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Friday Focus 011615

posted Jan 16, 2015, 11:06 AM by Michael Lepene   [ updated Jan 16, 2015, 11:07 AM ]


 RMS Friday Focus
Friday, January 16 2015

RMS Book Clubs open to all RMS students and staff. Facilitated by Mrs. Putnam-Pouliot.

+Principal’s Corner

Dear Parents/Guardians,

We hope that you all have a wonderful three-day weekend. In addition to the holiday on Monday, students at RMS will also be participants in an assembly honoring the work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on Wednesday the 28th. Josh Hall has created a program of music and readings that will help us all reflect on the meaning and memory of Dr. King's legacy. This program will be followed by several small group activities led by students on Thursday. We hope these efforts, along with many others, assist our students in their growth as positive members of many communities. I'm looking forward to the program and to hearing the thoughts and ideas generated by our students. 

Student talent was on full-display this past week at our annual talent show and geography bee. Those in attendance last Friday (and there were many!) witnessed the incredible talent, courage and determination of our students first-hand. A wide range of performances, skits, and routines were delivered to great applause. I am always equally impressed by our audience and their positive support of each and every performer. I think our students recognize the risk each performer takes and they truly celebrate their efforts. A big thank you to Mr. Lacrosse for organizing this annual event.

rms talent show

This week we also held our annual Geography Bee. Students in grades 6-8 competed in their Social Studies classes for a chance to be in the finals, held in the RMS auditorium in front of 6th and 7th grade students and staff. All participants impressed with their knowledge of both United States and World Geography. Our final three contestants had a particularly spirited last round with question after question answered correctly. Congratulations to our winner, Max Solberg, and to all of our contestants. Thank you to the RMS Social Studies department for their support of this event.

Geo Bee Finals

Michael Lepene

+RMS Quick Poll 

Last week we asked you what we should look for in a new teacher hire. Here are some of the responses: 

  • Strength of character, integrity.
  • Ability to connect with and inspire students.
  • Loves making a connection with this age group.
  • Passion for education, learning and subject matter.
  • Connected to community, dynamic in the classroom.
  • Growth mindset, inquisitive nature.
  • Experience creating interdisciplinary units.
  • Someone who has a demonstrated track record of developing student's potential into real academic achievers, at a very high level.
  • Someone who gravitates towards, and embraces, continuing education so that they are at the very forefront of pedagogical trends.
  • Creative problem-solver, flexible, no ego, lifelong learner.
  • Passion/enthusiasm for their subject that is shown in the engaging way they teach and inspire.
  • Willing to participate outside of the classroom in school activities.

Many respondents also noted the importance of observing a candidate teach and creating authentic opportunities to try and observe these characteristics. 

Thank you for all of your responses and descriptions of what is a very complex profession. Selecting staff to join the Richmond Middle School team is among the most important responsibilities I have as the building principal. Your input will be of great assistance to our search teams. 

+All School News and Events (RMS web site has GoogleCal with events and dates/times)

Monday, January 19 No School - MLK Holiday

Tuesday, January 20 Dresden School District Budget Adoption and Public Hearing - HHS Auditorium 7PM

Wednesday, January 21 Playwriting Performance "Snacks and Scenes" - RMS Auditorium 7PM - Contact: Claire Groby

Friday, January 23 Q2 Ends

+RMS Notes and Information

-Health Office: This week students have reported and/or experienced flu, cold/cough and stomach virus symptoms.  Thank you for keeping children with temperatures (>100F) home until they are fever free (without tylenol or advil) for 24 hours. According to Vermont and New Hampshire State Health Departments, many local communities and schools are also experiencing illness at this time. Further info on  "Is it Flu or Cold?" and "What To Do If You Have The Flu" can be found HERE 

Abigale Pelletier,RN RMS School Health Office 

-This year's "Snacks and Scenes" night is coming up! Students from this quarter's Playwriting and Performance class will be presenting an evening of new plays at 7:00 pm, Wednesday January 21st. The evening will feature 8 plays written by students, 42 student actors, and delicious snacks from the foods classes. The performance will last approximately 90 minutes and admission is free.
-Sustainability at RMS: This summer a group of faculty participated in a conference on sustainability hosted at the Shelburne Farm in Shelburne, VT.  One goal that emerged from the conference was to broaden both the definition of sustainability and the focus of sustainability education at RMS.  

At the December 10, 2014 staff meeting, members of the Sustainability Committee presented a workshop that involved the entire faculty in this endeavor.  Groups worked together to help focus ideas on what sustainability is and how we can continue to broaden sustainability education at RMS.  Catherine Patch collated those ideas and comments and created a Wordle.  The most prominent words represent the number of times a concept was considered.


-THANK YOU to our RMS families for the wonderful staff appreciation lunch and raffle. We enjoyed an unbelievable spread of food and excitement of raffle winners was all over the building. It means a tremendous amount to us and we are grateful for the support and appreciation. We know the best gift you give to us is the opportunity to work with your children this year and we thank you for all that you do to support RMS.

-Go RMS!!! Our 2 RMS Quiz Bowl Teams have qualified to compete against 128 Teams from over 32 States in the MSNCT Event in Dallas, Texas May 8th- May 10th 2015. Congratulations to all our Quiz Bowl athletes!

Look for our blogs, team news and updates on our site:

-The second quarter yearbook class announced it's theme for the 2015 yearbook -- Street Art. As the theme evolves, class discussions focus on the differences between graffiti and street art, mediums used, the power of art to promote social messages, and how to use images of other artists in ways that do not infringe on copyright. Students have been working together to develop cohesive representations that reflect the cultures and community present at RMS through the Yearbook. In class this week, students used google safe searches to complete independent research on images that could be used in developing backgrounds for pages. This work will segue into the use of Adobe Photoshop to incorporate original drawings and photographs that students have taken around RMS into backgrounds. Instruction has included how to use layers in Photoshop to develop complex images in Photoshop documents.

+Community Calendar and Activities 

-Empower Lacrosse Winter Sessions at KUA start January 25, 2015.  All middle and high school girls welcome to attend!  Register NOW!  Sunday Mornings 9:30 - 11 am, KUA Barn, Jan 25 - March 15.  More info and registration at

-Montshire Museum: Friday Nights for Teen Tinkerers 01/23/15 630-800p. Light Painting: We’ll take advantage of the early darkness to paint with light! Bring a digital camera if you can. Visit the Montshire web site for more information.