Drake Dragons PTO


We love the sense of community it brings to Drake Middle School. Please know that you are appreciated for giving to our school!

Your membership fee goes right back to Drake and doesn’t commit you to any volunteer hours; however it does get you on the inside track! If your kiddo is not the grand communicator then you will love getting our bi-monthly newsletter that is full of information, reminders and tips. These will go out to members only, and we’d love to reach every family! We need you to help build our strong community.

If you haven’t joined the PTO would you consider it? Membership forms are available on the forms section of this website or in the front office. Fill out your form and return it to the front office with a check made out to Drake Middle School PTO.


JANUARY 31 Parent/Teacher Conferences 3:30- 7:00 PM

FEBRUARY 13 DASH 2:30-3:15 PM







FEBRUARY 27 DASH 2:30-3:15 PM


We are headed into the last tri-mester at Drake for the 2018-2019 School year. The article below may offer you and your child some tips to help them be successful for that final push: ( I have included the link to the original article)

7 steps to succeeding in middle school

Help your child feel confident and perform well in middle school.

by: Marian Wilde | September 6, 2018

Offer hands-on guidance.

If necessary, go to bat for your child with teachers, counselors and other staff at the school. Give generous guidance, including monitoring her homework, while remembering that it’s her homework, not yours. You can help by asking questions that lead her to her own solutions. For example:

• What information do you need to do this assignment?

• Where are you going to look for it?

• Where do you think you should begin?

• What do you need to do next?

• Can you describe how you’re going to solve this problem?

• What did you try that didn’t work?

• What did you try that did work?

Help him get organized.

Organization is the key to middle-school success. Help your child develop a system to keep track of important papers. If he tends to forget to turn in homework or can’t quite keep track of how he’s doing in a class, it might help to get him a binder with a folder in the front for completed work ready to be turned in and a folder in the back for papers returned by the teacher.

Make sure your child has – and uses – a planner to keep track of assignments. Some schools provide these to students, and if not, you might want to work with your PTA or parent organization to provide planners at your school. Help your child get in the habit of writing down each daily assignment in each subject and checking it off when it’s complete.

Communicate with your child’s teachers. If your child is struggling with organizational skills, talk to the school counselor or teachers about what might be causing the problems and brainstorm approaches to solve them.

Teach time-management skills.

Time management becomes vitally important in middle school. Educators often start teaching time-management skills to students in fifth grade, but your child will most likely need reinforcement to make the process a habit.

First, make sure your child refers to her day planner/calendar on a regular basis. Teach her to divide up her work over the number of days allotted for the assignment. This will create smaller, manageable subtasks out of the larger, more daunting tasks. Large projects can create anxiety for students who are new to the process, and you will be helping your child by walking her through it the first few times and by enforcing the schedule you have devised together. A big research project will seem less overwhelming and will be less likely to be left until the last minute if it’s done in chunks, each with its own deadline.

Encourage her to estimate how long each assignment will take. She can then plan a realistic schedule, building in study breaks after subjects that are most challenging. Helping your child keep track of time spent studying – rather than staring at a blank page – will help her think about how she’s using her time. If she’s spending too much time on a subject that might be a signal she needs extra help or tutoring.

Develop note-taking skills.

Teachers will frequently start teaching the basics of note taking in elementary school but some students will need further guidance from parents or tutors. Taking good notes requires students to evaluate, organize and summarize information. It’s a key survival skill your child will need through high school and beyond. Taking notes in class: Writing at the speed of speech can be daunting even for an adult. These tips may help your student as he develops his own system:

• Start a new page for each new class each day. Date it. Leave space between topics or ideas so you can scan the page more easily later.

• Take down key words and concepts, not sentences. Develop your own system of abbreviations or symbols (such as w/ for with or math symbols such as > or =) to take down key points. Here are some abbreviations to get you started from the English-ZoneWeb site.

• Listen for word clues from the teacher. Teachers often signal what’s important to note, using phrases such as “The three incidents that led to the War of 1812 were…” Here are some examples of word clues.

• Review notes after class to make sure they’re accurate and complete. Doing this just before starting homework in a particular subject can help a student focus on the topic at hand.

Taking notes from reading: As a student moves through middle school, he’ll need to develop the ability to take good notes – from class lectures, reading assignments and research materials. That’s where parents can help, says author and California high school teacher Jim Burke.

“Sometimes you have to sit down and say, here’s this whole chapter. How do you decide what’s important? What are you going to use these notes for? To take a test? To write a paper?” said Burke, whose The Reader’s Handbook explains reading strategies and tools for high school students. “Students who don’t take notes well, don’t use them,” he says. “They lose faith in the process.”

Many experts advise students to pre-read a textbook chapter to get an idea about what it is about, rather than simply wading in. Students can grasp the main themes by first reading the introduction text, subheads, graphics, photo captions, summary paragraphs and study questions at the end.

Getting an overview will help your child focus on what’s important as she starts to take notes, rather than getting mired in the details.

Burke prefers to use the term “note-making” – making meaning from information – to the more passive “note-taking.” Note-making, he says, is “manipulating information to make it sticky.” Some students can make information “stick” by making outlines. For other more visual learners, colors might work better. Burke gives the example of one student who went back over her science notes using red highlighter to indicate blood and blue for oxygen.

Finally, if your child is struggling, she may be having trouble reading. Ask her to explain a chapter she’s read. If you can see that her comprehension is a problem, make an appointment to talk to the teacher or her counselor so you can get her the help she may need.

Help hone your student’s budding study skills.

Studying for tests is a skill. For struggling students, it’s a mystery. “Unsuccessful test takers don’t know where the questions come from,” says Burke. “The kids who don’t succeed tend to think the others are lucky.” Some tips to remember in helping your child:

• Your student can practice active learning when studying – highlighting his notes, using Post-its to mark key textbook passages, making study cards, and mapping and diagramming concepts.

• Some students focus better in the morning, others at night. Help your child find the times that his efforts will be most effective.

• Sometimes we just have to memorize. You may have used a mnemonic like Roy G. Biv to remember the colors of the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet). Inventing your own silly mnemonic together works just as well and can lighten up a study session.

Meet with the teacher or teachers.

Is there one teacher in particular that your child finds difficult? If so, work on ways to smooth over the problem areas. Maybe it’s understanding how the teacher gives homework or what his expectations are. Usually, an email exchange, a phone call or a visit after school will clear up misunderstandings between teacher, student and parent. A middle-school teacher can have as many as 90 to 150 students to interact with each day, and students need proactive parents to help them understand each teacher’s methods.

If all else fails, it might be time to hire a tutor.

For articles and tips on hiring a tutor, visit our Tutoring and Homework Help section.

Laura Hendrick, a literacy coach in Santa Rosa, California, advises: “Kids may try to push you away in middle school but they still need you. Be firm; establish accountability measures. I haven’t seen a case where a student didn’t need parental support in middle school both academically and emotionally.”

Box Tops for Education

FEBRUARY 28TH, 2019 is the deadline to receive Box Tops funds for this school year!!

  • All Box Tops submissions between now and February 28th will go towards this year's fund raising efforts.
  • Keep on clipping! A 2nd submission deadline lasts through the end of this school year with funds going towards the 2019-2020 school year.
  • This school year, our goal is to earn $500 and the money goes directly to the PTO which funds many school initiatives.
  • Please clip those box tops and send them to school with your student. The Box Tops will go in your student’s advisement teacher’s bin. The students in the Advisement class that submits the largest number of Box Tops by February 28th will receive something special before the end of the year.
  • For more information on Box Tops, including a list of participating products, go to http://www.boxtops4education.com. Be sure to sign up as a member (it’s free!) so you can check out our school’s earnings details and get access to coupons and bonus offers.

Businesses that Support Drake PTO

Lisa Pizzo

Prep-Rite Coatings and Contracting LLC




Beth Bolduc

Coldwell Banker Broker Associate



Travis Rogers

Keystone Appraisals and Consulting