Hello MC families,
In addition to September being a time in which we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month (more on that in a bit), September is also Suicide Prevention and Awareness month. Mental health is something that is often on our minds at school, as rates of anxiety and depression amongst teens are at all-time highs. We invest time during Advisory on social-emotional learning, and we seek to develop relationships with our students as a means of both creating connection, and as a means of helping to keep students safe. Please be sure to check in with your kids about how they are navigating school work, outside activities, and relationships with peers. If your student is struggling with anything at school, please reach out so that we can work in partnership.
If you ever need to report something anonymously you can do so through the Say Something anonymous reporting system (scroll down a bit on the page and you can see links with information on how to report through their secure website, their app, or on the phone). Ms. Lee will be conducting classroom guidance lessons around suicide prevention in each grade level in November, and again please reach out to us if you need help.
As an IB/MYP school we seek to expand our student’s internationalmindedness, and celebrating other cultures allows us to do this. This past Friday’s lunch menu included foods that are eaten in celebration of Rosh Hashanah. Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish celebration of the new year, and is one of the holiest days for Jewish people worldwide. Rosh Hashanah is observed from sundown Friday the 15th until nightfall on Sunday the 17th. On Friday, each lunch period was stopped for a couple minutes so that Chef Bradley could explain the significance of the various foods that were on our menu that day. Foods that are typically eaten during Rosh Hashanah. This was also explained during Advisory. Below is an excerpt from the Advisory slides from last Friday:
Nevertheless, some traditions for Rosh Hashanah are widespread. To celebrate, we eat:
sweet foods, and no bitter or sharp ones, for a sweet new year. Today, that’s Apples and Honey, Israeli-style Sweet Noodle Kugel, and Carrot Tzimmes (carrot coins cooked with honey).
round foods in hope that the new year is full and rounded. Today, Falafel (chickpea fritters) and Carrot Tzimmes. The carrots also resemble gold coins, symbolizing prosperity and good fortune, or to increase merits over shortcomings.
beans and seeds because abundance grows from these small starts. Today, that’s Falafel and Loubia, a black-eyed pea stew from Egypt, where Roden [the chef who’s recipes were used on Friday] was born and raised.
In a continuation of our celebration of various cultures, this week we began our celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. Hispanic Heritage Month begins in the middle of each September starting on the 15th in commemoration of multiple independence days in Latin America. Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua all celebrate their independence from Spanish colonial rule on September 15th. During Morning Meeting this past Monday, Ms. Taylor gave a presentation about the history of Hispanic Heritage Month which started with Hispanic Heritage Week in 1968, before becoming Hispanic Heritage Month in 1988. Ms. Taylor talked to us about Latin Culture, including the history of salsa, and afterwards a group of students from the Latin Dance club danced salsa. It was a great performance!
The Latin Dance club will be meeting after school on Tuesdays for all students who are interested. Throughout this month, we will continue to highlight famous Hispanic Americans in various content areas, and there will be a celebration with performers during Morning Meeting on Monday the 25th.
Last year we held our first live drama performance since before the pandemic with the Annie Jr. musical in the spring. In the past the drama club put on two performances and we are going back to that with a play in the fall, and a musical in the spring. The play for this fall will be The Misadventures of Baba Yaga. Our fall plays are only open to performers in grades 6-8, our musicals vary as to whether there are performers from the elementary campus. Tryouts for the school play began yesterday and will continue tomorrow, Thursday, September 21st after school in Mr. Dewey’s room.
Finally, Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl is another club that was announced during Morning Meeting this week. Ms. Linahan, our Media Center Specialist, is the sponsor of this club and she shared these details:
- “The Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl is a state-wide [event/competition] for all schools in Georgia. [The competition involves students answering trivia questions about a given set of 10 books.]
- Participants will read at least 3 of the 10 books, and create and study trivia questions to prepare for the competition.
- We will meet with other APS middle school teams in January to compete for the next level of competition.
- Copies of the books are available for [participants] to borrow.
- We will meet on Mondays from 3:10-4:00 in the library, and will collaborate via Google Classroom.”
As always if you have any questions feel free to reach out.