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The Messenger

March 18, 2016
Vol. III, No.28

St. Michael's Academy
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St. Michael's Academy 

It was a good week here at St. Michael's as we finished up the first week of IOWA testing. Please remember that testing will continue next week and we need you to help your students prepare and come to school each day ready to do their best.

 As we begin Holy Week, it is my pleasure to invite all of our families to the 8th grade presentation of the "Living Stations of the Cross." This moving account of Jesus' last days on earth will be performed at 1 and 2 p.m. at the Church. Our students will be attending one of the presentations and we invite you to join them.

Have a good weekend.


Ms. Ann E. Dougal

Important Dates To Remember!

Please make note of these important upcoming dates:

Violin - Tuesday
Banking - Wednesday


Monday, March 21 through Thursday, March 24, 2016 
IOWA Testing
Grades 3-7

Wednesday, March 23, 2016 at 1 p.m. AND 2 p.m.
Living Stations of the Cross (Two performances)
Grade 8

Thursday, March 24, 2016 
Holy Thursday

Friday, March 25, 2016
Good Friday

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Monday, March 28, 2016
Easter Monday

From The Classroom of Mr. Buldrini - Grade 8
Full Steam Ahead for Grade 8

Virgil certainly knew what he was talking about when, in Line 284 of Book 3 of Virgil's Georgics, he states, "Termpus Fugit" !!! One could maintain, however, that he only related one half of the story. I would add, "and the older you get, the faster it goes !!!"

It is somewhat difficult to believe that, already, we are more than halfway through the third quarter and grade eight has been extremely busy. With the Living History Museum and Schools NEXT Projects already "under their belts," they have been very involved in the remaining four important projects of the grade eight school year: the Living Stations of the Cross , the International Cultural Fair, the Poetry Cafe, and the Science Fair. And once those are done, it's time for their final responsibility of the year; preparing, and getting ready for, their Graduation Liturgy.

In addition to relating the subject matter of our own individual fields of expertise as teachers, our overall goal has always been to foster the growth and development of these young people to the extent possible, with the ultimate goal of their becoming valuable and productive members of society. Considering what they have already accomplished, and are currently attempting to accomplish, it has truly been interesting and gratifying watching them meet the challenges posed. As expected, they have at times "stubbed their toes" and fallen down along the way, but they have always gotten up, "brushed themselves off" and resumed the trek toward their goal.

We hold great hope for the Class of 2016, and we know that, one day, they will more than justify our faith in them.

Grade 8 rehearsing for the upcoming Poetry Cafe

Future Chefs Competition

Hope Clark Brings Home The Gold!

"It's a good thing math is my favorite subject," said 5th grader Hope Clark.

This was one of the first skills Hope realized she had to use, even before she began cooking, during her participation in the 2016 Future Chefs competition sponsored by Sodexo.

To give a little background, Hope was one of 13 students chosen from schools in Springfield to compete in the annual cooking competition. Each year students are challenged to create a healthy recipe. The winners from individual schools are then invited to the city-wide competition where they prepare their dishes. The competition this year took place on March 12th at Roger L Putnam Vocational-Technical High School.

"When we arrived, we were all given chef hats and chef coats," said Hope. "But then I was so surprised because each of us were assigned an assistant and a mentor. The mentor walked us around the kitchen and showed us where things were. And then, we each had our own prep station, our own oven, our own stove and was so nice."

Before the cooking could begin, Hope needed to convert her recipe which yielded 4 servings, into a recipe for 55. This is where her solid math skills were critical. The finished recipe needed to provide 50 sample plates and 5 judging plates. There was no room for miscalculations.

"And then we all started cooking. We had to have our finished plates ready for 11:20 a.m.," said Hope. "Our families could watch from a distance but they couldn't cross the line that circled around the kitchen."

After the finished recipes were plated, the tasting began. The judges ranged from a food critic and blogger to representatives from Sodexo, Big Y and Fresh Market, the Mayor's office and the school department's Food Service.
After the tasting the judges left the room to confer.

"It took about 20 minutes for the judges to reach a decision. It was the longest 20 minutes ever! When they finally came back into the room, we were all so nervous," Hope said with smile. "And then they announced my name as the winner! It was like time froze and I hoped no one was trying to trick me."

But no one was tricking her. Hope was awarded first place and a gold medal for her "Hope-ful Baked Egg" dish. She said she had tried a "bunch" of recipes and finally combined her ideas into one.

Laughing, Hope says, "One of the judges came up to me and handed me his business card. He said to come see him in 10 years and he would give me a job."

Hope said her grandmother taught her knife skills and her aunt from North Carolina would send her cooking videos. She also said she watches the Food Channel on a regular basis.

The Hope-ful Baked Egg recipe will now be sent in to the state finals. She will be notified if she is chosen to compete. In the meantime, she will be enjoying a new bike and helmet, a Fit Bit, cooking utensils, a kid-proof knife glove, a cutting board, a Williams and Sonoma saute pan and her gold medal...all prizes from winning first place!

In closing, when asked what was the most important lesson she learned, Hope didn't hesitate, "I learned that I can do anything because I didn't think I was old enough to cook at my age!"

Help Your Child Prepare

There is still another week of testing so please try to help your child be at the top of his or her game!

- Make sure your children have eaten well on test days. Studies suggest that good nutrition is related to improved attention and concentration. 
- Help your children by encouraging a good night's rest before exams. Children who are tired will have difficulty focusing on their work. 

- Make the morning of test days pleasant. Stress will impair your children's ability to perform their best. 

- Remind your children to dress comfortably, perhaps in layers, so that they are able to adjust to the temperature in the room. 

- Ensure that your children make it to school on-time so that they do not miss any instructions and are allowed ample time to settle in and relax before the test begins.

- Don't be too anxious about your children's test scores. Although it is important to let them know that the tests should be taken seriously, it is also important not to increase test-taking anxiety. 

- Don't underestimate your influence on your children. Taking an interest in what they are doing at school and helping them prepare for tests will certainly have a positive impact on them! 

Perfect Attendance

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 select one from PreK - 2nd grade, one from 3rd - 5th grade and one from 6th - 8th grade. Congrats to this week's winners!

              Ryan - Gr. KB                             Junior Jahbari - Gr. 3B

Eugene - Gr. 7B

Kindergarten Grandparent Event

The Kindergarten students, wearing leprechaun hats and carrying beautiful paper chains that they each created, dazzled their grandparents with several St. Patrick's Day and Easter songs. Feet were tapping and hands were clapping to their fantastic performance! What a great way to celebrate St. Patrick's Day!

To view the full photo gallery, please click here.

Kindergarten Field Trip

On Monday of this week, the Kindergarten classes went to the Springfield Science Museum for a special day of Dr. Seuss fun! They recycled with the Lorax, had an Oobleck exploration, watched a live reptile demonstration and made Dr. Seuss character buttons. It was a Seussical time! 

Stations of the Cross

Thank you Grade 4 for leading us today in the Stations of the Cross.

Living Stations of the Cross

Don't miss this opportunity to see the St. Michael's Academy 8th grade class perform the Living Stations on Wednesday, March 23rd. There will be a 1 p.m. performance and an encore performance at 2 p.m

All are welcome to attend.

 Scenes from last year's performance:

Middle Level Social Studies Cultural Fair
The St. Michael's Gymnasium was filled with excitement this past Tuesday evening as the middle level students presented their social studies cultural fair projects. The displays included information on countries as well as cultural foods, music and dress.

Nice job students!

Iditarod Winner!

Seavey Wins Again!

We have a winner of the 2016 Iditarod!   

Veteran Iditarod musher Dallas Seavey (bib #16), of Willow, Alaska, crossed the finish line in Nome, Alaska, to take his place as the Iditarod XLIV champion at 2:20 a.m. AKDT. Seavey's team traveled the length of the race, nearly 1,000 miles, in eight days, 11 hours, 20 minutes and 16 seconds, setting a new race record! 

Meanwhile back in our 4th grade TWO students chose Dallas Seavey as their musher. Congratulations to Jacob and Vyan - you were tracking a winner! Both explained some of the scientific-based adaptations that Mr. Seavey used included having NHL hockey sticks donated and using them to reinforce his sled.

Pope Francis Placement Test

3rd Placement Test for Pope Francis High School

A Placement Test for students will be administered on Saturday, April 9, 2016 from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon at Holyoke Catholic High School, 134 Springfield Street in Chicopee. Prospective ninth grade students who are interested in attending Pope Francis High School for September 2016 are required to take the test and should register as soon as possible.  There is a $50 application fee which includes the $25 test fee.  For more information or to obtain an application form for enrollment, call Ann Rivers, Director of Admissions at 331-2480, ext. 1132 or go to

5K for SMA!!

Get Ready for the 5K for SMA!

It's that time of year again! Are you ready to dust off your sneakers and support a great school? 

Now is the time to start thinking about registering for the annual "5K for SMA" run on Saturday, May 7th. Grab the family and head over to St. Michael's for a 5K run. Not a runner? We will have a walking route. Not fond of walking? The SMA Carnival will be happening the same day! Cheer on the runners at the finish line and have a little fun at the carnival. There will be something for everyone on May 7th at St. Michael's.
Run registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. and there will be a FREE Kid's Run at 9:00 a.m. The race will kick-off at 10 a.m. with the runners. The walkers will follow. Entrance Fees are $25 per person before 4/1; $30 per person before 4/15 and $35 per person after 4/16. $15 per student.
Online registrations will be available beginning on Monday, March 21st. Click here to register online after Maarch 21st: 

Calling All Alumni


We are trying to organize a St. Michael's Academy Reunion this spring or early summer. Please send your email or contact information to Mrs. Phyllis Lund at or contact us at 413-782-5246 ext. 1202.
Please spread the word!!

 Parish News

3rd Annual Lenten Fish Fry
Friday, March 18th
2-7 p.m.

St. Catherine of Siena, 1023 Parker Street in Springfield will hold its
3rd Annual Lenten Fish Fry. Tickets are on sale now so get them while they're hot! There are a limited amount of tickets available at the door so remember to get yours early...last year's Fish Fry SOLD OUT!
Tickets are $12/adults & $8/children 12 and under and are on sale in the parish office (Mon-Fri, 9:00-4:00) and after all masses. Dinner includes 1/2 lb of fresh haddock, french fries, homemade coleslaw and a beverage.
Join in the fun on March 18th from  2-7 p.m. in the Parish Center and take out will be available!


P A L M   S U N D A Y
9-11 a.m.
Adults ~ $5
Children ~ $3
Family ~ $10
Join the
 Holy Cross Parish in the St. Michael's Gym on Palm Sunday,
March 20th 
for an inexpensive Pancake Bunny Brunch from  9-11 a.m.. There will be pancakes, bacon, juice, coffee, and delicious baked goods. Visit with our very popular Easter Bunny - a picture for $5 - enjoy an Easter Egg Hunt, and a Color & Crafts Area. There is also a Bountiful Easter Basket Raffle. Come, welcome Spring, sit and enjoy the fun & friendship!


Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church, 123 William Street - Attention adults and youth who volunteer to have roles in the Holy Thursday 7 p.m. Mass  -- First Communion procession, washing of feet, presentation of holy oils are invited for a pizza supper in the downstairs Bertoni Room at  6 PM. The families of particiipants are welcome as well. Please call 734-5433x102 with names for roles, and numbers for pizza.


Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church

 3rd Annual Allison P. Dwarska Scholarship Pasta Dinner
Thursday, April 7th
St. Catherine Of Sienna Church 
1023 Parker Street Springfield

Tickets for the Allison Dwarska fund raiser are $13.00 and can be purchased at the parish office. Raffle tickets for a 60" TV are $5.00 each.  

All are invited to donate finger desserts at the April 7th event. Please place in a throw away container. If you have a dessert and are unable to deliver, please bring to the OLSH office on Wednesday.


Snow Days

Even though the weather has been FABULOUS, Mother Nature is always unpredictable.  In the event of inclement weather, St. Michael's Academy follows the Springfield Public Schools cancellation notices (due to bus transportation). If Springfield Public Schools cancel school - we cancel school, if they delay school - we delay school. Please check your local television stations for announcements.

We will do our best to send out a Blackboard Connect announcement to our families as well.

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

Mr. and Mrs. Michael Sullivan
Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Breda
Joan Griffin Kavanaugh
Sr. Ann Marie McKenna
Joseph Grimaldi

And we pray in a special way for all our dearly 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