Thursday, February 26, 2009

Internet Awareness for Parents and Educators Presentation

Mansfield Middle School is sponsoring an Internet Safety presentation on Tuesday April 14 from 7:00- 8:00 PM. It will be held at the MMS Auditorium, 205 Spring Hill Road, Mansfield, CT. They have extended the invitation to all the Region 19 schools including Ashford. There is no charge for the presentation. It covers the topics of Child Predators and Cyber Bullies and offers awareness regarding Internet threats as well as strategies for parents and educators to help protect children who use the Internet. It is being presented by Supervisory Special Agent Thomas Lawler of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
For additional information visit Mansfield’s Internet Safety Resource page:

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

How I Spent my Winter Vacation....

Thanks to funding from an EETT (Enhancing Education Through Technology) grant a group of 7 faculty members spent a chunk of their February vacation at school school creating new and exciting lesson plans to integrate technology into other curricular areas. Tech Coordinator Marji Roy organized a February Institute for teachers to work together sharing ideas, skills and creating. Teachers from a wide cross-section of the school participated including Rick Rossi (Grade 7 Science), Annie Perkins (Grade 8 Science), Kelly Knotts (Grade 6), Carol Moran (Enrichment), Chris Busse (Grade 2) and Michelle Bibeault (Kindergarten) along with Marji Roy assisting and problem-solving.

The types of projects developed reflect the curriculum units at the different grade levels. Projects ranged from using micro-processors to monitor temperature affects on breathing rates of goldfish, using video and iMovie to evaluate success or failure of bridge design, using temperature probes to monitor chemical reactions, exploring hurricanes, inventions, Ashford past and present, and transportation. On Monday second grade students got to start right in on the new "My Town" project designed by Mr. Busse for their social studies unit on communities.

Over the next weeks and months you will see the results of this workshop in some of the new activities your children will be completing using technology tools.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Science Night Attracks Hundreds of Spectators

submitted by Mrs. Perkins and Mr. Rossi, Photos by Mrs. Lindsay

The Ashford community came out in droves, despite the chilly temperature
s, to show their tremendous support for science education at Ashford School. The gym and cafeteria were packed on the evening of February 4th as participants of all ages displayed their knowledge and enthusiasm for science. There were over 200 displays from every discipline with many hands-on, minds-on activities. Even the art room was called into service as over 12 exhibitors chose to demonstrate their science research through PowerPoint presentations. Three eighth graders and one seventh grader qualified to enter their projects in the Connecticut Science Fair in March. Congratulations and best wishes for success at the Science Fair go to Nicole W., Ethan L., Paul F., and Jacob A. Honorable mention was awarded to Devon A. for her experiment on freezing fresh vs. salt water. The best part of the evening was to see the pride and responsibility with which students shared their projects with other members of the Ashford community. There is great hope for science education at Ashford School!

Mr. Rossi reported on his class wiki ( that
the students in the seventh grade created 48 different projects for Science Night. Seven of them were projects done by partners and 41 were done by individuals. Five of our team members entered the Connecticut Science Fair and our team had one winner. This project, The Coefficient of Restitution, (The science of bouncing balls) will be going onto the State competition at Quinnipiac University next month. Congratulations winner!

Other projects ranged in variety from, Is it possible to teach a chicken to dance: an in
vestigation of chicken intellect, to Microbe-opolis: a mini metropolis in a petrie dish , with all kinds of chemistry, physics, and math thrown in between. Several students did demonstrations such as Dry Ice Tricks and The Simple Machines in my ATV . Four additional students created Power Point presentations and presented them in the multi-media room.

One of the most amazing things that happened this year, was the number of peo
ple that came to Science Night. We were overrun by hundreds of spectators coming to view the scientific curiosities prepared by our students. It was great fun.