Principal’s Weekly Update (10/18-10/22)




Thursday October 28th at 7pm we will be holding our 1st annual pumpkin walk. We are asking students and families to carve pumpkins and bring them to school between October 26th and October 28th. All carved pumpkins will be lit and made into a spooky walkway for our Whittier families and friends to come stroll through on the night of the 28th. This will be a homeroom contest, so the homeroom with the most collected pumpkins will win a Pizza Lunch with Cupcake Dessert for the entire class. Remember to put your name & homeroom number on the pumpkin. There will be free candy and treats that evening. What a great way to kick off Halloween Weekend! Students are encouraged to bring in as many pumpkins as they can to help their homeroom win. Please see the link below for the flyer with all details:

First Annual Whittier Pumpkin walk


KIMBALL FARM CORN MAZE: The National Junior honor society will be hosting a “Whittier corn maze night out” on November 4th. Please see the link for the flyer with all details: corn maze




Our JGW PTO has launched our 2021-2022 cookie fundraiser with Adrenaline Fundraising from October 8th to October 25th. A Form for how to sign up and sell cookies went home with all students on Friday, October 8th. This form was also emailed to all families with all of the necessary details. Please see below for instructions to sign up and all of this year’s prizes:

_ JG Whittier Cookie Fundraiser Instructions 2021

_ JG Whittier Cookie Fundraiser Prizes 2021


2001-2022 PTO Meeting Dates · September 8th · October 13th · November 10th · December 8th · January 12th · February 9th · March 9th · April 14th · May 11th · June 8th


  • PROGRESS REPORTS: Your student’s progress report is available to view online through the student/parent portal. Please follow these directions to gain access:


  • Go to HPS main page:
    • Click on Parent & Student Resources
    • Click on Parent & Student Portal Login
    • Click Log-in
    • Use your student’s username & password to login
    • Click on Student Portal (top of page)
    • Select Report Cards/Progress Reports
    • Click Download




HAVERHILL PUBLIC SCHOOLS HANDBOOK (K-8): Please click on the link below to be connected to our up to date handbook for grades K-8:

WATER BOTTLES: Please make sure that your student(s) are bringing a water bottle to school every day. We do have filling stations that you can use throughout the day. At this time we are out of cups due to the volume of students that are asking on a daily basis. It would be greatly appreciated if students brought in their own water bottles to make sure they remain hydrated throughout the day. Thank you.

MASKS: As we continue to adhere to the Massachusetts’s State Mandate that all people (students, staff, visitors) are required to wear a mask in the school building, we ask that you please send your student’s to school with a spare mask. Many students have been breaking their masks and need new one’s throughout the school day. We would appreciate families sending students with an extra mask each day. Thank you!




JGW Chromebook Policy


We understand that “things happen” and from time-to-time students will forget to charge their Chromebook or leave it at home.  Unfortunately, this is becoming a habit for some students and is happening far too often overall.  Students were made aware at the beginning of the school year that the expectation is for ALL students to bring their fully-charged Chromebook to school each day.

The supply of extra Chromebooks is limited.  Because of this, we are implementing a borrowing policy here at JGW for Chromebooks and chargers.  Students who forget their Chromebooks, bring them to school uncharged, or do not return a borrowed Chromebook the same day will be given consequences as follows:

First Offense: Student will be issued a warning

Second Offense: Parents/Guardians will be called

Third Offense or More:  Student will be given after-school detention

**These consequences will reset for all students each trimester.

If a student loses or damages a Chromebook or charger and  the student needs to be issued another device, the family will be charged a fee for the replacement.  Typically, the Chromebook replacement fee will be $199.00 and the charger replacement fee will be $39.00.

It is very important for students to come to school with charged and functioning Chromebooks.  The devices are used in most, if not all classes; including music and art.  We are asking families to be partners with the JGW in this, and remind your children to charge their Chromebooks and bring them to school every day.


Attendance: A reminder to all families that if your student will be absent for the day, please make sure to call the main office (978-374-5782) to notify the school. Thank you.


Dress Code: We receive many questions about our school’s dress code. We would ask that all families please review the Haverhill Public Schools Dress Code Policy with their students in order to ensure that it is properly being followed. Thank you for your attention to this. Please find a copy of the HPS Dress Code Policy below:

Dress Code Policy (HPS)




SOCCER: The Girl’s and Boy’s Soccer teams have 2 matches this week. The Poets will travel to Consentino on Wednesday, October 20th with the girls playing first. Both teams will then travel to Hunking on Thursday, October 21st with the boys playing first.


CROSS COUNTRY: On Tuesday 10/19, grades 6-8 will run in the City Championship! Come cheer on the Poets! The meet will take place at Winnekenni after school. The next team practice for grades 5-8 will take place on Thursday morning at JGW @7:30 AM.


SKI CLUB: Ski Club takes place Fridays, starting on January 7th and runs for 6 weeks

-Lift tickets are valid from 3pm-7pm.

-Transportation to and from the mountain must be provided by parents

-Ski club members must be able to ride the ski lift and ski/snowboard independently in order to participate in the program.

-Parent Lodge Monitors will be onsite for the duration of Ski Club to assist the students in the lodge.

-Ski Club enrollment packets and payment will be due Friday, November 12th.

-Please email Ski Club Coordinator Amie Moscaritolo with any questions.


There will be a parent information meeting here at JGW on Tuesday 10/19 from 6-7





DANCE TEAM: Our team has grown to about 35 dancers who are working hard to learn the ins and outs of performing on stage. Dancers are learning choreography to a large group “Hunger Games” piece while also working on a quick tempo jazz piece as well. Next to come- lyrical and musical theatre! The dancers are working hard and listening to the timing of music while also gaining skills in all genres of dance. Thank you to Mrs. Jarvis and Izzy Leger for assisting in class- they are great teachers!!


NATIONAL JUNIOR HONOR SOCIETY: The National Junior Honor society is running a helping hands drive.  We will be collecting canned goods, boxed food, any non perishables, and any and all toiletries.  We will be delivering these to the Universal Unitarian Church and all products will be going to families in need.  We will be collecting all items from now until November 12th (see link below).  Next meeting will be in November.

NJHS Food drive banner


JR VIP: There will be a Jr. VIP meeting after school in the library from 2:45 to 3:45 on Wednesday 10/20.  All JGW students are welcome to attend and see what Jr. VIP is all about!!  See Mrs. Reynolds for more details.


DUNGEONS & DRAGONS CLUB: DnD club will be meeting next Tuesday 10/19, in room 13!



If this is something that might interest you, please follow this link:






I just want to take the time to thank everyone for being so patient and understanding as we navigate through this very stressful time. I understand the protocols can be confusing and seemingly unnecessary. I promise that these concerns are being voiced, and we are working towards finding solutions that keep our students healthy and in school as best we can. Please do not hesitate to call me if you have any questions, comments or concerns.


MEDICATIONS/INHALERS: A reminder to all parents that students cannot self carry medication of any kind without physician orders and an active administration plan in place developed with the school nurse. Please reach out to our nurse’s office with any questions.







Ms. Simes: Grade 5 Math/Science (Blue/Purple Group) In math, students have been working hard learning how to use models to add and subtract decimals, as well as use standard algorithms to add and subtract decimals.  Students showed understanding of these tasks on Friday.  This week, we begin to multiply multi-digit whole numbers and continue to build and use their math academic vocabulary, daily.  In science, students began their Explore lab, they are so excited to enter class everyday to see how their plants are growing without soil.  They will continue to observe and fill out their observations to their lab.  Students will engage in a Quizizz, as well as complete a quiz to show understanding.  After school help will be Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday this week from 2:45 p.m. to 3:20 p.m.  As always, if you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me at  Have a wonderful weekend!


Ms. Marciano: ELA – We will be finishing up our final projects for “Fish in a Tree” and moving into discussing fiction and non-fiction texts.

SS – We will be finishing our trading card projects of Spanish and European explorers. Students are doing such a great job using their class time to complete their projects! Mid-week, we will be wrapping up Unit 2 by discussing how European exploration affected the Americas.


Ms. Hogan: In social studies, we are getting to the end of our unit on European explorers! We had our final quiz for the unit on Friday 10/15. Next week, we will spend a few days on an in class project. This project will have students creating a trading card for an explorer of their choice. I am excited to see how creative my students are! By the end of next week, we will start to think about our first Document Based Question (DBQ) assignment. When completing DBQs, students will be looking at sources and taking what they learn from them to write an essay.


Ms. LaCoste: Grade 5 ELA students have been digging deep into our novel.  They have been working to strengthen their “Reading is thinking” skills and this time they’re connecting character feelings to character behaviors.  This skill can be generalized to peers (and others in their lives) to help them become more empathetic.  Writing about reading has become part of our routine as well.  Students are continuing to write with more detail and provide text evidence to support their written answers.  Students also learned how to use the IPICK strategy to choose appropriate independent reading books.  The acronym helps students remember some important steps when making their choices.  The structure of our lessons will change a bit once we complete our novel and students will have a bit more independent reading as part of their daily routine.


Thank those of you who met me for parent teacher conferences.  I enjoyed getting to know you.  Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you weren’t able to meet on Thursday, but would like to set up a conference in the near future.


As a reminder, I’ll be after school on Tuesdays to support your students with their book report.  Please let me know ahead of time if your student will come.  For those of you who can’t meet after school, I can meet most days before school at 8, with advance notice.


Ms. Consolazio: In science, we did our second experiment on if plants can grow with only water and air.  Students put seeds in a sealed plastic bag with a paper towel.  We will observe for two weeks to see if the seeds will grow. Next week students will make a comic on what plants need to grow and survive and read a passage about Jenny’s plant. Please make sure students have their Chromebooks charged every day.


Mr. Kelly: We started our unit on Multiplying Whole Numbers last week. We will continue this unit over the next couple of weeks. The students are practicing using the Area Model to solve problems. The goal will be for them to use Standard Algorithm for all multiplication problems. They will have XtraMath homework on the computer Monday through Thursday. Reminder: if your student needs extra help, they can come to my room between 8 and 8:30 Tuesday and Thursday. If that time does not work, please let me know and we can set up a different time


Ms. Lees: In fifth grade ELA the Orange and Green groups will continue to read How to Steal a Dog using

Reading is Thinking strategies – Summarizing, Connecting, Visualizing, Inferring, Predicting, and

Questioning as well as exploring different ways of how to talk and write about their reading.

Math students will practice multi-digit multiplication and strengthen math fact skills. Those

students with individual goals will continue towards achievement. Please reach out if after

school or before school help will support your student.





GRADE 6 Social Studies: We are currently working on our DBQ (Document Based Essay). Students are learning the importance of working with historical documents. Students are learning how to analyze documents such as articles, images, maps, charts, and diagrams, taking into account both the source of each document and the point of view presented within the document. All students are developing, organizing and writing a five paragraph essay using the evidence they are drawing from the documents they have been given. We are so proud of their efforts and achievements as they dig through the past to research and reflect.


Ms. Hamel: Students have dove right back into the mythological world or Percy Jackson. As we read each chapter, students are making connections through their 4Q notes while also spending time in class discussions about the characters, plot, point of view and story development. Students are also finishing up their Character Trait Posters, examining the differences between interior and exterior characteristics. I am so proud to see the creativity that has gone into these projects and the self awareness that has come about after reflecting on who they are and what type of traits they possess! Great Job Team 2!!!


Ms. Silveira: We have completed our scope on gravitational forces, so next week in science we will be taking our exam and working on our CER. Please make sure that your child is studying their vocabulary words and reviewing everything we have gone over thus far in order to do well on the exam.

In math, students are doing great with dividing fractions! We will be continuing to progress with this and then take a quiz on it.  Please make sure your child is persistent with practicing their multiplication facts.

Make sure to check School Brains weekly for your child’s grades!

You can always email me if you have any questions or concerns.

Mr. Taylor: We get back into Percy Jackson and vocabulary while studying character traits of ourselves and book heroes.


Mr. LeGrand: Last week we used models to multiply fractions and multiply the numerators and the the denominators to find the product of two fractions.  This week, students will be able to use models and equations to divide fractions.


Ms. Lane: The students are learning how to think like a Scientist by using the Claim Evidence and Reasoning (CER) discipline and learning how to use their Science packets filled with Experiments, Graphic Organizers and Explore Activities in order to learn how to record information on their CER Packets. Students will learn how to record their thoughts about the  question during their investigations of important Science Discoveries, during their mission of Gravity and Planets.


Ms. Tarbox: In ELA, the Yellow and Orange groups have finished up their character traits projects and have read three more chapters of Percy Jackson.  Next, the groups will continue with the book while also diving into a new spelling/grammar packet. In Math, both groups have wrapped up multiplying fractions and mixed numbers. We will now work with division of fractions and mixed numbers. Pull-out services have been delivered consistently.  As always, feel free to reach out at any time!





Mrs. Berthiaume: In ELA, students are reading an excerpt from Nimona, a graphic novel, in StudySync.  In Social Studies, students created selfies by Buddha and posters about Hinduism in Google Drawing.


Mrs. Trombly: We continue to work on rational numbers concentrating on multiplying and dividing fractions and decimals, with negatives and positives. This will be something we will be working on all year. All students should have a separate math notebook preferably at least a three subject.


Mrs. MacKinnon: We have begun our unit on relationships. The students have been be describing the types of mutualistic relationship both good and bad that organisms face in the ecosystems.  They will also Describe how relationships among and between organisms in an ecosystem can be competitive, predatory, parasitic, and mutually beneficial and that these interactions are found across multiple ecosystems. The kids did an activity on Thursday and Friday on finding their ecosystem buddy.  They all seemed to enjoy it.  Hope everyone has a nice weekend


Ms. DiGloria: Students in Grade 7 Blue and Green ELA will be wrapping up our work next week on The Monsters are Due on Maple Street. We will also be wrapping our unit on conflicts and clashes shortly thereafter. In Social Studies, we will also be wrapping up our unit on Ancient India by finishing our religions project and covering some final cultural topics. If you have any questions about your student’s progress, please reach out as soon as possible. We are in the second half of the trimester and it is important for students to be making up any missing assignments they may have.


Mr. Auger: Hello everyone! This week in my 7th grade science class, we have been learning about the different interactions and relationships that occur in ecosystems.  We finished up the week by doing a hands-on activity where students matched different organisms and tried to determine what type of relationship it was (Predatory, Competitive, Mutually Beneficial, or Parasitic).  Next week we will expand our knowledge on this topic.  This week in 7th grade social studies we finished our unit on Ancient India.  Next week we will work on our next writing assignment on the leader Ashoka.  Have a great weekend!


Mr. Harris: Green – Students are finishing up Chapter 1, and preparing for our Unit test.  This will cover everything we have learned in Unit 1 – rational vs irrational numbers and doing all four operations with rational numbers (positives and negatives, whole numbers, fractions, and decimals).  We will then transition into taking a look at proportional relationships.

Blue – Students are hard at work on fraction and decimal operations with positives and negatives.  Students will then be moving into solving word problems that use the skills we have been sharpening.  Test on Chapter 1 will be upcoming.


Ms. Bilmazes & Ms. Holmes: In Blue ELA, students have finished reading the story Monsters Are Due on Maple Street and are wrapping up comprehensive questions  in regards to mood, tone and conflict in the story. In Yellow and Orange ELA, students have begun reading Nimona and determining the characters’  good and bad qualities. In Math, students are continuing to work on multiplying and dividing fractions. Mrs. Holmes and I continue to meet during the success block, with those students who have pull-out support in Math and ELA. In addition, students are receiving support in the classroom from myself, Mrs. Holmes, and/or Ms. Credit. As always, feel free to reach out with any questions.





Mr. Lewis: English class has finished our short story Flowers For Algernon. Students worked diligently on their first essay of the year, which focused on whether Charlie’s operation was a blessing or a curse. We are now beginning a short unit on mystery and horror for Halloween. During this unit, students will be learning about mood/atmosphere in writing and how it is achieved. We will begin by reading Edgar Allan Poe’s classic “The Tell-Tale Heart”


Ms. Deblasis: We will begin Topic 2: Solving Equations next week.


Mr. Marinella: ELA– Hello! ELA has moved onto a new unit!! This time, we are discussing what makes people take risks, and how we can make certain risky decisions using information at our disposal. We will be reading and pulling info from a variety of stories, some fiction and some non-fiction. This unit will also feature our first novel!! Last time around, we read several short stories and poems, but this unit will be centered around a novel called, “A Night to Remember”. This story is about the sinking of the Titanic, and the ways the passengers faced risks and persevered in order to survive.


Civics– Now that Civics has moved past the Declaration, we now are faced with a new series of problems and one great big question, now what? What happens when a group separates from a country in order to make their own life? What government could be created to better serve the people? We aim to answer all of these questions, just as the Founding Fathers did, by looking into the past, seeing what worked and what didn’t. The US government is a puzzle made with pieces from all over the world and all throughout history. In order to better understand the government that surrounds us today, we must first understand its creation!


Ms. Sullivan: This week we will be working on Plate Tectonics and how it shaped our Earth. We will also be exploring volcanoes, earthquakes and tsunamis. On another note, I was out sick for conferences please email me for a time to meet. I’m so sorry for any inconvenience.


Mr. Harris: Purple and Blue – We finished this week with doing Operations in Scientific Notation, and began our review for our Chapter 1 test.  The test will be in the middle of this week.  From there we will begin Unit 2, which is all about Linear Equations.


Ms. MacKinnon: The students have  been investigating What processes cause the cycling of Earth’s materials?  They will do this by Using a model to illustrate that energy from Earth’s interior drives convection that cycles Earth’s crust, leading to melting, crystallization, weathering, and deformation of large rock formations, including generation of ocean seafloor at ridges, submergence of ocean sea floor at trenches, mountain building, and active volcanic chains.  We did an activity on Wednesday that involved playdough and making landforms.  The kids seemed to enjoy that.  We are starting this section with a review of the rock cycle.

Hope everyone has a nice weekend


Ms. Senior: Mathematicians of grade 8 are delving into Scientific Notation in several ways: conversion, adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing. There are steps to remember, so students ought to keep utilizing the colorful sheets they are given plus their classroom notes. ELA students are learning about Edgar Allen Poe, the master of scary, thought-provoking short stories, just in time for this “haunting season” and students are quite intrigued.




Physical Education: (Mr. Demarais): We are finishing up our team games unit this week.  Next week we will be working on net games skills.  These games include tennis, badminton, and volleyball.


Art (Ms. Boulger): The students in 5,6,7,8 red and green groups have been working on a variety of assignments such as paintings, flip book drawings and murals. The art department is looking for some new/used frames as well as used/ unused jars to store mixed paint.


Artwork by Adriana and Caylie



Health (Ms. Reynolds): grade 5 – We have begun our Drug Awareness unit.  We have examined the effects of smoking on the body and will be exploring how alcohol affects us as well.


grade 6 – We will be finished off the First Aid Unit by making a first aid kit for our backpacks.  Next, we will be starting the Tobacco Unit, learning what tobacco products do to the body.


grade 7 – Our Cybersafety Unit continues on with the results of cyberbullying and its effect on students.  We will discuss what constitutes cyberbullying and what does not, and what the law says about students and people who publicly bully others.


grade 8 – We will be ending our Mental Health Unit with Teen suicide prevention resources.  Students will make a fact sheet designed to provide information and helpful resources on this critical topic.



If this is something that might interest you, please follow this link:


Hello JGW Friends and Families!!


This week in Music class, all students began to learn how to play the guitar. We started by learning the basic vocabulary words at the beginning of the week. Students were taught about all the different parts of the guitar, and we all did a guitar labeling worksheet together in class. After that, we played a Kahoot to review the words that we had learned.


Then, we continued to learn about the frets and strings on guitars today. I taught them the string letters and numbers that are on an acoustic guitar, and how to properly hold the instrument. We spent the remainder of class practicing our strumming skills, which we will apply to what we have learned so far when we meet next time.


Library (Ms. Michitson): Good day, we are in the middle of the trimester and still plugging away at our book contest.  Contest ends  November 4th and winners will be announced on Monday the 8th.


We are learning the differences in each paper presented.

We have the city news, state news, financial pages, news across America and World news.  A lot to learn.  Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns

Thank you


Technology (Mr. Gordon): Across the grades in we are continuing with Google Apps. Students are learning how to more effectively use documents, presentations, and soon spreadsheets.





Guidance (Ms. Vlahos): It has been a great week visiting all 8th grade classes to present information regarding local high school options, admissions processes and the high school transition. The students have asked great questions and been engaged during my class visits.  If you have any questions at all about high school options or how to go about navigating this transition, please do not hesitate to connect with me.

I continue to be available to connect with and support all students and families throughout the school week. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me at I look forward to our continued work in support of a healthy, safe, and successful school year!


Student Support Coordinator (Mr. Newell): I am available to help support students and their families in any way possible. Please email me with any questions, thank you.


Student Adjustment Counselor (Ms. Midolo): Whether it’s with friends, siblings, classmates or adults, sometimes when you disagree with someone, you can feel angry, or frustrated and the disagreement can turn ugly and hurtful very quickly.


Next week’s lesson will cover true-to-life, age- appropriate scenarios, demonstrating five ways to disagree and be respectful: Stay calm, don’t make it personal, be considerate of others feelings and ideas and communicate by using I-statements and good listening skills.


JGW is kicking off Kindness Week next week. (10/18-10/22).

Monday: Wear GREEN for gratitude.  Daily Challenge: Say “thank you” to three or more people today.

Tuesday: Wear ORANGE for helpfulness.  Daily Challenge: Help a teacher or classmate today.

Wednesday: Wear YELLOW for POSITIVITY: Daily Challenge: Do something kind for someone.

Thursday: Wear BLUE for ENCOURAGEMENT: Daily Challenge: Give someone a compliment.

Friday: Wear RED for SElf LOVE.  Daily Challenge: think of something you did well this week and give yourself a pat on the back!!!


Have a great weekend!


Student Adjustment Counselor (Ms. White): In light of kindness week, we continue to focus on developing healthy relationships, treating one another with respect and making smart and safe decisions!  Please reach out with any questions or concerns.


Middle School Support Program (Mrs. Leydon & Mr. Diffin): We will continue to talk about what qualities we look for in a friend, and how we can be a good friend to others. We have been working hard on listening when others speak, and making questions or comments to show interest. As always, please reach out with any questions or concerns.


Parent Liaison (Ms. Arias-Reyes): Si tienen una pregunta o preocupación y necesitan un intérprete no duden en contactarme. Estaré más que feliz de poder ayudarlos a comunicarse con los maestros de sus hijos y el personal de la escuela. Mi horario es de 8:30am a 3:30 pm y  mi número es 781-666-4085 y mi correo electrónico es, me pueden llamar, mandar un mensaje de texto o enviarme un correo electrónico.  También tienen la opción de llamar a la escuela directamente para contactarme o usar la aplicación Remind, esta aplicación manda los mensajes directamente a mi computadora. Que tengan un buen fin de semana!


ELL (Ms. Khakali & Pepicelli-Raposo): Level 3,4, & 5 ELs are working on improving their writing using transition words and practicing editing their compositions. Newcomer ELs, are finishing up Unit 1: “All About Me” and will be taking a unit 1 test to demonstrate mastery of school vocabulary, present tense verbs To Be, Have and Do/does. Language learning tip:  music is a great way to have fun while practicing your second language!


Student Support Center (Mrs. Greenwood): SSC had a great week. The kids are being kind to one another, taking responsibility for their actions and helping their peers when needed. WE are all working together and making it the best year yet.  If you have any questions please reach out to Miss House and Mrs. Greenwood.  Have a great weekend.


Reading Intervention Team (Ms. Guthrie, Ms. Carney, Ms. Trovato): This week our interventionists have been working daily with small groups during success block. In other news. grades 5-8  are working on their new ELA programs.  Studysync for grades 6-8 and Fountas and Pinnell for grade 5. Stay tuned for more updates.


Math Coach (Mr. Stelzer): The small groups from each grade are working on operations with fractions. We’ve been making visual representations of fractions using bar models and are moving on to algorithmic computation.