Monument Valley Regional Middle School

Week at a Glance and News and Notes

Note from the Principal:

What a fabulous two weeks we have had!  We go into this school vacation with a lot of energy and whole lot of cheer.  The students finished the calendar year all in, and we are excited to see them on the other side in a new decade of this new millennium!  We have had a bunch of great student activities these past weeks with students and with staff too. Today we ended the year with a fabulous assembly with Berkshire Batteria.  They are a Brazilian drumming ensemble. They played all types of Samba, got the kids up playing and some staff too! Our kids were a great audience and really loved the show.  Last week several sixth graders led a Climate Action that was organized by them and other fifth and sixth graders. We had several hundred students outside the school in the front.  Students gave speeches about taking action to reverse climate change, and pushing us adults to do more to make sure we have a planet that is livable for the future generations. They led some cheers and chants, and then students had a chance to speak out, and many did.  It was a fine example of the spirit of the Monument Valley student: passionate, knowledgeable and caring. Last Friday afternoon we also had a professional development experience with the Anti-Defamation League. They delivered the World of Difference program to the faculty.  It was to give the staff an understanding of the peer leadership training we did last year and we are doing this year. The World of Difference Institute teaches about bias and what we can do about hate in our community. It teaches students to be upstanders and not just bystanders when they see mistreatment, bias or bullying. Currently we have eighteen sixth, seventh and eighth graders doing activities with fifth graders.  We are training thirty more students this year, and will be in all of the grades soon. The high school is also training peer leaders, and they will work with our older students, while our leaders are also interested in going to the elementary school to teach the youngest about difference and tolerance. I am very appreciative of the leaders for their courage and desire to make a difference. I am also appreciative of your understanding to shift Parent Teacher conferences to January to accommodate the staff training.  Last Friday evening we had our first middle school dance hosted by the Student Council. It was a blast and they did a great job with decorations, music and food. This Monday we had our School Advisory Council meeting where we reviewed a lot of the student issues from the past few months, discussed the budget for next year, and made plans for how to engage families and the community in learning about bias and how to address hate in the community. Please join us on Monday, January 27, 2020, for our next council meeting at 8:15 am.  Lastly I want to celebrate a grant we received from the state to support our progressive learning community. We are one of twenty-two finalists in the Kaleidoscope Collective. There were over 500 schools in Massachusetts who applied, so it is an honor and privilege to be part of the cohort of schools accepted. The Kaleidoscope Collective will support our shift to what the state is calling Deeper Learning–making learning more relevant to students by asking them to do real world tasks and integrate learning across the content areas.  Science Week is a good example of deeper learning, where the students study along a theme that covers all of the literacy, numeracy, science, social studies and art standards. Interdisciplinary learning is a skill that our students need to be critical thinkers, become engaged citizens and benefit from the 21st century economy. The state is eager to support leader schools in piloting these innovative approaches to learning. We are on the forefront of progressive education. This could not be done without the hard work of the staff and their commitment to your children.  Thank you for your support. Have a great break with your kids, and we will see everyone fresh in 2020!!!

With gratitude,

Ben Doren


Week at a Glance:

Monthly Lunch Menu:

Monday, Jan. 6

Regular School Day

Tuesday, Jan. 7

Regular School Day

Wednesday, Jan. 8

Regular School Day

Thursday, Dec. 9

Regular School Day

Friday, Dec. 10

Regular School Day

Parent Teacher Conferences

We will hold Parent Teacher Conferences at MVM on the evening of January 29 and the afternoon of January 31.  We have had January conferences in the past, and they have advantages and disadvantages. An advantage is that the teachers really know your child by then, and can give deeper feedback.  A disadvantage is that you are not getting feedback you may want until close to the middle of the year. If you have a question for a teacher in the meantime, please reach out to them directly.  We pride ourselves in good communication, so your child’s teachers will already have reached out this fall if they had concerns, and will continue to do so. If you have concerns about your child’s overall academic or social life at school, please reach out to our Guidance Counselor, Kevin Costello.  And remember that PowerSchool has a lot of important information on performance, and the grade websites have good information on current units of study, assignments and projects. Please reach out to our Guidance Secretary, Debra Spence, if you want to get connected to PowerSchool, and follow this link to grade websites.

Free Healthcare for People 14-25, Walk Ups Welcome!


Yearbooks are available for pre-order. You can order one at this link:

Choose from many different options including extra autograph sections and personalized covers with name and icons that reflect your personality!  Order by January 31st, 2020.

Yankee Candle Fundraiser

The fifth-graders at MV have kicked off our Yankee Candle® Fundraiser and we need your help! We are raising funds for the fifth-grade trip to Nature’s Classroom. Our group earns 40% of every dollar you spend.  Every year we have an increasing number of students requesting scholarships in order to participate in this incredible program. Individual fifth-graders have already earned a total of almost $3300 due to their sales efforts.  Any orders conducted using the link below will add to the MVRMS scholarship fund.

Simply click here ( to see the exciting collection of America’s Best Loved Candles™, candle accessories, flameless fragrance and assorted gift wrap. Shop online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – everything is shipped directly to you.

If you don’t click on the link listed above, you need to enter my Group Number 990009533 and my Seller ID Elizabeth7 in order for the scholarship fund to receive credit.

Click here for my site

If you are having trouble with the above link, you may copy and paste the following link in to your browser:

The online fundraiser will be running from 10-Sep-2019 through December 31, 2019. Please help me by placing your order before the end of our sale.

Please contact Elizabeth Sparks, with any questions.  Thanks, the fifth-grade and I really appreciate your support!

Tools for Schools

If you are a Price Chopper shopper, please register for Tools For Schools at this link:  Your participation from now until December 28th gives us points to buy valuable school supplies.  Our school code is: 14036


Flyers are available on our website at this link:

This week’s flyers:

  • Vacation Week at Norman Rockwell Museum

  • American Red Cross Learn to Swim Lessons @ BSRCC

Last week’s flyers:

  • Kids and Concussions:  What Parents Need to Know

  • RSYP:  Youth Operation Board

  • RSYP:  Ugly Sweater Party

Older flyers:

  • Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce Holiday Shop, Sip and Stroll

  • CHP Family Services

  • February Break Greenagers & Flying Cloud Institute

  • 411 in the 413 Conference

  • Learn Leadership:  Step Up and Drop In @ BSRCC

  • Stateline Youth Wrestling

  • Babysitter’s Training

  • WIC Information

  • Project Bread

  • Richmond Consolidated School’s Craft & Country Fair

  • Guthrie Center Thanksgiving Dinner

  • The Stockbridge Fire Department Annual Ice Glen Night Hike

  • Berkshire County STEAM Challenge for grades K-5 on 10/25/19

  • Parent Training for Parents worried about a child’s relationship with drugs & alcohol

  • Talking with Teens:  How to use current science to talk with youth about drugs & alcohol

  • Crafting Festival of Trees Ornaments @ BSRCC

  • una clínica de vacunación contra la gripe

  • Food Pantries and Meal Sites in Berkshire County

  • Golden Knight’s Girls Basketball House League Registration 2019-2020

  • Children’s Programming at BSRCC

  • Boston Children’s Hospital Autism Spectrum Center Community Lecture Series

  • Housatonic Youth Basketball – 2019/20 House League

  • McKinney-Vento Act Information for Parents

  • Swim Club @ BSRCC

  • Fit for Fall @ BSRCC

  • Basic Rights:  Evaluation and Eligibility A Free Workshop for Parents and Professionals from the Federation for Children with Special Needs

  • Stockbridge Halloween Parade and Pumpkin Walk-About

  • Bingo and Cupcakes Scholarship Fundraiser for The Thursday Morning Club to benefit students of Monument Mountain and Mount Everett

  • 26th Annual Winter Outerwear Drive

  • World Traveler’s Club @ GB Libraries

  • Book Club @ GB Libraries

  • Read and WAG @ Mason Library

  • Halloween Window Painting Contest for Grades 7 and 8

  • Teen Crossfit Training

  • Festival Latino of the Berkshires

  • Berkshire Boxing Club for Kids and Teens

  • Learn Leadership @ BSRCC

  • Fall Fun @ BSRCC

  • Berkshire Sings Fall Concert @ BSRDD

  • Babysitter’s Training Class @ BSRCC

  • TAFDC Children’s Clothing Allowance Fall 2019 Update

  • Kilpatrick Athletic Center:  Swim America; Snapper Swim Club; Rock Climbing

  • Martial Arts Institute of the Berkshires Grand Re-Opening

  • Berkshire County School Fair:  Exploring Educational Opportunities

  • Construct’s Walk into the Future

  • YMCA Camp Hi Rock’s Fall Family Fun Weekend

  • Project Connection:  Berkshire Co-op’s Round Up For Change

  • Berkshire Hills Youth Soccer House League

  • Winter Fun at BSRCC

  • Babysitter Training at BSRCC

  • Youth Aquatics at BSRCC

  • 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

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