Welcoming the 6th Grade to MUMS Our Transition to a 6 - 8th Grade Learning Community!
April 30, 2021
Dear ACSD Community,
As we prepare for the 2021 - 2022 school year the two of us have been meeting regularly to ensure a smooth transition of leadership and to continue to thoughtfully plan for the addition of the 6th grade to MUMS. During April break we were able to meet in person and with the help from a few MUMS students and Kurt Broderson from Middlebury Community TV, we filmed a short video of the school to give families an opportunity to see our facility virtually. Please follow this link to take a peek into the hallways of MUMS.
During the next few months, we are eager to collaborate more and find ways to have Michael in the building to meet students and staff in person. In addition, we are excited to host our incoming 6th and 7th graders to MUMS on June 2nd. See you all soon!
Andrew Conforti, MUMS Interim Principal Michael Dudek, MUMS Incoming Principal
Move Up Day
Move up day for incoming 6th and 7th graders is June 2nd.
More details to come.
Language and Literature
The study of Language and Literature at MUMS is grounded in a conceptual and inquiry-based approach to learning. Thus, as students read and analyze short stories, poetry, drama, novels, a variety of nonfiction texts, and film clips, they continually explore overarching questions related to meaningful and relevant topics. Within each unit of study, students have elements of choice and opportunities to direct their learning. Between 6th and 8th grade, students will incrementally gain essential skills as writers, speakers, and thinkers, strengthening their ability to communicate with the greater community.
Literacy Intervention - SOAR
Next year at MUMS Literacy Intervention will have two full time teachers, one licensed in English/Language Arts and a Special Educator. The Literacy interventionists will work with students who require targeted literacy instruction through scheduled classes, literacy assessment and progress monitoring, targeted intervention and consultation with families, teachers and teams.
Language Acquisition (French & Spanish) is an integral part of the IB Middle Years Program (MYP) at MUMS. The study of additional languages in the MYP provides students with the "opportunity to develop insights into the features, processes and craft of language and the concept of culture, and to realize that there are diverse ways of living, behaving and viewing the world."
6th grade language acquisition classes will explore both languages to inform students’ choice of which language to study for the duration of their MYP years. 7th and 8th grade language acquisition classes focus on communication skills, reflection and exploration of our own and other cultures, multi-literacy skills and attitudes, and international-mindedness. In the MYP, there are multiple phases of language; students in 7th grade will begin in Phase 1 of their chosen language, and will continue studies in this language through 10th grade (or beyond, if they so choose). Students must stay in their chosen language until they have reached a level of proficiency. Proficiency is defined by the successful completion of a Phase 4 world language course.
The Student Ambassadors came out of a merge between our Student Council and the Pride Panel at MUMS three years ago. Students are nominated by other students noting how they demonstrate IB Learner Profile traits. Teachers from each team choose 4 students to represent their team. It is a one year commitment and facilitated by MUMS teachers Jan Fraga and Sara Nadeau.
Student Ambassadors are the voice for their team. They are also ambassadors representing the student body. They meet regularly to bring up concerns and plan school-wide activities. Over the last few years our student ambassadors have coordinated fund raisers, planned assemblies, brought concerns to our administration, addressed the school board, and have helped on numerous projects. They just completed a successful fundraiser selling MUMS sportsware to promote school pride and help fund student activities at MUMS. They are currently helping to plan a schoolwide MUMS Survivor adventure for the end of the school year.
New Website for Incoming Students For Students by Students
The 8th grade students in Jan Fraga’s Design class have been working on a website for our rising 6th and 7th graders to help students and their families learn about MUMS. They created chatbots to share information on topics that they were worried about before they came to MUMS. They have posted answers to questions they received from students and started to post infographics about specific locations around MUMS. We hope information posted on this website will help answer some of your questions. There will be more bots and infographics added by students as the quarter progresses. Check out their website by following this link.
MUMS Staff Members
2021 - 2022
Denise Bérubé-Mayone Language Acquisition Teacher
Bonjour! I’ve been teaching French in Vermont for several decades, after teaching at private schools in my native Maine and in Massachusetts. Language Acquisition is such a critical component of not only the IB curriculum, but also of any solid and rewarding 21st century education. Sharing my knowledge of French and of French-Canadian language and culture as well as my love of travel are my true passions, and there is simply nothing else I’d rather do! To hear my students speak (and sing!) in French is incredibly rewarding to me. Our special school is about to embark on a new adventure! I’m sure that our new 6th and 7th graders will nicely complement our awesome 8th graders, making wonderful contributions to our already vibrant culture. Bienvenue!
Eileen Sears Language and Literature Teacher
I have been a Language and Literature teacher at MUMS for 16 years, and I live in Cornwall with my two children, Erin and Lachlan, and my husband, Bjarki, who teaches at the high school. I love the MUMS community! It's welcoming, supportive, and full of awesome learning opportunities. What's neat about these opportunities is that they don't just exist within the walls of our classroom. They extend out far beyond it, into our own lives, our experiences, interests, mindsets, and backgrounds. What makes our school excellent, in my opinion, are the many chances we have to share these different parts of ourselves with each other. This helps us all grow. Hence, my advice to you: Don't be afraid to use your voice here. We want to hear who you are and what you have to say.
Connie Mosquera Language Acquisition Teacher
¡Hola a tod@s! Bonjour à tous! Hello everyone! I am thrilled to be part of the MUMS community after two years of being a PYP Spanish Teacher at Mary Hogan, Weybridge, and Ripton Elementary Schools. I am looking forward to continuing my journey with the incoming 6th grade students and meeting all of the new and old members of the MUMS Community. I started my teaching career as a third grade ESL Teacher in several bilingual schools in Cali, Colombia, where I come from. After that, I moved to the UK as part of a program sponsored by the Colombian Government and the British Council to give opportunities to Colombian teachers to experience new learning and teaching techniques and methods used in public schools in the UK. I have been fortunate to travel, live and work in rural and urban areas in Central and South America, Africa, the Middle East, Europe, and Southeast Asia. In the years working as a Spanish teacher, I have taken great advantage of this position to show my students how rich and diverse the Spanish-speaking community is, around the world and in the United States. Next year, I will be in a position where I will not only continue doing this, but I will also be introducing students to the richness and diversity of the French-speaking communities around the world. I am truly excited to be part of the new 6th grade adventure!
Dana Cray Literacy Intervention Teacher
For the past twenty-three years, I’ve had the privilege of being a teacher of literacy (in one form or another), with the last fifteen of those years at MUMS. If you walk into my classroom while I am teaching, you can tell that I absolutely LOVE middle school students and think they are the BOMB! I truly believe that middle school students make everything in life simply awesome! Students who have had me over the years will tell stories of me teaching while standing on tables and sharing my love of learning! You should believe those stories because they are not lies! Even though I have high expectations for my students, we manage to have fun in my room each day. For the last four years, I’ve enjoyed being the Mosaic Language and Literature teacher; I've loved every minute of making memories with and providing instruction for Mosaic students. Even though these years have been terrific, I have decided to return to teaching Literacy Intervention for the 21-22 school year. I am super excited about this teaching position because I get to share my love of reading, writing, and thinking with my students in a way that places emphasis on process, strategy, and growth over time. What’s better than literacy and middle schoolers? NOTHING! I’m looking forward to meeting you all!
Martha Santa Maria Language and Literature Teacher
I am a native Vermonter and a National Board Certified Teacher of English who loves working with adolescents. Since Fall 2000, I have been a classroom teacher and a designer of several recognized inquiry-based summer programs, like "Shark Tank Start-Up" and " Wild SCIde" with expert colleagues at MUMS. Learning alongside my students brings me joy and challenges my professional practices. I look forward to more hands-on learning experiences in 2021-2022 and welcome all the new students to the middle school.
Laura Hall Language Acquisition Teacher
My name is Laura Hall. I am one of the Spanish teachers at MUMS. I finished the graduate program MATESOL in 2011 at Saint Michael's College. This is my sixth year teaching at MUMS, and I love working with the great staff and colleagues at school. I am very excited about welcoming the sixth and seventh graders into the school program. This will be a great experience for all of us. I can't wait to see the returning students that will start eighth grade for a fun and successful year together.
Barbara Collette Literacy Intervention Teacher
I began teaching as Special Educator in Salisbury Community School in 2010 and moved to the Middle School in 2013. Four years ago I shifted to the Literacy Intervention role. I feel so fortunate to work on literacy skills with middle school students, there's never a dull moment and it is so much fun to see our students learn and grow as readers and thinkers. I am so looking forward to seeing our new and returning students next fall!
Sandy Celauro Language and Literature Teacher
I have taught middle school English Language Arts for 15 years, and I have been a Language & Literature teacher at MUMS since 2018. While I am passionate about reading, writing, and sharing ideas in an effective way, I am equally excited about middle school students. As grade 6 joins this wonderful learning community, we all embark on this new adventure together.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can students participate in more than one after school activity at MUMS? Yes, many students participate in multiple activities after school. If there is a conflict between two activities, students can work it out by talking with the club leader or coach.
Will both breakfast and lunch be available? There will be several choices for students to choose from daily for both lunch and breakfast. Breakfast is available in the cafeteria before teacher advisory each morning and lunch will be served in the cafeteria during three separate lunch blocks (one per grade) in the middle of the day. To learn more about lunch at MUMS, check out the Lunchroom Chatbots made by 8th grade students in Design class.
When will students receive their schedule? Schedules will be mailed to students in early-mid August.
When will students learn which teacher they will have for their Teacher Advisory? Students will learn who they will have for their teacher advisor when they receive their schedule in early-mid August.
How does drop off and pick up work? Families enter the drop off and pick up line by driving along the route marked in red. Students can be dropped off and picked up along the sidewalk.
The MUMS Questionnaire is still open. Please take a few minutes to complete this questionnaire to help us better understand your questions and what information would be helpful to include in upcoming transition communications.
Take a virtual tour of MUMS by following this link.