OES Middle School Messenger Newsletter

A Message from the Division Head

by Ann Sulzer

Thanks so much to all of you who were able to join me on Wednesday for our Parent Partnership meeting. We started with a conversation about our monthly wellness theme of time, and I shared some time pie charts created by students about what occupies their minds on a given day. You’ll see some examples here in my presentation. It is a good exercise for all of us to really think through what is taking up room in our brains. We then had a great discussion based on ideas from Devorah Heitner’s book Screenwise. You’ll see the quotations I shared in that same presentation. 

We then switched gears, and some parents went to a panel of Upper School students talking about their experience in our high school and other parents joined Laura Todis to learn about how sixth graders will be learning about language and dignity in their Health and Wellness classes. 

If you missed Wednesday’s morning meeting, we are offering an evening meeting on Wednesday, December 11 from 7:00–8:00 p.m. to repeat Laura's information about the sixth grade lesson on language. This is important for parents to hear because she is talking with students about using language that is respectful. To get at that point, she will be discussing some explicit language that we want you to know about and have context. Please come to the evening meeting, especially if you are a sixth grade parent. 

Some reminders that I offered the middle schoolers this week: 

  • We do not have Secret Santas or gift exchanges in the Middle School because there is often someone who is left out of the activity. 

  • If your family is leaving early for Winter Break, it is really important that our office and the teachers know that students are going to be absent. Please email msattend@oes.edu as soon as possible and keep in mind the impact of your child’s absence on the larger class. Students are often engaged in group and collaborative projects, and when they are absent, it is disruptive to the classwork and learning. 

  • Ice skating excitement: we take the entire Middle School ice skating on the morning of Friday, December 20 at the Winterhawks Skating Center. We will provide skates and snacks, so no money is needed, although if students have their own skates, they are welcome to bring them. It is really important that students dress warmly with pants, jackets, and mittens or gloves to be able to skate. If they can’t skate, they can learn while trying, and we will have plenty of adults skating to help them out.