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Valuable connections in Covid times
Mary Swanson, Middle School Art Teacher

January 28 was an exciting day for our Middle Schoolers. We had several community events and the hallways were buzzing with excitement, laughter, and collaboration. 

The morning consisted of preparation for ASM’s new Mission Statement. First, there were rotation activities to help guide students through the mission statement process. Then they worked together in all three grade levels, along with their teachers, to discuss values that they deem important to the school community. They also shared personal vision boards for what they would like to see at ASM, making valuable contributions to the school’s mission work.

After a morning of deep thinking, it was time for some fun with the Middle School Jamboree. The House Program and Jamboree were created to build a middle school community that fosters positive intra-grade level relationships and to promote a sense of belonging for all students. The Jamboree usually happens twice a year, once in the winter and at the end of the school year. But the COVID-19 pandemic put the event on hold, so it was very exciting for both the teachers and the students for the Jamboree to make a comeback. 

It was different, however, as we had to ensure that we were following all of ASM'S safety protocols. Instead of meeting as an entire middle school in the gymnasium, or on the soccer field for games, students stayed with their Advisory in classrooms to compete in a series of game-like activities. One activity remained the same though and that was the House Tug of War competition. Still following safety protocols, David Hotler, one of the school’s Technology Integrators, created a live stream so that students could watch from their classrooms while a handful of students competed in the gymnasium. The event was emceed by English teacher Jeff Frantz, to provide additional entertainment and commentary.