September 28th, 2011
Dear Parents and Families,
Our first month of school is almost through, and we are headed into the very busy month of October. Students in grades 3-8 will be taking the 2011 NECAP Reading and Mathematics tests. Students in grades 5 & 8 will also be administered the 2011 NECAP Writing test. Please call me if you have any questions about the schedule or the assessment.
The following is a list of upcoming events and important dates in October for your information:
October 6th: First Day of NECAP Testing
October 7th: No School (Teacher In-Service Day)
October 14th: Hay Day!
October 16th: PTO Harvest Dinner
October 20th & 21st: No School
October 27th: Fall Parent Conferences 3-7PM
October 31st: Fall Parent Conferences 8:00-3:30PM
(No school for students)
In other news, a few classes are enjoying various field trips and experiences in this first week of autumn. I was fortunate to join the 8th graders on their annual Sterling Pond hike this week. We had a beautiful day for it, and are grateful to Ms. C-H for her work in organizing this trip! Students in K-1 classes will visit Green Wind Farm this week, as part of our Outdoor Classroom programming. Thank you for your continued support of our school. Happy fall!
September 14, 2011
Dear Parents and Families,
Oh, what a fun assembly we had last Friday! With support from local businesses, we were able to give out some great prizes to readers who participated in our FCS Summer Reading Challenge. A generous $500 donation from Bond Auto Parts helped us purchase 3 Nook e-readers for the top readers at grades 3-8, and a Leapster Explorer for the K-2 student who read and logged the most reading minutes this summer. Everyone enjoyed an ice cream treat at the end of the assembly. It was a nice way to end our week together.
Please remember that we are having an Open House this Thursday, September 15th, from 6-7PM. We will be having a mini “Resource Fair” in the gym during this time where various organizations and folks will be present to provide information and answer questions you might have. We hope to see you there! Also, we will be having our first 8th grade trip meeting on Thursday at 7PM in Mrs. Airoldi’s classroom .
Thank you to everyone who donated non-perishable food items to our food drive for those affected by Tropical Storm Irene. 8th graders helped collect the food from classrooms and pack my car. And it was definitely packed! I delivered the food to Collins Perley Friday afternoon, and it was brought to Hartford, VT after the football game Friday night. Thanks again for your support with our first school-wide community service project of the year! Mrs. C-H is still collecting hard cover children and young adult books to replace the collection lost in the West Hartford library in the storm. These can be brought in through the rest of this week.
With our new morning routines, we are working hard to maintain a safe and smooth traffic flow in the morning. We appreciate your support in helping us ensure an efficient morning transition by assisting us with the following procedures:
- Students should not arrive before 8:00 unless they are in Algebra or siblings of an Algebra student. All students should be in class by 8:15.
- Please enter from South Road for morning drop off. This will support a safe transition for students coming off the busses in the morning, as well as for kids being dropped off.
- Afternoon: If you pick your child up at the end of the day, please note that if you are parked inside the orange cones, we require that you wait to exit until the busses have left the school. Thank you very much for your cooperation with these procedures!
Did you know that our daily announcements are posted on our website? If you have other suggestions of things you would like to see on our website, please let me know!
Also, we sincerely appreciate your efforts in sending in written notes when your child’s dismissal plan has changed for the day. This has been a great help. Thank you for your support, and we hope to see you Thursday evening!
September 2, 2011
Dear Parents and Families,
We’ve had a busy first three days of school! In addition to meeting their teachers and getting settled in new classrooms, students have also been reviewing our “HR3” expectations with staff across all settings in our school. This is our second year of implementing a Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBiS) framework for teaching positive behavior at FCS. The beginning of a new school year is a logical and traditional time to discuss expectations about how we will work together so we can enjoy an optimal, supportive learning environment at Fairfield Center School. We have been re-teaching what “HR3” looks like in our classrooms, in the cafeteria, in our bathrooms, our hallways, on the playground, on the busses, during assemblies, and at arrival and dismissal times to all of our K-8 students. Next week, we will hold an assembly at which students will be reinforcing these concepts through a “charades” like game. We are looking forward to seeing how creative they are!
I am pleased to announce that we have hired Jennifer Hill to be our full-time technology integrationist at Fairfield Center School. We have accessed federal grant dollars to support the addition of this one-year position, but our long-term goal is to grow this position into a multi-year teaching post at FCS. As we all know, technology is rapidly changing our world and its implications for teaching and learning in 21st century schools have been articulated in many places for several years now. This position provides us an opportunity to take several strides forward in improving learning outcomes in these areas.
Important Dates/ Mark your Calendars:
- Food drive to Support Vermont towns affected by Tropical Storm Irene Friday, September 2nd -Friday, September 9th
- Hard cover book drive to support West Hartford, VT library, 9/2/11-9/911
- Fairfield Center School OPEN HOUSE, Thursday, September 15th, 6-7PM
- 8th Grade Trip Meeting, September 15th, 7PM
- Tuesday, September 20th, School Picture Day
Have a safe and relaxing Labor Day weekend!
Sincerely, Mrs. Wood
August 31, 2011
Dear Parents and Families,
We are enjoyed great first day back at school. A highlight of the day was our morning “Welcome Back” assembly where Kristen Hughes and I unveiled our new blue hair to our voracious summer readers who surpassed their BNML summer reading program goal and read close to 1200 books!
Next week, we will recognize the readers who participated in the FCS summer reading challenge in another assembly and award some great prizes.
We are looking forward to a terrific year at FCS!
August 1, 2011
Happy August! It has been busy at FCS since the end of school in June. Teachers have been involved in curriculum work in reading and writing, workshops in math strategies and Google applications, and district wide-work in supervision and evaluation and student reporting systems. A group of teachers are also preparing to attend a three day PBiS training later next week. We have moved the preschool to the main campus, organized our unified arts schedule to prioritize student choice for fine arts electives at grades 7 & 8, hired a French teacher (Mr. Nick Delaney) and a new Outdoor Classroom Coordinator (Ms. Joanna Jerose), put in a new tile floor in the main hall, and are very close to installing DSL!
I just returned from two weeks of vacation time with my family, and savored every minute of it. I hope all of our students and families are also enjoying some quality family time during these precious summer months, and am looking forward to seeing everyone back at school later this month!
June 14th, 2011
Dear Parents and Families,
Our last week of the school year is here. Thank you for a wonderful year! We have enjoyed much success with our students and faculty this year. We have lots of learning to celebrate. Highlights from the 2010-2011 school year include:
*The launch of our new PBiS and HR3 system at Fairfield. Students did a fantastic job earning recognition for following our expectations which are: Be Honest. Be Respectful. Be Responsible. Be Ready to Learn!
*Students earned five school-wide celebrations, including an ice cream social, a movie and popcorn afternoon, a sledding and Wii event, a read-in, and a pancake breakfast with our very own 2011 maple syrup!
*The addition of much more technology and hardware at FCS. We were also thrilled to receive 50 new netbooks from a Digital Wish grant which will support a 1:1 initiative on the 4/5 team.
*The PTO-supported Harvest Day and Luncheon, RIF day, and first Parents Night & Dinner in April.
*A wonderful athletic season including a league championship win for our 7/8 Boys Basketball team!
*Multiple community service projects including the Thanksgiving Food Drive for the Community Center organized by the student government, the holiday gift drive, and the Big Change Round-Up for the Vermont Children’s Hospital.
*Many wonderful musical concerts and achievements including “Best Entertainment” at the 2011 Maple Festival in Saint Albans for our jazz ensemble.
*Our engaging “Project Sweet Talk” community celebration in May.
*A fun, safe 8th grade class trip White Water rafting in Massachusetts.
*The “Book Brigade” partnership project with BNML.
*Young Writer’s Project on-line submissions from middle school students.
*86% of Fairfield 5th graders performed at the Proficient or Proficient with Distinction level on the 2010 Writing NECAP.
*The Fairfield Almanac created by students and on our website.
*7th grade class tree planting along the Wantzer brook.
*Fairfield Center School’s “Platinum Award” for our middle school students’ entry into the International Cyber Fair Competition!
*Expansion of the Outdoor Classroom gardens at FCS, and a successful plant sale and community BBQ in June!
Thank you for all of your support! As we ease into the summer months, I have just a few last notes and reminders for you:
On Tuesday and Thursdays throughout the summer, outdoor classroom volunteers Melissa Dion and Lorelei Westbrook will be on campus from 3-5 to weed and tend the gardens. If you are available and willing to help, please come by! Also, we will have a log book at both gardens as well (at the Common School and behind the back parking lot) if you would like to come by at another time to help out. You can make a note in the log book to record that you were there and what you did to help maintain our school gardens. We really want this to be a school-wide project, and appreciate any help you can give to help the gardens thrive over the summer months.
Step-up/ Placement: Teachers have spent much time and energy building the class lists for grades K-6 for next year. Students will have a “step-up” day this Thursday to meet their new teacher and class. Students in grades 6 and 7 will remain with their current homeroom configurations, but move on to Mr. Evans and Mr. Stebbins’ homerooms. Thank you for your support and trust in this process!
Rosie’s Girls Camps for girls entering 6th and 7th grade next year: Last week, I sent home informational packets and applications for the “Rosie’s Girls” camp that will be happening in Saint Albans this summer. The camp will take place at the Northwest Technical Center the weeks of June 20th, June 27th, and July 11th, everyday from 9-4. Rosie’s Girls Summer Program combines hands-on instruction in the skilled trades (carpentry, welding, etc.) with fun art activities and games. Breakfast, lunch, and snacks are provided. There are full scholarships available and this camp has just recently opened to Fairfield girls entering grades 6 and 7. If you are interested, please call Erica Bertucci at 527-0565 x 5124 or at 370-5490 as soon as possible.
Our first day of school for the 2011-2012 year is Wednesday, August 31st. Have a wonderful, safe, fun summer!
May 27, 2011
We had a Memorial Day recognition assembly this morning.
Our students met in the gym, recited the Pledge of Allegiance, and observed a moment of silence to honor all of the men and women who have served our country, and especially those who have given the ultimate sacrifice to protect our freedom. Mrs. Peyrat sang the National Anthem, and her powerful soprano voice was something to behold. Mr. Stebbins gave us a brief history about Memorial Day, and the 4th and 5th graders sang, “You’re a Grand Old Flag.” First graders in Mrs. Larose’s and Mrs. Fairchild’s room recited a poem, and we concluded with remembering Grandma Judy, too and honoring her with a tree planting.
It was a brief assembly, and poignant.
Our kids are awesome and they always demonstrate just how terrific they are when we come together for activities like these. I hope all our families enjoy some quality time this holiday weekend!
May 15, 2011
We do a lot of “cool stuff” at Fairfield Center School. Take this past week, for example.
On Tuesday, our entire student body walked or ran in the return of "the Great Race."
I stood at the one-mile mark of our two-mile loop on Castle Road, where I manned the water table. Ninety of our students ran or walked two miles, and the rest of our kids walked a loop around the main campus. This event culminated in a pep rally outdoors with our entire student body. Our student government members recognized every student who has participated in a club or sports team this school year. It is pretty wonderful how many of our students contribute to our school through their involvement in these various activities.
On Wednesday, our 4th and 5th grade team received their personal netbooks from Digital Wish. It was exciting to watch as our students learned how to navigate these new computers, explored the various programs installed on them, and even created mini-webcam videos with them on their very first day!
On Thursday morning, I visited the preschool in East Fairfield to witness a rocket launch! All 14 preschoolers, under the guidance and supervision of Bennett Dawson and Beth Peloquin, built and decorated their own rockets for the launch. It was a beautiful morning on the field, and it is hard to say who was more delighted by the excitement of the launch, the children or the adults!
On Friday, our Fuel Up to Play 60 team of students and staff traveled to Foxborough, Massachusetts, to visit Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots. If you haven’t already heard, the team won this all-expenses paid trip for their work in promoting healthy eating and exercise at FCS this year. Students and staff reported that it was a great experience for everyone involved.
Our students at Fairfield Center School have an array of opportunities to learn about themselves, about each other, and about the world around them. Together, we will continue to offer our students rich experiences, both on campus and outside our school walls, to grow and learn.
May 2, 2011
Dear Parents and Families,
I hope everyone enjoyed the spring break. I saw several of you at the Vermont Maple Festival in Saint Albans. Thanks for coming out to support our band. Our jazz ensemble, “52 Soule Drive,” and rock band, “B.A.M.!” won first place for entertainment in the parade. Congratulations to them, and thank you to all who helped coordinate and design our excellent FCS float.
Our first week back after the spring break was a busy one. Our middle school students are gearing up for the culmination of Project Sweet Talk, which takes place this Wednesday, May 4th at school. Our students will host an exhibit of their work from 9:00AM to 2:00PM in the school library. Stop by to see what our students learned about sugaring in Fairfield, and enjoy a delicious treat!
Before the break, I informed parents of our 4th and 5th grade team of a new partnership between Fairfield Center School and the Digital Wish organization. Digital Wish is an organization devoted to increasing technology access and integration in schools. As a recipient of an eVermont grant, Fairfield Center School has received 50 new Dell netbooks and printers that will be used to commence a 1:1 initiative at grades 4 and 5. The 1:1 initiative will start next year, but students on the current team are already benefiting from instruction in digital citizenship and Web 2.0 tools from Digital Wish instructors. We are very excited about this collaboration and the impact it will have on our technology integration work at FCS.
We practiced a lockdown on Friday, April 29th. Students and staff did a great job following the procedures overall.
Next Tuesday, May 10th, staff and students will participate in “the Great Race.” Students in grades 4-8 need to hand in their permission forms to participate in the run on Church and Castle roads. Any student who would rather walk will walk a loop here at school with the K-3. We are looking forward to this community-building event!
Have a great week.
April 14, 2011
Dear Parents and Families,
We’ve had an exciting couple of weeks at Fairfield Center School. As many of you may already know, Vermont Life magazine contacted us mid-winter and asked to come up to our school to do a piece on our middle school sugaring unit. Mr. Baxter and our students spent some quality time with the reporter and photographer while they gathered and boiled. We will be anticipating their winter 2012 issue!
On Monday, our students in grades K-5 were treated to a wonderful storytelling presentation from the Children’s Literacy Foundation (CLiF). The Bent Northrop Memorial Library was fortunate to receive a donation of over $2000 worth of beautiful new children’s books from CLiF. At this assembly, we also learned about many of the intriguing new books that will be available at the public library. You can learn more about this organization at http://www.clifonline.org/. We are thankful to Kristen Hughes for coordinating this event for us! It was enjoyed by students and adults alike. I hope many of you will have the opportunity to visit the beautiful new library over the spring break.
Our Fuel Up to Play 60 team of students and teachers received some terrific news this week. The group submitted their photo yearbook of the events and activities they have coordinated this school year into a contest a couple of weeks ago. Fairfield’s group won, and the prize is an all-expense paid trip to Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots, in Foxborough, Massachusetts in May. The kids are very excited, as you might imagine, and we are very proud of them!
- The Veterans of Foreign Wars and Vietnam Veterans Color Guards would like to hold Memorial Day Honors in East Fairfield on Sunday, May 29th at 11:45AM. They are looking for individuals or families to make a short speech, read a poem that will be provided, and to place a wreath in front of the honor roll and to release balloons. If you would like to participate, please call Rita Winegar at 827-3897 before April 30th.
- Spring Vacation: April 18th-April 22nd
On a last note, Fairfield Center School is now on Facebook. I am hoping this might be a better way to get information out to parents in a timely manner. When you search for it, a few different Fairfield Center School pages come up; our FB page is the one with the Trotter image.
Have a safe, fun spring break,