Thursday, December 23, 2010

Box Tops for Education

Help Macdonough School earn money by clipping Box Tops from your favorite products. This is one of the easiest way to earn, because we buy these products daily!  All you have to do is Clip, Turn-In and Save!

Another great way to earn Box Top points is by registering online. Once you register through Box Tops for Education Website, you have the opportunity to receive coupons and promotions on Box Top products that you can use at the local grocery store. 

You'll also get: Macdonough's complete Box Tops earnings details, money-saving coupons for Box Tops brands, over 100 recipes using Box Tops products, and exclusive chances to win Bonus Box Tops.  Best of all, membership in is absolutely FREE!

Macdonough School Selected for National Assessment!

We are pleased to announce that Macdonough School has been selected to participate in the 2011 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP).

Our fourth grade students will take the NAEP Assessment on Monday, January 31st.

NAEP is often called the "Nation's Report Card." It is the only measure of student achievement in the United States that allows you to compare the performance of students in our state with the performance of students across the nation.

We are delighted that students from Macdonough School will have the opportunity to showcase their knowledge on this important academic measure.

Greek Myths at Macdonough

Did you know a group of students meet each Wednesday morning before school to learn all about the great gods and goddesses of ancient Greece? 

Jen Alexander, a Macdonough parent, leads the group and introduces our students to famous Greek gods including mighty Zeus, lord of the universe; elegant Athena, goddess of wisdom; Hera, queen of Olympus; and moody Poseidon, ruler of the sea.

Each child in the group received a copy of D'Aulaires' Book of Greek Myths to further explore the many gods and goddesses of ancient Greece!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Macdonough Students win Recycled Scuplture Contest

Two Macdonough School students took first prize in Middletown's 2010 Recycled Scuplture Contest. 

The brothers took old homework papers and created a sturdy and attractive in-box.  Their artistic creation won first place in the Family Division.

The box is on display in our main office.

Congratulations to Rakesh and Rajeef!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Macdonough School Students win Stock Market Game!

The Connecticut Stock Market Game™ program announced two teams from Macdonough School were the top finishers in Connecticut for the Elementary School division of their fall session.  

Starting with a virtual cash account of $100,000, students strived to create the best-performing portfolio using a live trading simulation. They invested in companies, tracked their investments, and competed with other school teams across the state during a ten week session in a race to make the most of their investments. 

The first place team from Mrs. Paul's class turned their intial investment into $129,710.81, while the students in Miss Claffey's class earned an impressive $117,965.51.  

The Macdonough teams were also in the top ten statewide out of more than twelve hundred teams representing elementary schools, middle schools, high schools, colleges, and adult teams. 

The students and teachers will be honored at a ceremony hosted by the Connecticut Council on Economic Education.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Macdonough School... In the News!

While we occasionally see Macdonough School featured in the news for one thing or another, students at Macdonough School are now "into" the news another way!

Thanks to the Newspapers in Education program, a dozen copies of "The Hartford Courant" are delivered to our school each morning.  Students in our third, fourth, and fifth grade classes have the opportunity to receive newspapers.
Students enjoy catching up on the news, sports, and weather throughout the day.  They even get a chance to read about Macdonough School now and then!

Tis the Season to Be Reading

Macdonough School students and staff celebrated “TIS THE SEASON TO BE READING DAY” with special guest readers / community leaders today.

Each classroom welcomed a guest reader / community leader for a read aloud.  Then the entire school assembled in the gymnasium for a celebration to include a reading of Governor M. Jodi Rell’s formal proclamation of December 16th, 2010 as “Tis the Season to be Reading” day statewide, a read aloud of Our Children Can Soar, written by Michelle Cook; and a new book giveaway for every child at the school.

Children were reminded that although many associate this time of year with holidays and gifts, it's alway the season for reading at Macdonough School!

Macdonough Mariners

Coach Teresa Morello led the Macdonough Mariners to a thrilling last minute victory against the Bielefield Bobcats in today's interschool basketball game.

The Macdonough school team, comprised of fourth and fifth graders, demonstrated terrific teamwork, wonderful sportsmanship, and represented our school with pride in front of a standing room only crowd.

To keep the crowd energized during the basketball game, our cheerleading team led an assortment of cheers. 

The Macdonough School Cheerleading Team is led by Coach Stefanie DiBacco, a fifth grade teacher at Macdonough School.

Kwanzaa Celebration

The Kindergarten students learned about the Kwanzaa celebration this week. The students read the story "My First Kwanzaa" by Karen Katz. Students created a windsock with the traditional colors seen in Kwanzaa celebration- black, red and green. Students also enjoyed a delicious snack of various fruits found in the Kikombe. A Kikombe or unity cup is made up of corn, apples, yams, nuts, and squash. The fruit and vegetables remind the people of the end of the harvest and the beginning of the planting season.

Musical Mentoring at Macdonough

Thanks to an incredible partnership with the Green Street Arts Center, Macdonough School is proud to announce the start of the Musical Mentoring program.

The program matches fourth graders at Macdonough School with students from Wesleyan University for private weekly music lessons. 

The first session of the Musical Mentoring program was held yesterday.  Students were introduced to the instruments (viola, violin, flute, clarinet, trumpet, trombone, or saxphone) and had the opportunity to select one for their lessons.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

"Donors Choose" Project in Middletown

DonorsChoose is a simple way to fulfill needs and foster innovation in our public schools.

At, teachers submit ideas for experiences and materials that their students need to learn, such as: improving vocabulary with a class set of dictionaries; developing algebraic skills with graphing calculators; or taking students to Washington, D.C. to see the Supreme Court consider a case.

The first DonorsChoose project in Middletown is posted from Macdonough School! Miss Sarah Claffey, a fourth grade teacher, is seeking money to purchase book series for students.

Her project description begins with the following:

“Have you ever been reading a book and wished it would never end? Have you ever been thrilled to know that your favorite author has written a sequel allowing you to "spend more time" with your favorite characters? If so, you'll know exactly why I'm looking for book series for my students!”

Want to learn more? Click here!

Any individual can search proposals by areas of interest, learn about classroom needs, and choose to fund the project she/he finds most compelling. Donors may receive a feedback package of photographs, student thank-you notes, a teacher impact letter, and an expenditure report showing that their gift was spent as directed.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Holiday Concert 2010

Thanks to Miss DeAngelis and Mr. D'Amato for putting together a wonderful holiday concert!

We even had a surprise visit from Santa and Frosty the Snowman!  Where else but Macdonough School would these two special guests give away books as presents?

Friday, December 10, 2010

Holiday Wreaths at Macdonough!

Thanks to our friends from Middletown High School's Vocational Agriculture Program, a few dozen Macdonough families received holiday wreaths at dismissal today.

We even had a few to decorate our doors!

Did you like the potato latkes?

This week the kindergarten classes tried Potato Latkes during snack to celebrate Hanukkah. This week the question for our graph was "Did you like the potato latkes?" More students liked the potato latkes in both Mrs. Lenihan & Mrs. Spaman's class.

Hanukkah In Kindergarten

The kindergarten children learned about Hanukkah today. The children made menorahs and ate potato latkes.

Ms. Sally came in to show the children how to light the menorah and read them a Hanukkah story. Happy Hanukkah!

Recess "Plus" at Macdonough School

While almost every school has recess, not many schools have recess "plus."  Students at Macdonough School have the chance to participate in a variety of extra activities during their recess periods thanks to our wonderful staff.

Some of this trimester's Recess Plus programs being led by Miss Chaelyn Lombardo include:
  • Out Of This World: a Recess Plus Science Club
  • Kidz Math: A Recess Plus Math Club
  • Cooking for Literacy: A Recess Plus Enrichment Club
  • Kids are Authors: A Recess Plus Contest Club
  • Math Rap: A Recess Plus Math Club

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Counting Pennies

The students in Mrs. Lenihan's Kindergarten class are learning to count pennies. An area of our classroom was set up as a school store. Students had the opportunity to buy erasers, bracelets, reading books, holiday stickers and many other items. The students were given 5 cents to spend and had to count out their pennies to make the right amount of money to buy what they wanted. Happy shopping!!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Jack Jackter School Visits for Equal This

Every month Macdonough fifth graders get together with fifth graders from Jack Jackter Intermediate School in Colchester for a math program called Equal This.

Equal This is a program that allows students to engage with students of their own age and form positive friendships while partaking in various math activities. Students correspond monthly through friendly letters and visits. Macdonough students are grouped with students from Jack Jackter School. They compete against each other in a higher level thinking Equations game.

This month Jack Jackter had the opportunity to visit Macdonough. They were greeted by the fifth grade students and received a tour of the school. During their visit students worked together to create geometric masks that represented their unique individuality. Students shared the masks and were able to make connections with each other.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Musical Mentoring at Macdonough!

We are delighted to announce the start of a new program at Macdonough School!

In partnership with the Green Street Arts Center, the Musical Mentoring program will be offered to fourth graders. It is an after school program meeting on Wednesdays beginning in January.

The program will provide weekly private music lessons from Wesleyan University musicians for our students. Children will be matched with one of the following instruments for lessons: trumpet, trombone, violin, flute, saxophone, or clarinet.

Stay "tuned" for more information on this exciting new program!

Friday, December 3, 2010

What makes you the Happiest?

Kindergarten children graph this week about 'What makes you the happiest?' They chose from reading a book, spending time with family & playing outside. The winner is: SPENDING TIME WITH FAMILY!!!! This was the winner in both Mrs. Lenihan & Mrs. Spaman's class.

Christmas in Mexico

The Kindergarten students learn about 'La Posada' a holiday celebrated in Mexico. Children enjoyed 'Three Kings Cake' where there was a prize for the classroom in the middle of the cake. The children also put their shoes outside, which is a tradition done in Mexico. In Mexico the children believe that the 'Three Kings' will leave presents in their shoes.

The children listened to a story called "The Legend of the Poinsettia." In the story the little girl could only offer weeds as a gift. The weeds then in the spirit of 'La Posada' turned in poinsettia. The children in Kindergarten also crafted their own poinsettia.

'Tis the Season to be Reading' Celebration

Middletown city leaders will join the Macdonough School learning community for a reading of Governor M. Jodi Rell's formal proclamation of December 16th, 2010 as "Tis the Season to be Reading" day statewide.

Each classroom will welcome a community leader for a read aloud focusing on pioneers of change in America.

This will be followed by an all-school celebration featuring:

• a reading of Governor Rell's proclamation;
• a read aloud of Our Children Can Soar, written by Michelle Cook;
• a new book giveaway for every child at the school

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Macdonough School - Lego Style

Do you love Legos?  Do you love Macdonough School?

If so, you will LOVE this picture.  It's a Lego image of Macdonough School and is being built by a Lego expert this month.  The picture will be displayed at our school when we return from the holiday break.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Book Fair at Macdonough School

The front hallway is filled with hundreds and hundreds of books as the annual PTA Book Fair is in full swing.  Children and parents have been busy perusing the shelves in search of the perfect book.  From classics to the latest stories, there is something for everyone!

Proceeds from the Macdonough School PTA Book Fair are used to offset the cost of field trips for our students.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Although school dismissed early today, the hallways and classrooms were filled with students, parents, and teachers.  Our fall parent-teacher conferences provided a wonderful chance to connect with families about the progress of our students.

Miss Grossman is shown sharing a terrific report about one of her first graders.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Macdonough in the News

Mentors: Showing children the way
by Julie Anne Rancourt, Middletown Press Correspondent

MIDDLETOWN - Since its inception in 1992, the Middletown Mentor Program has helped thousands of children navigate the difficulties of growing up by forming lasting
friendships with caring adults.

There are currently 56 children matched with mentors in 11 schools throughout Middletown, while fourteen children are waiting to be matched with mentors. A disproportionate amount of those – thirteen children – attend MacDonnough Elementary School, as administrators recognize the benefits of the program and more mentors become interested in helping the most disadvantaged students.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving Celebration

We have so much to be thankful for at Macdonough School.  Today, during our annual Thanksgiving Feast, we shared some thoughts about things we are most thankful for...  the list included friends, family, teachers, our neighborhood, our school, and the world!

Turkeys in the office

Yes, a flock of turkeys made their way down to the office. The kindergarten classes wore their turkeys hats and sang 3 songs for the office.
Gobble, Gobble

Book Buddy Festivities

Students in Miss DiBacco's fifth grade class and Miss Grossman's first grade class meet every other week to read together. Each first grader is paired up with one fifth grade student. First graders get the opportunity to show off their reading skills to the older students. Fifth graders are able to relive their first grade experience by reading some of their favorite childhood books.

This week, in lieu of Thanksgiving, students worked together to create personalized turkeys. Fifth graders helped first graders trace their hands and feet. Each piece was glued together to create a Thanksgiving decoration. The feet were used as the body of the turkey and the hands were used for feathers.

Students look forward to meeting every other week with their book buddies.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Macdonough's Video Production Club

Ms. Jukins wrapped up this session of our Video Production Club. 

The after school program provided children with the opportunity to produce a video entry into the Recess Rocks program. 

Students in second, third, fourth, and fifth grade collaborated on the project along with Kyle and Hannah, two video experts from Middletown High School!

The Video Production Club is part of Macdonough School's 21st Century Schools program.

The Nutcracker

Thanks to our School Family Community Partnership Team, one lucky Macdonough family will be attending the Greater Middletown Concert Association's production of "The Nutcracker."  The program will take place at the Performing Arts Center at Middletown High School. 

"On Saturday afternoon, Nov. 27, there will again be a holiday performance of the celebrated “Albano’s Nutcracker Suite” ballet, which is also presented annually on the stage of Connecticut’s Mohegan Sun. Live orchestral accompaniment enhances the dancers’ performances along with extraordinarily beautiful sets and costumes. This music and dance experience is for all ages."

Turkeys in Kindergarten

This week the kindergarten children made different projects with a turkey theme. The first project was a Thankful turkey. The class thought of things that they were thankful for. Some examples are my school, my family, money and my bike.

The next project was a turkey with their head as the head of the turkey. Now they are gobbling turkeys.

The last project was a hand print made to look like a turkey. The poem read:

This isn't just a turkey

As anyone can see,

I made it with my hand,

Which is a part of me.

It comes with lots of love

Especially to say,

I hope you have a

Very Happy

Thanksgiving Day!

Macdonough in the News

Middletown Environmental Club seeks to make connections with foreign lands
by Hillary Federico, Middletown Press

MIDDLETOWN — Maybe you can go home again — at least for a little while. At least that’s what 9-year-old Kendalyn Zipf thinks as she sits in a classroom at Macdonough Elementary School eagerly awaiting for the Skype call to go through.

The group — made up of fourth- and fifth-graders involved in the Environmental Club — is calling students in Ghana, an effort that is supposed to encourage cultural connections between students from foreign lands. The term “foreign,” however, is relative as students participating in the “Dear Mother…Letters to the Earth” project come from all walks of life, from all parts of the world. Some students are from the southern portion of the United States, affected by Hurricane Katrina. Others were affected by the oil spill locally and overseas, according to principal, Jon Romeo.

Macdonough in the News...

Middletown Students' Environment Project Has International Aspects
by Melissa Pionzio, Hartford Courant

MIDDLETOWN — Huddled in a classroom corner Monday morning, Macdonough School fifth-graders shared posters they have created about the environment and what they can do to protect the Earth.

"Mother Earth provides us with grass and the land," said Leanna See, whose poster depicts a vibrant neighborhood filled with grass, trees, birds and homes. "At home, I have three gardens, one that is just flowers and plants and another that is for fruits and vegetables."

The posters, which the students drew during sessions of their Friday afternoon Green Smarts environmental club hosted by Wesleyan's Green Street Arts Center, are part of a special project they were invited to join called "Dear Mother … Letters to the Earth."

Monday, November 22, 2010

Community Health Center Groundbreaking Ceremony

Students from Macdonough School were guests of honor at the groundbreaking ceremony for the Community Health Center's new building located just a few blocks from school.
Students took part in the ceremonial "breaking ground" with shovels and hard hats provided by our friends at the Community Health Center.  They learned that the first School Based Health Center in Connecticut was right here at Macdonough School.  They also had the chance to meet Senator Chris Dodd!

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