HFS Weekly Collections

HFS News & Special Events
January 20, 2012

Dear Families,

This week’s message, in honor of Jennifer Button, is pulled from the Weekly Collections archives. This reflection was first published on May 12, 2006…

Jonathan recently used an expression that started the rusty wheels in my head turning and caused me to reflect on this first year at HFS.  The “central artery” is Boston terminology for the highway that runs through the heart of the city.  How like a thriving city we are becoming!  Each of us, Board members, Head, faculty, students, parents and Friends of the school were at different places in our lives when we were first introduced to the idea of Harford Friends School.  Yet there has been a common thread that drew us together… the desire to “find and develop the good in every child, that each may find the paths to becoming a person who strengthens self, the community and the world.” In coming together we have built a foundation for our community that will continue to strengthen and grow through the years, just as a small town is transformed into a city.  Though we sometimes focus on how much there is still to do, let us take a moment to reflect on how much we have already done.  Remember the nine students that began the year, each loved and honored by their own families.  Now look at the nine students nearly ready to move on to seventh grade, each loved and honored by their community.  As we move forward, there will be more students each year to welcome into our community.  I, for one, can hardly wait to see them grow the way our pioneering class has.

-Jennifer Button

Thank you, Jenn, for your part in making the experience of those nine students possible, as well as each and every student who has followed.

-Jonathan

NOTES FROM COMMUNITY MEMBERS…

[Please Note: HFS welcomes general announcements from community members to be included in this section of the Weekly Collections, particularly if the announcements involve the extra-curricular activities of our students, families, faculty, and staff. Please be aware that not all requests can be accommodated each week and that the school reserves the right to publish information at its discretion.]

Children’s Center of North Harford

The Children’s Center of North Harford Nursery and Daycare will conduct Registration for the 2012-2013 school year February 1st through February 29th,2012. Registration applications are currently available for all nursery classes (Two Year Olds, Three Year Olds, and Four Year Olds) and Full Day Pre-school Daycare, as well as Before and After School Care for children attending North Harford Elementary School and may be obtained by calling the Center at 410-836-0444 or CCNH707@zoominternet.net.

The Center is located in the former Highland Elementary School complex at Highland Commons, 707-708 Highland Road, Street, Md., near the intersections of Routes 165 and 543. Nursery classes, Pre-school Daycare and Before & After School Care programs are approved by Office of Child Care/Maryland State Department of Education.

All Children’s Center programs offer educational experience for all children regardless of race, sex, color, religion, or national origin. The Center is a non-profit, non-denominational child development center under the directorship of Brenda Marsden.

Parents who are interested in further information about Registration, or any of the Center’s programs, schedules, or tuition rates may call: 410-836-0444 or 410-836-1264 or e-mail ccnh707@zoominternet.net. Parents may also visit our website:www.childrenscenterofnorthharford.org.

Jazz Performance…

On Saturday, February 25, two HFS alumni, John De Mey and Alex Foley, will be performing at Calvert Hall’s Annual Jazz Dinner.  The theme is Mardi Gras, the food will be fabulous, a silent auction and several raffles will be offered, and the music will be provided by the amazing student jazz groups of Calvert Hall.  Tickets are $30 if purchased before February 20, and $40 after, but no tickets will be available at the door.  If you are interested in ordering tickets, contact Karen De Mey at karendemey@yahoo.com

Announcements/Calendar Updates…

NOTE: Items new to this week’s Collections are identified with bold type.

Items changed after an earlier posting are identified in italicized and bold type.

  1. Monday, Jan. 23 – HFS Closed for Faculty Professional Development
  2. Friday, Jan. 27 – Student Semester Reports distributed in individual conferences (1:25-2:55PM)
  3. Friday, Jan. 27 – Middle School DI practice (3:15-4:30PM)
  4. Monday, Jan. 30 – Middle School DI practice (3:15-4:30PM)
  5. Tuesday, Jan. 31 – Home & School Association Meeting (7-8PM)
  6. Friday, Feb. 3 – Middle School DI practice (3:15-4:30PM)
  7. Monday, Feb. 6 – Middle School DI practice (3:15-4:30PM)
  8. Tuesday, Feb. 7 – Parent Coffee with the Head of School (8:05-8:50AM in Room 1 of the Senior Center); Please RSVP to headosfschool@harfordfriends.org by Friday, Feb. 3.
  9. Wednesday, Feb. 8 – Home & School Association Meeting (7-8PM)
  10. Friday, Feb. 10 – Field trips for all grades. Contact your Parent Grade Rep for details and to volunteer. Please be aware that grades 5/6 & 8 have trips with a late return time expected.
  11. Friday, Feb. 10 – Middle School DI practice (3:15-4:30PM)
  12. Monday, Feb. 13-Thursday, Feb. 16 – Lower School Scholastic Book Fair (Details to be announced)
  13. Monday, Feb. 13 – Middle School DI practice (3:15-4:30PM)
  14. Wednesday, Feb. 15 – Financial Aid Applications due for families new to HFS
  15. Thursday, Feb. 16 – 4th Annual Judy’s Night of a Thousand Stars (5:30-7:30PM at HFS) to honor the memory of founding HFS Board Member Judy Harlan.
  16. Friday, Feb. 17 – School Closed for Mid-Winter Break
  17. Monday, Feb. 20 – School Closed in observance of Presidents Day
  18. Friday, Feb. 24 – Grade 3/4 field trip to Blue Dog Arts (12:30-2:30PM)
  19. Friday, Feb. 24 – Middle School DI practice (3:15-4:30PM)
  20. Saturday, Feb. 25 – 2nd Annual Family Fun Winter Walk to benefit Mason Dixon Community Services
  21. Monday, Feb. 27 – Middle School DI practice (3:15-4:30PM)

HFS Grade 8 Weekly Collections

NOTES from Humanities…

English: After an introduction to Mark Twain last week, the class has begun to read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and to discuss themes and characters in relation to Realism in Twain’s writings.  Due Dates for 2nd quarter book reports have been changed to Jan. 20 and 27th.

Social Studies: The class completed the multi-part Book 2 test last week with flying colors!  Now we are tackling the theme “Seeds of Conflict” as we begin to explore westward expansion, conflict with Spain and France, as well as changing interactions with Native Americans and colonial frontiersmen. The new notetaking format – COF _ (Chapter Outline Format) is now in place, providing a focus on outlining as preparation for the research project.  A quiz will be given on Chapters 1 through 6 next week, date to be announced.

NOTES from Technology…

Algebra I: The Algebra I class completed their semester exam on Monday, and we have continued our work on function notation and characteristics of functions, which was begun last week by our extern, Ms. Kaushiki Dunusinghe.

Kaushiki presented herself in a very professional, yet personal, manner to the students; she has the potential for being an outstanding mathematics teacher.  She was invited to participate in two Algebra portfolio presentations, which she found very enjoyable and informative.

Next week, we will continue our function work, as we define and apply the absolute value function and the greatest integer function (step function).

Science: The 8th graders have been busy learning about reflection, refraction, diffraction and interference of waves.  We have also been conferencing and researching about our science fair topics.  All students have now had a conference with me and should be researching and writing the rough draft of their literature review.  This is due on Friday, Jan. 27th. Special thoughts and prayers go out to the Johnson and Craddock families this week.

NOTES from Explorations…

Music: This week the composition students started practicing a new piece of music on handbells, ‘Ein Feste Burg’ originally composted by Martin Luther during the Renaissance period.  After tying up some loose ends of transposition and music theory assignments, the students ended the week with a team review game of treble and bass clef note identification that was competitively played and enjoyed by everyone!

Physical Education: Our aerobic fitness unit will begin next week. We will be learning how to get our heart rate up and learn how to keep our heart muscle healthy. Grades 5 – 8 will be expected to bring their notebook to class every Tuesday and Thursday.

All students should be bringing in miles for our trip across the country. Playing outside and practices count. Remember that I will double all miles for the month of January and February. Miles need to be written on a piece of paper by an adult and signed.

Spanish:  We are working on identifying questions and how to answer them.  Be ready to conjugate some verbs.

HFS Grade 7 Weekly Collections

NOTES from Humanities…

English: Students are now participating in the Rwanda Negotiations with Mr. Huxtable during English classes from January 17 through 26.

Social Studies: The seventh grade spent the week preparing for its negotiations to be held the week of January 24. Students became familiar with the historical context of the conflicts within Gisenyi, dating back to the time of colonial rule of Rwanda by the Germans and the Belgians. Now, post-genocide Rwanda (1996), it is up to our six villagers to achieve a “workable peace” among them. This will require students thoroughly understanding their confidential role instructions, learning key negotiation skills and tactics, as well as learning to understand interests and not just spout positions. Please refer to the project syllabus for insight into daily class work and assigned homework. If anyone is interested in coming in to witness the negotiations in progress, please plan on dropping in during class hours next Thursday and Friday. If nothing else, please talk with your seventh grade student about the experience each day to learn what he or she is learning through the experience!

NOTES from Technology…

Math: We finished up our last section of our Stretching and Shrinking unit and took a quiz.  We know what makes polygons similar, how to spot rep-tiles, how to stretch a figure and how to shrink it.  We can use ratios and scale factors to find the length of missing sides and we can also use shadows and mirrors to do it.  We’ve learned so much that now it’s time to pull it all together.  We will have a test next week.

Science: The 7th graders are diving into our chemistry study.  We have identified the differences between compounds, elements and mixtures. All students have completed their science fair conferencing with me and are now into the research phase of the project.  They should be presenting the rough drafts of their research to me on Friday, Jan. 27th.

NOTES from Explorations…

Music: This week the music history students continued to play handbells as an ensemble, and discovered the challenge of music containing both a melody and harmony line.  Students continued to develop a deeper recognition and understanding of three different types of rests commonly found in music-quarter rests, half rests, and whole rests.

Physical Education: Our aerobic fitness unit will begin next week. We will be learning how to get our heart rate up and learn how to keep our heart muscle healthy. Grades 5 – 8 will be expected to bring their notebook to class every Tuesday and Thursday.

All students should be bringing in miles for our trip across the country. Playing outside and practices count. Remember that I will double all miles for the month of January and February. Miles need to be written on a piece of paper by an adult and signed.

Spanish:  Wow has our pronunciation improved this week.  We will continue to work on developing oral skills.

HFS Grade 5/6 Weekly Collections

NOTES from Humanities…

We did it! We finished “Inside the Walls of Troy!” The ending was not a surprise because we all read up on the historical background, but it was still a less-than-happy ending to the story. The students have started to work on the project of their choice. These will be due early next week. Students should have enough class time to finish but may need to do outside work depending on how much they get completed in school. This week we completed the last lesson in our level 5 vocabulary book (we are not completing the last review section). This means next week we start out using level 6! In grammar this week, the students we introduced to (or reminded of) prepositions. They will be creating their own books while demonstrating how prepositional choice can drastically change meaning. In Social Studies, we began discussing the Pax Romana, and the many emperors that emerged during this time. Next week, we will continue to study the Roman Empire by looking at some of the technological and archeological advancements that were made: the Coliseum, the Pantheon, and aqueducts just to name a few!

NOTES from Technology…

Math: Math 6 students finished up the second investigation of “Shapes and Designs” by learning about parallel lines and transversals. They made conjectures about the measures of angles surrounding two or more parallel lines cut by a transversal. The first problem in Investigation 3 had them looking at regular polygons again. But this time, they made observations about the sums of the angles making up the polygons. After some practice on this, they were ready to determine if what held true for regular polygons would also work with irregular polygons. Next week we will continue our study of polygons and angles by looking at the angles made up by tessellations and then exterior angles of common shapes.

Science: The 5th/6th grade class has been wrapping up our study of the skeletal system.  Students wrote a one page factual description of the system that was edited and revised and will be included in their human body book.  On Friday, we had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Kenneth Noll.  He is a prostheticist with Amici’s Orthotics and Prosthetics in Fallston.  Mr. Noll shared his knowledge and experience with making, fitting and training patients in the use of a prosthetic. Our February field trip is to the Mutter Museum in Philadelphia.  Interested in seeing Albert Einstein’s brain?  Come chaperone our trip!

NOTES from Explorations…

Music: The 5th and 6th grade band students learned a new note on their instrument this week.  They continue to practice recognizing six different notes on the staff and remember the correct fingering on their instrument.  Our drum section learned how to play a ‘flam’ on the snare drum and we also added a bass drum to the section!

Physical Education: Our aerobic fitness unit will begin next week. We will be learning how to get our heart rate up and learn how to keep our heart muscle healthy. Grades 5 – 8 will be expected to bring their notebook to class every Tuesday and Thursday.

All students should be bringing in miles for our trip across the country. Playing outside and practices count. Remember that I will double all miles for the month of January and February. Miles need to be written on a piece of paper by an adult and signed.

Spanish: This week we worked with food.  Yummy!  Well not actual food, but the Spanish words for food.  Next week we’ll learn clothing.

HFS Lower School Weekly Collections

NOTES from the 3/4 Grade Classroom…

Welcome to the second semester!  I was very impressed by the students’ portfolio presentations  last Friday, and I hope you were, too.  The accomplishments they shared were really just the tip of the iceberg, as impressive as they were.  In Reading, we will finish our study of Tuck Everlasting this week.  We will be reviewing and assessing our knowledge of the book throughout the week next week, as well as watching the movie version of the story.

In Writing Workshop, the students are well into their realistic fiction pieces.  Whether they are studiously poring over ideas and carefully creating a story arc, or drafting volumes as their hands try to keep pace with their imaginations, they are all very busy creating original stories that I can’t wait to read.  Be sure to ask your child about his or her story idea.  In Social Studies, we have introduced our new unit on culture.  The students have chosen countries they will focus on for their third-quarter projects.  The project outline will come home next week.  A state poster was due on Friday, Jan. 20, and the next will be due on Friday, Feb. 3.  In Science, we have also begun a new unit on simple machines.  Science fair projects will be related to this topic, and project guidelines were sent home this week.  The Science Fair will be held on Thursday, March 8.  The intermediate Math group is continuing to explore measurement, using both metric and standard units.  Have a great week!

3/4 Music: This week the third and fourth graders discovered that a duet is two instrumentalists playing two different lines of music. They had the opportunity to play a duet with another classmate and they did a great job of focusing on their individual line of music while their classmate was playing something a little bit different.

3/4 Physical Education: Our aerobic fitness unit will begin next week. We will be learning how to get our heart rate up and learn how to keep our heart muscle healthy. Grades 5 – 8 will be expected to bring their notebook to class every Tuesday and Thursday.

All students should be bringing in miles for our trip across the country. Playing outside and practices count. Remember that I will double all miles for the month of January and February. Miles need to be written on a piece of paper by an adult and signed.

3/4 Spanish: We learned our body parts, sang a song and played a game.  We will be learning the family next week.

NOTES from the 1/2 Grade Classroom…

This week the primary class has continued finishing up units and themes.  In math, they had a mid year assessment and received their second math journal.  In science, we had a final assessment on air and weather and began discussing our science fair project, which will be done in school.  In language arts, they continued reading their biographies and started drafting their autobiography.  The primary class also continued talking about and sorted synonyms and talked about suffixes and what the rules are when adding endings to different words.  In theme, the students finished up their igloos and continued discussing other types of shelters.

1/2 Music: This week the first and second grade students continued on in their discovery of notes on the treble clef!  Students played an exciting team game of ‘Treble Clef Toss’ where each student had the opportunity to toss a bean bag on the treble clef board and identify the correct line or space letter name that it landed on.  Students also finished discovering the titles to their mystery songs by playing the notes on the bells and recognizing the familiar tunes by ear.

1/2 Physical Education: Our aerobic fitness unit will begin next week. We will be learning how to get our heart rate up and learn how to keep our heart muscle healthy. Grades 5 – 8 will be expected to bring their notebook to class every Tuesday and Thursday.

All students should be bringing in miles for our trip across the country. Playing outside and practices count. Remember that I will double all miles for the month of January and February. Miles need to be written on a piece of paper by an adult and signed.

1/2 Spanish:  We made a family tree (in Spanish of course) and we put them up in the hall outside the room.  Next week we’re going to learn about animals.

NOTES from the Kindergarten Classroom…

Kindergarten read Mama Cat has Three Kittens by Denise Fleming.   We identified the actions the kittens were performing.  We recited the nursery rhyme “The Three Little Kittens” and identified the rhyming words.  We decoded a new story Can It Fit by Liz Ray, and practiced reading with a partner.  We focused on writing sentences, paying close attention to capital letters at the beginning, punctuation at the end, and spaces between our words.

During math, we listened to Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear by Nancy White Carlstrom, and then the kindergarten class used first, second, third to describe a sequence of events in a day.  We drew pictures of daily events and then put the events in order.  We copied and extended visual patterns that were not based on colors, and were introduced to My First Math Book. We also played I Spy using multiple attributes to find and describe objects.

In science, we reviewed how to care for the animals in our classroom.  We talked about their needs, and our responsibility for their needs. We then learned how to siphon water to clean the aquarium so our fish could have clean water.  We also sprayed water into the terrarium for our earthworms.

We learned about Chinese New Year.  We read My First Chinese New Year by Karen Katz, and discussed the traditions related to the different activities.  We created Chinese lanterns and watched a Chinese Lion Dance.

Kindergarten Physical Education: Our aerobic fitness unit will begin next week. We will be learning how to get our heart rate up and learn how to keep our heart muscle healthy. Grades 5 – 8 will be expected to bring their notebook to class every Tuesday and Thursday.

All students should be bringing in miles for our trip across the country. Playing outside and practices count. Remember that I will double all miles for the month of January and February. Miles need to be written on a piece of paper by an adult and signed.

Kindergarten Spanish: We’ve finished our mini-booklets with all the things we’ve learned so far.  We will be doing more with this information in the form of stories and songs.