Middle School Newsletter for March 4, 2018

This past week has been a whirlwind of special dress and silly activities coupled with numerous projects and assessments. Students have worked hard and had some fun and laughs with their friends and teachers. With the longer days and warmer temperatures, we know that spring is just around the corner. Before we settle in for the final quarter of the year, we look forward to taking some time away to travel, to get busy with spring cleaning, and even just to spend a day in pajamas enjoying a good book. Wishing you all a very joyful break and wonderful time with friends and family! Let’s hope to return to a campus full of melted snow, sprouting leaves, and chirping birds.

Marissa Markonish
Head of Lower and Middle Schools

SPRING SPORTSNYA Athletics , North Yarmouth Academy, Yarmouth, Maine, Brian Beard - CIP

Middle School spring sports begin the day we return from March Break, Monday, March 19.  Students should bring clothing and gear and be ready to practice that day.


Thanks very much to all families who submitted their re-enrollments by March 1 to ensure inclusion in the upcoming course registration process. When we return from March break, students will be working with their teachers and advisors to begin developing their preferred course selection for September. Soon afterwards, a schedule template will be designed to best accommodate the choices of all re-enrolled students. This will be an exciting time for students to begin thinking about next year’s opportunities!

Rising sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students will be selecting their music courses (Chorus, Strings, Band, or a combination of two) as well as choosing their afternoon option for each season from the available athletic and drama offerings. In addition, rising seventh grade students will be choosing French, Latin, Spanish, or Advanced French as the language they plan to study for the next two years. Math placement will be determined by the department.

Rising ninth grade students will select their afternoon options and their language choice (either continuing in their current language or beginning something new). They will also have a variety of options in Visual and Performing Arts as well as Technology options including Computer Graphics and Programming. Eric Austin and Marissa Markonish will meet with the eighth grade to review options before students begin course selection.


Librarian Eliot Grady is pleased to announce NYA’s fifth annual March Break Photo Reading Challenge. This year’s theme is “Share a Story.” Find someone to read to – your grandparents, your niece or nephew, your stuffed animal collection, whomever, whatever – and take a photo or a selfie and email it to Eliot. All photo entries must be received by noon on Wednesday, March 21 to be considered. The pictures will be judged by a panel of faculty and staff, and a winner for each Division (Lower, Middle, Upper, and Faculty/Staff) will be announced, and prizes awarded at Friday Forum on March 23. Get creative, have fun, and share a story!


NYA is delighted to be welcoming Dr. Ross Greene to campus on April 4. Dr. Greene is a child psychologist and founder of the non-profit organization, Lives in the Balance, originator of the Collaborative and Proactive Solutions (CPS) approach, and a best-selling author. During the afternoon, Dr. Greene will be speaking with students in grades five through twelve and presenting to faculty and staff. We hope that you will be able to join us at 6:00 p.m. in the Middle School Community Room for the parent session with Dr. Greene. Light refreshments and babysitting will be provided.


ms-directors-lab-2018-19-resizeOn Wednesday, February 21, the eighth grade participated in a Shakespeare workshop with the Portland Directors Lab. The group began with a shortened performance of the play Julius Caesar, which the eighth grade has been studying for the past several weeks. After the performance, the Directors Lab conducted workshops in which they introduced the students to persuasive tactics and the power of director and actor choice. Students learned that meaning comes fromms-directors-lab-2018-56-resize more than simply the lines spoken; actors and directors can influence whom the audience believes with their movements, body language, pauses, word emphasis, volume, and so much more. Finally, students were given the opportunity to “direct” an actor in a monologue from the play and used their new knowledge to influence the audience. Annie Powell and Jack McMahon thank the Portland Directors Lab for coming out and sharing their acting expertise and the Parents’ Association for supporting this experience for our students!  ~ Annie Powell

SIXTH GRADE AFRICA FAIR40-ms-africa-fair-2017-40

The Sixth Grade Africa Fair will take place on Friday, April 13 from 12:00-2:00 p.m. in the Middle School Community Room. This year’s format will be a little different from past years with students working in groups to study various topics about Africa. At the Fair, student work will be on display, and each group will present their topic using a different form of technology. A local restaurant will provide foods with an African flair. We look forward to welcoming sixth grade families to this special event!


The Middle School will be having a spring dance and are pleased to invite the sixth graders to join in the fun. The dance will be Friday, April 6, from 6:00-8:00 p.m. in Safford. There will be a DJ, decorations, and refreshments! The cost is $5. This is the final Middle School dance for eighth graders and the first for sixth graders. We are looking forward to a fun and lively evening for all!

Parents: Students and chaperones will remain in Safford for student pick-up. Please arrive by 8:00 p.m., park, and come into Safford (the cafeteria) to pick up your student. Also, please let us know (note, email, or phone call) if your child will be picked up by someone else. Thank you!


The NYA Middle School Leadership Academy is a program open to rising seventh and eighth grade students who would like to spend five days this summer nya-leadership-academy-2017-18-0781-resizehiking across the high peaks wilderness of New Hampshire’s White Mountains learning about, and practicing, leadership. This is not merely a fun hiking trip (though it is that also!), but is also a laboratory for students to develop personal grit and leadership skills. Ian Ramsey and Danielle Barschdorf will lead this trip from July 19-23. The cost is $800; some financial assistance is available. Applications are due by April 15. Contact Danielle with any questions.  ~ Danielle Barschdorf

PARENTS’ NIGHT OUTowl-and-elm-2

NYA’s Parents’ Association is hosting a Parents’ Night Out event for all NYA parents on Thursday, April 5 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. at Owl and Elm in Yarmouth. Babysitting will be available at the Lower School for toddlers through fourth grade students from 4:45-7:15 p.m. We hope to see you there!


Mad Science of Maine will be offering a second class for students in kindergarten through fifth grade this spring. Engineering Mania begins on Tuesday, April 10. Register and find additional information here.


The Middle School parking lot is a very busy place. Please use caution! Be aware that the parking lot is one way, with the entrance side near Key Bank. Please remember not to park or idle in the drop-off area or in the spaces designated for cars with handicapped tags. In the morning, students should quickly exit the vehicle at the curb to keep the traffic flowing smoothly. In the afternoon, please park in a parking space and wait for students there. We appreciate your help in keeping our students safe!


The NYA Yearbook is a much-loved, highly-anticipated publication. The yearbooks will be passed out to students during our NYA Picnic/Fun Day on June 1, 2018. All NYA Middle and Upper School students are automatically charged for a 2017-18 yearbook, so you will see a $55 charge per student on your March bill. Don’t want a yearbook? No problem, just call or email Lisa McGlinn in the business office, 207-847-5425, and she will reverse the charge. If you choose not to purchase a yearbook for your student, please inform your child so that he or she will be prepared not to receive one on June 1. Please contact yearbook advisor Fatou Diagana with any questions.

EXPERIENCE SUMMER AT NYAsummer-programs2018

Registration for Experience Summer at NYA is now open. NYA offers a host of summer programs for toddlers to age 16. Camps include a variety of sports (tennis, lacrosse, field hockey, and soccer), art, theater, dance, circus, magic, and more! Register by April 15 to receive the early bird discount!


We have decided against doing a whitewater rafting trip with the eighth grade due to safety concerns. For the past two years, there has been a death at the Forks where we raft within a week of our visit. As much as we have loved the activity, the potential risk is just too great to take with students of this age. Instead, we will be doing a more local outing for the eighth graders during the day on Thursday, May 31 (after their exam ends at 9:30 a.m.).  Details will be coming later in the spring.


Alex Kloza and Crystal Gordon have arranged for a series of open skates for alumni and families. Families are welcome to bring friends and neighbors. Helmets are required for everyone on the ice. No sticks, please. There are several dates being offered during our March break: Monday, March 5, 3:00 p.m.; Friday, March 9, 3:00 p.m.; Monday, March 12, 3:00 p.m.; and Friday, March 16, 3:00 p.m.

MARK YOUR CALENDARS!Awards-Outing Day, North Yarmouth Academy, Yarmouth, Maine, Brian Beard - CIP

There are several important events coming up over the months ahead and we would like to alert parents to assist in your planning. The spring music concerts are listed in the For Your Planning section below. Middle School Field Trip Day will be on Friday, May 4 and the Special Olympics will be on Wednesday, May 9. Middle School Recognition will be on the evening of Wednesday, May 23. This event includes a concert, art show, numerous community awards, and presentation of eighth grade certificates. Friday, May 25 is our last day of class, and our year ends on Friday, June 1 with Awards and Fun Day. Mark your calendars now!


3/5-3/16 March Break
3/5, 3/9, 3/12, & 3/16 NYA Family, Friends, & Alumni Open Skate, NYA Travis Roy Ice Arena 3:00 p.m.
3/19 Classes resume; Middle School Spring Athletics begin
3/20 Deadline to submit photos for March Break Reading Challenge
3/23 End of third quarter
3/29 Spring Parent-Advisor Conferences Begin
4/4 Dr. Ross Greene Presentations
4/5 Parents’ Night Out, Owl and Elm, Yarmouth 5:00-7:00 p.m.
4/6 Faculty & Staff Appreciation Luncheon, MSCR
4/6 Spring Dance for Grades 6-8, Safford 6:00-8:00 p.m.
4/13 Spring Bring A Friend to School Day
4/13 Sixth Grade Africa Fair, MSCR 12:00-2:00 p.m.
4/15 Leadership Academy Applications Due
4/16 Patriots’ Day NO SCHOOL
4/17 Spring In-Service/Lower School Parent Conferences NO SCHOOL
4/20 Spring Choral Concert (grades 6-12), YPAC 6:30 p.m.
4/24 Poem in Your Pocket Day
4/24 Spring Strings Concert (grades 3-12), First Parish Church 6:30 p.m.
4/26 Spring Instrumental Concert (grades 6-12), NYA Gym 6:30 p.m.
4/27 Poetry Out Loud Presentations
4/27 NYA Soirée, Thompson’s Point, Portland 5:00 p.m.
5/3 Fifth Grade Arts Night, Higgins Hall 5:00 p.m.


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