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Friday Focus 052215

posted May 22, 2015, 10:37 AM by Michael Lepene

Frances C. Richmond Middle School Friday Focus
Friday, May 22 2015

power of me group presentation

Power of Me group sharing their idea for a fitness app that allows users to donate to charity.

+Principal’s Corner

Dear Parents/Guardians,

We are in the busy season of school with numerous events, special celebrations, and dates to keep track of. To that end, we are making our best effort to regularly update our web site, school Googlecal, and provide a more extensive listing of events in the Friday Focus. Please don't hesitate to call or email if you have questions about any of our upcoming schedule.

A separate reminder will be sent out to the 6th and 7th grade lists reminding parents and guardians about our 6th and 7th grade spring open house on Thursday, May 28 from 530p to 700p. The spring open house is a drop-in informal event where students and their parents/guardians can visit classrooms and teachers, view some student work, and reflect on the past year. During the open house we will also have our annual Empty Bowls dinner available in the Cafe. Reminder that our 8th grade open house will be part of class night this year.

As the Friday Focus for the week I am pleased to highlight the recent 7th grade "Power of Me" experience. The student work and final presentations were truly an incredible expression of the student and teacher effort that went into making this multidisciplinary program both authentic and engaging. Thank you to Team 7 and our community partners. An overview of the Power of Me is provided below with special thanks to Ms. Wallis and Mr. Schluntz for writing up the summary.

Power of Me

 There is great value in making connections across disciplines, and the Civil War unit is one example of that in seventh grade.  We also created a new immersion experience called The Power of Me:  How can I make a difference?  In science students saw videos about IDEO, an organization that stresses creativity and the engineering design process and creates numerous new products a year. As part of an effort to address high infant mortality rates in areas of Africa, another video conveyed the story of an organization that invented an infant incubator that was made from Toyota Forerunner parts, so the local mechanics could fix them and would always have spare parts.  Students solved a number of rapid design challenges and then worked in small groups to solve a deep dive challenge.  Independently they designed, built, and tested mini hot water heaters, mini solar ovens, mini solar powered cars, mini dye-based solar cells, and biochar stoves.


As this was happening, the 7th grade had six assemblies in which guests who had made a difference in the world came and presented.  Most of the presenters were kids from 9 to 21.  Billy Bender, an eighth grader told them about Mount Ascutney Pediatric Fund, a non profit organization that he founded.  Three high school groups presented ways that high school students are making a difference in this country and abroad.  Two Dartmouth undergraduate students told about their work as Dartmouth Humanitarian Engineers.  Tiltfactor representatives presented about designing games for social change.  A student group from the Marion Cross Elementary school set up a booth in the lobby to present ways they are working to mitigate the effects of climate change.


Students then worked in small groups for The Only Thing That Ever Has Challenge.  Over the course of four days, they came up with their own ideas and a plan to make a difference in the world.   Research and presentations followed, with the top presentation in each classroom presenting to the whole seventh grade. There were games, innovations, apps, new organizations, fund raising events for existing organizations, and other ideas.  We thank our guests from Kendal and Eileen O’Toole for listening, advising, and helping to choose the finalists.  


Michael Lepene 

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

Monday, May 25 - Memorial Day, No School

Thursday, May 28 - 6th and 7th Grade RMS Spring Open House and Empty Bowls Dinner, 530p-700p

Friday, May 29 - RMS School Dance, 7p, RMS

Wednesday, June 3 - RMS Quiz Bowl all-school event, 805a.

Friday, June 5 - RMS Colors Day Activities

Monday, June 15 - 8th Grade Class Night and Open House, 530p

Tuesday, June 16 - 8th Grade Class Trip and Last Day

Wednesday, June 17 - 6th and 7th Grade Last Day (Noon Dismissal)

+RMS Notes and Information

-Thank you to the many RMS families who contributed to the staff appreciation lunch and raffle this week. We were treated to an incredible buffet of food and appreciate all of the wonderful raffle items. We know we are fortunate to teach in a community with the level of support we receive on a daily basis. An extra special thank you to Kirsten Elin for organizing this and many other events for our school. Thank you!

-Empty Bowls Dinner during RMS 6th/7th Grade Open House

The Empty Bowls Project, now in its 4th year, is an elective class that pulls together the artistic and culinary talents of our students to raise money for an organization that works to combat hunger and food insecurity.  This year, we will be raising money for the Willing Hands, an Upper Valley organization working to collect and distribute food to area foods shelves.
Students have contributed to the project by making hand made bowls in ceramics classes.  This coming week they will cook a wonderful meal that will be served in those bowls and offered during our open house on Thursday, May 28

In the past,  it has been a great way to get together as families, share a meal, and appreciate the efforts of these students.  Please consider joining us that night. 

-We have had a great year in the library! Students have checked out over 7000 books this year! Now that we are nearing the end of the year, all books are due back in the library by June 2nd. Please encourage your child to return any Richmond Middle School Library books they have out if they are finished reading them. Stay tuned to the Media Center website for great summer reading ideas. Remember that we have downloadable audiobooks and eBooks available for students to check out all summer long. Contact: Chris Putnam-Pouliot

-On Saturday, May 16 fifteen RMS students attended the Northern District Music Festival in beautiful Berlin, NH. After rehearsing all day the students combined with peers from all over Northern NH to present a wonderful concert. There was a string orchestra, a band and a chorus. We are proud of our talented, RMS musicians. 

northern district music

-Congratulations to both RMS Quiz Bowl Tournament Teams on their return from competing at the NAQT MSNCT event in Dallas, Texas May 8-10. Both RMS Teams were the only teams that qualified from NH.

We were thrilled to have Gabe Brison-Trezise, former RMS & HHS QB student join us for dinner. Gabe, a senior at Kenyon College, President of Kenyon QB, and a NAQT staff & question writer, moderated 1 of our match games. 
Sixth Sense- Zach B., Lucy G., Rose L., Ellie S., Owen S., Fletcher Z., were the events first ever all 6th grade team, and placed 126th. 
Centrifugal Force- Henry B., Celeste F., Nora P., Paula S.,  were the events 2nd ever all 7th grade team and placed 123rd.
The teams were coached by RMS staff member Alex Lovejoy. Thank you to Alex for all of her efforts in making this experience and our RMS quiz bowl programs a success. We're looking ahead to qualify and compete May 6-8, 2016 in Atlanta Ga.
Go Team RMS! 
-Parents and Guardians of 8th Grade Students:
In an effort to better serve students participating in our 8th Grade 1:1 iPad Program, we are asking parents to take a few minutes to share their observations and thoughts from this year's 1:1 experience. Please take a few moments to complete our survey by clicking on the link below.

Printed surveys are also available.  Please email if you have questions or would like to receive a printed copy of the survey. Survey closes on Weds, May 27.

Thank you for your feedback and consideration.

Marty Warren

RMS Technology Coordinator

+Community Calendar and Activities 

-Sustainable Hanover Announces: The Hanover Green Power Challenge. Open to All Electricity Customers in NH. Save $$$ on your Electricity Purchase Over 20 Months AND Purchase Green-E Certified Electricity Generated in New England. Sign-up through May 28th at Julia N. Griffin, Town Manager

-Young Hacks Academy will be held July 13-17 (Level 1 for ages 9-12) and July 20-24 (Level 2 for ages 12-14) at Richmond Middle School in Hanover. 
Young Hacks Academy ( is a tech leadership camp for 9-14 year olds. A blend of computer programming, problem-solving, and teamwork, YHA focuses on how young people can use technology to solve today’s greatest local and global problems. In the role of “agents”—part activist, part storyteller, part programmer—campers are tasked daily missions filled with design-based challenges in front of and away from a computer. YHA is designed to help develop essential 21st century skills in a variety of fun, energetic activities. Whether your child is new to programming or an experienced coder, YHA challenges all students to think deeply and create video games about relevant topics that interest them the most. With a fresh spark, our agents actively pitch ideas and present work to their peers for feedback. It’s not all about computers, though. (Hey, it’s summer, after all!) Agents take breaks away from the computer with unplugged activities, outdoor play, and other team-building exercises.
The camp runs M-F from 9AM - 3:30PM with extended care options of 8-9AM and 3:30-5PM for professional families. Tuition is $345 per session. Partial scholarships are available.
Visit to register today!
-Registration is now open for summer tennis camps, clinics and Jr. Teams at Storrs Pond.  Please visit or contact Billy Pontious, Director, 603/632-9598 or for more information.