I hope that many students went home tonight and shared a unique experience that occurred during lunch today. Today marked the first "Mix it Up Day" at the middle school. This is a national event that focuses on developing tolerance and acceptance by inviting students to sit with different individuals during lunch. Our seventh grade team organized "Mix it Up Day," and left no detail out. As students entered the cafeteria, they were randomly assigned a number, and then found that number on the corresponding table in the cafeteria. Once at their table, students found some question/discussion cards to use to spark conversations with the goal of learning something new about their table mates. Many teachers and adults, including myself, joined students at their tables as well. After eating lunch, students had the opportunity to build teamwork strategies among their groups by competing in a friendly game of "Chicken Baseball."
I encourage you to ask your son or daughter about "Mix it Up Day." I hope that they were able to walk away with at least one new connection with one of their peers. I look forward to more Mix it Up Days throughout the year. Thank you again to our seventh grade team for planning such a meaningful event for our students and staff.
I had such a great surprise this morning when Ms. Tarasiewicz came into my office with a group of students, carrying a wrapped gift. After opening the gift, I realized the all of the students were part of Ms. T's cross stitch group. They created an unbelievably impressive bulldog cross stitch with "WCS" written on it for my office. Words cannot say how humbled I am to have received this from our middle school students! Below are some pictures of the cross stitch, and if you want to see it in person, it's proudly displayed on my desk.
A huge thank you to Ms. T and the entire cross stitch group! I am looking forward to seeing some of the work that they create throughout the year! I am thankful to work with such a great group of teachers and students!
Congratulations to the Westmoreland Pride on capturing their third straight NYS Championship title! If you were at the Dome on Sunday, you know how eloquently our band took the field, and how they kept the crowd in awe during their entire performance. We are proud of you all for your dedication, commitment, and passion. Thank you Mrs. Cutler for leading the band to this significant accomplishment!
What an exciting and entertaining week it has been here at Westmoreland Middle School! After five days of watching the students and adults band together each day to show their school spirit, we learned that our collective creativity tops the charts! Check out some of the pictures below from Spirit Week 2013! Thank you to Mrs. Pike-Roberts for taking so many great pictures of our students and adults!
Westmoreland is a great place for many reasons. Probably the most important is the fact that we are a family. Our students, teachers, support staff, and administrators are one big family. We are there to support one another when a member of the family needs help, and we are there to celebrate accomplishments and successes.
In true family spirit, the Westmoreland Sports Boosters commemorated Jason Robinson's huge accomplishment in completing his first Boilermaker Road Race this past July with a plaque. Jason's fifth grade family members raised the funds to purchase a racing wheelchair for him last year, when they were fourth graders. As a way to "Pay it Forward," Jason and his family have started the JRob Foundation. In his organization, Jason is on a mission to help others receive funding for adaptive equipment. I applaud the entire fifth grade class for being such positive role models to us all.
On Wednesday, October 23rd, Jason was presented his plaque, and addressed the middle school student body. He shared his journey and had a message centered around the power of courage and persistence. Judging by the response from his peers, it was a message that was well-received!
We welcome you to take a moment to check out Jason's plaque, which now hangs in the main hallway in the middle school (as well as in the elementary school).
The Builder's Club, led by Ms. Hawkins, came out this morning to show their support for research and for those individuals and families affected by breast cancer. Thank you to each student, parent, and teacher who joined the Builder's Club this morning. Their club shows us all that we can make a difference! Great work!
Student council has been hard at work planning and publicizing Spirit Week 2013! They have been very thoughtful and purposeful in planning the daily themes. Below you will find the theme of each day. This is an exciting week because teachers and students can join forces to show their school spirit. I already have my pink shirt picked out, and my PJs ready to go!
Monday: Pajama Day
Tuesday: Pink Day- Breast Cancer Awareness (please no inappropriate sayings or words on clothing)
Wednesday: Neon Day
Thursday: Costume Day (Let's get creative!)
Friday: Green and White Day
Although this week is meant to be fun and exciting for students, there is still a high level of expectation to dress accordingly. What students may wear outside of school, may not be suitable, so we ask that parents and families help students to make smart decisions. I am looking forward to seeing the creativity that students invest into each costume this year as well. As a way to keep students safe, and to minimize any distraction, there are a few expectations. We ask that students refrain from including face or body paint, masks, or fake weapons as part of their costumes. Each costume and clothing item throughout the week must meet the requirements outlined in the Middle School Code of Conduct.
I hope that middle school students are talking to families at home about the work we have been doing centered around anti-bullying, respect, and dignity. We will continue this work throughout the year, and in years to come. With the recent Dignity for All Students Act put into place in New York State last year, schools are amping up their efforts to curb bullying, harassment, and taunting. I am proud to say that Westmoreland Middle School students embrace these efforts, and are working hard to do their part of keep our school a wonderful place to learn.
As a way to support our efforts, Stand up to Bullying president Mike Dreiblatt will be visiting our building on Wednesday, October 23rd. He will be meeting with both students and adults over the course of the day. His message to students will focus on defining bullying behavior, learning about the dangers of cyberbullying, developing positive, alternative behaviors, and deciphering the difference between teasing and taunting. His time with adults will be spent developing common strategies for addressing bullying behavior in our school.
We look forward to the message and work that Mike has in store for us during his visit and will share more information after his presentation! For more information on Mike, please visit his website: http://standuptobullying.net/education/aboutmike.html
A letter of pride....
Dear Westmoreland Band Students,
Although I have only been the principal in the middle school for a few months, I have quickly learned that there is so much to be proud of here in this wonderful school. One of those is the marching band. In so many ways, I am proud of you. I am proud of you for the phenomenal musicians that you have worked hard to become. I am proud that you are already looking at ways to improve and continue to grow. I am proud of the countless hours that you spend with Mrs. Cutler late into the evening, rehearsing, perfecting, reflecting, and building your band. I am proud of the way that you represent yourselves and Westmoreland each time you're away from the school. I am proud to have Mrs. Cutler represent our band, and equally proud of the tremendous parental support that we have. Most of all, I am proud that you take PRIDE in yourselves and your talents. I look forward to many years of watching you grow, perform, and amaze!
Below is a video from Mrs. Morris from the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame this past weekend! Stay tuned for more videos and pictures!
Congratulations to each of the eight students who were awarded with the, "Student of the Month" certificate this week. We are proud to have such a wonderful community here at Westmoreland Middle School, and are thrilled to recognize each of these students. This month's students include:
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