January 17, 2018
Darien High School Parent News
Published by the DHS Parents Association
Important Dates


End 2nd Quarter
18 - 24 Mid-term Exams
25 Begin 3rd Quarter
DHSPA Meeting: Electives Expo, 9:00 am, Auditorium

PLC Day - 90 Minute Delay Students
Incoming 9th Grade Curriculum Night, 7:00 pm, Auditorium 
DHSPA Meeting: Author Speaker Andrea Petersen - 7:00 pm, Auditorium 
Professional Development - NO SCHOOL for students
19 - 23 
February Recess
Calendar Links

H Day
Exam Period 1 (8:00 a.m.); Exam Period 2 (10:30 a.m.)
Exam Period 3 (8:00); Exam Period 4 (10:30) 
Exam Period 5 (8:00); Exam Period 6 (10:30) 
Exam Period 7 (8:00); Exam Period 8 (10:30) 
Exam Make-up Day and Placement Testing 
H Day Begin 3rd Quarter - Second Semester  

Morning buses will operate over the usual routes at the regular time. 
Afternoon buses leave DHS at 12:35 p.m.
Student parking regulations remain in effect.  Parking for seniors with permits only. 

Students are expected to be in attendance for each exam.  Individual arrival and dismissal times depend on each student's schedule.  Students may leave school when they are dismissed from their last exam for that day.  There is no school on make-up day (unless student has a scheduled make- up exam or placement test).  Make-up day is for excused absences only.  Students who miss an exam for illness or other excused reason must contact their teacher directly to schedule the make-up exam.   

Breakfast items and beverages will be available in the cafeteria from 7 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. The cafeteria will be closed on make-up day.   

Library will be open for quiet study only 7 a.m. - 3 p.m.  

We are grateful to the library for accommodating our students, who are reminded to be mindful of other library patrons during exam time.   

In the event of a weather-related 2-hour delay, the exam schedule will be as follows:
1st exam: 9:40 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.
2nd exam: 12:10 p.m. - 2:10 p.m. 
AM buses will run routes two hours later; afternoon bus will be at 2:25 p.m.  
If school is closed for inclement weather, power outages, or emergencies, the exam schedule will be adjusted so that the next school day will have the exams that were missed and the schedule will move along in order.

These are the stress relieving activities available to students during Midterms
  • Healing Hounds : Enjoy the company of different furry friends each day.
    • Chill Zone, 9:30-10:30am
  • Himalayan Salt Therapy : Unwind in the peaceful presence of salt lamps, known for their ionic healing properties.
    • Guidance, 9:30-10:30am
  • Craft to Calm: Join your school counselors in making stress balls and slime!
    • Guidance, 9:30-10:30am
  • Coloring: Express yourself and practice mindfulness at the same time with adult coloring pages.
    • Library, all day
  • Exercise: Exercise is a great way to combat stress! Release those endorphins with activities hosted by the Physical Ed Department, 9:30 - 10:30 am
    • Basketball, North Gym
    • Badminton, Main Gym
    • Cardio/Lifting/Yoga, Fitness Center
  • Snacks/Drinks
    • Grab a snack outside the main office in between Exams 3 & 4
Upcoming Events

Students need to print or download a schedule and bring to school on Thursday, January 25.
Joyce Sixsmith, DHS Connections Counselor, welcomes all students 9 th -12 th grades to participate in the new exciting group called the Blue Wave Council. Students in this group will focus on substance abuse prevention (promoting substance-free living for teens) and healthy decision-making for all DHS students.

The next meeting is on MONDAY, JANUARY 29 th from 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm (POT LUCK DINNER) in the English-History Learning Connections Center, Room A206. There will be guest speakers, plans to host forums, etc. This is a wonderful opportunity for kids to make a difference with their peers and make new friends! For more information or to RSVP for your son/daughter please email Joyce at jsixsmith@darienps.org .

Thursday, January 25th
What better way to decompress from midterms and kick off the second semester on a positive note than attending the 2018 DHS Wellness Fair! 
Come out during the lunch waves from 11 am - 1 pm on Thursday January 25th (snow date Monday January 29th) to visit the many stations set up in the Main and North gyms, focusing on fitness, nutrition and mindfulness.  We look forward to seeing you there!
* Fitness * Obstacle Course * Yoga * Karate * Strength Training * Zumba * Barre * Pilates * Run * Stretching * Therapy Dogs * Nutrition * Meditation *  Gratitude Wall * Stress & Anxiety Reduction * Tea Station * Healthy Snacks * Coloring Table * Aromatherapy * Mindfulness * Acupressure * Healthy Sleep Habits * Mood Dots *

January 30, 2018   9:00 am - 10:30 am
The program will focus on the many of the amazing electives available to students in each of our academic areas of study and the extracurricular opportunities students can join and participate in to further their learning, pursue a passion or just have fun!

All 9th and 10th grade students who are interested in applying for English 10 Honors or Grade 11 AP Lang/American Literature need to fill out an application form. These application forms can be found in the English Office starting on Tuesday, January 9th. The deadline for submitting applications will be Wednesday, January 17th.

All 9th graders - even those currently in Accelerated English - have to apply for honors. There is no placement test; placement will be decided based upon student grades and teacher recommendations.

For Grade 10 - 300 students who wish to apply for Grade 11 AP Language and Comp/American Literature, there will be a placement test given on mid-term make-up day (currently scheduled for January 24th). Students who wish to sit for the test must complete and submit the application in advance. Students who are currently in 10-400 do not have to sit for the test.

If your student has any questions about the process or is in need of advice, please encourage your student to meet with his/her current English teacher.
History Honors Applications are now available.  300 level students who are interested in taking 400 level courses next year should submit applications no later than 2:30 pm on Wednesday, January 17th. 

Freshmen applying for Honors World Studies will need to take a placement exam on Make-up day at 8AM.  Room assignments will be posted that morning.  Sophomores applying for AP United States History and juniors applying for AP Law and Gov do not need to sit for a separate exam.
Darien High School will once again offer its SAT review course headed by Mr. Dooley from the math department and Mr. Speiser from the English department.  The February class is appropriate for JUNIORS who will be taking the SAT on March 10th.  The same course will run again in April in anticipation of the May 5th test .
SAT Math: The Math course will run on four Tuesday nights from 7pm - 9pm in room B112 for a total of 8 hours of instruction.  The dates of the math class are February 6, February 13, February 27 and March 6.  The cost of the course is $200 and checks should be made payable DHS. To register for the Math course, you can contact Patrick Dooley at pdooley@darienps.org.
SAT English: The English/Verbal course will take place on four Wednesday nights in room B203 from 7pm - 9pm for a total of 8 hours of instruction.  The dates of the class are February 7, February 14, February 28 and March 7.  The cost for the course is $200 and checks should be made payable to DHS. If signing up for both the English and the Math, please write separate checks. To register for the English course, contact Alex Speiser at aspeiser@darienps.org.

The Music Department of the Darien Public Schools would like to announce the 17th Annual Darien Young Composers Concert. This special concert program will be held on Wednesday, April 4 at 6:30 p.m. for grades K-5 and at 7:30 p.m. for grades 6-12 in the Darien High School auditorium and will feature the works of student composers in the Darien Public Schools from the Elementary, Middle School, and High School levels. All compositions for performance consideration must be recorded on a CD, DVD or electronic file and submitted along with the application form to one of the school music teachers no later than Monday, March 2, 2018. 

The student composers selected to perform will have the opportunity to have their compositions reviewed by a professional guest composer and will also meet with the composer in a special workshop to discuss the creative process of music composition and opportunities for professional composers. During the course of each school year, the music teachers in the Darien Public Schools engage their students in composition lessons and activities as part of their curriculum and encourage participation in this unique opportunity.  Guidelines, application forms and other information are available from all school music teachers in the Darien Public Schools, on our website at: www.darienps.org/music or by calling the Music Office at: 655-3981 ext: 2250.
DHSPA Annual Fundraiser 2017 - 18

The DHS Parents' Association 2017-2018 annual budget is $50,690. Thanks to the generosity of only 144 families, we have reached 76% of our annual fundraising goal.  Please help us get to 100% so we can continue to support our students, faculty and school.  Unsure how much to give?  DHS has 1375 students, which means the DHSPA will spend approximately $39/student this year.    
For online donations, please visit  https://paypal.me/dhspa .  Checks are also accepted, made payable to DHSPA. Please send it to  DHSPA c/o Darien High School, 80 High School Lane, Darien, CT  06820
If you have any questions, please contact Stacey Smith (Stacey.foster@sbcglobal.net) or Amy Howe (ahowe@generalatlantic.com).

Photos needed: In the underclassmen portrait sections of the 2018 yearbook, we would like to include additional photos. For these photos:
  • Group shots preferred
  • Photos from this school year only.
  • Please state which year (freshmen, sophomore, junior) the photo represents 
  • Please submit the photos as a .jpeg via email with the subject line: UNDERCLASSMEN PHOTOS and the year of students in photo (freshmen, sophomore, junior) to: dhsyearbook@darienps.org
  • DEADLINE: Friday, February 9th
  • February 2 - Senior Ad: The deadline to submit a senior ad for your student is February 2 (at an increased price). This is your last opportunity to place and ad for your senior.  Go To: www.simplyyearbookads.com   (select Darien High School from the list of schools) 
  • Senior Section Photo Pages, Early Years: In the senior section of the 2018 yearbook, we would like to include a few pages for " Through the Years" - a section focusing on School age photos (Kindergarten through Junior Year). For these photos:
    • Group shots only please
    • If the group is 6 or less students, please include the names of the students in the photo
    • If the group is more than 6 students, please state the time frame of the event/photo
  • Current Senior Year Photos: We would like to have a few pages from the current Senior Year. We would really like as many group photos as possible, and these can be from events at school, at homes or in the community.
    • If the group is 6 or less students, please include the names of the students in the photo
    • If the group is more than 6 students, please state the time frame of the event/photo
    • Please submit the photos as a .jpeg via email with the subject line: SENIOR SECTION PHOTOS and your name to: dhsyearbook@darienps.org  
    • DEADLINE: Friday, February 2nd
Stay connected with the DHSPA!
Thriving Youth/Community Fund 
Parents recently weighed in on successful conversation starters with teens. Try these after school or over dinner: "What was the funniest thing that happened today?" "What was the best part of your day? The worst part? The weirdest part?" "What are three things you're grateful for today?" "Is there anyone you want to send to Mars today?" "What are you looking forward to about tomorrow?"  Remember, these conversations shouldn't feel like an interview. Share your answers to the questions, too, or a story from your day. You can set the tone for casual and fun sharing in your home.

Talk early, talk often. The Community Fund/Thriving Youth
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With many thanks from the  DPN editors, 
Cathy Barrett, Madhavi Desai, Julia Ford, Carmen Phipps, and Pamela Ha-Stevenson