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091517 RMS Friday Focus

posted Sep 17, 2017, 6:19 AM by Michael Lepene

Frances C. Richmond Middle School

Friday Focus 091517

Spirited game of 4-square at recess featuring Mr. Schluntz (Photo: Lepene)

Principal's Corner

Dear Parents/Guardians,

I am writing to you this week from my mobile desk which is currently parked in our lobby. In front of me students are dropping objects from our balcony as they begin an investigation of falling objects with Mr. Stott in 8th grade science. To my left a different group of students are engaging in an introduction to yoga experience with Ms. Patch. As I observe both of these groups I am enjoying seeing our Kids and Co class walk preschoolers through our halls on a hunt for hidden dinosaurs. Needless to say, I am a little slow in the writing but am certainly enjoying the energy and learning all around me. I am also mindful of the discussion on multi-tasking I had with a parent this week... perhaps Friday "Focus" is something I should consider!

This week I am happy to feature a short write-up from our 7th grade social studies class. I hope to share similar pieces from across our curriculum this year to help you gain a different view into our school and program. I hope you enjoy it. Have a great weekend!

Michael Lepene, Principal
RMS 7th grade Social Studies students participated in an activity today called, “Here I Stand”, which encouraged students to think about difficult issues and take a stand for their beliefs. Ms. Powers, RMS Guidance Counselor, co-facilitated this discussion through introduction of the Pyramid of Hate. Students were asked to consider personal biases, and how they might intervene to keep prejudice from escalating into acts of hate. Students examined and reflected upon their own personal biases in response to 15 different statements, for example: Anyone in the U.S. can become successful by working hard.  In class discussion after the activity, students worked to respectfully acknowledge differences in thought amongst their classmates in a non-judgmental environment.  This activity was intended to lay the foundation for future conversations around difficult and challenging themes in 19th century U.S.History. -Ellen Fisher and Jill Collins
All School News and Events

Tuesday, September 19 - School Photo Day. Picture Day ID: VJ017001Q0

Thursday and Friday 9/21 & 9/22 - RMS No HW Days

Friday, September 22 - RMS School Dance, 700-900p.

Wednesday, September 27 - Parent Tech Support with Marty Warren, 1130-1215, RMS.

Thursday, September 28 - RMS Open House, 530-730p.

Tuesday, October 3 - CircleUp! Community viewing of the film "Beyond Measure"

Friday, October 6 - No School, Inservice Day.

Monday, October 9 - No School, Columbus Day.

Wednesday, October 11 - Walk and Bike to School Day

RMS Notes and Information

-The first RMS School Dance of the year is coming up on September 22. Dances are for RMS students only and are held from 700-900p. Admission is $5.00. In addition to music/dancing the gym is open for pick-up basketball and soccer. Other games and activities may be offered as well. We review dance guidelines and expectations with our students in homeroom prior to the first dance. You can find the full RMS dance guidelines here.

-Friendly Safety Reminder from HPD: Please do not use the school parking lots or circle for drop-off or pick-up between 730-815a and 230-315p (130-215p Weds). Instead use the pull-out lanes on Route 10 and the traffic circles to change direction. Thank you.

-RMS Open House: Open House will be on Thursday, September 28th from 5:30-7:25p. Parents should come to the lobby by 5:30p to pick-up a copy of their child's schedule. We will be following a Wednesday schedule and will provide a bell schedule for the evening that includes time in each of your child's core classes and some elective blocks. During elective blocks we encourage you to visit any of the elective classes that your child is taking this quarter. We hope you enjoy the time getting to know the staff, the classes and the building. Many parents also report enjoying the time talking in the halls on their way to their next class. New this year: We have added a homeroom period following some parent and staff suggestions.

-Tech Support for RMS Parents: New to our School?  Considering coming to a workshop at RMS to learn about some of the technology we use.  What is the difference between PowerSchool and Schoology?  How do I set up parent accounts for these?  Who do I contact if I need help?!

RMS Technology Coordinator Marty Warren will provide a drop-in tech support session for parents on Wednesday, September 27 from 1130 to 1215 here at RMS in our computer lab. Reservations are helpful for planning purposes. Email to

-RMS Model United Nations: Attention future diplomats! The RMS Model United Nations will hold its first meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 26, at 310 p.m., in room 705. Come join us as we learn to debate burning issues of our time. Ms. Fisher and Ms. Gaines

-Believe it or not snow and winter conditions are not too far away. This is a good time to consider back-up plans and strategies for when SAU 70 or Hanover Rec activities are cancelled due to road conditions.

-RMS Emergency Preparedness: The RMS and SAU 70 emergency committees are in the process of reviewing our response to the DHMC incident this week. We greatly appreciate the efforts of our school personnel, students, parents, and first responders as we took the necessary precautions. Each event is reviewed critically with an eye for opportunities for improvement. 

Volunteer Opportunities: Please check this space for ongoing volunteer requests this year!

Library Assistance: We are looking for volunteers to assist students with checking out books, restocking bookshelves, and other miscellaneous tasks.  Times are very flexible, on any day Monday - Friday.  September and October helpers would be very appreciated!

Dance Chaperones: A reminder that the dance chaperone sign-up sheet was sent home with your child this week.  If you are interested in chaperoning one of our dances, please fill out the form and have your child turn it into his or her homeroom teacher.  Dance dates are:  9/22, 10/27, 3/16, and 5/25.

We appreciate you sharing your time and talents!

Kerry Artman, District Volunteer Coordinator 603.643.3431 x 2714

Community Calendar and Activities

-Hanover High school will be Hosting Pembroke Academy at 7pm under the lights! Raffle for TWO Patriots Football Tickets. Raffle tickets will cost $5 and the winner will be called out at the last home game on 10/13. Tickets will be SOLD at the HS games.

-Circle Up is screening "Beyond Measure" on Tuesday, 10/3 at RMS at 7:00 p.m.  Public welcome!  Seats are limited, so please click on the link below to register.

"In making Beyond Measure, I set out to tell a new narrative: one that uplifts and leads by example. A story that showcases the courageous, enterprising and innovative educators, students and parents who are forging a new path, and unleashing the true human potential of our students as they do so. Beyond Measure is unique among education films in its dedication to exposing what’s working, and celebrating the school communities that are daring to break the mold, rise above challenges, and reinvent the classrooms of the last century to make way for better learning and more inspired teaching. By going into the schools that are trying out the most cutting-edge research and promising teaching models, we find a picture of what’s possible in public education." - Vicki Abeles, Director

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-Team Green Dartmouth Kids Club: Click for information.

-Have you ever been curious about the sport of speedskating?  
Did you know that the Upper Valley has its very own speedskating club?! 

The Speedskating Club of the Upper Valley invites children and adults alike to experience the thrill and exhilaration of speedskating.  This is an exciting sport that both kids and parents can learn together.  The fledgling Upper Valley Speedskating Club is led and coached by a team of passionate and talented local speedskaters, including two-time Olympian, Dan Weinstein. My husband and 10-year old son spent most Sunday mornings last winter on the ice with coaches Dan, Amelia and Sarah, and had such a blast flying across the ice together.  The coaches were so enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the sport, that our whole family got caught up in the wave and have enjoyed excursions beyond the season to visit the Lake Placid Oval and other speedskating venues across New England.  

We’d love to share our experience on the ice with other Upper Valley families!  If you’d like to learn how to speedskate and others ways to get involved with the Upper Valley Speedskating Club, contact Dan Weinstein at, or Amelia Ihlo at  They are in the process of securing ice time for the winter right now, and would like to open the program up to all who are interested! —Submitted by Katie Kitchel,

-Indoor rock climbing team: Join other Richmond Middle School students for indoor rock climbing at the Green Mountain Rock Climbing Center (GMRCC) in Quechee.  This co-ed program is open to middle school students in grades 6th-8th.  Teams practice at the GMRCC Quechee facility and compete as a team against other local schools at monthly competitions.  While practices run year round, competitions are held November-March. If other Fall sports conflict don't worry, you can join the team in November.  Students will learn climbing skills and total body fitness.  No climbing experience necessary. All team members will have access to the climbing gym during regular business hours, free belay lessons, and free harness/shoes rentals.  For more information contact Jeff Low ( 

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