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Roger Williams Middle School

Quarterly Newsletter
Principal Vorros Message
Happy New Year!
The school year is half over and we have many great things going on at Roger Williams
that you will read about in this newsletter. We also have some very important assessments going on now and coming up soon. Students just finished their mid-year STAR
assessment for Math and Reading to monitor your childs academic growth, our English
Language Learners are currently taking their ACCESS assessment to determine their
growth in reading, writing, listening and speaking of the English language and students
will be taking the PARCC assessment beginning in mid-April. There will be information
coming soon regarding some informational meetings for parents and supports that will
help your child succeed on PARCC. Every staff member is taking the practice test for
both Math and ELA in order to understand exactly what your child is being asked to do
on this assessment. I encourage you to do the same. You can access the practice assessment at: By taking your childs grade-level assessments you will know the rigor of the questions and high expectations for your child
and it will help you empathize with your childs frustration and anxiety leading up to the

Volume 1, Issue 2
3rd Quarter, 2015-2016

Mission: Our mission at Roger Williams Middle School

is to engage our
learning community
in student centered,
rigorous instruction
In early January we held a meeting with Mayor Elorza, Superintendent Maher and repre- that develops our
sentatives from Providence police. We realize that the meeting was last minute and are
core values and empleased that so many of you were able to attend. Through the discussion from this meeting and other district meetings that followed we were able to put some of the following in powers our students
place to ensure a safe learning environment for your child: we have identified necessary to make the transiupdates to our camera security and are working with central office to get the equipment
tion to high school
identified, lighting has been updated, we are working with the Institute for Non-violence and successful adultand Providence Police are present at dismissal to support with managing and moving the

high school students who gather near our campus at dismissal. While these are a few of
the things we are doing, we are constantly looking for ways to improve and update our
Vision: Our vision at
systems and protocols to ensure that your children feel safe and secure each day so that
they can learn to the best of their ability. We welcome input and feedback in order to help Roger Williams MidRoger Williams be the amazing school your child deserves.
dle School is to creThank you for partnering with us as we strive to provide your child with the best educational experience possible in order to prepare him/her for high school and beyond.

Uniform Information

Roger Williams Middle School is a uniform school! It is our expectation that students will be in
full uniform every day while on school grounds.
The full uniform consists of:
a maroon or black top
khaki or black bottoms
closed toe shoes
Students need to remove their hoods from their heads when entering the building and leave
them off throughout the day.

ate a community of
independent, lifelong learners, who
aspire to become
critical thinkers and
problem solvers that
approach challenges
creatively through
persistence and hard
work, in order to become productive citizens of the world.

Volume 1, Issue 2

Special Education Update

Procedure Reminders:

Students with Special Education services

have Individualized Education Plans (IEPs)
IEPs are updated EVERY year
Parent involvement in the IEP process is
extremely important
Students must be made eligible for services
every 3 years.
Case managers will contact parents/guardians directly in order to schedule
Our IEP team meets every Wednesday in
the Parent Zone

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English Language Learner (ELL) students

will begin preparing for the English Language Proficiency Exam (ACCESS) that will
be administered during the weeks of January
26th -February 8th.
The test will measure students' growth toward English proficiency in the four domains of language: listening, speaking, reading, and writing.
ACCESS scores are used to determine student placement in ELL and General Education programs.

The ELA department has been very busy this quarter! Grade 6 Core classes have been reading the novel Walk
Two Moons and are completing an expository essay. Grade 7 classes are leading up to an Argument Essay with
collaborative discussions and debate. Grade 8 classes have been reading the novel The Giver and are also leading
up to an Argument Essay.
Enrichment classes are reading novels such as Harry Potter, Julie of the Wolves, and The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. Classes are working on citing textual evidence and working on literary elements such as character, plot and

Math Department Update

Greetings from the RWMS Math Department. This quarter is an important
one as we get ready to begin the End of Year (EOY) assessments utilizing
STAR math. Even though we are still one quarter away from the end of
school, we actually have students start taking the EOY assessment during the
first month of the 4th quarter. In order to get all the math classes cycled
through the computer lab and utilizing the laptops carts to complete the online
test, it can take upwards of a month, we start testing as soon as the 3rd quarter
is over. Also, as teachers, we want to have time to analyze student data and
then conference with students in order to make decisions impacting their math
classes next year and assess their overall performance this year. Please ask
your child how they did from the beginning of the year assessment to the end
of year assessment. They will be shown their individual EOY results starting
in May. Students will also take the PARCC test in May. The PARCC is an
online test that is focused on assessing the common core standards that all students are learning this year. There is so much to cover in all grades/classes
that the students are extremely busy working on daily goals needed to master
the grade level standards. Please dont hesitate to contact your math teacher at
school if you have any questions or concerns.

Report Card Night

February 10th at

Talk to teachers
about your childs
academic growth.

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Roger Williams Middle School

Social Studies
ELL Social Studies (all grades)
All students received on line access to their history textbook and a plethora of excellent resources to help them
master the social studies content. The website includes maps, pictures, games, videos, and of course plenty of
opportunity for reading and writing practice! Also, the textbook and many other resources are available in Espanol on this wonderful website!
All regular education students of Social studies have also received links and passwords on how to access their
new McGraw Hill books online and are actively utilizing these online resources.
6th Grade
As part of their studies in Mesopotamia, students learned about the first system of writing in the world, called
cuneiform. They made their own clay tablets and practiced writing messages using this ancient language. As
part of second quarter topics, students also concluded studies of other agrarian civilizations, including Egypt,
India and China.
Upcoming topics of study for third quarter include beginnings of major religions:
Early Judaism
7th Grade
As part of their 7th grade studies, students studied Spanish and Dutch colonization and also the English colonies
in North America.
They will start third quarter by studying the ideas behind The Declaration of Independence and how this historical document affects the lives of all people today.
8th Grade
Students have studied the effects of Urbanization, Immigration and Slavery in early US history.
Students will start third quarter by studying the Civil War, its causes, and how this war affected the lives of
those in the North and the South.

Generation Citizen
A group of students represented their Generation Citizens civic action class during the December Civics Day competition
at the RI State House. There they presented projects that allowed them to actively participate in creating possible solutions to community problems such as school bullying and the
achievement gap between English Language Learners and
their peers.

Above: Generation Citizen students and teacher

Juanita Montes de Oca win the Change Maker
Award for their work around the ELL achievement gap and ELL certification for teachers.

One of these Generation Citizens classes, guided by teacher

Juanita Montes De Oca, hosted meetings in our building with
Superintendent Maher, Senator Pichardo, and Ms. Barreto, the
ELL Director. Not only did this class bring the Civics Day
Class Change Maker Award home to Roger Williams, but they
also achieved their goal by presenting to and receiving the support of the Providence School Board meeting to assist teachers
with ELL certification.

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Roger Williams Middle School

Science Update
The 6th grade, at Roger Williams, will know whether or not the weather outside is frightful or delightful. All
aspects of weather will be examined with scientific equipment both purchased and homemade. Their study will
start local and then drift toward a global perspective. Since motion and complex interactions of air masses result in changes in weather conditions both locally and globally, they end the quarter examining evidence of factors that have caused our global climate to shift. When they get their homework done they may discover some
unfortunate truths.
Our 7th graders are getting organizedliterally. Dichotomous keys and other organization techniques are the
order of the day. A complete understanding of how our scientific world is organized can only lead to a greater
understanding of plants and animals (and maybe their sock drawer). Once they are organized its off to the Galapagos Islands to follow Darwin. Dont let them fool youthey know how to organize their homework.
It might be said that our 8th grade has a particular type of chemistry. Well, this quarter they do. This may,
very well, be their first look at how the world is really put together. We will be exploring and analyzing the
planet on a very elemental basis. Some bubbling and oozing will be the order of the day. We delve deep into
chemical science and analyze atoms from the inside out. Mendeleev would be proud as we examine the periodic table and truly understand the products of our chemical reactions. A lot of energy goes into (and out of)
chemistry. Toward the end of the quarter, well see a change in the class and your student will have all of the
solutions to chemical reactions. Remember to drink plenty of dihydrogen oxide while using your metalloid to
complete your homework.
As alwaysscience in all grades continues to work on the process of being a scientist with collecting data, graphing, analysis, writing conclusions and applying their knowledge to engineer and reengineer. Please be sure
your student has a tri-fold board for their quarter end presentations.

Guidance Department Update

Happy New Year and Welcome Back! There are some exciting things going on in the Guidance Office at
RWMS right now! Eight graders are right in the midst of the High School Choice Process. All grade 8 students
have been given their High School choice form and we are expecting them back as soon as possible. They have
each students name on them so it is important no one loose them. They need to be in pencil and not folded!
We will begin semester 2 at the end of the month. Students will receive new schedules with their elective
changes. Please remind students this marks the halfway point in the year and it is very important that they try
their hardest through June because there arent as many days left as we think.
It is extremely important that the seventh graders try their absolute hardest. If they are considering applying to
Classical HS, 7th grade is the year that they really look at. We dont want any student to limit their high school
choice options because their grades or attendance slipped semester 2.
Also, as the winter months come along, we cannot stress
enough how important it is that every student be here on time
every day. The more students are out, the more likely they are
to fall behind. If your child is out for a doctors visit, please
make sure they bring in a note and get that absence excused.
If your child is in need of coats, hats, or gloves please let us
Heres hoping we have a calm winter!

Volume 1, Issue 2

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Upcoming Dates
2nd Quarter Report Card NightFebruary 10th
3rd Quarter Report Card NightApril 13th
Cinco de Mayo Family DinnerMay 5th, 5:30pm-7:30pm
4th Quarter Parent EventJune 8th

Come support our school at Unos Providence Place Mall!

What: A fundraiser where Unos will donate 20% of your check to our school!
This includes take-out, too!
When: March 3, 2016all day!
Where: Unos at Providence Place Mall
Make sure you tell your server you are with Roger Williams Middle School!

Roger Williams Middle School

278 Thurbers Avenue
Providence, RI 02905