Category: Student Life

Students Spreading Smiles

Originally published on The Magnet by Megan Jacques

The 2019-2020 school year is one month in, and the school is seeing a rise in positivity.

Students have already taken steps to help each other have a great school year where everyone can feel appreciated.

It began on the first day of school when a mystery writer began putting up inspirational and uplifting messages on the whiteboard next to Ms. Tomkiel’s room in the Computer lab. These messages, sometimes as simple as “Happy Monday,” have been a daily occurrence and serve to help lift everyone’s spirits.

When asked what inspired them to write the messages on the board, the mystery writer said that, “Well I’ve always thought that ever since I was younger, that my parents used to teach me that positivity was the answer for a lot of things. And that even if positivity couldn’t fix something, necessarily, it could at least help you on your way to fix it.”

This mystery writer, who wished to remain anonymous, hinted at more random acts of kindness to come. They said, “there are new people getting involved, and hopefully some exciting things that are coming up on the school, we will see more of an impact.”

The mystery writer also added that they “definitely hope that students see the messages and don’t see them as something sarcastic, or even other peoples’ positivity, that they take them as genuine acts of kindness and something that people can look at as a real thing, not something that would be just done because someone thought about it one day, just like a reminder.”

Along with the mystery writer, there have been three other students who have been spreading positivity in their own way. Seventh-grader Brooklyn Moore and eighth-grader Emily Parnicky, along with sophomore Angelika Osowiecki, organized and ran an inspirational quote day for the middle school.

After school one day, these students decided that they would write notes to put in their friends and classmates’ lockers to not only boost positivity but also cure their boredom.

Although they did not see a huge impact within the Middle School, Parnicky hopes that the school would embrace the fact that “it shows that you can do something, it can be a random act of kindness.”

These students hope that the school will continue to work to spread positivity which can be anything as simple as a smile. Moore said, “Especially when the high schoolers smile at me because I am just a little seventh grader, it makes my day.”

Head of the Middle School Tara Robinson said that “middle school has historically been a time thought of negative angst emotion roller coasters. It is really easy for kids to feel down because it is such an overwhelming time. And positive emotion at this time won’t be the default.”

In regards to Upper School involvement, Robinson added, “If we make them [The Middle Schoolers] stronger it will permeate to the rest of the MacDuffie community.”

These little reminders can not only raise positivity around the school in general but also help mental health overall.

School Counselor Deanne Klingensmith has been working at the school for seven years and has encountered many different aspects of mental health.

Klingensmith described what she does at the school saying, “I am available for any students to come to talk to me about various issues. It can be anything from serious home issues to past events to my boyfriend broke up with me to I’m stressed out over a test. Unfortunately, there are some kids who have suicidal ideation. Such a various array of different issues that kids will come in to talk to me about.”

When asked about how the spread of positivity impacts mental health, Klingensmith said, “positive reinforcement is a huge factor in changing behavior, changing thoughts. Even if something as simple as walking in the hallway and you see a friend and you say “Hey! How are you?” and give them a positive smile, it makes you feel better.”

A random act of kindness does not have to be a big project with lots of planning. Simply saying hello to someone and smiling at them in the hallway or holding open a door are ways that you can spread kindness and positivity.

Positivity is spreading around the school, but it cannot continue to foster without the small acts of kindness from everyone.

In the words of our mystery writer, Osoweicki, Parnicky and Moore, “Continue spreading positivity!”

If you need to talk to someone, do not hesitate to contact Mrs. Klingensmith. Her office is open for walk-ins or you can contact her at the email below.

For alternative resources or more immediate help,  do not hesitate to contact one of the hotlines below.

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255

Other resources:

Magnolia Day 2019

Magnolia Day, hip hip hooray! Awards, stories shared, and tears shed for good times past turned to laughter and play in this traditional end-of-year community celebration. Students enjoyed a bounce house, photo booth, and a cookout on the lawn courtesy of SAGE. Students also received copies of The Muse literary magazine, The Magnet, and the yearbook. This year’s yearbook is dedicated to Ms. Valentine.

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Take a Load Off! Backpack Safety at MacDuffie

Take a load off!

The MacDuffie School learned the importance of backpack safety in The Little Theater yesterday during a demonstration headed by athletic trainer Kevin Konstant.

When used correctly, a backpack is a practical way to organize school supplies and leave hands free as students travel between classes. With a variety of styles and colors to choose from, backpacks are also a fashionable way to display one’s sense of style or showcase school pride!

However, many students overfill their backpacks or wear them incorrectly, which can lead to problems like back pain down the road. Konstant stressed the need for students to lighten their load and to wear their backpacks properly to lessen the risk of back pain or injury.

A properly worn backpack exceeds no more than 10 percent of a students’ bodyweight. A good backpack for daily use has wide, padded shoulder straps and individualized compartments to help position content efficiently. Heavier items like books should be placed closest to the students’ back while lighter, smaller items may be stowed in outside compartments.

In addition to total weight and distribution, students should be mindful of they wear their bags. Always utilize both shoulder straps and employ additional chest straps, if available.  Never wear a backpack more than four inches below the waistline, which affects proper carrying posture.

At The MacDuffie School, we encourage our students to be mindful of how much they carry throughout the day and visit their lockers frequently to store unnecessary textbooks.  

Honor Roll – Second Semester 2017-18

Congratulations to The MacDuffie School students who made Honor Roll for the second semester of the 2017-2018 school year. The entire MacDuffie faculty, fellow students and your parents and guardians are proud of your sustained academic effort and we believe it is worthy of recognition! This list is sorted by grade and then alphabetically.

First Name Last Name Grade  Recognition
Matthew Brown 6 High Honors
Moroni Hua 6 Maximum Honors
Koda Jacque 6 High Honors
Emily Parnicky 6 Honors
Adam Stetson 6 Maximum Honors
Sara Avery 7 Maximum Honors
Sophie Griffin 7 High Honors
Julianna Mason 7 Maximum Honors
Zachary Mavlouganes 7 Honors
Artem Nazarov 7 Maximum Honors
William Platt 7 Maximum Honors
Ryan Priestly 7 High Honors
Gabriel Shumway 7 Maximum Honors
Nathan Stevenson 7 High Honors
Alexis Stratton 7 High Honors
Reece Tramazzo 7 High Honors
Michael Aboukasm 8 High Honors
Liam Brown 8 High Honors
Malcolm Brown 8 Maximum Honors
Hannah Donnelly 8 Maximum Honors
Samantha Jacques 8 Maximum Honors
Zi Jian Jiang 8 Maximum Honors
Seiri Lee 8 Honors
Akana Nakamura 8 High Honors
Emmi Nunes 8 High Honors
Piper Polga 8 High Honors
Kiara Rogers 8 High Honors
Brian Squire 8 Honors
Sophie Stetson 8 Honors
Mohammed Abbasi 9 Maximum Honors
Dima Aboukasm 9 Maximum Honors
Mikhail Belanovich 9 Honors
Junqi Cui 9 Honors
Vy Dinh 9 High Honors
Lily Griffin 9 Maximum Honors
Madilyn Hernandez 9 Honors
Qi Hu 9 Maximum Honors
Marie Hua 9 Maximum Honors
Jun Hyun Kim 9 Honors
Jinqi Liu 9 Honors
Jiahao Lu 9 Honors
Katarzyna Ludkiewicz 9 Maximum Honors
Jaidan Luis 9 High Honors
Evan Manioudakis 9 High Honors
Nam Nguyen 9 Honors
Jillian Ouimet 9 High Honors
Leslie Pena 9 Maximum Honors
Zachary Roulier 9 High Honors
Chenling Tang 9 High Honors
Maxim Tishchenko 9 Maximum Honors
Laurel Tramazzo 9 High Honors
Zhirui Xia 9 Honors
Sudenaz Yilmaz 9 Maximum Honors
Junmin Zhu 9 Maximum Honors
Wenxin Zou 9 Maximum Honors
Sofiia Akhmechet 10 High Honors
An Cao 10 Maximum Honors
Duc Dao 10 Maximum Honors
Chloe DeAngelis 10 High Honors
Dung Doan 10 Honors
Grace Drost 10 High Honors
Hongde Han 10 Honors
Jayden Holder 10 High Honors
Haoran Hu 10 Effort
Ian Hua 10 Maximum Honors
Alison Jackson 10 Maximum Honors
Megan Jacques 10 High Honors
Franck Kepnang Ndjong 10 High Honors
Arina Kharakhashyan 10 High Honors
Madeleine LaChance 10 Maximum Honors
Maya Levine 10 Maximum Honors
Peiyuan Lin 10 High Honors
Pengcheng Lu 10 Honors
Huiqin Mao 10 High Honors
Dale Messer 10 High Honors
Nhung Nguyen 10 Maximum Honors
Trung Nguyen 10 Maximum Honors
Kwan Poon 10 Honors
Savannah Richard 10 High Honors
Jordyn Shepard 10 Honors
Hannah Sudsbury 10 High Honors
Daniela Tishchenko 10 Maximum Honors
Ayse Beyza Tumturk 10 Maximum Honors
Mehmet Tuncer 10 Honors
Si Jun Wang 10 Maximum Honors
Yinan Xiao 10 Effort
Jonah Abrams 11 Honors
Turec Akalin 11 High Honors
Charles Avery 11 Honors
Aurora Basnet 11 Maximum Honors
John Lucas Bellingall 11 High Honors
Georgianna Brown 11 Maximum Honors
Ryleigh Cauley 11 High Honors
Asmaa Chaudhry 11 Maximum Honors
Yanru Chen 11 Maximum Honors
Julia Cloutier 11 Honors
Mikhail Galaktionov 11 Maximum Honors
Mustafa Gureltol 11 High Honors
Yunxia Hallowell 11 Maximum Honors
Ziqi He 11 Honors
Eugene Hong 11 Honors
Hazim Jaber 11 High Honors
Craig Judicki 11 Honors
Gabriella Keser 11 Maximum Honors
Chloe LaDuke 11 High Honors
Kirill Lazarev 11 Maximum Honors
May Le 11 Maximum Honors
Quynh Huong Le 11 Maximum Honors
Alexis Legowski 11 Maximum Honors
Manning Li 11 High Honors
Jiachen Lu 11 Honors
Yu Lu 11 High Honors
Anna Ludkiewicz 11 Maximum Honors
Ava Marion 11 Honors
Haley Moriarty 11 Maximum Honors
Gia Nguyen 11 High Honors
Hoang Nguyen 11 Maximum Honors
Nicolette Peterson 11 Maximum Honors
Chenxi Pu 11 High Honors
Olivia Ramirez 11 Maximum Honors
Jacob Roulier 11 Honors
Sarah Scott 11 Maximum Honors
Emir Sengun 11 Honors
Arhum Shaikh 11 Maximum Honors
Sophia Sharp 11 Maximum Honors
Mengqi Sun 11 Maximum Honors
Pelin Top 11 Honors
Zhenhao Wang 11 High Honors
Zixun Wang 11 High Honors
Talia Wiesel 11 Maximum Honors
Mengxi Wu 11 Honors
Hanbei Xiong 11 High Honors
Shiyu Zhao 11 Honors
Owen Albanese 12 Maximum Honors
Isabel Alvarez 12 Maximum Honors
Aniis Anderson 12 Maximum Honors
Narcizo Andrade 12 Honors
Emilee Auclair 12 Maximum Honors
Emre Ban 12 Maximum Honors
Mason Baral 12 Honors
Alexander Burch 12 Honors
Long Chau 12 Maximum Honors
Nguyen Co 12 Honors
Ethan Deecher 12 Maximum Honors
Kayla Deecher 12 Maximum Honors
Nathan Enders 12 Maximum Honors
Zeynep Erol 12 Maximum Honors
Chufeng Fang 12 High Honors
Alvaro Garcio 12 High Honors
Isabelle Gerboni Amaral Lopes 12 Honors
Yicheng Hao 12 Maximum Honors
Seungyeon Hong 12 Maximum Honors
Tae Seol Hong 12 Honors
Sin Hee Hwang 12 Maximum Honors
Maren Jung 12 Maximum Honors
Neville Lee 12 High Honors
Chenxi Li 12 Maximum Honors
Hanyang Li 12 Honors
Xiner Liu 12 Maximum Honors
Ziyu Liu 12 Honors
Yuanjin Lyu 12 Maximum Honors
Khaylen Mahdi 12 Maximum Honors
Varona Maysonet-Ayala 12 Maximum Honors
Son Bao An Nguyen 12 Maximum Honors
Matthew Niemczura 12 Maximum Honors
Hyunggwon Oh 12 High Honors
Mojolaoluwa Oke 12 Maximum Honors
Reagan Os 12 High Honors
Vincent Pedersen 12 High Honors
Khanh Pham 12 Maximum Honors
Taylor Pluta 12 Honors
Tianxiang Qiu 12 High Honors
Jinglin Qu 12 Maximum Honors
Phuong Quach 12 Maximum Honors
Jaeyong Shim 12 High Honors
Jordan Skibel 12 High Honors
Sarah Soares 12 Maximum Honors
Jocelyn St Onge 12 Maximum Honors
Ashley Stebbins 12 Maximum Honors
Samuel Szczur 12 Maximum Honors
Dogukan Tumturk 12 Maximum Honors
Nam Vo 12 Maximum Honors
Shilin Wang 12 Honors
Ziyang Wang 12 Maximum Honors
Yiran Wei 12 Maximum Honors
Tianyue Xiao 12 High Honors
Zixiao Xu 12 High Honors
Beyza Yilmaz 12 Maximum Honors
Siyu Yin 12 Honors
Caitlyn Zaranek 12 Honors
Suchen Zhu 12 Maximum Honors