The Sharon Academy Newsletter, December 13th, 2013

Posted by on Dec 13, 2013 in Newsletter, Uncategorized

The Sharon Academy Newsletter, December 13th, 2013

In this Issue:

Mark Your Calendar
TSA’s Chain Reaction Day
General News
Middle School News
High School News
Community Events
Community Service


Mark Your Calendar


Fri 20 TSA Afternoon Cafe, school is dismissed at 3:00
Mon – Fri 23 – Jan 3 Winter Break

January 2014

Fri 3 Alumni Potluck and Basketball Game
Mon 6 School Resumes
Mon 6 Alumni Day
Weds 8 First Day of Suicide Six Skiing and Alumni Ski Day
Thurs 16 Paying for College Night for 12th Grade Parents, 6:30 PM
Mon 20 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day:
No School for students.  In-Service for Teachers
Tues 21 Chain Reaction Day honoring Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy
Weds 22 HS Second Marking Period ends

Future Dates:

  • All HS Field Trip: May 16th, 2014
  • Prom: May 17th, 2014
  • All MS Field Trip: May 20 – 22nd, 2014




Sam at New England ChampionshipsCongratulations to Sam Hayden ’17 who finished in 2nd place in the 15-16 year old age group at  the USA Climbing New England Championships for bouldering on Saturday in Worcester, MA.  In mid-January, he will move on to the Eastern Divisional Championships in New Jersey.  Divisionals will cover the area from Virginia north.


Congratulations to Margaret Gish ’14 who was a plenary speaker at Saturday’s VECAN (Vermont Energy and Climate Action Network) conference in Fairlee.  Her audience included hundreds of adults, and she spoke with confidence and poise.

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TSA’s 2014 Chain Reaction Day:

A celebration in the spirit of the work
of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Workshop Leaders Needed!

On Tuesday, January 21st, TSA will host its 5th Annual MLK day celebration, Chain Reaction. We will offer a day of student, teacher and community-member led workshops focusing on celebrating, exploring and engaging in the spirit of the work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

We are currently looking for parents, alums, or other community members to lead workshops regarding any of the following topics: (Or a subject of your own choosing!)

  • Race and Language
  • Race, Ethnicity and Culture in the Media
  • The Civil Rights Movement
  • Race, Ethnicity and Culture in Art/Literature
  • The Life of MLK Jr.
  • Stereotypes and Assumptions
  • Diversity and Difference

This is a limited list so if you have other ideas about workshop topics, please be creative! If you are interested in possibly leading a workshop, please take a moment to think about how your chosen topic may address these ideas:

  • What happens/has happened between “US” and the “OTHER”?
  • How does this topic fit into the work of Dr. King and the spirit of his work?
  • How does this topic fit with the day’s objectives, which are to:
    • Explore the unspoken assumptions we make on a daily basis.
    • Increase our awareness of how our differences can enhance our relationships.
    • Begin to engage in difficult conversations.

Thanks for considering leading a workshop. Please let Kate Sensenich know if you have any questions or ideas at or 802-763-2500 ext. 115.

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General News


Reminder: Suicide Six Ski Forms are due on December 16th.  Please click here to access the registration form:  Note: please fill out the registration form even if your student will not be participating.

Message regarding Snow Days:  As last Monday proved, we are entering into snow-day season. Our primary concern when calling snow days is the safety of our students and families.  Because we do not have a bus, and we have so many students driving themselves and other students to and from school, we err on the side of caution when calling snow days.  We consider the forecast for both the morning and the afternoon drive-time while making our decision. However, in recognition of the fact that weather in Vermont can be very localized, we encourage you to use your own judgement.  For instance, there have been times when there was no snow in Sharon, while our families in Rochester had 5 inches of snow and Route 132 was icy on the top of the hill in Strafford.   Parents, if you feel that the roads are not safe and we have not called a snow day, please call the school and let Cynthia know that your student will be late or not be in that day.

All-School Café Performance: On Friday, December 20th, TSA will hold its annual All School Holiday Cafe. Students from both the middle school and the high school will be performing from 1:00 until 3:00 in the afternoon.  We have asked our students to make sure that their performances are appropriate for a range of ages.  Parents are welcome to join us for the fun.

Open Studio: Lynn Sheldon (Otis and Jacob Hudnut’s mom) will continue the ornament theme at Open Studio on Thursday, December 12th. Ornaments made from walnuts, wire and/or paper will highlight the mini workshops. Remember: Open Studio is Tuesdays and Thursdays after school from 3:30 until 5 p.m.

Energy Quest: Valley Quest is looking for some motivated middle or high school students to research and write an Energy Quest for the town of Enfield, NH. Learn about the history and future of energy sources in Enfield, NH.  Students will be working with the Enfield Energy Committee and the Energy Emporium.  Call 802-291-9100 x107 or email for more information.

Picture Retakes: Retakes for both Middle School and High School students will be at 8:30 am on Monday, December 16th  at the High School. Please bring your picture packet, minus the class picture. If you like your students’ ID picture and would like a copy, you can go online to order.  For those having pictures taken for the first time, please go online for pricing. Lifetouch: 800.639.9101  The picture day ID is VJ173299Y1.

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Phoenix News


Banner for Trenton: Last year’s graduate Trenton Morrison broke the TSA scoring record for the Boy’s Varsity Basketball team eclipsing the 1,000 point mark and totaling 1,246 points for his career. On Friday, December 20th we will have a banner unveiling ceremony for Trenton to celebrate his accomplishments on the basketball court. The ceremony will take place at 6:45 before the first TSA Varsity Boys home game of the season at 7:00. At halftime of this game, we will also be drawing the winning ticket for the first ever TSA Booster Club Raffle. Half the proceeds from the raffle will benefit the TSA Athletic department. Please come and show your support for Trenton and TSA athletics!


Soccer Uniforms: Those who have not turned in soccer uniforms by Friday, December 20th will be charged $50 to their student accounts.

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Middle School News

Attention 8th Grade Families:  Please remember to arrange a shadow day for visiting the HS.  The available days are: January 8th, 15th, 22nd, and 29th.  Call Amber Wylie at 802.763.2500 x120 to make arrangements.

Outside Reading Reminder: The middle school has officially started its 2nd trimester.  Students are expected to read 400 pages of outside reading (books of their choice) per trimester. Students will not have homework over December break, so this is a good time to knock off at least a portion of the outside reading requirement.  Plan now and have books ready for holiday break outside reading.

Geo Bee: The TSA Geo Bee will be held on Monday, December 16th from 3:30 – 5:00 at the middle school.  This school sponsored bee uses National Geo Bee materials.  The winner will represent TSA Middle School at the regional competition. All TSA middle school students are encouraged to participate.

High Five Adventure: The middle school will be undertaking a new adventure this spring from May 20th to May 22nd.  In the past we have visited the Hulbert Outdoor Center for our annual trip in May. This year, we will be exploring a new team-building experience in Brattleboro, VT at the High Five Adventure Center. (  The main reason for this change is to take advantage of the highly experienced team of outdoor educators that will work with our students at High Five.  (One of High Five’s most famous current team-building clients is the Boston Bruin hockey team.) The goals for the 7th grade include developing leadership and team building skills as these students step into the 8th grade leadership position at the middle school.  The goal for the 8th grade is to look ahead to high school and examine the ways positive and negative risk taking plays a role in the high school experience, and how students can support each other for optimal growth.

Report Cards:  Report cards were sent home on Tuesday, December 11th.  Look in backpacks!

Secret Santa:  Every year our Secret Santa gift giving tradition generates a lot of laughter and excitement at the middle school.  The activity will start next Wednesday when each student will pick a classmate’s or teacher’s name out of a hat.  Then, beginning on Monday, December 16th, students will secretly deliver gifts to his or her special person.  Secret gift giving will go on all week until Friday, December 20th.  On Friday (the day before holiday break), Secret Santas will reveal themselves and give one final gift.

Gifts can be handmade items, funny nice notes, pictures cut out of magazines, origami, CDs, re-gifted items from home, goodies of all kinds, locker decorations etc.  The TOTAL cost amount should not be more than be in the range of $5.00 – $10.00.  The point is to secretly shower a person all week with attention, not expensive gifts.

Please encourage your student to remember to participate.  Some students need help thinking of gifts.  Students that are neglected by their Secret Santa feel left out, so it is important that everyone fully participates.

Holiday Festivities
On Friday, December 20th the middle school will participate in holiday celebrations at the high school.  This includes a Yankee Swap and a “Café” performance.  Please help your student get ready for these events:

  1. Your student will need a wrapped gift for the all school Yankee Swap.  This gift should cost $5.00 or less.  We encourage re-gifting used items from home, finding something from a thrift shop or making a handmade item or baked goods. This gift should be brought in by December 18th.
  2. You student is encouraged to perform in the all school Café performance.  This event is a talent show in which middle and high school students perform short acts for the entire school.  Singing, juggling, playing an instrument, telling a G-rated joke or story, reciting a poem, dancing, performing a short skit – these are just a few suggestions for student performers. Students from the middle school must get their acts approved ahead of time by Pam Ward.
  3. On Friday, December 20th your student will need to be picked up at the high school at 3:00.

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High School News

Kitchen Use:  Please remember to rinse your dishes and place them in the dishwasher. Please also remember to clean out the drain-catcher thingy after you have rinsed your dishes.

Yurt Alert: A Special Interim Edition of the Yurt Alert is coming out next Tuesday.  Please click here for the Yurt Alert:

Secret Santas in Advisories and Yankee Sawp:  Many of our students are involved in Secret Santa gift exchanges in their advisories.  Each advisory has created their own timeline and rules.  We encourage parents to check in to see if their students could use some help in coming up with gift ideas. Secret Santa can be a lot of fun when everyone in the group is participating, but it is not so much fun when a Santa or two falls down on the job!  Likewise, the all-school Yankee Swap on Friday, December 20th can be a time of great laughter and enjoyment when everyone is participating.  A Yankee Swap gift should not be expensive.  It can be a “re-gift”, a handmade gift, or something small.  Students are encouraged ask themselves if they would find their proposed gift  exciting, funny, or fun if they were the one opening the package. Yankee Swap gifts should be brought in by Thursday, December 19th.

Helpful Hints for reducing energy use:  As a part of the Whole School Energy Challenge, here are some hints for reducing energy and resource consumption in our school.

  1. Only print if you need to.
  2. If you can, try printing multiple pages on each sheet of paper by using the “layout” option in your print dialog box.
  3. Remember that you can print on both sides of the paper.
  4. Copy only the text you need from the internet and insert it into a document – you rarely need to print the whole webpage
  5. Turn out the light when you leave the room.

Schedule for Friday December 20th: December 20th is the last day of school before the December Break.  Here is the schedule at the high school:

8:15 to 11:30 All classes run for  35 minute each with 5 minutes between
11:30 to 12:15 Advisory [includes lunch]
12:15 to 12:45 Yankee Swap
12:45 to 1:00 Clean up the school
1:00 to 3:00  Afternoon Cafe

Attention all artists! The TSA Yearbook committee is beginning their work on the 2013-2014 Edition! With this comes the need for TSA students to draw up a cover (in ink, NOT pencil) that they would like to be a contender for this year’s yearbook. Let it be known that the cover does not HAVE to be a drawing – it could be a photo or collage or whatever comes to mind. The cover must have the school year, name, and artists signature somewhere on the page. All submissions are welcome, however, only one will be chosen. All covers are due by December 19th, to Robin Chadwell, Grace Dorman, or Mahar Sperling.
Yearbook orders: Each high school student receives a yearbook.  If you are interested in buying an additional copy, please contact Jay Knoerlein, Paige Bissaillon, or Jocelyn Johnson by January 15th.  Each additional copy costs $30.

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Community Service Opportunities

For a more complete list of Current Community Service opportunities,
please click here: portals/current-students-and-parents/community-service-opportunities/


Sharon Skating Rink: The Sharon Skating Rink is being built this Saturday, December 14, from 9:00 – 1:00 at the elementary school.  A free community lunch is offered after the festivities.   Bring a cordless drill if you have one.  Please contact Steve Gagliardone at for more information.

The Arts Bus is a non-profit organization serving the towns of the White River Watershed Region by bringing Arts programming to children. To raise awareness of what the Arts Bus is and what it does, volunteers are needed to serve on town committees from Jan. – May for the 2014 season. Tasks include assisting community leaders with fund-raising projects and may also include assisting with an arts activity such as Drama Club, Mask-making, Music and Dance, Back-yard Farm Arts and Eco-Kids activities. Your ideas are welcome! If you would like to share your creativity and enthusiasm, develop community leadership skills and help foster resiliency and transformation through the Arts with this unique project – please contact Robin Russell at (802) 889-3246 or e-mail More info about the Arts Bus Project can be found at and

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Community Events


Emerging Artist Showcase Seeks Young Talent:  On Saturday, January 11, 2014 at 5:00 pm, the sixth annual Emerging Artist Showcase will feature rising young performers and visual artists from up and down the Upper Valley. The Showcase will take place at Damon Hall at Hartland Three Corners.  The event’s producers have put out a call to all performers and artists aged 16 to 26 to sign up and share in the celebration of your talents. Musicians, singers, dancers, poets, acrobats, jugglers, comedians, storytellers, and other performers, along with painters, sculptors, cartoonists, and other visual artists–and even chefs are invited to participate.  The Showcase is a production of Hartland Community Connections. For more information about the showcase, or to sign up and take part, contact: Jaxon Morgan at 802-291-1049  or

The 2nd Annual Holiday Cheer Craft Fair:  on Saturday, December 14 from 9am-2pm at Sharon Elementary School.  Get more of a jump on your holiday shopping while supporting our fabulous local crafts people and school families as they offer great gift ideas and special treats.  All table fees help to provide the FREE, community lunch! There will be quilts, pot holders and table runners; balsam wreaths and decorations; knit scarves, hats, mittens and sweaters; reed baskets and hooked rugs; knit dolls and fabric tote bags; bead and gem stone jewelry; pine crates and boxes; cards and ornaments; personalized Christmas stockings & tote bags; Origami Owl living lockets; recycled clothing; plus pies, bread, vegetables, meats, pickles, fudge, jams & jellies, herbs and spices, Greek delicacies, and more! Santa arrives at 11am with treats for the kids, and the Ice Skate Rink Raising party is 9-1 outside.  The holiday poinsettia pick-up and sale is 9-2.  The FREE lunch will feature a variety of dishes, salad, and more from 11:30-1pm.  There will also be FREE activities for the children all day!  Fabulous opportunities for unique gift and holiday meal ideas!!  Call Donna Foster for more information, and for community service hours opportunities at 802 763 8280.

Semi-Formal Dance and South Royalton High School: There will be a semi-formal winter ball at the South Royalton high school on Saturday December 14 from 7:00 to 10:00 pm.  Admission is  $5 and a student ID is required.