor testimony to answer the question, “If you could ask a survivor any question what would it be?”

Our 8th grade African Drumming class will be performing at the Lower School Assembly on April 12. Our drummers will be sharing the music they’ve been learning with the entire Lower School student body. The performance will feature the 8th grade West African drumming and dance ensemble performing 3 pieces, with special guest artist Mama Yaa.

Spanish 8 is studying the culture of Spanish-speaking countries and the contributions of Spanish-speaking cultures to the rest of the world.  A hands-on component of their study involves planting, harvesting and cooking vegetables brought to us by these cultures. The photos here show Sr. Bautista’s Advanced 8 class starting tomatoes in the Lagana Greenhouse, from seeds saved from last years’ harvest.

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13 Apr

Kathy’s Message


I trust each of you found some good family time over the Spring Break and were able to enjoy some special moments with your young adolescents. I loved being in Umpleby Lobby on the Monday morning after the Break, listening to the excited chatter and gleeful shouts of joy as our students reconnected with one another. There’s nothing quite like the energy and verve of middle school kids!

I’d like to remind you of a few upcoming events:  

  • On Tuesday, April 18, 7:00 – 8:30 pm in partnership with the D-E Parents’ Association, the Middle and Upper Schools are hosting “Growing Up OVERexposed” featuring Lauren Hersh. Ms. Hersh is an expert speaker on current issues concerning online exploitation, sexting, and the digital age in which your children live.  Parents of students in Grades 6-11 are invited to attend this timely, thought-providing discussion, in which they will receive concrete strategies for keeping their children safe in a digital world. To RSVP for this parent education event click here. Please note that on May 2 & 3, Ms. Hersh will be back here in our Middle School, working with our students and our faculty on these same issues.
  • 8th Grade Parents: Another reminder that our Grade 8 Moving Up Ceremony will be held on Thursday, June 8, at 7:00 pm.
  • Save the Date on Sunday, April 23 for the annual D-E Spring Carnival, which includes the “D-E Fights Hunger” food packing event, presented by D-E School Activities and the D-E Parents’ Association. NEW! This year is the addition of a STEM Festival including model rocket launches, 3D printing, and robotics demonstrations by D-E’s award-winning US Robotics Club, Team 0207 Critical Mass. All D-E families are invited and admission is free!  
    • Volunteer: To sign-up for “D-E Fights Hunger” food packing click here.
    • Learn more: Click here to download an info. flyer (PDF) or visit www.d-e.org/clubs
    • Questions? Please Email gunasm@d-e.org  

Hug your child, and Go Bulldogs!

Kathy Christoph
MS Principal