IACS Hawk Distance Edition
Week ending April 3, 2020
Dear IACS Community,
While we may not be all together in school, there still seems to be plenty that is going on in our community. IACS has been donating Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) from our science department to Lowell General, Tyngsboro EMS, and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency. On March 23rd and 24th, Food Service Director Karen Drake organized an initiative that delivered 15 days’ worth of lunches to families of students enrolled in our free or reduced lunch program. Each meal included: meat/meat alternative, veggies, fruit, grains, and milk or juice. Additionally, breakfast items on hand were given out to provide a 5 day supply of breakfast. In sum, 1,380 meals were delivered to families. Finally, our Chromebook distribution program placed over 60 computers (in addition to those already on loan from our library) to support distance learning for our students.
At the classroom level, amazing community-oriented work continues. Kudos to Grade 5 & 6 Social Studies Teacher Katy Angelone for spearheading the sewing of masks from home in order to donate to area institutions. At last count, the Angelone advisory and IACS community volunteers had sewn over 130 masks and shipped them or dropped them off to Anton’s Cleaners for sterilization before delivering to area institutions in need. Thank you to everyone that has given their time and effort to accomplish these things.
We also want to thank high school science teacher Ms. Anna Cynar for getting the IACS Connects Google Classroom created. Not being in school and not being able to be with the many people that are important to you can be isolating and we know some people are feeling nervous and definitely a little bored. Belonging to a community and connecting with each other is more important than ever, so we’ve decided that it’s time to bring us all closer…from a very safe virtual distance:) Each school day morning we’ll share a video made by IACS high school teachers, students, and families to connect and bring a little morning pep to our collective step. Any student or teacher can volunteer to make a video (2 – 5 minutes) that is fun, obviously appropriate, and will help lift people’s spirits and feel more connected! Multiple students and teachers have already made contributions and many more are already signed up for future days. Any student can join "IACS Connects" by going to google classroom and using the class code: zjdqmbq
Additionally, when students win challenges for IACS Connects, they can choose a gift card to support a local restaurant or choose to make a donation in their name to a charity of their choice. This week’s winner chose the charity Feeding America.
Thank you all for doing your part during this crisis.
Be well –
IACS Faculty and Staff
Middle School News
Middle School Yearbook
With the unprecedented events regarding school closure, we want to document this year in our Middle School Yearbook. As we are not able to capture pictures of spring activities we need your help. Although the pages will look different, we would like them to represent what is happening at home. Please send in creative pictures of your middle schooler working from home – doing something around the house, selfies with the family, pets – anything fun and creative to document this time.
Please email pictures by April 20th to email@example.com. Mention your student(s) name in the subject line.
The early bird sale has been extending to April 20th. Middle School Yearbook can be ordered online at Middle School Yearbook Order and Payment Form for the early bird price of $20 through April 20th.
8th graders- stay tuned for information on baby pictures and personal pages submissions.
Video from the ⅞ Team
7th/8th grade staff got together to make the video below for students. Enjoy!
5th/6th-ers– don’t worry, your video is coming soon!
Distance Learning Plan
If you haven’t read our distance learning plan here, please review it here.
A few reminders:
Work will be posted each week here: https://www.innovationcharter.org/middle-school/
All assigned work will count towards student grades beginning on Monday, April 6th.
Semester 2 grades on report cards will be Pass/Warning (Fail), rather than the NAPD scale.
The total workload will be about 2.5 hours of work per day for 7th & 8th graders and about 1.75 hours of work per day for 5th & 6th graders.
Who says distance learning can’t be fun?
This week, Mr. Pererya described a scene in Spanish for Profe Ashley and Sra. Schmalz to draw…let’s see how close they got to his description.
High School News
From the Desk of Mr. Barry:
As we move through this time period, I think it is important to acknowledge that you may be experiencing a variety of emotions, all which are valid. When our lives suddenly change and we lose our routines it can understandably create a sense of loss that can lead to procrastination, depression, exhaustion, and aimlessness. It is times like this when finding things that give our lives meaning, such as relationships, and exploring your personal interests can be meaningful exercises in keeping yourself active and engaged.
With that in mind, if you are feeling down and disconnected from the world or even just from yourself, I wanted to suggest that engaging with art a little each day may help. Obviously as an art teacher I believe strongly in its benefits and wanted to share with you two schools of thought about how art can help us process and work through what we are feeling.
Art therapy is the belief that art gives us a window into ourselves. For at least 40,000 years we have used art to express ourselves and convey our ideas, and there is something inherently rewarding about this experience. Art Therapy itself aligns very closely to the traditional art practice in that you make work about a thought, feeling, or experience. You can do this by telling a story about something that has happened or as an analogy to something you believe, using symbols that represent what you want to convey, and you can also let your subconscious decide what you make in order to see what it is telling you. In all of these practices the hope is that by making something you are able to take what you are experiencing and let go of it by putting it back into the world. Sometimes this can even lead to you learning something new about yourself as you may realize that a small choice you made when making your piece actually says something far more meaningful about yourself than you originally intended.
Expressive Art Therapy
As I stated above, we as a species have been making art for at least 40,000 years. Expressive Art Therapy believes that because of this we are born with a desire to engage with art making and that the physical activity of this has inherent therapeutic qualities. In Expressive Art Therapy it doesn’t matter what you make, a scribble on paper is just as meaningful as the Mona Lisa. What is important is engaging with material. Pushing paint around on a surface, writing down words, making musical notes, moving our bodies, these are the things that matter. When we engage with these actions that humans have been doing for thousands of years it connects our souls and our bodies and gives us an outlet for what we are feeling.
So if you are feeling any of the things that I mentioned above, whether loss, disconnection, depression, or just boredom, I would consider spending a few minutes each day making art. It doesn’t have to be a lot of time, you don’t need to do the same thing every day, and there is no need to finish something unless you want to. But you might find that spending a little time drawing, painting, playing with clay, singing, playing an instrument, writing, or dancing may help to change the way you feel. This is especially beneficial if you do it early in the day as it can help set your state of mind.
I hope that you are all doing well and If you have any questions feel free to reach out to me.
Original Music by Senior Alex Pace
Alex is a senior in Ms. Lane’s Chorale class. She was given an assignment to experiment with different online programs and make an individual or group vocal recording. Here is her amazing work…
From Alex: “I composed a mini song on Garage Band and arranged the instruments and voices. This 34-second song is about the impact of Corona Virus…especially for us Seniors.”
Oh I know what we’re gonna miss to this
For sure, this year is gonna be the one we’ll never miss
I know this year has taken so much from us
But know we’ll grow stronger
Cause we’ve only been planted
Day by day
Day by day we’ll grow
Day by day
We will grow
2020-2021 Scheduling Process
Check out the new Program of Studies for next year. More information will be coming on the course offerings and how to make your course requests through Aspen…stay tuned.
We hope flipping through our auction will be a fun distraction from everything else that’s going on. The auction can be found here: www.32auctions.com/iacacasinonight
Thank you for all you do!