Volume 19~ January 19, 2020
St. Joseph's Regional Jr. High School
News & Notes ~ Week of January 19, 2020
Mission Statement: St. Joseph Regional Jr. High School is a Catholic, inclusive school for 7th and 8th grade where students learn and grow in respect for God, themselves, and others, engage in academically rigorous curricula and a wide-range of meaningful service and enrichment experiences. 
Unity at St. Joe's Through Service Work
Charitable Service Work at St. Joseph Regional Jr. High School
Our goal on Friday was that every student saw themselves as capable of learning something new. Seventy-five students, over 100 knitting needs piles of practice yarn balls, all sizes of crochet hooks,16 looms, and boys and girls who joyfully learned to begin creating. It was great to see some typically shy students rise as leaders and others learning to follow.
Adults of every level of expertise and students coaching each other led to some inspired energy at the end of the school day. Though I have set aside one afternoon per month for the unified service work, the students, faculty and volunteers wanted more! We will have lunch-bunch Tuesdays and Thursdays in the library for practice on their service work. Many said they wanted to go out this weekend to get their own needles and yarn.
For knitting, I recommend thick wooden needles and chunky yarn. It's so much easier to see your work and make progress. They are welcome to bring these to our practice group. Our next Service Work Friday will be February 14th, 12:30pm-2:15pm. If you'd like to volunteer time, thick yarn, needles, crochet hooks, circuluar looms, please let us know. We're happy to have you!
We will be donating the first scarves, hats and wash cloths to the Veteran's Administration.
St. Joe's Classroom Spotlights ~ French and Spanish

A new initiative that I am starting in the World Language classroom has to do with the book Disconnected , How to Reconnect our Digitally Distracted Kids, by nationally known author Thomas Kersting. As you may remember, the Diocese invited the author to speak in Manchester this past October, and the Diocesan school district, including parents and teachers, were invited to attend. In his presentation, the author focused on how the overuse of electronic devices impacts a child’s brain, such as loss of ability to focus, and hindered executive functioning. More “screen time” results in less time spent outdoors and less time spent reading.

In his presentation, as well as in his book, Mr. Kersting explained ways to remedy the situation:

  • Learn to control thoughts through present moment thinking.
  • Take mental breaks, and use visualization to develop mental creativeness.
  • Develop concentration.

Examples of our specific classroom activities to take advantage of this concept are:

  • Begin each class with a two minute focusing activity.
  • Practice concentration by staring at an image for several seconds. Then try to recall the details. (in Spanish or French)
  • Once a week, on the weekends, the homework assignment will be to go outside for 20 minutes, observe their surroundings, and write down 5 things that they notice. Back inside, they will translate the words or phrases to Spanish or French.
  • On Monday the students will share and discuss their observations with each other, contrasting real world experiences versus seeing things on a screen. Their words will be written on the board to create a class vocabulary list.

I chose this activity in support of students spending a bit of time outdoors, and by tuning into the environment, experience present moment awareness. Another expected learning outcome is that they will learn new words that THEY chose and that represent something that they experienced first hand.

Our goal at St. Joe’s is to use every proven method to make learning as easy and as productive as possible, in a way that they will enjoy and remember as they continue on to high school.
A heartfelt thank you to the Roth Family, the Bouchard Family, the Broketa Family and the Saich Family who have visited our Amazon St. Joe's Library Wishlist and purchased books and display shelves.

In addition, students are ALL working toward the 2019-2020 Fisher Cats Reading Challenge. Last year, St. Joe's won $1000 for all of the reading the students completed!
~ Language Arts with Mrs. Deignan~
School Scripts Spelling Bee
Below are our class spelling bee winners! Congratulations to them! Please join us in the gym on Monday, January 27th at 8am to see them compete to represent St. Joseph Regional Jr. High in the state competion.

*Aimee W.
Brooke H.
Jasmine H.
*Torrey P. 
Xavier P. 
Owens A. 
*Emanuel M. 
Noah F.
Robinson M.
Erin C. 
Meredith M. 
*Ryan A.
Nehemiah O. 
Michael D. 
*Susan D. 

* class winners 
These winners have their study lists and will continue to practice in the coming week. We wish them the best of luck!
Parent Engagement News


Dear Fellow Parents:
First, thank you so much for your support of the school and teachers. I, for one, have definitely felt a sea change this year in the culture at St. Joe’s. I have enjoyed the opportunity to be more involved and gratified by the outpouring of support such that we were able to create a Parent-Teacher Organization and fund it to the point of giving Christmas gifts for teachers and supporting a whole school science project. This represents an amazing start, but the work isn’t done. We need more help. We need more people. And frankly we need more money. We have some ideas for further fundraising, but many hands make manageable work. We are all overstretched, overscheduled and overtired but the cause is worth it – our kids. Besides, the PTO isn’t just for kids and teachers, it’s for parents too. I’ve found the more involved I am the more I benefit from interactions, experience and advice from the parents I’ve met. Its been very helpful to speak with parents of older kids to get a preview of next year’s high school challenges, and after I stop screaming into my pillow, I feel much better. I hope you will consider joining us on our monthly virtual meetings or reaching out to a PTO member ( flyingfurey1@comcast.net) to offer help. Our next meeting is Feb 18 th at 7pm. Mrs. Florino’s newsletters have the link. Also please check our Facebook page (St Joseph’s Parents Group) for updates. I hope you’ll consider joining the team and getting involved – it’s good for you and easier to take than a giant multivitamin!
Gale Furey


  • PLEASE NOTE: We will not have school on February 11th (Election Day) and 17th (President's Day). Our building is used as a city voting location, as many schools are, so we do not want students here. We will, however, have a professional development day for teachers. Please note these days off on our lunch calendars. The school calendar will be aligned next year across all Manchester Catholic Schools.

  • PTO Meetings: February 18th, 7-8pm, Click here to join us by video! Please consider joining us. The meetings are remote, video gatherings for your convenience and the more members we have the more we can do to support our teachers and curriculum projects like Mr.Rosa's terrariums.

  • Our Advisory Board meeting will be on March 5th , 6:00pm-7:30pm in the St. Joseph's library. Notes from the November meeting are here. This board has been reviewing outward facing documentation to assure it aligns with our mission. In January, we will be reviewing the St. Joseph Regional Jr. High budget.

  • You may visit our Parent Page to pay for the January 31st, 10am-12pm, snowtubing trip to McIntyre, just one of our Catholic Schools Week Activities. Please submit all checks or go online to pay by Wednesday.

  • All re-enrolling students are encouraged to register before January 31st at the discounted rate of $140. After that, registration will be the normal $250. We want to be able to build our schedule for next year before the end of the year AND provide you with all you'll need to kick off 2020-2021 school year. Financial aid decisions will be made on a first-come-first-serve basis and we have a limited amount to distribute. Please do check out the new scholarship from CMC and DO APPLY! (see our previous Constant Contact and our website)
Bears Athletics

  • See coaches' notes from Mr. Frenette and Mr. Borromeo!
Looking Ahead
  • We will be in need of a track coach!
If you or someone you know has experience participating in or coaching track and enjoys mentoring students, please ask them let Mrs. Martineau.
Always on Top!
Please note, I am monitoring grades, conduct and effort throughout the quarter. Students must maintain a minimum of C in each class and 3 or better in conduct & effort to be eligible to participate.
Important Dates Ahead

Looking Ahead:

January 20th: (No School) MLK Day

January 17-24th: 17th, Service Workshop - Knitting & Crocheting Service Work Winter NWEA testing, Quarter 2 grades close 1/17, Report Cards Issued 1/24

January 27-31th: Catholic Schools Week!
27th: School Spelling Bee and SPIRITWEAR DAY! Homeroom Games Begin!
January 28th: Pajama Day! Winter Wonderland "Registration Celebration" for ALL ASPIRING St. Joe's students AND RISING 8th Graders! Please invite 6th graders!
January 29th: Mass, 9:15am, wear mass dress code AT TRINITY , afternoon retreat with Sister Mary Joseph. We will be busing students to Trinity for this mass. Permission slips to come.
30th: Homeroom Games! Wear homeroom t-shirts
31th: SPIRITWEAR DAY! Snowtubing at McIntyre Ski Area, Hot Chocolate Social and Trivia
Enrichment at St. Joseph Regional Jr. High
New Activities ~ St. Joe's Choir
Choir will be meeting this week with lunch meetings for those interested. Mrs. Deignan has ordered the first songbooks and all students are welcome and encouraged to join! Our first performance will be for St. Teresa's Manor just after February vacation. Interested students should meet in the library on Tuesday, January 21, 2020 at lunch.