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Current News Blog

Michael "MG" Griffeth, PreUpper Instructor

The PreUpper School would like to thank Beth Hellriegel, Cristy Johnson, and Molly Caines for doing such a fantastic job decorating our Great Room for our annual Halloween party. The decorations looked AMAZING! THANK YOU!

Sincerely,

The Students and Faculty

  • Parents
  • PreUpper
Cheri Harwood

Kevin teaches Language Arts in the Middle School and he is new to MSA this year. He loves the community feeling we have here. He came to us from another private school in Atlanta and prior to that he taught English as a Foreign Language in both China and Korea! He says his teaching philosophy is that, "everyone should have the opportunity to learn in a positive and encouraging environment. My aim is to provide a solid content foundation through engaging lessons that include relatable life experiences/skills."

Outside of school Kevin enjoys golf, cycling, and tennis. He is married to Ying and they have a dog named Gator. The most recent book he read is The Sympathizer by Viet Than Nguyen. Did you know that Kevin started the 6th grade boy's basketball program from the ground up at Shanghai Korean School in China?

Welcome to MSA and thank you for what you do each day!

  • Parents
Cheri Harwood
MSA Class of 2020

We are proud to announce the following college acceptance:

  • Maxwell Davis - Georgia State Perimeter College

Congratulations to you!

  • Alumni
  • CommArts
  • Parents
  • Upper
Debbie Orr, Head of School
Survey List

Our survey has launched and there are just a few days left until it closes. if you haven't responded yet, please do so! Your opinions and perceptions matter a great deal and we need to hear from you. And if you have not received an email asking you to participate, please contact us directly at charwood@millsprings.org and we will make sure you have a chance to participate.

The survey should only take about ten (10) minutes to complete and the deadline is November 22, 2019.

Sincerely,

Debbie Orr, Head of School

  • Parents
Margaret Brito, Outreach Director
Dyslexia Dash Logo

Congratulations to Jody Cleveland (U11) for coming in at second place overall at the International Dyslexia Dash on Saturday, October 19 at Perimeter Mall. The individual that beat Jody was a college student!

Thank you to all of the Mustangs, Cross Country Team, parents and faculty that took the time to participate.

  • Upper
Brittany Emge, Librarian

When: Monday, November 18 - Friday, November 22 (M-Th 8am-4pm, F 8am-1pm)

Where: MSA Library/Media Center

What: Awesome books and book-themed merchandise for everyone!

Come play trivia and games to win prizes all week - like books and posters!

Book Fair starts Monday! Shop awesome titles for ALL ages, support our classrooms by shopping Teacher Wish Lists, and more! We can't wait to see you there! Don't forget we're open 8am-1pm on Grandparents' Day.

If you can't make it, shop our Online Book Fair until Saturday, November 23 (books will ship to you!) Thank you for supporting our readers at MSA!

  • CommArts
  • Lower
  • Middle
  • Parents
  • PreUpper
  • Upper
Ginny Berkemeier, Communication Arts Instructor

In Communication Arts Geometry class this week, we reviewed for the next mini test on Triangle Introduction in Geometry. Students worked on constructing bisections of segments and angles on the board as well as drawing various types of angles while solving algebraic equations.  

We reviewed the concepts using a math game entitled “The Bermuda Triangle”. It was a fast paced game of memory, identification and solving math equations for triangles. We ended up playing the game (second picture) twice this week because students wanted to review and be the “Champion of the Bermuda Triangle”. 10th grader, Colby Johnson enthused; “This really makes me want to learn more about Geometry. I actually understand the material”. The overall winner of the game (twice), 10th grader, Elliott Daugherty (first picture) boisterously pipes in “I am the winner and Queen of the Game. When can we play this game again?”

This was a wonderful example of getting students engaged not only in learning but also to work with one another in a collaboratively as well as to encourage good sportsmanship.

  • CommArts
Elizabeth Regas, Music Educator
Trombone players

It’s almost that time again… The MSA Band and Chorus Winter Concert EXTRAVAGANZA!

On the afternoons of November 19th and 20th, Band students from Upper, Comm Arts, Pre-Upper, and Middle will be fearlessly taking the stage to enthrall you with everything from Trans-Siberian Orchestra to Metallica! There will be lights, cameras, AND action! The Chorus will dazzle you with music from the 1920’s, and will feature something brand new- student conductors! Prepare yourselves to be entertained!

If you miss the daytime shows, there will also be a 7:00pm performance on Wednesday, November 20th!

(Picture from the 2018 Winter Concert)

  • Parents
Coach Josh and Coach MG

This past Saturday the MSA Swim Team (AquaStangs) competed in their first swim meet of the season against Howard and Cottage.  Everyone swam their hearts out, and we all had a blast in the process!  Although it is still very early in the season, the Mustangs are looking very strong as we aim to hopefully win another AAC Championship!!  Please take a moment, and congratulate everyone on a great first meet if you see them in class.

Our next meet will be on Saturday, December 14 when we host the Mustang Invitational.  We would love to see everyone there!

GO MUSTANGS!!!

  • CommArts
  • PreUpper
  • Upper
Cheri Harwood

Baked turkey on a platter

EARLY DISMISSAL - Grandparents' Day

Friday, November 22, 2019

12:15p – Carpool

12:30p – Bus Departs

 

SCHOOL CLOSED

Monday - Friday, November 25-29

Thanksgiving Holiday

  • Parents
Sylvia Cutchin, Middle School Instructor

The 5th Grade Middle School students have been learning about decimals. Decimals are useful in the real world and easy, once you get the hang of it. Here are some observations about decimals and helpful hints for learning decimals.

“During this unit I learned about money and decimals. You need to learn about adding money so you can properly pay for things. You need to learn about decimals so you don’t accidentally pay $500.00 for something that costs $50.00.” - Nico Bateson (M5)

“I think decimals are fun. They can be hard to catch on to, but I figured it out because I had examples and help from Ms. Sylvia and my partner, Brady. - Ethan Cohn (M5)

“So far in October I have been adding and subtracting money. I am doing well in it. It’s like normal math but with a dot. I think math is easy and fun.” - Caleb Donaldson (M5)

“We need money because we need to buy food and furniture to live. We also need to learn how much money we have once we get a job. We also need to learn how much change we get when we buy something.” - Sam Hartman (M5)

“We have learned about decimals and fractions. Fractions are easy, but decimals are hard. We also learned about rounding. I think it is hard, but other kids might think it is easy. Math has been hard, but the best math teacher, Ms. Sylvia Cutchin, always tries to make it easy and fun for us.” - Sammy Lesser (M5)

“We learned about decimals and money and how to add and subtract them. My favorite part was rounding money.” - Michael Liu (M5)

 

“We just finished decimals and money. It was easy when I got the hang of it. So the trick for adding and subtracting the money is to line up the decimals. I loved the lessons because math is my favorite subject. Last but not least math is awesome and in my opinion the best class ever.” - Brady Mashburn (M5)

“The thing I find most important about decimals is the fact that if you forget the decimal it can lead to getting the whole equation wrong.” - James McGahan (M5)

“Decimals will help me with the real world if I ever become a manager, or someone who helps or works with money. All you need to do is add a dollar sign right next to decimals, and you get money.” - Britain Phillips (M5)

“Rounding decimals for me was pretty simple. A trick I learned is if whatever you are rounding has a value of five or more round up, if you have a number with a value of four or less, then round down. I enjoyed this section of the unit.  Adding and subtracting decimals was also pretty fun for me. Something I learned is ALWAYS LINE UP THE NUMBERS!!!, or else your answer will be incorrect. Another thing to remember is REMEMBER THAT DECIMAL!!! If you do not, your answer could be 1,207 instead of 12.07, which if you ask me is a BIG difference. - Griffin Snell (M5)

“I learned a lot about decimals! The easiest thing for me was to add with decimals, because I can do addition the best. The hardest for me would be subtraction because I’m not that as good with it with decimals. I am glad that I learned about this because it will be actually useful in life. Doing decimals was fun to do because it was really easy and useful if I’m doing my taxes.  It will be good if I become a teacher and go to college, or someone sells me something or I want to buy something. Decimals are useful!” - Max Young (M5)

Pictured are Max Young, Ethan Cohn, and Michael Liu as they play a game that helps them practice with decimals and money.

  • Middle
Emily Koehl, Director of Marketing and Communications
Parent University logo

MSA parents are invited to join us for our third Parent University (Parent U) Thursday, December 5, at 8:15 a.m. in the Middle School Community Room (room 201). Brenda Fitzgerald will be speaking about Dyslexia. Find out more information and RSVP online by Monday, December 2.

  • Parents
Cheri Harwood

This week in MG’s PreUpper Language Arts classes, students have been reading the non-fiction book, Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World, which is an account of the 1914-16 Trans-Antarctic Expedition led by Sir Ernest Shackleton. Needless to say based on the title of the book, the expedition doesn’t go according to plan and develops into one of the most inspiring stories of leadership and survival ever recorded. For this unit of study, students have developed a fictional crew member persona who would’ve been on board Shackleton’s ship, The Endurance. The students created a backstory for their crew member that included their background, educational experience, work experience, and how they were chosen to be a crew member on board the ship. Next, as the class moves through the chapters in the book, they are then asked to write diary entries that respond to the events that unfold in the text from their crew member’s perspective. “It’s a fun way to write creatively while engaging in a non-fiction unit of study,” said MG. “As the classes get closer to completing the book, we will electronically publish some of the diary entries, along with their backstories, on www.wordcraftmsa.com. And to all the adults out there, if you haven’t read this book, I strongly encourage you to come by my room and borrow a copy - it’s excellent!”

Cheri Harwood

Tuesday, December 3 - Thursday, December 5

Dear Parents,

We are inviting you and your child to participate in the upcoming "Holiday Gift Shop" at Mill Springs Academy. This program makes it possible for children to experience the joy of choosing their own special holiday gifts for family and friends. The "Holiday Gift Shop" will be set up at the school in the Communication Arts Great Room of the CommArts/Upper School Building and supervised by our PVA. They will help the children pick that perfect gift for the price they want...in a familiar, comfortable atmosphere.

This program will create wonderful memories for the students while teaching them to budget their money and make their own decisions. There will be a large variety of gifts in different price ranges to choose from. Imagine the fun they will have surprising a loved one with a "secret" gift they bought...all by themselves!

We welcome you to be part of this great experience. A "money control" envelope will be provided to your student (1st-8th) to help them decide whom they should buy gifts for and how much they should spend. You can even suggest ways that your child can earn extra shopping money.

THE HOLIDAY GIFT SHOP...Where wishes come true!

www.funservices.com

We need Volunteers to make this a Great Experience!

Signup to help:  https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C094BA8AF22A46-pvaholiday

  • Parents
Cheri Harwood

During this time of year, people stop and reflect on the things in their life for which they are thankful. Students in Ms. Branigan’s class took some time to reflect on their life and wrote (pictured on the bulletin board behind the students) about what they are thankful for. Sawyer Smith is thankful for his pet hamster, Hampy, his two pet fish, and his teachers. Henry Waugh is thankful for his grandfather that picks him up from school, his dog, and his little sister, Darci. Jansen Jones wrote that she is thankful for her mom and dad, her dog, Coco, and her friends. Koren Wolkow said he was thankful for his family, his pets, and his nice neighbors. Camden Schier wrote that he is thankful for his teachers, his family, and his friends. It was nice to listen to the students share their thoughts about what is important to them and why they are thankful. This is a wonderful everyone should try!

  • Lower
Phil Hanson, Soccer Coach & PE Instructor

Posting a 7-3-1 overall record, the MSA Mustangs concluded another successful Soccer Season with a second place finish in the AAC Regular Season and AAC Tournament. Brendan Nemesh (pictured between Coaches Phil Hanson and Michael Smith) earned the Inaugural Robert Moore Mustang Award and was voted All AAC Conference Player of the Year. “This team was a gift from God; and day in and day out, improved exponentially. From May Summer Camp to mid-October, they had an IT FACTOR to them; and reestablished our culture. Kyle Moffitt and Taylor Mallady received Coach’s Awards, Scott Owen received Most Improved Award, and Matthew Clifton was the Rookie of the Year Award recipient. Special thanks to Coach Mike Smith, the players, parents, MSA administration, our faculty and student body, and the Mustang Family for all their time, effort, and energy regarding this year. The 2020 season promises to be a Great Campaign. See you between the lines!

  • Athletics
Kate McElliott, Fine Arts Instructor
Drama masks

Congratulations to the following outstanding students who have been chosen to be a part of the amazing spring musical this year: “STAR WARS - A MUSICAL PARODY!”

We are super excited to do this musical this year to really CHALLENGE our students past anything they have done before. Our very talented own Jamie wrote it and it is HYSTERICAL and going to be so much fun. 

Luke Skywalker....Maggie Erlacher

Princess Leia Organa....Calista Craig

Han Solo....Henry Wallace

Chewbacca....Aaron Breitkopf

Obi-Wan Kenobi....Liam Couch

C-3PO....Jack Buckley

R2-D2....Claire McAllister

Darth Vader....Warner Jones

Grand Moff Tarkin....Zach Peppers

Stormtrooper Phil....Jonathan Davis

Stormtrooper 1....Cameron Carr

Stormtrooper 2....Jack Cook

Stormtrooper 3....Thomas Bayman

Jawa/Sandperson 1/General Tagge/Imperial Pilot....Jacob Baum

Jawa/Sandperson 2/Admiral Motti/Imperial Pilot....Rayna Doniparthi

Rebel Trooper/Jawa/Ponda Baba/Imperial Officer 1/Rebel Pilot....Olivia Wallace

Rebel Trooper/Droid/Dr. Evazan/Imperial Officer 2/Rebel Pilot....Ella Parsons

Uncle Owen/Bartender/General Dodonna....Seth Horwitz

Rebel Captain/R5D4/Greedo/Dianoga/Imperial Officer/Rebel Pilot....Isa Stokes

Captain Antilles/Droid/Alien/Red Leader....Connor Doyle

Droid/Alien/Imperial Officer/Rebel Pilot....Kai Goltze

Rebel Trooper/Alien/Wedge....Jack Craven

  • Fine Arts
Gage Clark, Communication Arts History Instructor

In our Communication Arts 8th grade Language Arts class, the Literary Festival is taking over! The students are dressed as famous historical figures of the 1920’s, including Walt Disney, Henry Ford, Pablo Picasso, and Babe Ruth. Aside from writing speeches and producing accurate costumes, the 8th graders are working with the other grades to bring the 20’s to life. Here they are, working with the other CommArts classes to practice most popular dance moves of the Roaring Twenties! Ridge George is demonstrating the Charleston!

  • CommArts
Michael Goodwin, Upper School Instructor

In Creative Writing, we are wrapping up our world building unit this week with student presentations and feedback sessions. For the past month, our trio of young writers have been dreaming up their own original fictional settings by drafting articles, identifying inspirations, coming up with character and location synopses, and authoring a series of disconnected fiction vignettes to establish tone, characterization, and voice. This collection of reference documents, assembled together as a setting bible, should provide students with everything they need to be able to write short stories, anthologies, game worlds, or even whole novels based in their original universes.

In the course of this unit, we’ve seen a mayhem-fueled horror-comedy alien invasion, a tragic time-travel saga in the vein of “It’s a Wonderful Life” about the perils of the butterfly effect, and an occult thriller about the cataclysmic collision of two dimensions. We have debated, brainstormed, and challenged each other as a writing circle to improve each of these inventive settings in preparation for the final unit where students write new stories based in their worlds and practice writing dialogue.

This has been the class’s favorite unit so far, both for the open-ended opportunity to stretch their creativity, and also because it will help them create all sorts of works that build on their ideas even after they leave the class. My goal has been to empower these young writers to see all the myriad details that come together to make a compelling world and learn how to fill in plot holes before they crop up.

Pictured: Jacob Baum (U12) points out a potentially-confusing aspect of Matthew Kuhn’s (U11) world as Sutton Smith (U10) waits for her turn to give feedback.

  • Upper
Jamie Fambrough, Theater Director

Last week, the cast and crew of the MSA One-Act Play, !Artistic Inspirations, traveled to Carrollton, GA for the GISA regional competition.  When the dust settled, MSA received 3rd place overall, and Henry Wallace (U12-pictured) was awarded "Best Performance" in the region, for the second year in a row!  Then on Monday this week, they performed once more, this time for their peers in 9th through 12th grades.  Congratulations cast and crew!

  • Upper
Brandi Smallwood, Counseling Director
Coffee Mug with Licensed professional counselor on it

Please congratulate Angela Davis on receiving her Licensed Professional Counselor designation this pas week! To get this designation takes a lot of time, education, dedication, and years of supervision. This is a huge accomplishment! Great job Angela Davis, LPC!

  • Parents
Michael Griffeth, PreUpper Instructor

I wanted to update all of you on a new development from our business letter writing assignment in my Creative Writing class. Miss Nadia Allen-Krincek (PU7- pictured 2nd from right) just received a response letter from Apple Electronics. They thanked her for the kind words in her letter and encouraged her to participate in a summer program they operate that is geared towards exploring creative electronic engineering ideas/concepts. It was such a nice moment to have a student run into my room waving their unopened letter around saying, “They wrote me back!  They wrote me back!”  This led to a discussion about how empowering writing that is appropriate in tone, content, and structure can be and how the idea of a professionally-written letter can prove to be a powerful means of persuasion to its recipient. Hopefully, our class will receive more letters in the coming weeks . . . Onwards. 

  • PreUpper
John Hanrahan, Wrestling Coach

Your Mustang Wrestling Team came out on top in a 5-team Round-Robbin style Dual Meet event at Weber Thursday. Our boys faced strong opponents from Weber, Creekside Christian, Brandon Hall, and Atlanta Jewish Academy. 

Big wins provided by Smith Hill (U9), Ishwar Naik (U10), Luke McCoin (U10), Nick Clifton (U11), Mason Ogryzek (U12), Zach Porter (PU8) and Daniel Tarrant (U10) led our team to victory. Congratulations to all of our MSA wrestlers who carried themselves well in all situations and exemplified true sportsmanship in both individual wins and losses.

The ”Wrestler of the Week” award goes to Nick Clifton (pictured above) who made his debut competing as a first-time Wrestler and recorded two wins: one by Tech-Fall (a win by a 15 point margin) and the other by a second period Pin Fall. 

  • PreUpper
  • Upper
Kate McElliott, Chorus Instructor

Mill Springs Chorus students shared music with our friends from the assisted living home, just down the road, during 5th period Thursday.

  • CommArts
  • Upper
Marlena Alvarado, Upper School Instructor

Thank you for your constant contact, your involvement in your son's learning, and sending the photos of him enjoying biking, his favorite sport. I appreciate the information you share, it helps me, and the rest of his teachers, ensure he has a wonderful day. I am most grateful for you and I thank you.

Sincerely,

Marlena Alvarado - Upper School Instructor

  • Parents
  • Upper
Ginny Berkemeier, Communication Arts Instructor

This week in Communication Arts Algebra 2 class we worked on a Math lab while presenting Linear Equations and lines. Eleventh grader, Jackson Wickley was thrilled to be working outside of the classroom, “I wish we could do math outside every day since this makes sense.” While 11th grader, Bella Rousseaux felt that this activity makes “math more real.”

The math lesson started out with conversions using dimensional analysis (a review) and then tying in math equations using y = mx + b. We used the measurement of distance over time in order to make predictions (hypothesis). Students investigate key features of graphs while trying to create, solve, and model graphically linear equations and inequalities in one and two variables. This activity was a means of relating science and math. Pictured L to R are Chris Carey, Mamiko Tsuto, and Alexis Gioia - human equations.

  • CommArts
Cheri Harwood
Tree made from hands

Mill Springs Academy PVA's Fall Beautification Day is November 9, 2019 from 9:00am - 1:00pm with pizza to follow! This is a great opportunity for students to earn service hours! Bring your work gloves and come help beautify the campus one handful of mulch at a time.

Saturday, November 9

9:00am - 1:00pm

Sign Up Today!

  • Parents
Jodi Easter-Smith, Lower School Instructor

Last week Lower School celebrated Halloween in style! Students and teachers arrived to school in their costumes. At 10:00 am we went trick-or-treating around the campus. Upper School teacher, Troy Blume (pictured below), passed out sweet treats to the children. In the afternoon, we had fun activities planned by our awesome parent volunteers. Ms. Jodi’s home room estimated that it would take 2 full rolls of toilet paper to make Johan Proano L3 (picture on left) into a mummy. They were close! They used about 1 and a half rolls. Despite the rain, we had a great time! The photo on the right is Suri Roth L4 in her costume.

  • Lower
  • Upper
Jamie Fambrough, Theater Director
Drama masks

This Wednesday the cast and crew of !Artistic Inspiration journeyed to Carrollton, GA for the GISA One Act Play regional competition. The play pits two hack playwrights against each other in a bid to write the worst play ever. Other actors play out the scenes as they write, making for a hectic and hilarious storm of horrible clichés and tropes. Cast and crew have been working hard to nail the comedic timing needed for the show.  will present the play at the GISA Regional One Act Play Festival, competing against the other schools in our division. We always have a strong showing at One Act, and this year was no different. Congratulations to the cast and crew! Cast: Henry Wallace, Cameron Carr, Ella Jensen, Rayna Doniparthi, Jack Buckley, Liam Couch, Zach Peppers, and Warner Jones.  Crew: Joseph Stanley, William Gaines, and Luke McCoin.

  • CommArts
  • PreUpper
  • Upper
Michael Adams, PreUpper Instructor

Last week, the Beestangs (the MSA beekeeping club) worked on the two hives you see in the roundabout to prepare them for winter.  Over the winter, the bees work hard to maintain a hive temperature at about 100 degrees Fahrenheit.  To help the bees prepare the students cleaned inside the hive, checked for a queen, verified brood, and put sugar water out for the bees to use to make enough honey to last through the coldest months of winter.  Beestangs!

  • PreUpper
Brittany Emge, Media Specialist

Our annual Scholastic Book Fair will be November 18th – 22nd! We will have titles for all ages at MSA, including our Upper School students. There will be trivia, games, and prizes throughout the week. A portion of the proceeds will benefit MSA’s Media Center to support our students and teachers with awesome new titles. We look forward to this fun-filled week every year, and we can’t wait to see you there!

  • CommArts
  • Lower
  • Middle
  • Parents
  • PreUpper
  • Upper
Katie Aiello, Middle School Science Teacher

Last week in my Earth and General Science classes, we celebrated Halloween with a STEM activity called “The Gummy Worm Challenge.” In each class, the students worked with a partner to save a gummy worm by placing a gummy lifesaver over it.  The challenge goes as follows: Place a gummy Life Saver on a flat surface such as a paper plate. Cover the gummy Life Saver with a plastic cup and place a gummy worm on top of the cup. Four paper clips can be used to remove the gummy Life Saver from under the plastic cup and to place it on the gummy worm without touching the gummy worm, gummy Life Saver, or plastic cup with your hands. Another requirement for this challenge is that the gummy worm needs to stay on top of the cup the whole time. Many of the students found this requirement to be the hardest part of the challenge. After a couple of minutes, several of the students were able to accomplish this task.

At the end of the activity, the students had to answer several discussion questions. When asked what worked well, many of the students said that working with a partner was very helpful. What other materials could they have used instead of paper clips?  Some suggestions included pipe cleaners, chopsticks, pencils, and Popsicle sticks. All students agreed that the best part of the STEM challenge was eating the gummy worms and Life Saver after they completed the discussion questions. Fifth Graders Left: Britain Phillips and James McGahan. Right 6th graders: Ben Fowler and Anderson Bridges.

  • Middle
Cheri Harwood

Thank you so much for supplying Halloween materials to decorate our homeroom. Your generous donation of supplies is much appreciated, as is Bella's help in putting this together.

Thank you for everything - without your contribution, we would not have such a festive room to look forward to.

Sincerely,

Ginny's Homeroom Students

Ginny Berkemeier - Communication Arts School Instructor

  • Parents
Cheri Harwood
MSA Class of 2020

We are proud to announce the following college acceptances:

  • Catie Claire Coyle - Georgia State Perimeter College
  • Jack Holt - University of North Georgia

Congratulations to you both!

  • Alumni
  • CommArts
  • Upper
Cheri Harwood

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Courtney's family. They have scheduled the following services to honor her life:

 

Visitation

11:00am – 1:00pm

Mayes Ward-Dobbins Funeral Home

180 Church Street

Marietta, GA 30060

 

Celebration Service

1:30pm

First Baptist Church of Marietta

148 Church Street

Marietta, GA 30060

 

Interment

Following the service

Cheatham Hill Memorial Park

1861 Dallas Hwy

Marietta, GA 30064

 

  • Parents
Kaylee Simmons, Lower School Instructor

In Social Studies, we have been studying some of the Native American tribes in the US including the Kwakiutl, Hopi, Inuit, Pawnee, Seminole, and Nez Perce. We read about important aspects of each tribes’ culture and made graphic organizers with the food they ate, the shelters they built, and the clothing they wore for each tribe. My students are very creative and enjoy building things, so in addition to reading and writing about these tribes, we also built 3-D models of shelters. Each student picked a tribe and used the information on their graphic organizers to help them build their shelters. First, students drew a design on paper to plan what materials they would use to build. I was impressed with how detailed and imaginative the shelters turned out. Pictured from left to right is Suri Roth with her Inuit igloo, Owen Burke and Allie Detsch with their open-wall Seminole chickees, Wyatt Cadora with his Hopi adobe house, Preston Bonham with his Nez Perce teepee, and Jackson Kramer with his Seminole chickee.

  • Lower
Cheri Harwood

Last Friday's Flex Friday in Communication Arts, Ginny Berkemeier presented Yoga and the 1920’s Charleston dance as a Fusion Flex Friday lesson. This lesson was a means of teaching the students something about 1920’s dance (to get ready for Communications Arts Festival of the 1920’s on December 2nd) and to teach students about finding balance and peace in their busy lives. Research on adolescence has suggested that the first stages of hormonal changes takes place during the turbulent years of adolescence. Here, the brain’s neurochemical circuitry is getting established and both brain and body go through fluctuating levels of puberty hormones which results in impulsive behavior, such as the amygdala, a part of the limbic system involved with emotions, which is infused with hormonal fuel. These general hormonal flux can bring on buzzing energy, mood swings, and troubled skin outbreaks as well as a new focus on communication and social-emotional connections. The practice of centering the body-mind connections have been found to bring some level of peace and equilibrium to student’s who have attention and behavioral dispositions. Jackson Wickley (CA11) was the first to sign up for the yoga and dance session. He was very excited about practicing yoga; “I practice yoga with my mom and it makes me happy.” At the end of the yoga-dance session, 9th grader, Garrett Burroway enthused; “We should start a Yoga Club in Communication Arts.”

Students held 10-minutes of centering at the end of the session and the feedback was insightful; more yoga, more flexibility and finding balance = peace. Picture 1 is Jackson Wickley, Colby Johnson (CA10) and Conner Doyle (CA10) working on the steps fr the Charleston. Picture 2 shows Garrett Burroway demonstrating the students how to get into the Plow Pose.

  • CommArts
Cheri Harwood

On Friday, November 1, we are having early dismissal, that affords everyone the opportunity to attend the funeral for Courtney. Dismissal/Carpool is at 11:30am. Buses will leave at 11:40am.

We will be holding a professional development teacher work day on Monday, November 4. There are no classes for students.

  • Parents
Michael "MG" Griffeth, PreUpper Instructor

This past week in PreUpper’s Creative Writing class, students focused on the concept of writing business letters. At the beginning of the week, students chose a business to write to and learned, through various examples, how to draft a formal letter. During this process, they learned how to properly format their letters, how to use appropriate and professional tones within their writing, and how to be politely persuasive in their writing. The class spent their second session of the week drafting and editing their letters, and on Friday, mailed their letters to their respective businesses.  Some of the recipients included Ferrari of Atlanta, Under Armour, Apple Electronics, Marvel Comics, and Dick’s Sporting Goods. The class will be keeping an eye on the mail in the next few weeks in the hope that they will receive some responses. Here’s to the written word! Pictured from left to right: Ari Rogoff, Isa Stokes, Ward Sutlive, Nadia Allen-Krincek, and Jaden Sella

  • PreUpper
Cheri Harwood

Our Scholastic Book Fair is coming soon, and Ms. Brittany needs help! If you are interested in volunteering your time to help make our Book Fair run smoothly please fill in the Parent Volunteer Sign Up Form. Here are the opportunities:

  • Set-Up/Decorating: Thursday 11/14 and Friday 11/15
  • Regular School Day Help: Monday 11/18 through Thursday 11/21
  • Grandparents’ Day: Friday 11/22 from 9:30 am-12:30 pm
  • Break Down: Friday 11/22 from about 12:30 pm to 3:00 pm

 

  • Parents
Cheri Harwood
Bad weather ahead sign

If you are new this year, you may not know about Parent Alert. Parent Alert allows Mill Springs to quickly notify all of our school's community about an emergency or closing at anytime, from anywhere.

 

When we have any unexpected school closings or a delayed start of school due to weather, you will be notified via a phone call. The system will automatically call every phone number we have in RenWeb for your family. This ensures that we get in touch with you to share that important information.

 

If for some reason you don't answer the call, the recorded message will be left on your voicemail system for you to retrieve. This is not the only way you will get notified, but it is the most efficient. You will be able to see the closing on all of the local news outlets as well.

If you have any questions about this system, please feel free to contact Emily Koehl our Marketing Communications Director.

  • Parents
Emily Koehl, Director of Marketing & Communications

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Middle School Great Room

RSVP TODAY

What is LD? What is ADHD?

Come to explore these issues with your hosts Upper School Principal J.P. Watson and PreUpper Teacher Michael Griffeth. They will present the F.A.T. City Workshop video, "How Difficult Can This Be?" by Richard D. Lavoie, a nationally known expert on learning disabilities.

 
In this video Richard Lavoie shows why the classroom can be an intimidating place for kids with learning disabilities. In the video he leads a group of parents, educators, psychologists, and children through a series of exercises that cause Frustration, Anxiety, and Tension … feelings all too familiar to children with learning disabilities. By dramatizing the classroom experience so vividly, Lavoie lets us see the world through the eyes of a child. 

 

At the end of the video, a casual discussion will take place on strategies for working more effectively with our learning disabled children.

 

This is a Dad's only (grandfathers are welcome too) event! We will serve pizza.

 

Please RSVP to help us plan for food.

  • Parents
Kaylee Simmons, Lower School Instructor

Last week was Be Kind Week at Mill Springs, so Lower School teachers decided to continue the kindness this week! We noticed that some students were having trouble understanding whether an act is kind or just an expected behavior. We did a sorting activity with a variety of different scenarios and students had to decide whether each statement was an act of kindness or something that everyone is expected to do. Some examples of kindness were writing a thank you note, holding the door for someone, and cheering up a peer who is upset. Some expected behaviors were saying thank you when someone hands you something, raising your hand, and including others in games. Pictured is Suri Roth (L4) identifying that “saying good morning back to someone who says good morning to you” is an expected behavior.

  • Lower
Emily Koehl, Director of Marketing & Communications

MSA parents are invited to join us for our second Parent University (Parent U) Thursday, November 7, at 8:30 am in the Middle School Community Room (room 201). Dr. Jennifer Bailey will be speaking about Emotional Regulation. Find out more information and RSVP online by Friday, November 1.

  • Parents
Kevin Findell, Middle School Instructor
Child at a ball drop track

Grades 5 and 6 English Language Arts classes had a quiz this week, and the students did very well as a whole. Middle School students also took a trip to the Tellus Museum on Tuesday. While this trip was not directly related to our subject, we are using the opportunity to take this experience and apply it in our classes. Both grades will be writing a descriptive paragraph to paint a picture of the trip using words that appeal to the reader’s senses. Picture 1: Brady Mashburn (M5) coaching on RJ Velloff (M6) as he uses the crane magnet machine. Picture 2: Sam Hartman (M5) making a course for a ball drop.

  • Middle
Cheri Harwood
Tree made from hands

Mill Springs Academy PVA's Fall Beautification Day is November 9, 2019 from 9:00am - 1:00pm with pizza to follow! This is a great opportunity for students to earn service hours! Bring your work gloves and come help beautify the campus one handful of mulch at a time.

Saturday, November 9

9:00am - 1:00pm

Sign Up Today!

  • Parents
Jaime Gutierrez, Upper School Spanish Instructor

Students are coloring their shields in our Kingdom project. This is a semester long project that allows students to learn as much as they want. Students get to see how well they are doing, and what they need to do to improve as a group. During this project students get to color their shields to reflect how many points they have earned by practicing with vocabulary, conversations, pronunciation, online work, grammar lessons, songs, etc. At the same time, students have a chance to be promoted to a higher level as they get their Honor points. Students need to show Respect, Honesty, Work, Support and Teamwork to get to a higher rank. They all start as a citizen in their group (kingdom), and they get to become a Knight or Lady, a Baron or Baroness, and so on until they become a King or a Queen.

So far, we have 10 Ladies and Knights, and 3 Barons. Julian Lopez, pictured, is coloring one of his shields as he mastered the lesson. There is no limit as to how far students can get, or how much they can learn during the semester. It all depends on the student's interest level, and his/her work ethics.

  • Upper
Erin Muehlhausen, Communication Arts Instructor

This week in the Communication Arts British Literature class, students finished reading Macbeth - just in time for Halloween! The class both watched and read the classically spooky Shakespearean tragedy. The students had fun acting out some scenes from the play, with Chris Carey playing the infamous Macbeth. When asked about the play, 11th grader Chris Carey said, “It has an eerie atmosphere the whole time! I thought it was really creepy.” Jackson Wickley agreed, adding, “Macbeth had it all - action, horror, adventure, and drama all in one story!” Pictured are Chris Carey, Jackson Wickley, Alexis Gioia, Ridge George, and Jacob Beck.

  • CommArts
Brittany Emge, Media Specialist

Our annual Scholastic Book Fair will be November 18th – 22nd! We will have titles for all ages at MSA, including our Upper School students. There will be trivia, games, and prizes throughout the week. A portion of the proceeds will benefit MSA’s Media Center to support our students and teachers with awesome new titles. We look forward to this fun-filled week every year, and we can’t wait to see you there!

  • CommArts
  • Lower
  • Middle
  • Parents
  • PreUpper
  • Upper