News and Announcements


January 2017 Newsletter

posted Jan 7, 2017, 8:27 AM by Carol MacArthur

Greely Middle School 4-5

January 2017 Newsletter



From the Principal’s Desk


In schools, the New Year seems to invite students to bring with them their new gadgets and technology devices.  A friendly reminder that personal technology devices that not being used for educational/medical purposes must remain turned off and stored in backpacks during the school day, including recess and dismissal. Please do not plan to contact your child or encourage him/her to contact you during the school day using personal devices. If students are misusing their personal devices, they will be delivered to the main office and safely secured until a parent/guardian can pick them up. We appreciate your partnership to ensure safe and responsible usage of technology devices in school.

At the end of this month, progress reports will be sent home - Friday, January 27th. Our teachers spend a considerable amount of time gathering and analyzing information to ensure accurate reporting about your child’s progress to date. If you have questions about your child’s progress after reviewing this report, please contact your child’s teacher directly.  In late March/ early April, teachers will be offering another opportunity to formally meet about your child’s performance.


Please know that I am always open to communication that will enhance your child’s educational experience with us and welcome your questions and feedback at any time.


Sincerely, Carol MacArthur

Principal, Grades 4-5



Don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

for quick updates of what’s happening at GMS 4-5.



In an effort to save on paper, newsletters are sent via email and posted on our web page.

If you would prefer a paper copy each month, please let your child’s teacher know.


Office Reminders


• School begins at 8:45 AM.  Students may be dropped off at 8:15 AM, or enrolled in Early Arrival at 8:00AM.

• If your child will be absent from school, please call the main office to notify us of that absence at 829-4815.  If we do not hear from you letting us know your child will be absent, please expect a phone call from the school to check on your child’s status.  

• If your child arrives after 8:45AM, he/she is tardy to school and needs to check-in at the office before going to the classroom.

• Please remember to send a note in with your child if there is a change in their afternoon schedule. Without a note, we will follow the regular routine for each child. If you must call during the day to change dismissal plans, please do not leave messages on voicemail regarding those changes.  If at all possible, please, call before 2:30 with changes.

We greatly appreciate your attention to these procedures, as they help to ensure that our routines run smoothly and efficiently.



The Late Bus


In addition to regular, daily dismissal, a late bus is also available on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday for students who stay for co-curricular activities or after-school academic support.  Buses pick up students from GMS at 4:15pm and transport them home. Please be aware that depending on the number of students riding the late bus on a given day, your child's arrival time at home may vary.  If you have specific questions about the late bus, please feel free to call the Transportation Garage at 829-4820.







Japan Welcome Assembly!


For the last 25 years, GMS 6-8 has participated in the Japan Homestay Program. On Friday, we joined together as a 4-8 school community to welcome our Japanese guests. The Japanese students put on a fantastic show for the audience. You should definitely ask your GMS student about life in Japan, including inquiring about convenience stores, video games, and vending machines. They learned about all of these and more during the assembly.


GMS 6-8 band and chorus students provided the musical entertainment for the assembly and did a great job of showing warmth and hospitality to our guests.


Here is a photo of our visitors and the host students who have generously opened their homes to them while they are here.










5th Grade FULL BAND will be starting on Monday, January 23rd.  Please check your email and Ms. Cummings' webpage for complete information and a permission slip.




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The Coder Express was a great success!


Thank you to Mrs. Poissonnier and the Coding Club for their hard work to make this evening so fantastic!








Mr. Brookes’ class would like to thank everyone who participated in the 2016 MSAD 51 Penny Drive. Our total donation from Kindergarten through 8th grade was $1,351.60! Lots of less fortunate kids in Southern Maine had a much happier holiday because of this generous gift. Thank you for your help with this year’s penny drive!



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        January Box Top Winner: Mr. Goldsmith’s Class




December 2016 Newsletter

posted Dec 2, 2016, 1:35 PM by Carol MacArthur

Greely Middle School 4-5

December 2016 Newsletter



From the Principal’s Desk


Winter weather is sure to be here soon! Please know that we believe it is important for students to have a break from the classroom to enjoy fresh air and play time with friends whenever possible. Unless the temperature drops to 10˚ or colder, with the wind chill taken into consideration, students will be outside. Please help your child plan accordingly for appropriate cold weather clothing.  


When the playground is covered in snow, our recess rules and activities shift in response.  Students who choose to play on the snow-covered fields must wear boots and snowpants. Staff will ask students who do not have boots and snowpants to play on the cleared areas. One of the benefits of our snow-covered fields is that students may build snow structures and go sledding down the playground hill. Staff will be reviewing winter recess rules with students in the coming weeks.


Please see the message below from the Superintendent’s Office regarding school closings/delays and alerts.


In most cases, school closings and delays will be posted on our website and in our Twitter feed by 6:00am. For timely and accurate no school announcements, you can also click the link below to sign up to receive school closing alerts from local News TV (via email or text - must sign up annually) or follow @SuperMSAD51 Twitter.


WCSH 6 - Text alert

WMTW 8 - Email alert

WGME 13 - Text alert


Please know that I am always open to communication that will enhance your child’s educational experience with us and welcome your questions and feedback at any time.


Sincerely, Carol MacArthur

Principal, Grades 4-5



Don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

for quick updates of what’s happening at GMS 4-5.



In an effort to save on paper, newsletters are sent via email and posted on our web page.

If you would prefer a paper copy each month, please let your child’s teacher know.


Office Reminders


• School begins at 8:45 AM.  Students may be dropped off at 8:15 AM, or enrolled in Early Arrival at 8:00AM.

• If your child will be absent from school, please call the main office to notify us of that absence at 829-4815.  If we do not hear from you letting us know your child will be absent, please expect a phone call from the school to check on your child’s status.  

• If your child arrives after 8:45AM, he/she is tardy to school and needs to check-in at the office before going to the classroom.

• Please remember to send a note in with your child if there is a change in their afternoon schedule. Without a note, we will follow the regular routine for each child. If you must call during the day to change dismissal plans, please do not leave messages on voicemail regarding those changes.  If at all possible, please, call before 2:30 with changes.

We greatly appreciate your attention to these procedures, as they help to ensure that our routines run smoothly and efficiently.



The Late Bus


In addition to regular, daily dismissal, a late bus is also available on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday for students who stay for co-curricular activities or after-school academic support.  Buses pick up students from GMS at 4:15pm and transport them home. Please be aware that depending on the number of students riding the late bus on a given day, your child's arrival time at home may vary.  If you have specific questions about the late bus, please feel free to call the Transportation Garage at 829-4820.




The GMS Lost and Found is overflowing!

Please take a moment during your next visit to look through our Lost and Found, located just outside the cafeteria doors.  

All items remaining at the end of the month will be donated to local charities.




Train-clipart-for-kids-free-free-clipart-images.gif

Join us on The Coder Express!


An Evening of Coding and Cocoa





All 4th and 5th grade students will participate in “The Hour of Code” during technology class the week of Dec. 5th. This is an introduction to computer science to help nurture their problem-solving skills, logic and creativity.


As an extension of this week, students and their families are invited to attend The Coder Express from 6-7 p.m. on Wednesday, December 14, 2016 in the Greely Middle School cafeteria.


Participants will have the opportunity to take part in computer programming and coding activities using iPads. Students are encouraged to wear pajamas and bring stuffies and blankets as they take part in a fun evening of coding. Thanks in advance to our Greely PTO for providing cocoa and cookies.


Reserve your seat now on The Coder Express!!


The idea for Coder Express was created by Tom Charltray of Pond Cove Elementary School in Cape Elizabeth.




The 4th and 5th grade Civil Rights Team wants to remind our school community that ...






A school-wide penny drive will be happening Dec. 5 through Dec. 16th.  Proceeds will be donated to the Portland Press Herald Toy Fund, an organization that provides holiday presents to the children of needy families in southern Maine. Each classroom will attempt to fill at least one large storage bag with pennies. The total of our collection will be announced on Thursday., Dec. 22nd. Please help by sending in your pennies by December 16th.  (Other coins, bills, and checks - made out to Portland Press Herald Toy Fund - will also be gratefully accepted.)

Thank you!  


Mr. Brookes’ 5th Grade Class



News from our Student Service Providers about Community Resources


Ali Waterhouse, School Counselor

Katie Campbell, Social Worker

Libby Gordon and Nancy Terison, School Nurses


We are writing to share local and state resources for your family, friends and neighbors. These resources are available for those needing support as well as those who wish to donate or volunteer services.


Community Resources:

Food:

The Food Pantry at the Cumberland Town Hall is open Fridays 2:00-6:00, receiving donations at any time.


Heating assistance:

PROP Keep Me Warm 553-5900


Town of Cumberland General Assistance: Confidential financial assistance to residents who are having difficulty meeting basic needs for housing, utilities and food. 829-2200


Town of North Yarmouth General Assistance: 829-3705


Toys for the holidays:

Firefighters for Kids: Cumberland Fire Department. For more information about donating or receiving toys, e-mail ff4kids@yahoo.com.

Bruce Roberts Toy Fund: application -  https://brucerobertstoyfund.org/apply/

Cumberland Congregational Church 829-3419


Clothing and other items:

Falmouth Goodwill Store: U.S. Route One Falmouth Shopping Center 347-8252

Portland Free Cycle: www.portlandfreecycle.org

A grassroots, nonprofit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns and thus keeping good stuff out of landfills. Membership is free.

The Community Center Thrift Shop: Freeport 865-3985

Lots For Tots Children’s Resale Store: Falmouth (207) 347-8601


Free and reduced cost dental care:

Preventive Partners: 694-3332

Cumberland County Dental Health Center: 874-1028

University of New England Dental Health Services: 221-4900


Health Care:

THE ROOT CELLAR: 94 Washington Ave., Portland, Maine 40101 (207) 774-3197

For any child without access to healthcare.  By appointment.


Discounted eyewear:

http://www.39dollarglasses.com


Referrals and resources:

Call 211 or e-mail www.211maine.org for a list of state-wide resources, services and volunteer opportunities.


GMS 4/5 Resources – please call us for services (all inquiries are confidential)

Counseling referrals

Free and reduced lunch for students at school

Prescription drug discount card (contact school nurse)

Glasses prescription discount card for financially eligible families (contact school nurse)



Successful Students attend school regularly -


Happy Holidays! As we take a short break from school for the upcoming holiday break, we want to express our gratitude for everyone who makes it possible for as many students as possible to come to school every day, on time, and ready to learn. We thank:

● our students and families for making daily attendance a priority, since they know the habit of attendance will help them do well with their learning in the classroom and the larger world around them in the future,

● our wonderful teachers and support staff who pour their energy into making each classroom an exciting place for exploration and knowledge, so the students do not want to miss out on any learning, and

● our community partners and volunteers who provide extra hands and attention our students’ needs.


We appreciate each one of you so much. We look forward to seeing you after the December break. Also, we hope you will keep in mind that the last day of school before the break is Thursday, December 22nd, and we will reopen on Tuesday, January 3rd. We hope that you enjoy some fun and relaxing times with your friends and family during this time. We especially appreciate everyone’s efforts to avoid taking extra time off around the holiday break. Just a few missed days here and there, even if they are excused absences, can add up to too much lost learning time and leave your child struggling in school. This is as true in kindergarten as it is in high school. So, once again, thank you for your efforts.


Wishing you a Happy Holiday Season!



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FILL A BUS, FILL A BELLY

The Greely PTO invites you to join Greely Middle School students and the community in helping to feed local families in need as we attempt to fill an MSAD #51 school bus with non-perishable food items for the Cumberland Food Pantry.

FILL A BUS ~ December 5 - December 9

Bus will be parked in the GMS lot all week. Donations accepted during school drop off & pick up times.


FILL A BELLY ~ December 10 at 9:00 am

Help us UNLOAD & CELEBRATE! On Dec. 10, the bus will be driven to the Food Pantry at Cumberland Town Hall. Join us for this family-friendly event. Light refreshments provided.

We run on parent power!

Volunteers Needed: Look for SignUpGenius email.


November 2016 Newsletter

posted Nov 4, 2016, 2:12 PM by Carol MacArthur

Greely Middle School 4-5

November 2016 Newsletter



From the Principal’s Desk


Students and staff are participating in a schoolwide effort to be “bucket fillers” based on the book Have You Filled a Bucket Today? This book emphasizes that when we use kind words and actions toward others, we make them feel good. That’s being a bucket filler and it supports a positive school climate. Staff are reinforcing and recognizing students for their safe, respectful, and responsible behavior by giving them “bucket slips”. Students are working together to earn schoolwide celebrations by accumulating slips. Our first celebration was a Hat Day, and we are more than halfway to our goal of our next celebration. In addition, at each school assembly, we are recognizing individual students for their safe, respectful, and responsible behavior by randomly drawing “bucket slips” and inviting those students to pick a prize. The energy around this initiative is really positive, and we look forward to many more celebrations and recognitions throughout the remainder of the school year.


Upcoming Dates of Interest:

Tuesday, November 8 - Picture Retake Day

Wednesday,  November 9 - Garbage to Garden Launch (more information at the end of this newsletter)

Friday, November 11 - Veterans Day - No School


Don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for quick updates of what’s happening at GMS 4-5.


Please know that I am always open to communication that will enhance your child’s educational experience with us and welcome your questions and feedback at any time.


Sincerely, Carol MacArthur

Principal, Grades 4-5



In an effort to save on paper, newsletters are sent via email and posted on our web page.

If you would prefer a paper copy each month, please let your child’s teacher know.


Office Reminders


• School begins at 8:45 AM.  Students may be dropped off at 8:15 AM, or enrolled in Early Arrival at 8:00AM.

• If your child will be absent from school, please call the main office to notify us of that absence at 829-4815.  If we do not hear from you letting us know your child will be absent, please expect a phone call from the school to check on your child’s status.  

• If your child arrives after 8:45AM, he/she is tardy to school and needs to check-in at the office before going to the classroom.

• Please remember to send a note in with your child if there is a change in their afternoon schedule. Without a note, we will follow the regular routine for each child. If you must call during the day to change dismissal plans, please do not leave messages on voicemail regarding those changes.  If at all possible, please, call before 2:30 with changes.

We greatly appreciate your attention to these procedures, as they help to ensure that our routines run smoothly and efficiently.



The Late Bus


In addition to regular, daily dismissal, a late bus is also available on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday for students who stay for co-curricular activities or after-school academic support.  Buses pick up students from GMS at 4:15pm and transport them home. Please be aware that depending on the number of students riding the late bus on a given day, your child's arrival time at home may vary.  If you have specific questions about the late bus, please feel free to call the Transportation Garage at 829-4820.




The GMS Lost and Found is filling up!

Please take a moment during your next visit to look through our Lost and Found, located just outside the cafeteria doors.  

All items remaining at the end of the month will be donated to local charities.





Picture re-takes are on Tuesday, November 8th. Students should bring in either their original order envelope or the unwanted picture packet.





News from the library---


The students brought their chromebooks to Library class last week and learned how to access the GMS Library Catalog and how to log into their own account!  Let them show you how to view the catalog, see when their books are due - and even put one on hold (reserve)!  The catalog and their account can be accessed through any device that can connect to the internet and this gives them a chance to see if the Library has something for which they are looking even when they are not in school!


The Book Fair is here!  We began sales on Thursday morning and the fair will run all week through 6-8 student-involved conferences next Thursday, 11/10.  On most days, the fair will be open from 7:45 am until the late bus, with the exception of Family Night, the night of conferences, when we'll be open until 7:45pm.  That's a great time to bring the family to build home book collections - or come by yourself to do some shopping!!  You may also shop online at http://www.scholastic.com/bf/greelymiddleschool.  If you'd like to purchase a title for the library, please check out our wish list.  Thanks!









News from the School Counselor, Ali Waterhouse


4th and 5th grade students will be focusing on substance abuse awareness in guidance with Mrs. Waterhouse during the month of November.  

4th grade will talk about tobacco products and 5th grade will talk about alcohol.

The lessons will focus on making healthy choices for ourselves now and in the future.

Some questions you can ask your student  about these topics:


Grade 5:

What is the legal age to consume alcohol?

What are some ways alcohol can impact your body?

How can you respond to someone who asks you if you want to drink alcohol?


Grade 4:

What is the legal age to use tobacco products?

What are some ways tobacco can impact your body?

What are some of the ingredients in cigarettes?

How can you respond to someone who asks you if you want to use tobacco products?


Talk with your student about what your family expectations are around the use of alcohol/drug and tobacco products. Help them understand that you are willing to listen when they have questions about these topics. The more accurate information they have, the more likely they will make safe and healthy choices in the future.




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Wrapping Up Greely PTO's Parent Power Annual Appeal

  • Our campaign officially wraps up TODAY! Thank you to everyone who has already contributed.

  • Every dollar makes a difference in our ability to invest in curriculum enhancing field trips and enrichment activities. Thanks for considering making a donation

  • to this appeal.

Calling All Room Parents - Sign-Up Genius Training - Tuesday, November 8

  • Are you a Room or Team Parent for your child's class? If so, are you using the program Sign-Up Genius to organize classroom parties and collection activities? If not, we'll show you just how easy and efficient this tool is to use. It really makes managing volunteer sign-up activities a snap!

  • Join us on Tuesday, November 8th from 6-6:45pm in the Greely Middle School cafeteria for an interactive introduction to Sign-Up Genius.

Parent University - Kids and Anxiety

WEDNESDAY, November 9, 2016

Greely Middle School Cafeteria

6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Speaker: Dr. Gordon P. Street

  • Did you know anxiety disorders are one of the three most common childhood psychiatric disorders?

  • Are you concerned your child or teenager is struggling with anxiety issues?

  • Do you have questions about what to look for and how to manage an anxious child?

Please join Dr. Gordon P. Street from Anxiety Solutions as he discusses anxiety in today’s children and helps parents learn strategies to address it.


Click here to learn more about and sign up to attend this free session.





MSAD #51 Goes Green!


MSAD #51, in partnership with Garbage to Garden, is proud to announce our latest sustainability initiative. On Wednesday, November 9th, the District will introduce a composting and single-stream recycling program at Mabel I. Wilson School and Greely Middle School 4-8. We plan to implement the same systems at Greely High School in the winter of 2017.


Our Strategic Plan identified Environmental Stewardship as one of its objectives. A committee comprised of MSAD #51 staff, parents, teachers, administrators and school board members worked last year to identify “green” District priorities. Moving to single-stream recycling and beginning a composting program rose to the top of the committee’s list.


In May, 2016, the District partnered with Garbage to Garden to plan the implementation of these programs. Garbage to Garden was founded in 2012 by Tyler Frank, a North Yarmouth native and Greely graduate! In four short years the organization has grown to be the most subscribed to curbside composting company in the United States. Garbage to Garden currently serves over 6,000 households, schools, restaurants, and businesses in Southern Maine. This widespread popularity can be directly attributed to its dedication to community engagement and education. Frank and the rest of the staff at Garbage to Garden are excited to bring this full circle and support the sustainability initiatives of his home district. Garbage to Garden works with over 30 schools in the region and has seen first hand that sorting food scraps and other compostable items creates a catalyst that provides a clear roadmap for reducing waste of all kinds, increasing overall recycling rates, and developing sustainable habits that last a lifetime.The November launch date at our schools is the culmination of months of hard work on behalf of the Environmental Stewardship Committee, and the Food Services & Facilities departments.


How it will work


In conjunction with Garbage to Garden, MIW and GMS 4-8 will work to seamlessly incorporate composting and single-stream recycling into the cafeterias and classrooms of the schools. To do this, Don Foster, MSAD #51’s Facilities Director, has designed and built custom waste stations with clear signage for each of the school’s cafeterias.

IMG_0256.JPG


These stations will be monitored by Garbage to Garden staff and community and parent volunteers for the first week or two of the program to ensure that students learn how to properly sort their waste.


Students and staff have been recycling paper in their classrooms for years. The addition of single-stream recycling means that other recyclable materials, such as plastics and metals, will now be captured and diverted away from the trash. The recycling bins that will be used are pictured below.


How you can help!


Garbage to Garden will provide receptacles, hands-on training, and on-site monitoring to make the transition as smooth as possible, but support from our community is necessary for the success of the program! We are currently looking for parent volunteers to help students sort waste in the cafeteria at lunch time during the second and third weeks of November. If you are interested in learning more, please contact Augusta French at augustafrench@yahoo.com.


In addition to hands-on support during the first weeks of the program, MSAD #51 encourages parents to keep up the momentum and reduce waste by working towards waste-free home lunches. We have included a list of tips for you to use when packing your child’s lunch.


We are excited about these new initiatives in our schools, and look forward to both the environmental benefits and learning opportunities they will bring!




IMG_3962.jpg


Be a hero, aim for zero!


The best way to reduce trash is not to create it! According to the EPA, the average American student creates almost 70 lbs of discarded lunch waste per year. To support your school’s zero-waste goals and help reduce this number, we highly encourage you to pack your child a waste-free lunch by relying on reusable or compostable materials and not packing more than your child will eat that day! Not only is it better for the health of people and the planet, it is good for your pocket book. You might surprise yourself with the savings you experience which could total hundreds of dollars per year.


Tips for Packing a Waste-Free Lunch


Reduce

  • Pack only what you/your child will eat

  • Do not buy single serve packages - make your own with reusable containers

  • Pack like items in the same container


Reuse

  • Use a durable, reusable lunch box

  • Use reusable containers and bags made of plastic, metal, glass, or cloth

  • If you use small plastic bags or foil, bring them home for reuse & think creatively about reusing “disposable” packing multiple times

  • Use reusable water bottles and thermos’ for drinks to avoid single use bottles and cans


Recycle

  • We recommend aiming for no-waste, but if you can make your lunch low-waste in the process, that is a great place to start

  • If you must use disposables - think compostable like paper bags and waxed paper

  • Remind kids to use the green compost bins at school - “if it grows, it goes!”


October 2016 Newsletter

posted Oct 6, 2016, 3:22 PM by Carol MacArthur

Greely Middle School 4-5

October 2016 Newsletter



From the Principal’s Desk


I’m pleased to announce that GMS 4-5 has added social media to our repertoire of parent communication. I will now be posting news and announcements on Twitter and Facebook. Please like/follow us for quick updates on what’s happening with us!


Please know that I am always open to communication that will enhance your child’s educational experience with us and welcome your questions and feedback at any time.


Sincerely, Carol MacArthur

Principal, Grades 4-5


“Life doesn’t require that we be the best, only that we try our best” ~ H. Jackson Brown Jr.



In an effort to save on paper, newsletters are sent via email and posted on our web page.

If you would prefer a paper copy each month, please let your child’s teacher know.


Office Reminders


• School begins at 8:45 AM.  Students may be dropped off at 8:15 AM, or enrolled in Early Arrival at 8:00AM.

• If your child will be absent from school, please call the main office to notify us of that absence at 829-4815.  If we do not hear from you letting us know your child will be absent, please expect a phone call from the school to check on your child’s status.  

• If your child arrives after 8:45AM, he/she is tardy to school and needs to check-in at the office before going to the classroom.

• Please remember to send a note in with your child if there is a change in their afternoon schedule. Without a note, we will follow the regular routine for each child. If you must call during the day to change dismissal plans, please do not leave messages on voicemail regarding those changes.  If at all possible, please, call before 2:30 with changes.

We greatly appreciate your attention to these procedures, as they help to ensure that our routines run smoothly and efficiently.




The GMS Lost and Found is filling up!

Please take a moment during your next visit to look through our Lost and Found, located just outside the cafeteria doors.  

All items remaining at the end of the month will be donated to local charities.




Next Thursday and Friday, students in grades 4-5 will be taking a new assessment called i-Ready. Please take a moment to read the following informational letter from our Curriculum Director, Sally Loughlin.


District i-Ready Letter


From the School Counselor, Ali Waterhouse


In the 2016-2017 school year, 4th and 5th grade students will be focusing on adopting a growth mindset during guidance class..


In a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point.


Over the school year, students will gain an understanding of the neural networks in the brain. Students will also learn that “struggle” is an important part of learning and that when we struggle and don’t give up, neurons are connecting and becoming stronger. The important skills that students can gain from these lessons will be perseverance, self-confidence, resiliency, coping skills for disappointment and failure, and the ability to handle constructive feedback.


Below are some ideas on how to support the work students are doing here at school and to create a growth mindset at home.


  • Model flexibility. Communicate that change is an important part of living life. Model this by taking a flexible mentality when things don’t go as planned. Praise your children for their flexibility and adaptability when plans change or success is not met.

  • Talk about neural networking. Ask what he or she has learned in school about the brain.

  • Whenever you hear your child say “I give up” or “ I just don’t get this,” remind your child to visualize neurons connecting every time he or she learns something new.

  • If your child says “I am not good at math,” then you might say “you may not understand this yet, so let’s practice some more.”

  • Be aware of your own fixed mindset statements such as “I am a terrible cook,” “I was never good at math either,” “I wish I could play the piano like you do” (You can with practice and perseverance!)

  • Share with your child some things that you have not yet mastered and your plan for practicing and building stronger connections in your brain.

  • When watching TV a movie or reading a book with your kids, talk about a character’s strength or lack of perseverance or resiliency. ASk your children how the situation or story would be different if the person did or did not have this skill.


Fun Fact

The following were invented by mistake.

  • Post-It notes

  • Penicillin

  • Potato chips

  • X-rays

  • Ice cream cone

  • Velcro

  • Chocolate chip cookies



Attendance Matters!

Absences Add Up: Sporadic absences, not just consecutive days of school, matter. When your child is absent, he/she misses opportunities to learn. Those opportunities can’t always be replaced by homework or makeup assignments. Learning is interactive with “hands-on” activities so when a student is absent he/she misses the chance to be actively involved in their learning community. Believe it or not, only two or three days a month can add up to missing nearly 10 percent or one month of learning.


What Can You Do? Help your child build a habit of good attendance, including arriving to school on time each day! Getting your kids to school on time teaches valuable life lessons.  

4 Things to do the night before to help make the morning rush easier:

1. Set school clothes out.  Taking the time to review the forecast and planning clothes the night before will save time and valuable energy.


2. Pack your backpack.  Before putting the kids to bed, make sure homework, shoes for PE class, library books and snacks are placed in their backpack for the next day.


3. Place coat, backpack and instruments by the front door.  Placing your child’s backpack, coat, musical instrument or whatever is needed for school, by the front door will help make a it easier and faster to leave the house in case you are running late.


4. Agree NO television or video games until the morning routine is done.  One of the most common reasons students are “a few minutes late” to school is because they would not turn off their video game or television  in the morning.  Try this:  Before the television can be turned on, kids should be dressed, fed, teeth brushed and backpack loaded by the door.  Set a TIMER to make sure the television is off at least 5 minutes before you need to leave for school.

Admittedly, following these steps takes practice and can be challenging. But try it out.  You will find it makes the morning transition smoother, more enjoyable and less stressful!



Tech Devices


A friendly reminder that personal technology devices that not being used for educational/medical purposes must remain turned off and stored in backpacks during the school day, including recess and dismissal. Please do not plan to contact your child or encourage him/her to contact you during the school day using personal devices. We are asking staff to be explicit with students about this expectation and reinforce as needed. If students are misusing their personal devices, they will be delivered to the main office and safely secured until a parent/guardian can pick them up. We appreciate your partnership to ensure safe and responsible usage of technology devices in school.

In order for students (and the school) to contact parents/guardians during the school day, it is imperative to have up-to-date emergency contact information. Please be sure if any contact information changes over the course of the year that you let the main office know so we may update our records.



https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/RoZMT-KEn1yW6S4cbuRGZ-nXuo0PTUxr7lkm6bMVmCXwcztuWUX_gzDAdio-DVukBeMfyYb5oRGzrjJZL99skuLHgdvPA_XjUqeh4topyZX_DMaETp-QCPUZSeptember Box Top Winner: Mrs. White’s Class


The Parent Power Annual Appeal is in full swing! And they are almost halfway to meeting the goal of raising $10,000 to support enrichment activities and events for students in grades K-8. The appeal ends on November 4th, but if you give by October 14th, you'll be entered in a weekly raffle to win a prize.

To make your donation, visit www.greelypto.org





Click here to read Mrs. Belmore’s OCTOBER PE NEWSLETTER




The Late Bus


In addition to regular, daily dismissal, a late bus is also available on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday for students who stay for co-curricular activities or after-school academic support.  Buses pick up students from GMS at 4:15pm and transport them home. Please be aware that depending on the number of students riding the late bus on a given day, your child's arrival time at home may vary.  If you have specific questions about the late bus, please feel free to call the Transportation Garage at 829-4820.


September 2016 Newsletter

posted Sep 9, 2016, 3:11 PM by Carol MacArthur   [ updated Sep 9, 2016, 3:33 PM ]

Greely Middle School 4-5

September 2016 Newsletter



From the Principal’s Desk


We have had a great transition back to school! Staff have been working hard to establish routines and positive expectations. Students have been responding with safe, respectful, and responsible behavior. Thank you for your continued support of our efforts!


Thank you to all who were able to join us for Parent Information Night. We hope you left feeling informed and energized about your child’s upcoming year.


Please know that we are always open to communication that will enhance your child’s educational experience with us and welcome your questions and feedback at any time.


Sincerely, Carol MacArthur

Principal, Grades 4-5



In an effort to save on paper, newsletters are sent via email and posted on our web page.

If you would prefer a paper copy each month, please let your child’s teacher know.


Office Reminders


• School begins at 8:45 AM.  Students may be dropped off at 8:15 AM, or enrolled in Early Arrival at 8:00AM.

• If your child will be absent from school, please call the main office to notify us of that absence at 829-4815.  If we do not hear from you letting us know your child will be absent, please expect a phone call from the school to check on your child’s status.  

• If your child arrives after 8:45AM, he/she is tardy to school and needs to check-in at the office before going to the classroom.

• Please remember to send a note in with your child if there is a change in their afternoon schedule. Without a note, we will follow the regular routine for each child. If you must call during the day to change dismissal plans, please do not leave messages on voicemail regarding those changes.  If at all possible, please, call before 2:30 with changes.

We greatly appreciate your attention to these procedures, as they help to ensure that our routines run smoothly and efficiently.




What is your hope?


Here are a few photographs of our “What is your hope?” bulletin board, which was a collaborative project completed by students, staff, and parents this past week. This project is a heartwarming example of how special our school community is and how much we all care about and value our children’s/students’ experiences here. Take a minute next time you’re in the building to either admire or add to it.








Did you know September is Attendance Awareness Month? This is a nationwide event recognizing the connection between school attendance and academic achievement. MSAD #51 continues to partner with the Count ME In! project to address our elementary student absenteeism.




As a follow-up to our “What is your hope?” bulletin board project, we all know you have hopes and dreams for your child’s success in school and beyond. To help make sure those hopes and dreams happen, we are asking for your commitment in making sure your child attends school every day possible this year.  The evidence is clear. Good attendance is key to keeping students on track academically and to engaging them in all aspects of school life.  This is true for children of any age and every grade.


It is understood that some absences are unavoidable and students must stay home when they are unwell. The most important message to our students is that even occasional absences matter. Before you know it, just one or two days a month can add up to nearly 10% of the school year. Too many absences, either partial days or full days, represent lost learning time in the classroom.


We ask that families avoid extended vacations that require students to miss school. Kindly try to line up vacations with the school’s schedule. This would apply for medical appointments as well.


We are asking for your support in helping your child get to school on time every day this year. Your child needs to be in school and engaged in learning to reach his or her full potential.  We realize that every family faces challenges. Please let us know how we can best support you and your child so he/she can show up for school on time every day.  


When your child is not at school, we notice because we care! Thank you for all you do to support your child’s school success and well-being, as well as our school.  


For more information on the Count ME In! project, visit their website at  http://countmeinmaine.org.






From the K-5 Math Coaches, Clare Harrington and Shannon Peterson


Welcome back to school! We know that parents are their children’s first teachers. We also know that math homework today may look different from what you experienced when you went to school which makes it difficult to support your child.


Here is a letter from former National Council of Teachers of Mathematics President J. Michael Shaughnessy that gives helpful advice on how you can help and support your child.


Attitude can make all the difference in achieving success. Helping your children believe in themselves and that learning can take time and effort is valuable skill. The beginning of the school year is a great time to establish a positive, supportive homework environment. Your student can learn anything. Click here for a short video reminder on this.


Helpful, positive comments for homework




NEWS FROM THE LIBRARY:

We are looking forward to another great year!  We hope everyone had a great summer filled with lots of good books. In case you missed it, the GMS Library Summer Reading List is full of great ideas on what to read next including award winners, kid's picks, and the top books read here at GMS last year. The list is still posted on our website but here is the direct link if you happen to be reading this online.

A large reorganization project is underway with new fiction genre sections, integrated nonfiction, rearranged furniture to allow for better universal access, and improved cataloging to assist in more productive searches on the online catalog. We appreciate everyone's patience as we undergo these changes!

This year's Maine Student Books Award nominees are great!  We have the books on display available for check out and the list can be found online: http://msba.umeedu.maine.edu/ 4-8th graders are encouraged to read at least 3 from the list and then they can vote for their favorite title in March.

​This year, the 4th graders will also have the opportunity to vote for their favorite title from the Chickadee Award nominees list. We will read all of the books on the list in library class throughout the year and encourage students to read them independently as well. The Chickadee list can be found at: http://www.mainechickadeeaward.org/

The library is always looking for volunteers! If you would like to help us out weekly, monthly, or sporadically we would love to hear from you. You can download our volunteer application from our website (look under the parents tab). *Please note, you must also apply to be a volunteer through the district process before you help out here. Students are also encouraged to apply to be a library volunteer.  The application is found on the library website under the students & staff tab.





LOST & FOUND: In just a few days of school, a collection has already started in the Lost & Found (located just outside the cafeteria). Please remind your child to regularly check for missing items, and feel free to take a look yourself whenever you are in the building. It is also helpful to label jackets, sweatshirts, lunchboxes, etc. to assist staff in getting items back to their rightful owners.




Reminders from Food Service


• When sending in cash or checks, please be sure to include your child’s first & last name or lunch code number. If you’d like to make payments online, visit www.myschoolbucks.com.


• For safety reasons, please do not send in glass containers.



The Late Bus


In addition to regular, daily dismissal, a late bus is also available on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday for students who stay for co-curricular activities or after-school academic support.  Buses pick up students from GMS at 4:15pm and transport them home. Please be aware that depending on the number of students riding the late bus on a given day, your child's arrival time at home may vary.  If you have specific questions about the late bus, please feel free to call the Transportation Garage at 829-4820.




Co-Curricular Activities


4th & 5th Grade:


Chorus: We will be performing in several concerts throughout the year, and students will learn many important skills to help them be successful singers! We meet on Tuesdays from dismissal until 4:15. Our first rehearsal will be September 20th after school on the GMS stage!  Hope to see lots of new faces!


Concert Dates: (All concerts held in GMS gym)

4/5 Chorus  Wednesday 11/30 @ 6:30 PM

4-8 Chorus  Wednesday 3/1 @ 6:30 PM

4-12 Chorus Thursday 5/4 @ 6:30 PM



Newspaper: The Greely Gazette meets every Tuesday after school in the library classroom, beginning with an informational meeting on September 13th. Students learn the essential skills of reporting news, interviewing people, researching topics of interest, and production of a newspaper in order to publish four editions (Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer) during the school year. To see the amazing job the students do, check out The Greely Gazette on the GMS 4-5 library/media page on the MSAD#51 website!



Civil Rights Team: The focus of this student group is to help make our school a safe place for everyone who enters through education and awareness efforts. We have discussions, read books, and do projects that help bring awareness to our school community. We meet twice a month on Thursday during lunch and recess beginning next week.


Color Guard & Coding Club will begin in October. More information to come.



5th Grade only:


Math Team will begin in October. More information to come.


Band: If you missed the parent information night or have questions about Beginner Band, please contact Ms. Sarah Cummings at scummings@msad51.org.





In the spirit of student wellness, we offer you this resource with suggestions about how to balance your child's schedule so he/she can maximize the benefits of getting involved!  So Many Activities, So Little Time


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