The Sharon Academy Newsletter, December 5, 2014

Posted by on Dec 5, 2014 in High School, Middle School, Newsletter

In this Issue:

Mark Your Calendar
General News
Middle School News
High School News
Community Service Opportunities
Community Events


Mark Your Calendar

MS = middle school, HS = high school

To download a PDF version of our 2014 – 2015 calendar, please click here:

Also, check the website regularly for calendar updates:
TSA Calendar

December 2014

Tues  9 Picture Retakes for MS & HS
Thurs 11 Geo Bee, 3:30 – 5:00
Mon 15 Registration due for TSA skiing at Suicide 6
Fri 19 Cafe afternoon, school releases at 3:00
Mon – Weds 22 – 31 December Break


January 2015

Thurs –
1 – 2 December Break, Cont.
Fri 2 Alumni Potluck and Basketball Game
Mon 5 School Resumes
Weds 7 First Ski Wednesday and Alumni Ski Day


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Congratulations to first years Joe Campbell and Cal Hale who are our new 9th grade student representatives to Student Government.

Kudos to Roslyn Parker ’18, Kaila Skeet Browning ’18 and Ella Williams ’15 who participated in Hanover High School’s foreign language recitation contest this week.

Congratulations to our high school students on yet another wonderful Interim performance.  Disco Inferno was amazing fun.  It had audience members literally on their feet and dancing.  From the sets to the costumes, tickets to makeup, lights, sound, promotions, props, hair, playbill and of course the performances of our actors, dancers and musicians, our whole high school came together to create magic once again.

Thank you to Troy Wunderle for coming to spend a day with our middle school students on November 14th.  The day had many goals such as to help students understand that achievement takes hard work and to inspire students to take risks, be vulnerable, try new things and don’t be afraid of mistakes.  The day was fun-filled and achieved our goals.  Students walked away from the day filled with new energy.  The middle school has now decided to  work 15 minutes of circus practice time into the regular school day – practicing circus skills is a fun way to take a break from work and inspire kids to practice over time.  Juggling (and other skills) is surprisingly good exercise as well.

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Snow Days

As Wednesday proved, we are entering into snow-day season. Given that Wednesdays are half days, late starts on Wednesdays generally don’t make sense.

Our primary concern when calling snow days is the safety of our students and families.  Because our students do not bus to school, 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.


General News

Pico Student Passes:  Vermont Student Pass, $89! (Price valid through December 12, 2014.)  Hit the snow just as hard as you hit the books. Come find out why Pico Mountain is so popular with the locals. Join in with all the other Vermont students who call Pico Mountain their home mountain. Vermont Student Passes available to students in grades K-12 and requires proof of eligibility:

  • Student’s parent or guardians will need to bring a report card or other official document issued by the school indicating the student’s home address (or parent must prove residency) and current enrollment.
  • For homeschooled youth, proof of enrollment in a home study program with Department of Education required.
  • Vermont resident students who attend a New York or New Hampshire border school also qualify for pass.
  • Proof of eligibility is not required at time of purchase, but must be provided before pass is activated.
  • Pico Mountain reserves the right to cancel any pass without refund which it believes was obtained fraudulently under this program.

To download a PDF with more information about the program, pleas click here. To visit the Pico website and purchase tickets, please click here.

All-School Café Performance: On Friday, December 19th, 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.

Recycling Packaging Materials: Abby Tonks will take your clean and bagged packaging supplies to ship her pottery this season.  Recycle your packing peanuts, bubble wrap, or air pillows by dropping them–bagged or boxed–outside Janice and Brian’s office at the school.  Last year we kept over 2000 gallons of packing materials out of the waste stream!

School Picture Retakes: Our previously scheduled retake day was Wednesday, December 3rd, but as we didn’t have school that day, we have rescheduled for Tuesday, December 9th. As a reminder, retakes are for students who were absent from the first take, students who missed purchasing, and those who did not like their first photo. Students needing a retake of their old set of photos are asked to return their original set of photos on the day of retakes. There is no additional charge for retakes. Retakes will start at 8:30 at the high school building. Middle school students who would like retakes will be brought up to the high school.

TSA Wednesday Skiing at Suicide Six: Registrations due by December 15th.  To access the registration for participating in Suicide Six’s ski program for TSA students, please click herePlease fill out the registration even if your student will not be participating in the program.  HS students – remember that to receive PE credit for skiing, you must fill out the Suicide Six Ski Program Request for PE Credit  form:

Update from Flo:
“I am about to start my treatment. I am keeping people in the loop and posting useful information on:  Ways to help me are listed on the blog, including a meals’ website:
Thank you for your love, generosity, and support.”
Helpful Information about Teen Driving:  This article was sent to us as a reminder of how much teenagers pick up from their parents’ driving habits.


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Middle School News

Geo Bee: The TSA Geo Bee will be held on Thursday, December 11th 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.

Scholastic Book Order: The order form has been sent home with your student and is due on December 11th.

Report Cards: On Friday, December 5th , middle school report cards will be posted on Gradelink. You will receive an email alerting you when report cards have been posted.  To access your student’s report, log on to Gradelink as usual and click on the pdf icon.

Please take the time to go over the report card and the teachers’ comments with your student.  If you have any questions or concerns, please be sure to connect with your student’s advisor.

We appreciate being able to post the report cards online both because of the financial savings and the reduced environmental impact.  Thank you!  If you need a paper copy of the report card please contact Catherine Farrington at 763-2531 or  If you have trouble accessing Gradelink, please contact Cynthia 763-2500 or

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 Wednesday, December 10th when each student will select at random a classmate’s or teacher’s name.  Then, beginning on Monday, December 15th, students will secretly deliver gifts to his or her special person.  Secret gift giving will take place all week until Friday, December 19th.  On Friday (the last day of school 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 cost amount should 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.


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High School News

Governor’s Institute of Vermont Winter Weekends: GIV winter weekends are coming up.  GIV’s website ( will post information on the Winter Weekends starting December 10th.  These weekends are open to all high school students.  There are fees associated with the program, but GIV offers a sliding scale for tuition.  If you have questions, please feel free to ask Kimberly Barnhart.   




Career & College Guidance

Applications are available in the College and Career Advising Office for the Vermont-NEA 2015 Maida F. Townsend Scholarship for the sons and daughters of Vermont-NEA members.  Application deadline is the end of the business day on February 2, 2015.  ​Students majoring in any discipline are eligible to apply; however, preference may be given to those majoring in education.  Awards will be baed on merit, not financial need.  Talk with Ellen for details!


Student Opportunities

Summer Science in Greenland: In this summer science and culture opportunity, students and teachers from the United States, Denmark, and Greenland come together to learn about the research conducted in Greenland and the logistics involved in supporting the research. They conduct experiments first-hand and participate in inquiry-based educational activities. The JSEP format has evolved over the years into its current state, which consists of two field-based subprograms on-site in Greenland: the Greenland-led Kangerlussuaq Science Field School and the U.S.-led Science Education Week.

Summer Science in Alaska and Washington for Girls: Girls on Ice is a unique, FREE, wilderness science education program for high school girls. Each year two teams of 9 teenage girls and 3 instructors spend 12 days exploring and learning about mountain glaciers and the alpine landscape through scientific field studies with professional glaciologists, ecologists, artists, and mountaineers. One team explores Mount Baker, an ice-covered volcano in the North Cascades of Washington State. The other team sleeps under the midnight sun exploring an Alaskan glacier.  The application period for the 2015 Girls on Ice Teams will begin December 10, 2014 and end on January 31, 2015 at 11:59 p.m. Alaska time.

  • Alaska program: June 19 – 30, 2015
  • North Cascades program: July 13 – 24, 2015

To be eligible, girls must be at least 16 years old by June 19, and no older than 18 on July 24.



Community Service Opportunities

TSA now has an active community service page on Facebook.
Like the page to be notified about current community service events and opportunities:
Have a community service opportunity that you wish to notify people about?
Email with the information
and we will let our staff and students know about the opportunity.
Want to fill out our Community Service online form? Click here

Holiday Gift-Making Workshop at Newton School: On Saturday, December 6th, from 10 am to Noon, volunteers are needed to help run craft tables at this annual event. Contact Leslie Berger at 333-4303 or if you can help.

Shoveling for the Vermont Independent School of the Arts: The Vermont Independent School of the Arts in Sharon is looking for someone to do shoveling this Winter. Please contact Scott Paulson,

Help Strafford’s Health Hub: Nurse Ellen Gnaedinger is looking for students to help sell Health Hub clinic raffle tickets on December 6th, from 9:00am – 3:00 pm at Barrett Hall and Coburn’s in South Strafford.  If you can help, please email Ellen at

Revels North needs hair and makeup volunteers for the upcoming holiday show.  Please contact Laura Craft <> if you can help.

Dates for hair:
  • Wed Dec. 17, 4pm – 6pm or 6:30
  • Thurs Dec. 18, same time
  • Friday Dec. 19, same time
  • Sat Dec. 20, 11am to 1:30 pm, and again at 5pm until 6:30
  • Sun Dec. 21, 11:30 am to 12:30, and again at 3:30 pm

Makeup: The dates and times for make-up are similar, except they also need make-up on Tuesday, Dec. 16.

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Community Events

VT Pride Theater  at Chandler:  This year’s Chandler’s VT Pride performance will feature a staged reading of a play that focuses on the concerns and issues of the LGBT community, an adaptation of the book M or F. The staged reading will be performed on January 24th.  Auditions are December 7 from 2 – 5 at Chandler.  If you can’t make auditions but would be interested in performing, talk to Charlie to arrange an alternate audition date.
Emerging Artists Showcase: This year’s Emerging Artists Showcase will be on Saturday, January 10th at Damon Hall in Hartland. This event is a great opportunity for mostly high school age students to show off their performing or visual artistic abilities in a friendly environment. It gives them both exposure and confidence – sometimes even connections for future jobs. Also – Visual artists displaying their work are able to sell it if they wish both during intermission and after the show.
Hmong Pandau Art Exhibit at BALE: Hmong Pandau: Reflections of a Mountain Culture runs through Thursday, Jan. 29 at The Commons @ BALE. The remarkable textile art of the Hmong tribal people native to the mountains of Southern China and Southeast Asia, Hmong pandau (meaning “flower cloth” in the Hmong language) features bold, highly stylized, and symbolic geometric design motifs painstakingly executed in bright, contrasting colors. Regular hours are 9 AM to 2 PM Mondaythrough Friday through Dec. 19. Call Chris Wood for other times that work for you: 802-498-8438 or
Backstage at the Revels:
My Revelsy Things *(to be sung to the tune of My Favorite Things from The Sound of Music)*

*Concession tables that sell Revels goodies**CDs and chocolate and t-shirts and hoodies**Make-up and hair-dos for those who sing**These are a few of my favorite things.**Sets to be painted, then moved in and out**Costumes and make-up to shuffle about,**Children in chorus who need loving wings,**These are a few of my favorite things.**Chorus:Days are darker, days are colder, and I’m feeling sad.I simplyremember to volunteer, and then I don’t feel so bad.*

The Revels North Christmas Show; is coming right up, and it will be a show to remember!  There are still many ways to be involved as a Backstage Reveler, and get a behind-the-scenes glimpse. Are you interested in theatrical make-up and hair design?   We would love to have you! Revels is all about community involvement.   We would love to have you involved. Please contact volunteer manager Laura Craft–; to sign up or learn more.


Classified Ads

House for Sale, Sharon: House and garage built 2008. 2 miles from I89 on Fay Brook road in Sharon. 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1000 square feet total. easy to heat- great gardens, outbuildings, nearby pond,  woods above the home. call 802 291 2064   Price reduction: $175,000.

House For Sale, Cobb Hill, Hartland: Cobb Hill Cohousing home in Hartland, VT for sale. Sunny 2300sq.ft. home on the hill offers 4 bedrooms and 3 baths, open floor plan, pine floors including multi-use finished basement, large mudroom and an outdoor stone patio surrounded by birch trees. An Energy-Star labeled home, it features solar hot water, south-facing passive solar orientation, green building design and wood burning heating system. The 270+/- acre commonly owned property has miles of trails for recreation, plus many opportunities to support on sight farm and agriculture and share in community activities and dinners. A rare opportunity to explore the challenge of living in ways that are materially sufficient, socially and ecologically responsible, and satisfying to the soul.

For more information see:

Contact: Jay Mead 802-649-7047,