CMS HS Life: ACCAS Drama Festival, Team DRIFT, NHS and more...
ACCAS DRAMA FESTIVAL
This past week, 200 high school thespians from all over the DR converged upon the theatre at Colegio Dominico Americano for a fast-paced, high octane four days of learning, collaborating, performing, and creating! Students from American schools in the Capital—Carol Morgan, Colegio Dominico-Americano, MC School, St. Joseph’s School, and St. Michael’s School joined the International School of Sosua, Santiago Christian School, and CapCana Heritage School to present individual school performances ranging from Romeo & Juliet to murder mysteries such as The Mysterious Mansion of Mr. Uno and CMS’s version of the longest running show in Chicago Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind. Students participated in workshops such as Comedic Miming, Shakespearean and Stanislavski Acting Techniques, Improvisation Games, and Creating Theatre from Story. The festival, in its 7th year, was once again an overwhelming success. Congratulations to all involved!
ACCAS Theatre Festival participants on the last day—(about 1/3 of total students)
CMS cast of TOO MUCH LIGHT MAKES THE BABY GO BLIND
CONGRATULATIONS to Team DRIFT!
Team DRIFT has just returned from the FIRST Robotics Regional Competition in Orlando, FL making quite an impression as a rookie team. Due to their hard work, skill level, and the amount of time put in, the team was able to accomplish a number of “firsts”:
- Reaching the semi-finals in a regional competition.
- Developing a team that included members from public schools, local universities, governmental organizations, and local non-profit organizations.
- Raising over $80,000usd in a span of a few months.
- Generating a ground swell of newspaper and television coverage across a number of media outlets.
Thank you to all the sponsors, parents, and mentors who made this all possible! There are too many to mention here, but we would like to especially thank Abraham Dauhajre & Sons, Espaillat-Bonnelly family, Campollo-Buchanan family, Trujillo-L’Official family, Christian-Rey family, Saini family, Osiris Villacampa, and Micah Hall.
We will now be meeting to debrief the experience with a focus on what went well and what could be better. We will also begin to plan and prepare for the next team to assemble and being looking towards next year’s competition. We encourage you to let us know if your son/daughter is interested in being a part of Team DRIFT for 2012-2013. Below is a link to a recent newspaper article and the updates that were sent from the competition (please note the updates were written quickly, and may reflect that in grammatical mistakes):
"Equipo de robótica logra tercer lugar en certamen" - Listin Diario
Wednesday, March 14th
The first day, Thursday, found the team working through the early morning into the evening for final preps to get Sharkatron ready for the competition and pass inspection. Early that morning the team began working by assembling tools, going to the hardware store for materials, and making repairs and adjustments that were necessary after shipping. All was well, and then it quickly wasn't, as we got close to the 8pm deadline, we found another problem, and after almost 13 hours, hope was hard to hold. But, the team found the problem, made a fix, and passed inspection. After the long day, we spent the late evening taking in Universal's City Walk, a larger than life collection of restaurants and shops with lights, Universal globe w/ smoke, a central lake with shuttle boat, and more.
Yesterday, Friday, we started the day with a 7am departure from the hotel to the University of Central Florida's campus, which is expansive and modern, where we rejoined the competition at the arena for game day. You entered an arena full of ninjas, super heroes, pink people, mooses, children of the swamp, zombies, martians, monkeys, and more. We were right in the mix with our straw Caribbean hats, Dominican flag, colorful beads, and most importantly, the now famous Arriba, Arriba cheer! Each team was cheering, yelling, dancing, and spirits were high! Throughout our first matches we proved to be a very strong defensive player that could also balance a bridge like a veteran robot (balancing on a bridge was worth 10 points, whereas shots made were worth only 1 to 3 points). Sharkatron never failed during a match, it was always an active player, an exception more than the rule. Our drivers, Enrique, Rafael, Pablo, and Franklin showed little nerves and improved their strategy in each game. In these early matches we had a full mix of game situations from winning alongside a very strong team; being the only team to score and earn a victory for our alliance team; and being a part of one of the highest scoring matches only to lose in the last seconds. Each match had its own story to tell, each dramatic and great fun to watch. We made baskets, balanced on the bridge, and achieved the ultimate cooperation balance where a team from each side is balanced on the bridge to earn both teams additional points.
Throughout the day we stayed towards the top end of the leadership board, fluctuating between 11 to 25 as we continued to make a solid impression as a rookie team. It was quite a day for TEAM Drift!
Today, Saturday, competitions resumed and we had a successful morning as we "ran the table" and set ourselves up well for the final round selection. In each of our matches we showed we could be a high quality team member because we can easily cross from one side of the court to the other, collect balls from the that side and shoot them back over, and that would deny the other team with opportunities to score, and if a good "shooter" was on our team give them plenty of opportunities. We also could get balls off the ramps and move the ramp to either get ourselves balanced or to hold it up for other teams to roll onto. This was all important because the top eight teams would be drafting their teammates.
We got to the draft with a number of the top teams talking to us about our robot, strategy, and specifications. Then the draft began. The top eight teams select a partner, 1 thru 8, then in reverse order they pick their third, and final partner. Thus these 24 teams head into the final round battle. We went through a number of selections with no suitors, and we noticed the trend that most teams were teams with low numbers (the lower your team number, the longer you have been participating in the competition). Then the 3rd seeded team called our number! Team 4091, which at first our cheering section didn´t hear, or maybe believe, but it was us! And we said yes! This was a challenge because the number 1 seed had also courted us and we saw them going quickly to their clipboards in a scramble to pick the next team after our number was called. Well, we will never know, but we HAD a date to the BIG DANCE.
So, here we are, with an afternoon of matches between these top 8 seeds, and we are riding the high of making into this select group! We will also find out this early evening whether we won the important "Rookie All-Star" award, which also comes with a spot in the national competition. Either way TEAM Drift - Arriba, Arriba, Arriba!
There are conflicting feelings as I write this email. It has been a heck of a ride, and this afternoon proved no different. It was as if we were a part of a Hollywood sports movie, the underdog, surprising opponents and ourselves, as we marched against all odds towards the championship. And it felt wonderful! We battled in the quarterfinals, earning 72 points in one game with our alliance teams, which at that point was the highest score of the tournament. We won the games we needed to earn a spot in the semi-finals - a first EVER for a rookie team in the regional tournament. We could feel the momentum, the energy, and see the finish line - what a story it would be. We entered the semi-finals and we fought. Sharkatron gave it’s all as a defensive specialist and teammate as the TEAM Drift members gave their best. However, the eventual champion we faced in the semi-final was too much for our team, and we feel short as we watched our opponent go on to dominate in the final round. So close!
The awards were next and we had put our efforts into winning the Rookie All-Star award and with our performance we felt very good about our chances. But, the award is not based on your performance, but your application, essay, interviews with judges, and other criteria. The award went to another of the 12 rookie teams at the competition. This was a blow to our team as we knew the impact we had on one another, on the tournament, and the high level we demonstrated in the competition. And this is what we will work to hold onto, remember, and build off of in future years.
We reached a first in the tournaments history with a very competitive performance, we brought together partners from a variety of sectors for the first time, and did it all within a very short timeline. I won’t try to capture all that was "won" as there will be more time for that, but we did come away with so much. More to come.... We are off to dinner with our friends from the Australian team to relive the last few days.
Thank you to everyone who was able to watch and follow us this weekend!
NATIONAL HONOR SOCIETY (NHS)
We will be holding our NHS induction ceremony on Tuesday, March 20th at 1:45pm. We are excited to welcome new members to this prestigious organization. Below is more information regarding NHS:
An NHS member is a community leader in the areas of service, leadership, citizenship, scholarship, and character. He/she contributes to their school and community without compensation and with a positive, courteous, and enthusiastic spirit; is resourceful, dependable, a good problem solver and promoter of school activities; understands the importance of civic involvement, freedom, justice, and democracy; upholds principles of morality and ethics, is cooperative, demonstrates high standards of honesty and reliability, shows courtesy, concern, and respect for others; and maintains a cumulative GPA of 3.8 or higher.
Students who have a cumulative grade point average of 85 percent, B, 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) or equivalent standard of excellence, or a higher cumulative average set by the local school's Faculty Council, meet the scholarship requirement for membership. These students are then eligible for consideration on the basis of service, leadership, and character (and citizenship for NJHS).
This quality is defined through the voluntary contributions made by a student to the school or community, done without compensation and with a positive, courteous, and enthusiastic spirit.
Student leaders are those who are resourceful, good problem solvers, promoters of school activities, idea-contributors, dependable, and persons who exemplify positive attitudes about life. Leadership experiences can be drawn from school or community activities while working with or for others.
The student of good character upholds principles of morality and ethics, is cooperative, demonstrates high standards of honesty and reliability, shows courtesy, concern, and respect for others, and generally maintains a good and clean lifestyle.
The student who demonstrates citizenship understands the importance of civic involvement, has a high regard for freedom, justice, and democracy, and demonstrates mature participation and responsibility through involvement with such activities as scouting, community organizations, and school clubs.
We are continuing to monitor morning tardies following the CMS school policy. Please support our efforts to reinforce this life-habit. Our start time for school is relatively early, so going to bed at an appropriate time, planning/preparing materials the night before, and leaving the house on time, are all ways to help ensure your child is arriving on-time each day.
High School Counselors are currently visiting classes to review the class registration process, HS 4-year plan, college requirements, and provide more information about electives. Students should complete the class registration form within the allotted time frame and return them to the counseling office. An important part of this process is obtaining a parent signature. This is a fantastic opportunity to discuss and ensure that the classes selected match your students academic goals and interests. Counselors are always available to meet with parents if you would like to discuss it in more detail, including if you have any questions or concerns.
We will be trying a new online software program, Genbook (www.genbook.com), that is used by many companies to handle scheduling and has received high marks from customers. We were unsatisfied with our previous process, and we received feedback from parents that confirmed our thinking that we needed to do something different. We will send out detailed information in the coming weeks so that you can schedule your meetings with teachers. We are hopeful you will find this to be a much easier and quicker method!
March 20th – NHS Induction Day
March 21st – Staff Development Day
March 24th – Spring Fest
March 29th – Battle of the Books
March 30th – 3rd Quarter Ends
April 2nd – 6th – SPRING BREAK
April 10th – Staff Development Day
April 17th – Parent/Teacher Conferences