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The Messenger

October 30, 2015
Vol. III, No.10

St. Michael's Academy
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St. Michael's Academy 
It's hard to ignore God's handiwork. The tree outside my office on Eddywood Street is magnificent! I've been enjoying it all week, watching the leaves change colors and then let go and fall gently to the ground.

Our students are also changing, letting go of old beliefs and growing in their understanding as they learn new things and have new experiences. It's an exciting time for them, as well as a scary time. As we all know, sometimes it's hard to grow up!

Our role as parents and educators is to encourage growth and to nurture wisdom in our young ones. And for all of us, I think the most difficult part of this role is to not underestimate their ability to meet the everyday challenges of life. We too, can be scared to let them go. But if our goal is to raise intelligent, responsible, successful and joy-filled adults, let them go, we must. It's the right thing to do.

Have a great weekend.

Ms. Ann Dougal

Important Dates To Remember!

Please make note of these important upcoming dates:

Grade 2 Violin - every Tuesday
Banking - every Wednesday
Drumming - every Wednesday

Tuesday, November 3, 2015
Professional Development

Friday, November 6, 2015
Veteran Guest Speakers
Individual classrooms

Friday, November 6, 2015 at 2:20 p.m.
Walk-a-thon Awards Ceremony



What a fantastic job! St. Michael's Academy students took on the competition in San Diego and what a job they did! Our team, Elijah Ayers, Richard Bordonaro, Joe McCoy and Gerry Martin, placed FIRST in the nation and SECOND internationally. We are so VERY proud of you!

For the full article click HERE.


Can you feel it?

When you walk into the doors of St. Michael's Academy, can you feel it? When you walk into a classroom full of students, can you feel it? When you walk into the cafeteria and hear children laughing, can you feel it? When you walk into church to attend Mass with the students, can you feel it? 

What is "it" that you feel?

"It" is a welcoming environment where students are "empowered" with faith, knowledge and critical thinking skills and come to know the feeling of self-confidence and success. Isn't that what everyone wants for their child?
Spread the word ... It Starts Here.

News from Mrs. Warbington - Grade Two

The sights of the fall season are certainly evident around our school campus.  It's hard to believe we are nearing the end of the month!  

Our second graders have been working very hard. This week we will start Unit 2 in our religion lessons. Our main focus will be centered around the Sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation. This will be the second sacrament our students will make in their Faith development. In our english/language arts lessons, we will continue to strengthen our skills on short and long vowels, blends, singular/plural nouns and continue to read a variety of stories of different genres. In math we will focus on how to compare and order numbers, identify odd /even numbers and look for patterns using a hundred chart. They certainly have been and will continue to be busy little beavers!

October is fire safety month and we continue to learn and practice how to stay safe in the event of a fire. We read and discussed "Firefighters in Three Communities" using Scholastic News. They learned about three communities rural, suburban and urban and what firefighters have to do to fight fires in these communities. Our students had a wonderful visit from two firefighters who work here in our city, firefighters Cournoyer and Sullivan (Fathers of Matthew and Liliana). They gave a great presentation on fire safety and how important it is to have a family plan in case of an emergency and emphasized the importance of never going back into their house to get their pets or toys. They also discussed the difference between urban and wildfire firefighters. 

At the end there was plenty of time for questions. Our students had some important questions for our firefighters, such as how many gallons of water can a truck hold, what to do if their tanks run out of air, and how far their ladder can go up?  In the end, our guest speakers told the students what they need to do to be a firefighter. They need to do the following:  stay in school, stay out of trouble, less television and playing videos, and going outside to get exercise and staying healthy!  We are very grateful to Firefighters Cournoyer and Sullivan for taking time away from their busy schedules to spend time with us and teaching  our students the importance of fire safety!                          

Academics/Classroom Happenings - 

Yes, it starts here!

As we, the SMA school community, continue our quest to be the very best, not only are the students learning, but the teachers are as well.  Our goal is to reach out and expand our horizon as we teach and learn.  With that goal in mind our teachers continue to explore the many options they have using technology. 

One of those options is the availability of student books online. All of our K-5 students now have the availability to pull up their student reading book online from the comfort of their home. This gives the student more practice in reading the stories being worked on in class. It is especially helpful for the student who needs extra practice. Would you like to know your child's comfort level with the material being worked on in class?  Pull up the reading book and listen to your child read and then ask questions about the story. One of the things we are focusing on this year is looking for details. Ask your child a question about the story. What did a character do or say?  How was one character different from another?  Where was the character when (blank) happened?  

You can access the site for the Journeys student book by typing in When you get there you will have to identify the state, the school district (Diocese of Springfield Ed Offices) and the school (St. Michael's Academy elem).  Your log in name is your child's first name.last name.  For example- john.doe.  Your password is fall2015.

Studies show that children who write well also read well.  Does your child like to write? Could your child use more practice in writing?  Would your child like to see a piece of their work published? There are several free sites online where children can go and create their own story. They can use their own drawings and designs or those saved on the site. The possibilities are great. Not only can students write and design their own stories they can look through the library of stories others have written. It is a fabulous way to improve skills while using creativity, technology, art, writing and reading. For more information on two of these sites go to: or and let the writing begin!

Reading Buddies

Thanks buddy! The 1st and 4th graders got together this week to read, share a few stories with each other and create some great bookmarks.

Grade 6 Pendulums

Miss Brown's 6th graders have been busy creating pendulums and doing some analysis. What did they analyze? Whether length, amount of mass and angle of release would affect the number of swings per minute. The students created the pendulums, did two trials and then averaged out the results. They then used the smart boards to document their information and finally put the results into a graph form for easier analysis. Nice job 6th graders!

Perfect Attendance
This week we have two weeks of perfect attendance winners!

Congratulations to our perfect attendance dress-down winners! In order to qualify for the weekly drawing, a student must have no absences, tardiness or early dismissals the previous week of school. We will select one from PreK - 2nd grade, 3rd - 5th grade and 6th - 8th grade. Congrats to this week's and last week's winners!

           Fatima - Gr. 2                                   Jordan - Gr. 4

                                           Olivia - Gr. 8

                   Riley - Gr. 2                                    Max - Gr. 4

                                         Grace - Gr. 8

Pope Francis 

The Diocese of Springfield held a press conference today at the future site of Pope Francis High School. The"Future home of Pope Francis" sign was unveiled as well as artistic renderings. Students from the current Cathedral HIgh School, Holyoke Catholic High School and St. Michael's Academy were in attendance.

Springfield Diocesan School Superintendent Sr. Andrea Ciszewski and SMA students Declan and Petra display the new Pope Francis shirt.

And mark your calendars! The Pope Francis High School Open House will be held on Sunday, November 8, 2015 beginning at 1 p.m. at the current Holyoke Catholic High School campus at 134 Springfield Street in Chicopee. 

A placement test for perspective ninth grade students will take place on Saturday, December 5, 2015 at 8 a.m. at the Holyoke Catholic campus.

Attention 8th Grade Families!

Yearbook Photo Share Opportunity
In past years our wonderful parents have shared photos with the yearbook staff. Many of these amazing photos were included in our yearbook. This year our yearbook company, School Annual/Jostens, is offering everyone a new way to share photos, through an app! 

The app is called Replay It. This app is available through the iTunes App Store and Google Play for the Android and IPhone. Simply download the app, choose our school, create a username and password, and off you go! You can upload, tag, and share photos by event. You can also browse and like photos that other users have shared as well. Our school counselor, Mrs. Freeman, tested the app for ease of use and she gives the app two thumbs up! 

Please take a few minutes to download the app and start sharing your photos with us. We would love to include a variety of photos to showcase our students participating in extracurricular activities throughout the school year.  We will do our best to include as many photos as possible in the yearbook. Download your app today!

Thank you,
Ms. Laporte and the Yearbook Staff

Middle Level Dance

The SMA gym was rocking and rolling this week with some mysterious visitors to the Middle Level Dance! 

Book Fair Volunteers Needed

Attention Parents & Grandparents!!

The Book Fair is coming and we are very thankful for the volunteers that have already signed up. However, we still have a need for volunteers on Thursday 11/12 for the 1p-5p shift. Even if you can only spare an hour or two, that time would be greatly appreciated. Please contact Stephanie Lapierre at  Thank you!

Odds and Ends

Food Drive

The middle level Student Council will be conducting a food drive. They are accepting non-perishable foods beginning on Monday, Nov. 2 through Friday, Nov. 20th. Collected food will be donated to The Gray House. 'Tis the season to think of others!

Please make sure to check expiration dates on donations. We cannot accept any expired products. Thank you.

Label Student Clothing

A reminder to parents to label your child's clothing, hats, gloves, etc. We have many items that end up in the Lost and Found box without any identification. Many of these things are expensive items and we know you would love to be reunited with them!

If your child has recently lost anything, please make sure you check the Lost and Found box located at the top of the stairs, on the right, before you enter the cafeteria.

Fall Back

This weekend is the one! Remember to "fall back" this Saturday evening and turn your clocks back one hour. We will all get an extra hour of sleep before we head out to Sunday Mass. 

When you change the time on your clocks, it's also a good time to change the batteries in your smoke detectors. Safety first!

Parish News
Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish, 123 William Street - Students from Mt. Carmel Parish are invited to an All Saints-All Souls party Sunday, Nov. 8. Dress as your favorite saint! Bring a photo of someone you love who has died to put on the memory board. You can also bring their favorite dish to share. There will be games, food, and prizes. It's in Marian Hall after 10:30 Mass.
The Mt. Carmel Parish annual Memorial Mass is Wednesday, Nov. 4 at   7 p.m.. Refreshments in Marian Hall after the Mass. All are welcome.

Prayer Corner
St. Michael the Archangel, pray for us! 
We pray for all St. Michael's Academy students, families, faculty, and staff, and their special intentions. 

This week we pray in a special way for:  rosary-beads.jpg
Mr. and Mrs. David Maynard
Mr. and Mrs. James Rivers
Mr. and Mrs. Derek Kellogg
Lisa Orr
Rosie LaBreaque
Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Rivers

And we pray for all our recently departed.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen. 
Our prayers continue to be with Mr. Rancitelli, who is undergoing treatment for a cancer recurrence. Each week, a different homeroom sends him cards. If your family would like to send a card, please send it to school with your child, clearly marked for Mr. Rancitelli. His family has set up a blog to write about this experience.Click here to read the blog. 

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St. Michael's Academy 
153 Eddywood Street - Springfield, MA 01118
413.782.5246 office 
413.782.8137 fax