Monument Valley Regional Middle School

Week at a Glance and News and Notes

Note from the Principal:

This was another great week at Monument Valley.  The fifth grade took a field study adventure to the Berkshire Museum to see the Leonardo Da Vinci exhibit.  The sixth grade took their annual hike up Monument Mountain. The two seventh and eighth grade teams, Team Orange and Team Green, buckled down to dive into academics this year.  This is a solid start to the year: exciting field work and community building in the younger grades, serious study in the older grades. We are shepherding in the students to the middle school experience, and taking advantage of the new structures we are building in our program.  Each grade level has an approach that makes learning deeper. The fifth grade has double blocks of literacy and math-science which allow the teachers the time and flexibility to inspire the students. The sixth grade has expanded learning time in the morning to create more space for projects and study.  The looping in the seventh and eighth grade is in the second year, so we are reaping the benefits of the new program. The eighth graders got to start the year with the same teachers as last year. This accelerates the learning process by deepening the relationships between adults and students, and they can get right into learning with expectations and routines already set from the previous year.  The Exploratory teachers are all embedded in the grade teams in the Advisory program, so we are all taking care of the students well being and social development. I want to acknowledge that all of these developments are led by the staff. Educators have had the time over the past years to propose new designs for instruction, and get a chance to try things, adjust and align with student needs and interests.  We have a dedicated and capable faculty to work with your amazing children!

Have a good weekend!

Ben Doren


Week at a Glance:

Monthly Lunch Menu:

Monday, Sept. 9

Regular School Day

Tuesday, Sept. 10

Regular School Day

Wednesday, Sept. 11

Regular School Day

Thursday, Sept. 12

Regular School Day

Friday, Sept. 13

Regular School Day


Advisory is the core unit of our middle school community.  Students start every day in this small group. Every teacher is an Advisor at Monument Valley, which lets us keep the groupings small at about twelve students per Advisory.  Some days it is just a quick check in before announcements, and then off to the day. Twice a week, though, we have extended Advisory. One of them is Community Advisory. Students learn to talk in a circle format, listening to each other and discussing things relevant to their lives as students and in our larger local and global community.  This is the basis of Restorative Practices, a way of building community that honors each individual, teaches us to listen to each other, and address concerns and aspirations. We also do Academic Advisory throughout the school year. This is when students check in with their Advisor and teachers about progress and goals in their classes, get help organizing their school lives, and reflect on their progress through the year.


Attached is the Student and Family Handbook for this year.  Please take the time to review the handbook yourselves, and with your children.  It has a lot of important and helpful information, and explains how the school works.

School Advisory Council

The School Advisory Council is the group of parents that advise on the School Improvement Plan every year.  Please join us for our first meeting on Monday, September 16, at 8:15 am or 2 pm—each is the same meeting, but at two times to make it more convenient for you to join.  We need interested parents and guardians to help make the vision real and relevant to our community.


The supply lists for each grade went out this summer.  If you need help in obtaining supplies we have some on hand in the main office.  Please let the office know if you need assistance.

Meet the Teachers Night

The date for Meet the Teachers Night is Tuesday, September 17, from 6:30-8:00 pm.  We love this night, as it gives you a chance to get an overview of the year, and meet the teachers who work with your children.

Scholastic Book Fair

Our Scholastic Bookfair will take place Friday, Sept. 13th  through Monday, Sept. 23th. All students will visit the bookfair with their class and have the opportunity to shop or create a wish list from a great selection of fiction and non-fiction books.  Payment can be made with cash or checks payable to Monument Valley. Families may shop at the beginning or end of school, (7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. ) or during Open House night on Tuesday, Sep. 17th from  6:00 to 8:30 p.m. Families may also shop online through our bookfair webpage:  (

As a special incentive to get books into the hands of our students, each grade has the opportunity to win a water balloon contest with Mr. Doren and our administrators if they buy the equivalent of one book for each student in that grade.

Volunteers are needed to help set-up, run, and take-down the fair.  If you love books and kids, follow this link to sign up for a slot:     SignUp will even send you a reminder e-mail.  Thanks so much for your support of our bookfair.

MVRMS Student and Parent Handbook 2019-2020.pdf

This week’s flyers:

  • Berkshire Hills Youth Soccer House League

  • Winter Fun at BSRCC

  • Babysitter Training at BSRCC

  • Youth Aquatics at BSRCC

Last week’s flyers:

  • Pittsfield Figure Skating Club

  • Learn Leadership:  Step Up and Drop In @ BSRCC

  • Ski Butternut Student and Family Season Pass Application

Julie C. Duffin
Principal’s Secretary
Monument Valley Regional Middle School
313 Monument Valley Road
Great Barrington, MA  01230