J.G. Whittier Middle School

  • Update (March 25, 2020)

    Hello JG Whittier Students and Families,

    I hope that this finds everyone safe and well during this unprecedented time in our lives. I miss the consistent day to day communication with students, staff, and families. Please know, however, that we as a school and a district are still trying to provide as many educational opportunities possible for all of our students in an attempt to keep them engaged in their academics and to keep some semblance of consistency and routine.  As most of you probably feel the same about wanting to get this situation over with get back to our “normal” lives, please do not hesitate to reach out to us if we can be of assistance with anything, or if you have any specific questions that you think we can help with. I am frequently on my emails, and will get back to you as quickly as I can: tbetty@haverhill-ps.org I feel that it is important to mention that during this time off, that we are doing everything that we can to keep everyone safe so that we all as a society can move past this situation. This includes actively practicing social distancing as much as possible. While having more free time, it seems fair that friends want to get together and socialize. However, in order to protect everyone, it is best that we find alternative means to stay in communication during this time. I hope all students are making good choices out there! I have asked all of our staff to provide you all with a brief update as to what they have been doing to help keep your students active. Please see the updates that come directly from the staff below, and if you have any specific questions in regard to assignments, please feel free to reach out to them directly via email.

    GRADE 5:

    Ms. MacDonald: Science: For students who can log into Google Classroom, continue working on the assignments I have posted under classwork. I have also been posting daily discussion questions. I encourage all students who can log in to participate in these to stay connected during this time off.  For students who do not have access to the internet, hopefully you were able to grab a packet. Continue to work through the packet. I also encourage you to get outside and explore. There is science all around you!

    Math: For students who can access Pearson Envisions online: Continue to work through the Topic 9 daily reviews. This will help review topics we’ve been working on and topics that we learned throughout the year. For those of you without internet, you can do the same thing in the packets I provided for students to be picked up. As always, reach out if I can help with anything at all.
    Ms. Sanguedolce: I have sent home four math packets which include two MCAS practice tests, twelve pages of mixed math facts, and a packet of Topic 9 daily review practice pages. Students can go online to practice their math facts at XtraMath.org. Assignments have also been posted online through Pearson/Envisions.
    Ms. Simes: I just finished Purple Group’s and Yellow Group’s Google Meets.  Take away, the kids would like to stay connected 3 days a week.  Today, I asked what they are doing with this time off and what do they miss about school.  I plan on making this connection with some structure, just planning this out.  The kids were so happy to see one another.  A parent emailed me immediately and said that her daughter needed this and thanked me.
    This week’s material is on Google Classroom.
    Try writing your own fable and a “Shel Silverstein” poem from the perspective of being 15 ft. tall.  There is a new spelling list, as well as a PDF and comprehension question for “The Great Gilly Hopkins.”
    Google Meets will continue to happen, monitor postings for information in Google classroom.
    Mr. Marinella: I’m using google classroom for both of my classes. History- Since we did not meet everyday in school, I am not doing daily assignments. Instead I am putting up longer, research based projects on that should take some time to complete and keep them busy.
    English- I am posting almost daily, reminding students to continue to read and journal using google or just regular notebooks. I am also adding reading assignments with questions, and practice MCAS-type assignments, and readworks. I am also using google post updates.
    Ms. Lees: Ms. Lees has and will email parents and has a list of online math and reading resources to challenge and hopefully have fun with for those able to go on line.  If you need anything specific for your child, please reach out to her and she will provide as much support and as many ideas as possible. This week she will be setting up students with a Lexia reading account to practice and build reading skills at individual reading levels.  If you haven’t already and would like to take part, please contact her and she will set up your child.  Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays she will join Mrs. Simes and the Purple ELA group with an online classroom to stay connected, do read alouds and explore what we can do together.
    GRADE 6:
    Mrs. Aylward: Hi Whittier families! I am posting messages to students almost daily on my ELA instagram @aylwardsela as well as on their Google Classroom page. In addition to the packets that were available previously, I’ve posted additional work opportunities and will continue to do so as needed. Some students have told me they are so bored, they actually want more work! My own kids and I have been reading a nightly bedtime story on Instagram as well. If you have any questions, please feel free to email me as usual. Hope to see you all soon. – Mrs. Aylward, Grade 6 ELA
    Ms. Delong: I uploaded materials to the Google Classroom for my Science and Social Studies classes. There are lessons, videos, and digital worksheets for students to complete. I am also asking all of my students to start and maintain a Coronavirus (COVID-19) journal to document this time in their life.  Someday, these could be considered primary sources for historians! Students are expected to write 4 entries per week.
    Ms. Sargent: Hi Everyone! I miss you all and can’t wait to see you all again. I have been working on my math songs and can’t wait to share them with you all.  I have been sending the weekly math homework sheets via all the e-mail addresses that I have and also suggest using your i-ready accounts.  Don’t forget the Math Antics website.   As always email me with any questions.
    Mr. Taylor: Red and Orange group ELA: Assignments are posted in google classroom in the classwork section. There are also messages posted in the stream for students to access as far as where they can find assignments. I’ve added a new website, noredink.com, to help work on some writing. The class codes for the different groups have been posted in the stream.
    Yellow and Orange group Social Studies:  no work is being posted yet. Keep watching the news to stay updated on the current global situation. Some geography work will be posted within the next couple of days.
    Mrs. Rubera: Here is my usual communication/ways to connect with students and families:  weekly Sunday e-mail to families with math homework and other resources included/attached , jrubera.wordpress.com (Math and Science Resources included here as well) , Instagram:  @jrubera10, Tik Tok:  @j.rubera
    Math:  math homework included in weekly e-mail and also on blog, iReady assignments (Go to ClassLink on the HPS Launchpad to access iReady), Google Classroom
    Science:  blog has many videos and websites , STEMscopes (Go to ClassLink on the HPS Launchpad to access it) ,Google Classroom
    Mrs. Guisti: Mrs. Guisti has reached out to all students on her caseload and has been able to speak with many parents over the phone and email.  If you would like to connect with her again or were not able to receive her message please feel free to email her at nancy.guisti@haverhill-ps.org and she will get back to you.  Mrs. Guisti has been working on setting up students with online reading programs that are available now that many companies have given free resources to the district.  She has been working remotely with both parents and other teachers across all Haverhill schools to set up accounts and instruct both teachers and students on how to use the programs that are available.  She is also a resource for her students in answering questions for all academic enrichment assignments that have been offered from the Math, ELA, Science, and Social Studies teachers in grade 6.
    Mrs. Cronin: I miss the uncertainty of our everyday lives. I am thinking and praying for all of our students and families during this dynamic event. I am finding journaling each day about the events or lack of events of the day to be therapeutic for me. Each day, I get outside just to walk and get some fresh air while walking the dog. I am keeping busy in the kitchen trying to cook and plan ahead for the family. I think the students need to know we are in this together. It is a struggle for all of us. Please know that I miss everyone and hope to get back to our daily routines soon.

    GRADE 7:

    Mrs. MacKinnon: For 7th grade science: students are finishing up geoscience processes. They are starting on the next unit on natural hazards. I am sending out work today on stemscopes. For any child that does not have access to stemscopes I would like them to research a natural disaster that has happened in the past. For example: volcanoes, tornadoes, hurricanes, etc….. I would like to know the name of the disaster, the year it happened, the area it happened in,  and what was the outcome. When you are finished with the research please send to me on google docs. Hope everyone is staying safe and healthy!!! Miss you all and can’t wait to get back to a normal routine!!!

    Mr. LeGrand: My students are encouraged to spend at least 30 minutes daily on iReady.  Students should check their google classroom periodically and email me if they have any questions.  Parents, email me if your child is having difficulties accessing iReady at home.  I have posted the directions on my google classroom for those who are having difficulties login on at home.

    Ms. DiGloria: I have communicated with all grade 7 parents via two emails, last week and this week. I provided suggestions for non-academic enrichment opportunities, and have told families that I will keep in close contact about further opportunities to be provided based on the changing situation.

    Mrs. Trombly: My math classes are doing a combination of online work with I-ready and packets for those students who did not have Internet access. I am also on with students and parents on the Remind app. Students are texting me questions about their math with parents permission and sending me pictures of their work to show proof that they’ve done it.

    Mrs. Berthiaume: Mrs. Berthiaume will make updates periodically. Check her homework site for new information. berthiaume.educatorpages.com

    Ms. Marciano:  ELA (Blue, Green + Purple Groups)

    • Packets that were picked up at school can be completed by students. Although these are MCAS practice packets, they allow students to read at grade level, as well as use critical thinking strategies to answer questions and compose an essay.
    • As most of you know from my previous email, I reactivate my teacher Instagram page (@coastal_teacher), as I figured it would be a good platform to post updates because many students have social media. As parents, please also feel free to follow me (the account is private, so just send me a message as to who you are!). This will be helpful for ANY/ALL updates to Google Classroom. I am also trying to post activities/ideas for kids of all ages.
    • I have also asked all students to join their FLIPGRID classrooms. The directions are on the Google Classroom post from MONDAY, MARCH 16th. Each class has their own FLIP CODE that students must enter first (usually at the bottom of their screen) and then they need to use their school email address to log in. You can download the FREE APP for your phone or students can access Flipgrid on their home computers.
    • Week of March 23-27th: I will also be posting a new “assignment” each day on Google Classroom. I am hoping students will participate in the following things online:
    Movie Mondays – students will complete an online movie review assigned through Google Classroom (or write one themselves + email alexis.marciano@haverhill-ps.org or send a picture through Instagram)
    Ted Talk Tuesdays – students will create an infographic using CANVA (or they can make one themselves + email alexis.marciano@haverhill-ps.org or send a picture through Instagram)
    Wellness Wednesdays – students will track their “wellness” on a Google Doc – see examples listed in directions on Google Classroom (or make a tracking sheet + email alexis.marciano@haverhill-ps.org or send a picture through Instagram)
    Talent Thursdays – students will show a talent that they have. They can email a picture to alexis.marciano@haverhill-ps.org or send a picture through Instagram.
    Friendly Fridays – students will DO GOOD in their homes/communities – see list in directions on Google Classroom. They can email a picture to alexis.marciano@haverhill-ps.org or send a picture through Instagram.
    My intentions with these “assignments” this week are to keep kids thinking while they are out of school, help them get back into a routine, and also hope that they realize learning can be fun. Please feel free to use this with your other children as well, as it’s something kids of all ages can participate in.
    Ms. Bilmazes: Special Education-Grade 7 Orange/Yellow Hope you are all doing well, keeping busy and I hope to see you all soon. Please continue to work on assignments listed under your subject teacher’s name. Some additional resources for Math practice- multiplication.com, mathplayground.com   For ELA- journalbuddies.com ( 34 Creative Story Ideas) mycuprunsover.ca
    Feel free to email me with any questions or just to say hi!
    GRADE 8: 
    Mr. Harris: Purple and blue group math – assignments are posted every 2-3 days on iReady. Students are getting review on the ratio and rate concepts that are the support for learning the eighth grade standards on functions and equations.
    Yellow and orange group civics – no work is being posted at this time. Stay up to date on the current news (and not just the virus!) as the things going on right now are civics in action!
    Ms. Sullivan: I have two assignments listed on google classroom.  One is a project and the other are Stemscope assignments.
    This week 3-23 to 3-27
    1. Read Stemscopedia Genes and Protein Synthesis and highlight important information (Don’t turn it in until you have completed the assessments).
    2. Do the Science Reading A Genes and Protein Synthesis. Turn in when you are finished.
    3. Do the open ended assessment and the multiple choice assessment. You can use the Stemscopedia and do as an open book test.
    4. If you have any questions please email me csullivan@haverhill-ps.org
    Mr. Blaustein: I have posted assignments for Civics on the McGraw Hill web site and I have been posting some ELA non fiction Corona virus related work for all my students through Google classroom.
    Ms. Deblasis: I hope this finds you all well during these trying times of uncertainty. Below please find the math assignments for this week.  Remember these are voluntary. However, I would encourage you to attempt to work on these assignments. You will receive extra credit for working on them.
    Lesson 9: Instruction Book Pages 78-87 and Practice/Problem Solving Book Pages 91-100.
    Lesson 10: Instruction Book Pages 90-99 and Practice/Problem Solving Book Pages 103-110.
    Unit 2 Interim Assessment: Instruction Book Pages 100 & 101.
    Unit 2 Performance Task: Instruction Book Page 102.
    Unit 2 Practice: Practice/Problem Solving Book Pages 113 & 114.
    As always, if you have any questions please email me here. jdeblasis@haverhill-ps.org
    Mr. Lewis: Mr. Lewis is periodically updating his Google Classroom with reading and writing assignments. Students can either write their work in Google docs or their own notebooks. He is also available to chat via email at mlewis@haverhill-ps.org if there are any issues or questions.
    Mr. Yanoff: I have been using both Zoom and Google Classroom.  We are doing a project and continuing to do work from our book.  I did find it online. The kids seem to like this type of leaning.
    Ms. Brown: Hello to grade 8!  I miss you, and I have been trying to practice the following mantra: “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” Dalai Lama.  As tough as it may be at times, I’m finding that it does pay off in ways, that I am sure, I will always remember, long after these trying times. Feel free to give it a try, and just send me an email, if you want to talk about it.  First off, please continue to work on assignments listed under your subject teacher’s name for grade 8. Second, parents, I can set up students with a Lexia reading account, that I can monitor, in order to practice and build reading skills at individual reading levels, if you would like to strengthen your child’s reading skills, or are concerned about a recession in reading skills during this time away from school. I am working on setting this up this week, if you are interested, please email me at kbrown1@haverhill-ps.org.  As I learn of further enrichment learning opportunities or about on-line programs that I can work with your child with, that have not been listed by other teachers, I will pass them on.  Take care, and be well!
    Mrs. Kaiser: I found this resource the other day from The New York Times (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/20/books/writers-entertain-kids-virus.html). It’s great to see how the literary community is coming together at this time for a common cause. I would encourage students to take advantage of these read alouds, many of which are read by the authors themselves! Students can scroll down through this list for their reading level and area of interest; scroll down for virtual author activities for middle schoolers. There are even links to challenge eighth graders with activities for young adults. I send my best to all my students, and encourage them to exercise patience as they stay at home and practice “social distancing.” This generation is so adept at computers that I’m confident they will be able to access all this valuable, current, and uniquely compiled material to help keep their minds as well as their bodies strong!
    SPECIALISTS: 
    Physical Education (Mr. Demarais): Hello everyone, I hope that everyone is healthy and safe.  During this tough time my hope is that while you are spending time at home, you are also finding the time to “GET UP AND MOVE!”  Thankfully the weather is improving and giving us a chance to get outside and get some much needed fresh air.  I know today’s kids prefer to sit in front of a screen and play video games, but now is the perfect time to reconnect with family members through exercise and play.  Getting outside for family walks, runs, or bike rides is a great way to get that body moving!  I look forward to hopefully seeing all of you sooner than later.
    ART (Ms. Boulger): Ms Boulger is posting art exercises and art resources daily for the students to access in Google Classroom.
    HEALTH (Mrs. Reynolds): Mrs. Reynolds is posting games, videos and online quizzes to test your knowledge of subjects that have been recently covered in Health classes.  New items are posted weekly if not sooner.
    The units being covered are:
    Grade 5 -Nutrition
    Grade 6 – First Aid
    Grade 7 – Cyberbullying and Cybersafety
    Grade 8 – Mental Health
    I also have a website with the Health outlines on them.  jgwhealth.weebly.com
    MUSIC (Mr. Gariepy): Students and teachers can access my Facebook page for music updates: Facebook.com/whittiermiddlemusic They can also visit whittiermiddlemusic.webs.com for school appropriate games, resources, and more.
    Students and parents can also contact my email directly robert.gariepy@haverhill-ps.org to add their emails to my contact list. This way they can get a weekly update on music and activities to do at home!
    TECHNOLOGY (Mr. Kowalewski): First I am missing all of the JGW students.  Secondly, from a technology class standpoint, I would recommend students use
    It is a great resource and will help students with typing needs preparing them for High School and beyond.
    Kahn Academy is another great resource, it will allow students and parents to work together by grade level and even allow the students to work at their own pace.  Parents can actually assign different lessons.  It has a great section on Computer Literacy and Technology, I find myself using it more and more during this time just to brush up on my skills.
    If you have amazon prime, the audible section is great. I would use this opportunity to listen to some books.  This is a great resource and perfect for the students who are not heavy readers.
    **From a social connection stand point for students. I do recommend, after work and chores are done, allowing students to play some video games with their friends online. It will allow them to interact with each other and not feel alone or like things have drastically changed.  Parents should join in on the fun and play with them as well.** Hope everyone is safe and happy and can’t wait to see everyone as soon as we can. I am just an email away if you have any questions.
    SUPPORT STAFF UPDATES: 

    ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS (Ms. Coffin): Our English as a Second Language teacher is reaching out to mainstream teachers to provide ways to support English language learners with their online work.

    Nuestra maestra del desarrollo de inglés está trabajando con los demás maestros para buscar maneras de apoyar a los estudiantes de proficiencia limitada de ingles con los trabajos en linea.
    GUIDANCE (Mrs. Vlahos): School Counseling Information

    HHS Course Registration Information for 8th Grade Students

    The attached course registration documents include the Haverhill High course selection booklet with guidance for 8th grade students to choose electives for their 9th grade year at HHS (forms translated in English and Spanish), as well as an attachment with descriptions of all elective courses available to grade 9 students (one in English and the other in Spanish). At this time, 8th grade students and families can review the provided information and may begin the process of choosing HHS electives remotely, at home, if desired.   If you have questions regarding course selection and elective options at Haverhill High School, feel free to contact Mrs. Vlahos via email at jvlahos@haverhill-ps.org. In an effort to stay connected with all students and families during the school closure, I am checking email periodically at home and responding to all emails as soon as possible.  I am maintaining continued collaboration with staff and administration to ensure continued support for the JG Whittier students.  I encourage to reach out to me via email, and not hesitate in doing so. A resource that may be helpful in this uncertain and trying time:

    The Haverhill High School course selection information has also been posted to the JG Whittier School Counseling page
    SCHOOL ADJUSTMENT COUNSELOR (Mrs. Midolo): Mrs. Midolo encourages students to access her google classroom page.  An email has been sent out to all students and parents at the beginning of last week.  She has been posting and updating information along with providing mini-activites for students to participate in, daily.  Please encourage your child to reach out to Mrs. Midolo via email tmidolo@haverhill-ps.org with any questions or concerns.   Appointments can be made for check-ins by phone as well.
    STUDENT SUPPORT CENTER (Mrs. Greenwood): Greetings from the SSC! First and Foremost…..We miss you!
    Secondly, and equally important, we hope you are practicing ownership and kindness skills while you are at home with your families.
    Demonstrating the skills you have learned in the SSC  with your own family will continue earning you points ! This project is now open to every student at JGW. When we return to school, those who participated will earn a school-wide pizza party celebration!
    Ownership of your behaviors (which helps you change them from negative to positive), and showing Kindness to those around you (especially when you don’t feel like it!).
    Record  on google doc
    You will receive an email invitation to a google doc for the details. If you cannot access a computer to record your OK project, please use a pen and paper and bring it with you at the return of school.
    MIDDLE SCHOOL SUPPORT PROGRAM (Mrs. Leydon & Mr. Diffin): I hope you all are doing well and staying healthy!! I wanted to reach out and let you know to please reach out if there’s anything I can do in the next couple weeks. Please forward my e-mail to your kids as well april.leydon@haverhill-ps.org if they would like to reach out to me with any questions or concerns that I can help with/relay the message to anyone.
    I included conversational starters to do at home if you’re looking for a little fun. We did this at the beginning of the school year playing JENGA so they are familiar with it!
    -Mrs. Leydon
    I think that during this time it is beneficial to keep our students in an active learning frame of mind. This does not mean 5 hours of school work a day. What that means is keep them active in the programs that they were using in school. Having them login daily, review and work on some documents. If not, when we do return this is another learning step to start from. Remaining as close to schedule will help out in the long haul.
    There has been suggestions for students to journal during historical period of time. If students prefer not to write, how about comic stripping your time showing what transpired during their time out. Letting them release their emotions is part of the healing and moving forward process.
    With that being said, I truly miss my shadow Connor. All the energy that Jadiel brings daily. My conversations with Jaeden. And the seriousness of Riley. Can’t wait till we are all back together as a group again.
    Stay positive…better times are coming.
    -Mr. Diffin
    STUDENT SUPPORT COORDINATOR (Mr. Newell): I can be reached by email at jonathan.newell@haverhill-ps.org and available to support and talk to caregivers and students about anything including behavioral concerns at anytime.  
    SPEECH (Ms.Ostrovskaya): Missing all my previous students at JGW!  I am available to support students, parents and teachers remotely if I can be of help.  Please reach out!  In the meantime, there is an excellent list of fun resources for home practice in a number of areas which the Speech and OT departments have compiled that is available at http://www.haverhill-ps.org/supportive-home-learning-resources/. I look forward to hearing from you all!

    -Ms. O
(978) 374-3400
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