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RAISE at the Sargent

posted Sep 26, 2016, 11:24 AM by   [ updated Jun 4, 2017, 4:48 PM ]

During the school year Sargent school students and staff do a host of school activities related to creating a positive school climate and RAISE (Respect, Achievement, Inclusion, Service and Empathy).

Early in the school year our school counselor will talk to students about what to do if they are having conflicts with fellow students.

During the school year, we at the Annie L. Sargent School will continue our efforts this year to promote the values of RAISE in our school community every school day. Organized by our School Climate Committee we will be promoting a sense of community among members of our Sargent family and continue the teachings, learnings and activities of students related to the principles of RAISE.

We will continue our tradition of  “Watch out, Shout out! Fridays” where RAISE-worthy deeds during the week are recognized on the intercom between refrains of The Isley Brothers/Otis Day and the Nights: “You Make Me Want To Shout!” Also, our monthly RAISE assemblies that focus on various principles of RAISE. Assemblies include special guest speakers from the community, for example we’ve had in the past Officer Mark Wilson and Kara Caffrey from the NAPD as well as students from NAHS.

Finally, each month we have a school-wide RAISE Assembly in which we celebrate one of the principles of RAISE as a school community. In September, the RAISE Assembly was focussed on" Achievement through Perseverance." A few students from grades 4 and 5 worked with our librarian Courtney Ahearn as she read aloud a book about perseverance. The book was called Try Again, Sally Jane by Mary Diestel-Feddersen. Students acted out parts of the book as she read. As students held up RAISE signs to kick off the assembly, a mystery guest (A student from Miss Shannon's class) appeared wearing a red cape holding the letter 'P" for Perseverance, which turned RAISE in PRAISE for working hard to achieve!  To help define perseverance, students from 3rd grade made a poster that read "Try, try, try again."  The poster has found a permanent home outside our library. Later in the week, examples of  student perseverance were given by teachers for our Friday Shout Outs, and will continue to be our focus this year.  All of this connects wonderfully to our work in the classroom with the Growth Mindset.  

October was focused on Respecting yourself and others through walking safety. We combined the Safe Routes work with the lower grades to focussed on walking safety. School Resource Officer Kara Caffrey spoke to the students on Friday, which was the day of our Monster Mash and Halloween weekend.  Officer Caffrey answer a wide assortment of questions from the students regarding walking safety when trick or treating.

During our November RAISE Assembly our very own Courtney Ahearn dazzled the students with a story by Jacqueline Woodson which was projected in full screen to the students. Courtney's very animated story telling was a wonderful prelude to the students attending the wonderful district assembly at the High School where they were able to meet  award winning author and have her take questions from them. Her message was one of Respect, Achievement and Inclusion.

In December was our annual Holiday Sing-a-long. Each grade level was able to stand and show off their multi-talents with the accompaniment of our master of music, Mr. Shelkowitz!  Various Sargent cultural holiday celebrations were highlighted as well. And, no Holiday Sing-A-Long would be complete without the appearance of our secret guest dancing performance of Frosty the Snowman! Great time was had by all. It was a great day for Inclusion and Respect at the Sargent. 

We continued with our RESPECT theme during January's Assembly.  We did the "Mannequin Challenge" where by some classes "froze in place to demonstrate what RESPECT looks like in their classrooms. The students were creative and purposeful in showing an array of poses. It was a lot of fun and we hope to have another Mannequin Challenge in before June. A group of teachers lead by our guidance counselor did a brief skit illustrating the "Zones of Self-Regulation" that were both fun and impactful.

In February, Massachusetts State Trooper Bob Holland. A graduate of Sargent School and North Andover Middle and High Schools.Trooper Holland spoke to our students regarding the importance of  Respect and what that has meant to his career as a three sport varsity Captain at NAHS and Captain of his football team at Stonehill College. He shared stories of becoming a Massachusetts State Trooper and why Respect is at the very core of all that he does. Sargent School awarded Trooper Holland its 1st  Alumni Respect Award. 

For March, NAHS Band members were in attendance to celebrate the unveiling of our amazing painting of our school mascot "the Sargent Shark" by the renowned painter Rob Surrette.  Thanks to the generous contribution from our PTO, the unveiling was met by awe inspired applause as our PTO President Sheryl Sciaudone and Assistant Superintendent Greg Gilligan pulled the tarp away revealing our beautiful new Mascot!! During the same assembly we honored our very own Librarian Extraordinaire ~ Mrs. Courtney Ahearn! Mrs. Ahearn was the recipient of MSLA Presidents Award. As part of our celebration four students from the 3rd grade read a Dr. Suess like "Proclamation" (written by our very on Mrs. Gildea in 3rd grade) congratulating her on this wonderful honor! We surprised Mrs. Ahearn by having her parents and her husband join us in placing a crown and sash to acknowledge this wonderful, well-earned award! 

Also in March we had a second assembly at the end of March when Read Across America and Beyond activities culminated with a video of each classroom's "reading travels" throughout the US and beyond, as well as Boston Marathon Race Director speaking about the runners from all over the world and share his new children's book on "Perseverance." 

Finally, May’s RAISE assembly initially was focused on how to use our new “Buddy Bench” which will be located on the playground shortly! It ended up being much more. During our RAISE Assembly, we welcomed Mrs. Kate Middlemiss as our featured speaker. Kate is a former Kindergarten teacher. She and her husband founded the Joseph Middlemiss Big Heart Foundation, in honor of their son, Joseph, who passed away at age six from cardiomyopathy.  The Foundation's objectives is to promote “Random Acts of Kindness” on local, national and international fronts, and to educate children on the power of kindness by supporting the efforts of schools. The foundation contributions aid research and spread awareness of childhood heart conditions while providing financial, social and emotional assistance to families impacted by these.

The Buddy Bench is a very generous donation sponsored by the Roberts family in memory of their son, Nicholas.  During the assembly, Mrs. Roberts and her daughter, Leyla, who is a Sargent 1st grader, were asked to join our celebration by sitting on the newly christened Buddy Bench during our assembly in the gym. The Buddy Bench has small heart on it with Nicholas and Leyla’s name engraved on it. The Buddy Bench will soon have a permanent home outside on the grounds of Sargent School!

It was an inspiring assembly! Mrs. Middlemiss was wonderful in  explaining the ripple effects of kindness in large and small ways and how our individual choices can affect others in positive ways both big and small. The Buddy Bench, and what it represents was enthusiastically received by students and staff alike. It is a wonderfully welcomed addition to our Sargent community and helps accent our RAISE values. A sincere thanks goes out to the Joseph Middlemiss Big Heart Foundation and the Roberts family!