J.G. Whittier Middle School

  • Principal’s Weekly Update (5/26-5/29)

    Hello J.G. Whittier Students and Families,

    It is amazing to think that we have not physically been in school for 10 weeks! Memorial Day Weekend is now upon us, and everyone can see the finish line to the school year (only 4 weeks to go)! I want to thank both the students and families for continuing to prioritize education!

    Please remember that it is crucial that ALL students continue to put in their best effort into EVERY subject in order to ensure that they receive credit on their report cards at the end of the trimester. We appreciate your continued support and perseverance as we as a JGW staff continue to provide remote learning opportunities to help all students be successful.

    Please continue to encourage your students to hand in assignments to all of their teachers. We recognize that each family is different and that your student may not always be able to follow their remote learning schedule exactly as it is written, and that is understandable. The important thing is that the school work get completed (for ALL subjects) and turned in when it is most convenient for you and your family, taking into account your individual circumstances and prioritizing safety and well-being first. As always, if you have specific questions about any assignments, or how to access those assignments, please reach out to the specific teachers with your questions. I am also available via email at tbetty@haverhill-ps.org if you or your students have specific questions and would like to set up a phone call or virtual meeting with me.

    As always we have a great deal of information to share with you in regard to news in our classrooms and in and around JGW. You can find that information below…



    I would once again like to thank everyone for making our student belonging distribution days run smoothly. We were able to return belongings to 331 students over those 2 days this past week! We do still have some belongings left at the school, so if you believe that your student has belongings that need to be picked up, please email me (tbetty@haverhill-ps.org) and we can coordinate a time for you to receive these belongings. The last day to pick up belongings will be Friday, May 29th. Please remember that we also have a Lost & Found (1 new item added today: 5/22). You can click the link below to be connected to the Lost & Found. You only need to click on the picture and comment to claim the item.


    If belongings are not claimed or picked up by Friday, May 29th they will be donated.

    TITLE 1 NEWS: 

    JGW is hosting its first virtual Title 1 Event!  We hope your family will be able to participate!  

    Memorial Day 2020:  Honor and Remember 

    Our virtual Title 1 event will give families the opportunity to learn about Memorial Day.  Unlike other holidays, Memorial Day is not a celebratory holiday like Halloween or Thanksgiving.  It is a day to honor soldiers who died while serving.  For our virtual event, families can participate in the following activities:

    • Watch a video to learn about the history of Memorial Day.

    • Listen/watch to The Wall by Eve Bunting.  It is the story about a boy who visits the Vietnam Veterans Memorial with his dad to find his grandfather’s name.

    • Drive by or visit monuments and places in Haverhill that honor veterans and honor the soldiers who died while serving.

    The site for the Title 1 Virtual Event is here:


    • Complete the activities.

    • The slideshow highlights the monuments and a cemetery in Haverhill to drive by or visit.  Some monuments honor veterans who served, and some monuments honor and remember those who died while serving.

    • Please click on the link below to complete the Family and Community Event Evaluation by Saturday, May 30, 2020.  https://forms.gle/YkGpeCUbgzrwgU5t5

    If you have any questions, please e-mail Jean Sargent (jsargent@haverhill-ps.org) or Jen Rubera (jrubera@haverhill-ps.org).  Thank you!

    YEARBOOK: There have been many questions about yearbooks. Once yearbooks have been delivered to JGW, we will set up a plan for all of those who ordered a yearbook to receive it. Remember that all of our 8th graders will be receiving their yearbook for free this year, thanks to the PTO! Please stay tuned…


    Here is a reminder of some resources that could be useful to your family or others that you know:

    For Technology: Basic login support for students and parents should always start with the classroom teacher.  Then if there is something the teacher can not assist with please visit this webpage: https://sites.google.com/haverhill-ps.org/athome/   At the bottom of the webpage there are instructions on how students and parents can submit tickets for support. All you have to do is go to the Student Support Ticket system by visiting the HPS LaunchPad > ClassLink > HPS Tech Support and you can submit a ticket for support.

    For Community Resources: The city has a 311 number https://www.cityofhaverhill.com/news_detail_T30_R35.php that can help families connect with services.

    There is also information updated on the HPS website under community resources. https://www.haverhill-ps.org/haverhill-community-programs/. This includes food pantry and other resources as well as weekly updates on available therapeutic resources in the community including wait lists.

    GRADE 5 NEWS: 

    Ms. MacDonald: 

    Math:  The kids are doing a great job with their new material. Be sure to watch each video completely. Please keep working on your Topic 11 Independent Practice and Quick Check work. If you have any questions, please attend a Google meet during office hours.
    Science: This week we will be re-visiting orbit vs. rotation. There will be one hands-on investigation and a quiz due this week. Be sure to join Google meets during office hours if you have any questions!
    Ms. Sanguedolce: Congratulations to the following students for completing all of their work last week: Orange Group – Joseph, Jadelyn, Maya, Giovanni, Christopher, Sophia, and Ava; Red Group – Dillan, Jude, Mason, Jayden, Jonathan R., and Colby; Yellow Group – Lauryn, Ethan, Liam, Adriel, Brodie, Raquildis, Baylee, Yilliannis, and Enmanuel. This week we learned about coordinate grids, horizontal lines, vertical lines, and lines of symmetry. We also reviewed important math concepts like multi-digit multiplication, word problems, and math facts. Next week is a four-day week. Assignments will be posted on Tuesday and office hours will be held on Wednesday and Thursday.
    Mr. Marinella: Hello everyone, please continue to check Google and your emails for updates. History is working on a Tuesday/Thursday schedule, and English is Monday/Wednesday/Friday. I am encouraging all students to be reading everyday and Orange English will be posting their notes on those days. Please remember to attach or share your work with me. Assignments are generally due on the Friday of that week, but if any more times is needed or any questions arise please just ask via email or comments!

    ELA just finished “Chocolate Fever” and are writing an essay, ask your child what they think was the lesson of the book!
    History is moving on to the Civil War, talk with your kids about what you know from that time period or any famous Americans you remember from this time, or what they have already learned so far from class!
    History Shoutouts: Eve Farrell and Brodie Melvin
    ELA Shoutouts: Sophia Lafontaine and Jackson Casullo
    You have all been working hard and I am extremely proud of all of you!
    Ms. Simes: I want to give a “BIG SHOUT OUT” to the following students who completed all of their Week 5 ELA assignments and are my “ELA Superstars of the Week”: Eve F., Autumn G., Dylan G., Rowen G., Ryan H., Madeline J., Paige K., Saniyah M., Kaelie M., Aiden M., Lucas P., Dale P., Angelina R., Halley S., Aurora A., Jaida-Marie C., Sophia B., William C., Dillan D., Kayleigh D., Cameron F., Shannon G., Cash M., Jonah N., Jude O., Mason P., Jayden Q., Jonathan R., Colby S., Lauryn C., Ethan G., Liam G., Adriel H., Brodie M., Christopher M., Baylee P., Analia R., Yilliannis R., Zenia R., Jeremy S., and Enmanuel V.  We will continue with our Google Meets on Wednesday and Friday mornings, the link is located on the front page of your student’s classroom page.  Students will be working within their weekly folder of, “Week of 5/25 – 5/29.” They will read an article on Newsela and begin the process of a persuasive writing piece, this will be done in steps.  Additionally, students have completed their novel study of “The Great Gilly Hopkins” and will be working on a meaningful project.  Office hours continue to be everyday from 11:00 a.m – 12:00 p.m. for questions or assistance with assignments.  As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at michele.simes@haverhill-ps.org.  Have a great holiday weekend.
    Ms. Lees: I hope everyone has a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend. The weather is blessing us. Next week, Miss Lees and her fifth grade reading groups will read another chapter and work on questions about what is happening to Henry in “Chocolate Fever.” Everyone will begin writing a persuasive essay to Mr. Betty and Mrs. Kitsos. Students should regularly be logging onto Lexia if it is assigned to them. Orange and Purple small group Google Meets and lessons continue on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays for both Math and ELA. Students are encouraged to join all of these as well as to check in regularly with Ms. MacDonald, Mrs. Sanguedolce, and Mrs. Simes during Conference Hours. Additional teacher conference time to support students work completion will be on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 – 11:00. Parents are encouraged to set up weekly phone appointments for check-ins and appointments already set up will continue. Help is available by email (alees@haverhill-ps.org) and directly in Google Classroom for questions about ELA, Math, and History to support all assignments. See Classwork page in the Google Classrooms to see weekly assignments.
    GRADE 6 NEWS: 
    Ms. Delong: Science (Red/Blue/Purple) – We will be starting our Human Body Projects using the information we learned last week. Body System assignments will be posted on Google Classroom on Tuesday.  This will be an ongoing project that will take a couple weeks to complete.  We have Science class Tuesday and Thursday.

    Social Studies (Red/Blue/Purple):  We will be completing our last Ancient Civilization Project this week.  All projects are due on Friday.  You have all been doing a great job researching and we will be using these presentations to explore all civilizations the following week.  We have Social Studies class on Wednesday and Friday (Monday is a holiday).
    Google Meets will be on Tuesday and Wednesday next week from 12-1pm.  Families will get email reminders with the links.  Thank you to all the parents for their support during remote learning!
    Ms. Rubera: I am proud of you for working so hard to learn and grow!  This Monday is Memorial Day.  When we were preparing for our Veterans Day Ceremony back in November, we learned about the difference between Veterans Day and Memorial Day.  You learned that Veterans Day is a day to honor all those who have served in the military, whereas Memorial Day is a day to honor and remember those who died while serving.  I hope you will take the opportunity to participate in our Title 1 virtual event about Memorial Day.  The Wall by Eve Bunting is a beautiful story about a boy who visits the Vietnam Veterans Memorial with his dad to find his grandfather’s name. I hope you listen to the story and share your thoughts with me.  Also, I hope you visit or drive by the monuments in Haverhill.  Some of the monuments are very close to where you live!  Take care, and I will see you Tuesday and Thursday during our Google Meets!
    Ms. Aylward: This week students continued to read through Percy Jackson. They fought with Ares and rode a zebra cross-country. In writing they chose their argument topics and began to write the introduction to their essays.
    Ms. Sargent: Hello Grade 6.  Great Job again this week.  I think most of you are getting yourselves into a great routine of getting your work completed and passed in.  Thank you.  We have set up a Virtual Slide activity that you can do with your family in honor of Memorial Day.  Go to our website to check it out.  I hope you all enjoy your weekend and I will see you all on Tuesday’s Google Meet.
    Mr. Taylor: ELA- The Giver continues. How will Jonas react as he begins training for his new role? What will he think of the ways of society? Coupled with vocabulary and comprehension questions, we check in to see if Jonas is rethinking how the community works.

    SS- All projects should be completed by Friday.  Great job of researching! This skill will help you next year. We will be showing the some of the projects so you can learn a little about the civilizations you didn’t do later. Finishing up this week by adding pictures! No class Monday.
    Ms. Guisti: Grade six is doing an amazing job working on online assignments and attending google meets! Mrs. Guisti has been holding small group google meets during math and ELA in order to meet student needs and break down tasks.  In Math, Mrs. Guisti has offered extra help sessions for all students across all five math classes during the “study” block.  In ELA Mrs. Guisti’s small group continues to read and discuss Holes and work on online reading programs.  Mrs. Guisti has posted videos of herself reading the chapters aloud and discussing specific questions related to the characters and the plot. Ms. Blanchette has been holding small group google meet for both math and ELA. Ms. Blanchette and Mrs. Cronin continue to support students in google meets as well.  Mrs. Guisti, Ms. Blanchette and Mrs. Cronin have also continued to support students during one to one google meets and phone calls.  Please let us know if you would like one to one support and we can schedule that. Please email me at nancy.guisti@haverhill-ps.org
    GRADE 7 NEWS: 
    Ms. Marciano: During Week 7, students will complete a Flipgrid Check In video, read Chapters 16-20 of “Freak the Mighty”, and work on a cause/effect graphic organizer.
    Ms. DiGloria: For Remote Learning next Week (Week 7), students will have assignments on Wednesday and Friday. We will be learning about the death of the great Julius Caesar and the crumbling of the republic into an empire. This week, I sent home emails to families of students who were missing TWO or more assignments from the past two weeks. Please encourage your student to “catch up” and check Google Classroom for missing work. As always, please reach out to me with questions or requests for support.
    Ms. Berthiaume: It looks like you enjoyed the story of Icarus and his father, Daedalus, this week.  One of my favorite things is to introduce students to the portrait of Icarus by the artist Henri Matisse. I hope you liked that part of the lesson, too!  We will continue the oral tradition unit with more tales.  Be sure to turn in your work and keep up the great effort! I’m proud of you all!
    Ms. MacKinnon: Hello 7th grade parents!! hope everyone had a nice Memorial Day Weekend!! The weather was gorgeous!!! This week in science the kids will be learning about potential energy.  It is an A week so they will have science on Tuesday and Thursday.  On Tuesday they will have an optional assignment using a rubber band and a ruler, or they can do the vocabulary, or they can do both for extra credit!! On Thursday there will be a reading with questions.  Hope everyone has a great week, and thank you again for all your help with the participation, it has been great to see so many doing science still!!!
    Ms. Trombly: Mrs. Trombly.‘s math classes continue to work through Google classroom and sending their work through the Remind app.  We are currently in review of rates, proportions and geometry. Please email Mrs. Trombly at Strombly@haverhill-ps.org with any questions.
    Mr. LeGrand: This week we are working on multiplying and dividing rational numbers.  Please encourage your student to log on to my Google Classroom for assignments and updates.  As always, do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions.  My email: wlegrand@haverhill-ps.org.
    Ms. Bilmazes: It’s been great to see increased google participation this week. Keep up the good work on assignments and continue to reach out for help. I’ve read some wonderful student-written myths this week. Enjoy the long weekend and be ready to work on Tuesday.
    Ms. Senior: It’s wonderful seeing students’ faces on the screen and working with them.  Reading and Mathematics are moving along nicely as students do their best in distance learning during these times.  Here’s hoping the long weekend brings rest and relaxation to students and their families.
    GRADE 8 NEWS: 
    Ms. Sullivan: All 8th grade science assignments will be posted on google classroom.  I have google meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11-12 and office hours Tuesday from 1-2. I hold them to either answer questions or to do the assignment together.  Students should be checking their google classrooms for daily updates.
    For the blue group the civics assignments will be posted on google classroom.  I have google meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12-1 and office hours Tuesday from 1-2. I hold them to either answer questions or to do the assignment together.  Students should be checking their google classrooms for daily updates.
    Mr. Harris: Blue & Purple Math – we will be finishing up Functions soon and moving into Expressions and Equations.  Specifically we will look at all the different relationships, and how to solve linear equations and systems of equations.

    Yellow & Orange Civics – we continue to look at the Legislative Branch of the government and how it functions.  Specifically, next week we will delve into how a bill becomes a law and the process that it takes.
    Please make sure your student is accessing google classroom, as that is the ONLY place I am assigning work.
    Mr. Blaustein: 
    Civics Red & Purple
    • I will add another article from Newsela this week- Once you are logged in go to Binder and click on My progress to go to new assignments. Remember to click on the activities tag to take the quiz when you finish reading.
    • I will open the next round of Chapter 6 The Executive Branch activities in iCivics.
    • All assignments in McGraw -Hill remain open.
    • Our Google meet are Thursdays from 1-2 look for the invitation in our Google classroom. This week 5/28
    ELA Blue & Yellow
    • I will the 9 article assignment I created in Newsela last week, open as many students have not completed it yet. – Once you are logged in go to Binder and click on My progress to go to new assignments. Remember to click on the activities tag to take the quiz when you finish reading.
    • I will post  Questions for the next two Outsiders Chapters [8 + 9] as well.
    • Our Google meet is Thursday from 1-2 look for the invitation in our Google classroom
    • Our Google meet are Wednesdays from 1-2 look for the invitation in our Google classroom. This week [5/27]
    Ms. Deblasis: Lesson 14 Assessments due today, Friday 5/22.  Next week will be a make up week for anyone that needs to get past assignments handed in.  No new lesson will be assigned next week.  Please email me any work you owe as soon as possible.  If you need to make sure you are caught up, email me or check in to one of my Google Meets either Wednesday 12-1:30 or Friday 12-1.  I hope you all enjoy the long weekend.
    Mr. Yanoff: The grade 8 accelerated math/Algebra 1 is busy reviewing for their placement exam May 28. Our attendance has been 100% since the pandemic stopped standard learning. We have meet at least three times a week, with an abundance of homework. They deserve to be commended, having completed the book. Sponges, pure sponges. Good luck class!
    Mr. Lewis: English class continues to roll with The Outsiders. In chapter 5, Pony and Johnny flee town after a “significant event” forces them to do so. Students worked on vocabulary to reinforce the two column note strategy and reading questions as they read. As always, if a student has fallen behind a little in work, that’s no problem, just please reach out to me at mlewis@haverhill-ps.org

    Have a great holiday weekend!
    Ms. Brown: Dear grade 8, first, please continue try to attend your teacher’s Google Meets, on Google Classroom. If you are struggling, you simply have to make an appearance – you can get your questions answered, and then sign off. My Google Voice is: (978) 361-3024 and my email: kbrown1@haverhill-ps.org. For those students that I have speaking to, only, please know that you still have to be in school, as difficult as it is, with all the great weather!  My office hours are Wednesday: 1:00-2:00.  Please enjoy your Memorial Day Weekend, however, please take some time to think of those that have given the ultimate sacrifice of their lives, not only in wars past, but in the world that we live in right at this moment.  Take care, be well, and I’ll see you on Tuesday!
    ART (Ms. Boulger): All assignments for grades 5-8 art classes are posted in Google Classroom. There is no need to buy any art supplies, all art assignments will focus around only using recycled materials that can be found at home.
    PHYSICAL EDUCATION (Mr. Demarais): We will be continuing with our workouts and challenges.  I have been hearing from more students but would love to hear from more of you!  There are several ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle (wellness).  Please take a moment to check in with me and let me know what you have been doing.
    HEALTH (Ms. Reynolds): As we continue on with our human body knowledge, we are focusing on the 5 senses.  The first lesson is all about vision and our eyes.  The second lesson this week is about our ears and hearing.  Take the fun quizzes to find out how you measure up!!
    GUIDANCE (Ms. Vlahos): I want to encourage you all to keep up the great work and finish the school year off strong!  I am very proud of your efforts and hard work during this unusual time.  I continue to be available to connect with and support all students and families throughout the week by email (jvlahos@haverhill-ps.org), please do not hesitate to reach out.  Aside from email, I facilitate check ins through Google Meet or by phone.  If desired, please email me to request a check in and I will coordinate with you.  My office hours are Tuesdays and Thursdays from 930-11am.
    STUDENT ADJUSTMENT COUNSELOR (Ms. Midolo): Please continue to encourage your child to attend our weekly social groups. The link and times to “google meets” can be found on my google classrooms page.

    As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to email me @ tmidolo@haverhill-ps.org.
    Stay safe and be well!
    STUDENT SUPPORT CENTER (Ms. Greenwood): The Student Support Center wishes you a wonderful and much deserved Memorial Day weekend! Enjoy the warm weather and we will see you next Tuesday on Google Meet. As always, you can send Ms. Greenwood or Ms. Christine a message through the SSC classroom page.
    STUDENT SUPPORT COORDINATOR (Mr. Newell): I am available Monday through Friday by email. Please contact me with questions, concerns or just to say hello.
    MSSP (Mr. Diffin): Great participation from the MSSP students for the week. The “Social Group” challenge is still going on. The 7th grade group won last weeks challenge and their Pizza’ were delivered on Wednesday. This weeks winner will get $10 gift cards to McDonalds. Keep up the tremendous effort! Enjoy the long weekend ahead.
    READING COACH/INTERVENTIONIST (Ms. Forrest): Hello students and families. As the school year is winding down, it’s time to start thinking about summer reading. Are there books that you’ve really been wanting to read all year, but haven’t had the chance to? Summer is a great time to catch up on your reading and to add some new favorites to those books you’ve read and loved.

    If you don’t already have a library card, Haverhill Public library has an online application. Click on this link to apply: https://www.haverhillpl.org/library-services/get-a-library-card/reg-form/. With your library card, you will have access to books online.
    I’m still looking for book recommendations and reviews from students. Please check in with your ELA teacher to get the Google Book Review doc. You can make a copy of the form and share it with your teacher and with me. You can also share your reviews with friends and family.
    Happy Reading!
    SPEECH (Ms. Ostovskaya): This week in Speech, we finished and reviewed part 2 of the conjunctions assignment, social skills inference assignment, and 3 different vocabulary assignments.  Several students have submitted all or some of these, but there are still quite a few people missing.  I encourage all students to try whatever you can of the work, and don’t hesitate to ask me for help if you need!  Even if you can’t finish everything, or don’t know all of your answers, please turn in what you have done so that you can get credit  for your work, and help if you need it. Assignments are NOT graded and you will NEVER lose points for turning something in late or not having everything 100% correct, so no need to worry!  Just give it your best effort and turn in whatever you can!

    This week we also started fun new assignments!  Students will work more on forming sentences with conjunctions, read or listen to an article about a REAL LIFE batman (!!), and make a virtual pizza!  Give these a try and let me know if you need help.  We’ll be going over these in next week’s Meets.
    Last, I want to give a HUGE SHOUT OUT to the Wednesday Google Meet group.  This week, we had the best turnout so far this year, with students from both 6th and 8th grade attending!  It was such a joy to see your smiling faces and I can’t wait to see you back next week!  I hope more friends are able to join us – stop by for 10 minutes or stay the whole hour, ask questions about homework or just say hi!  You’ll be glad you did 😀 (Meet times and links are posted in your classroom – 3:30-4:30 Mon or Wed, depending on your grade).
    NOTE: Since the upcoming Monday is a holiday, the Monday Google Meet group should watch for an announcement about rescheduling our meeting.  We will meet Tuesday or Wednesday – announcement coming soon!
    I hope everyone has a FANTASTIC LONG WEEKEND, and I look forward to see many of your next week!
    As always, don’t hesitate to email me with any questions.
(978) 374-3400
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