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News from the Principal - November 10, 2020

Hello Black Hawk Families, 

After two days of preparation for the shift to full Distance Learning we are ready to welcome students back tomorrow!  As usual, on Wednesdays, students will be taking their own attendance in Campus; in full distance learning they will do this every day!  Wednesdays are intended to be “Managed Independent Learning Days” for students.  This means students are engaged in learning where they independently complete academic learning tasks and move onto the next one.  This can be a challenge for many of our middle school students.  Building this skill takes time and requires endurance and stamina!  

So, where to begin you might ask?  After taking attendance, students should open up Schoology and review their learning in each class.  Following their schedule, students should open up each course one at a time, review past content and if new content is posted, look ahead.  Wednesdays are essential for students, allowing them time to catch up on missing assignments, message their teachers, and even engage in enrichment and extension activities.  

On Wednesdays, and EVERY DAY it’s critical that students do not just click on their assignments found in the calendar.  We want students to SLOW WAY DOWN and make sure they are reading instructions, engaging in learning activities (reading, listening to/watching a video), prior to attempting their assignment.  

On Thursday, November 12, we will shift into our Distance Learning Schedule for Students and Families.  Cohort C students with the last names A-K will join Cohort A and Cohort C students with the last names L-Z will join Cohort B students.  Students will now Zoom with their teachers during their assigned Cohort days (2 days of the week).  Wednesdays and opposite cohort days are now “Managed Independent Learning Days”.  If your students are struggling on the days they are not in the Zoom classroom with their teachers, please reach out and we’ll brainstorm solutions together.

Although it saddens us to not see our students on campus, we remain hopeful that as a community we are able to engage in healthy and safe practices to curb the spread of COVID-19.  By engaging in these practices, we will increase our chances of returning to campus sooner rather than later.  We are fully committed to continuing to support and engage ALL of our students on their academic journey in full distance learning.  As parents, you are our best partners.  Please reach out to us with your questions, concerns, and celebrations!  Let us know what works and where roadblocks appear.  As a community, we are stronger together and must continue to communicate, support, and reach out to each other.  A well known African proverb reminds us, “It takes a village to raise a child”.  In truth, it takes a community to educate our children.  Collectively, we are responsible for ensuring the students at Black Hawk Middle School have full access to and are included in a healthy and safe learning environment.  We remain committed to our students, our families, and each other in this promise. 

Daily Schedule and Expectations

Everyday of the week students should start their school day by taking attendance in the Campus app.  Directions for taking attendance can be found here:

  • Students are required to check in to Panther Time on their assigned cohort day and are welcome to attend on their non-cohort day.

  • Students are encouraged to work independently from 7:30 AM - 8:45 AM and 2:15 PM - 3:30 PM daily.  This is a great time to organize a learning plan for the day, complete homework, and reach out to teachers with questions via Schoology messenger or email. 

  • For most classes students should be able to complete all of their work by the expected due dates.  Some classes will have daily work, while other classes will have assigned tasks over the course of the week.

A Distance Learning Week at a Glance


Cohort A students attend Panther Time and synchronous classes via Zoom

Cohort B students follow their schedule and access their lessons in Schoology


Cohort A students follow their schedule and access their lessons in Schoology

Cohort B students attend Panther Time and synchronous classes via Zoom


Wednesday is a school day.  All students will practice and engage in managed independent learning skills.  Students will take attendance like they do every other day.  They will check ALL their Schoology course folders for directions, lessons, and content needed for the course.  

Wednesday is a review day where students ask: What have I been learning about? What do I need to look at again? What assignments am I missing and need to complete? If everything is completed, is there an enrichment assignment I would like to do?

Wednesday is also a preview day where students ask: What have I been learning about?  What new content has been posted?  How do I plan for and pace the new content my teachers are pushing out today?  What does the “Peek of the Week” tell me about what is to come?  What questions do I have and what support do I need to be successful this week?

Wednesday is a great day to reach out to teachers, counselors, administrators, and other staff to let them know what questions you have and what support you need.  You can send a Schoology message or email them. 


Cohort A students attend synchronous classes via Zoom

Cohort B students follow their schedule and access their lessons in Schoology


Cohort A students follow their schedule and access their lessons in Schoology

Cohort B students attend synchronous classes via Zoom

Zoom Access, Inclusion, and Participation for Students

  • If you are using a hotspot, put it near a window for the best service.

  • Zoom from a location that is quiet and allows you to focus on your learning (free of TV, video games, other distractions)

  • Attend all of your required Zoom sessions (Panther Time, Cohort A classes or Cohort B classes)

  •  In an effort to honor data privacy, Zoom sessions are reserved for students only.   Unless requested by the teacher, parents are asked not to participate in or monitor Zoom sessions.

  • Use your full name as your Zoom screen name (this is the default - do not change unless requested by the teacher for an activity).  This is how teachers will identify you in the waiting room to admit you into class.  If a nickname or pseudonym is used they may not be admitted to the Zoom room.

  • While in the Zoom classroom please strongly consider using the camera and keep the microphone on mute unless you are speaking

  • Virtual backgrounds are okay if you’d prefer to use one.  Make sure they are school appropriate, neutral, and non-distracting.

  • Any student behavior that disrupts the Zoom classroom may result in removal from the classroom. Parents/guardians and administration will be notified if a student is removed. 

Who do I go to for help? 

Technology  Student Resources
  Tech Help Form 
Student Schedules
Contacting Teachers Staff Directory
Contacting Counselors 6th Grade 
  7th Grade
  8th Grade  
Contacting Administrators Principal
  Asst. Principal
  Asst. Administrator

Student Video Contest

Any student interested in making a 60 second video, in grades 6-12, is eligible to enter this contest for FREE. Your 60 second video must focus on 1 of 3 topics: Promoting Environmental Justice, Strengthening Global Health, Re-Imagining Industrial Systems. Video entries are due by February 25, 2021. You can work in a group!

Learn more Video Contest>

Message/Email Mr. Herem, if you still have questions.

History Day is Here!

Has there always been a topic you have always wanted to learn more about? Maybe a person, a battle and invention? This is your chance! In History Day Club you get to choose ANY topic you want and complete a project connecting it to the theme of the year.  Your topic can be a current event or any topic in world history. The theme for History Day this year is: “Communication in History: The Key to Understanding!”

Students can show their learning in 5 different ways: an essay, display board (tri-fold board), website, documentary movie or an original skit. 

Learn more History Day>

Join the History Day Schoology Group, use the code: 6KKV-9NP4-FB9FW.

Media Center Update

Learn how to request books and schedule a curbside pickup.

Library Books- Curbside Pickup 

Library Books- In Person Checkout

Meal Kit Pick-up

Beginning November 9, all students are eligible for free seven-day meal kits to support their distance learning. To best meet the needs of our families, meal kits will be available for pick up near door number 8 at the lower entrance doors of Black Hawk Middle school at these times:

  • Monday 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM

  • Tuesday 7:30 AM - 9:00 AM

  • Wednesday 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM (Digital Academy Meals will continue)

  • Thursday 7:30 AM- 9:00 AM

  • Friday 7:30 AM - 9:00 AM

Look for the banner and sign for the distribution location.  Families with children in multiple schools are encouraged to pick-up all seven-day meal kits at one school.

Initially, families will be asked to complete this Seven-Day Meal Kit Interest Survey. This will allow the Food and Nutrition Services department to prepare the number of meal kits needed. The survey only needs to be completed once.

The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture has authorized funding for schools to provide meals at no charge to children, 18 and younger, for the entire school year. All secondary families are encouraged to participate in this opportunity. Any child 18 and younger, or parent/guardian of a child is able pick up these seven-day meal kits. For contactless distribution, the seven-day meal kit boxes will be placed on a 6-foot table with a bag of milk on the side. Families will be able to take as many boxes as needed for their children. Food and Nutrition Staff will monitor and replenish the table as needed.


A partir del 9 de noviembre, todos los estudiantes son elegibles para recibir paquetes de comida gratuitos de siete días para apoyar su aprendizaje a distancia. Para satisfacer mejor las necesidades de nuestras familias, los kits de comida estarán disponibles para recoger cerca de las puertas de entrada de las escuelas intermedias o secundarias en los siguientes horarios:

· Lunes 4:00 pm a 5:30 pm

· Martes 7:30 am- 9:00 am

· Miércoles 10:00 am- 11:00 am (Continuarán las comidas de la Academia Digital)

· Jueves 7:30 am- 9:00 am

· Viernes 7:30 am - 9:00 am|es)

Busque la pancarta y firme para la ubicación de distribución.  Se anima a las familias con niños en varias escuelas a que recojan todos los kits de comida para siete días en una sola escuela.

Inicialmente, se les pedirá a las familias que completen esta Encuesta de Interés sobre el Kit de Comidas de Siete Días. Esto permitirá que el departamento de Servicios de Alimentos y Nutrición prepare la cantidad de kits de comida necesarios. La encuesta solo debe completarse una vez.

El Departamento de Agricultura de los Estados Unidos ha autorizado fondos para que las escuelas proporcionen comidas sin cargo a los niños, de 18 años o menos, durante todo el año escolar. Se anima a todas las familias de secundaria a participar en esta oportunidad. Cualquier niño/a de 18 años o menos, o el padre/madre/tutor de un niño/a puede recoger estos kits de comida para siete días. Para la distribución sin contacto, las cajas del kit de comida para siete días se colocarán en una mesa de 6 pies con una bolsa de leche a un lado. Las familias podrán llevar tantas cajas como necesiten para sus hijos. El Personal de Alimentos y Nutrición controlará y reabastecerá la mesa según sea necesario.


Laga bilaabo Nofeembar 9, dhammaan ardayda waxay xaq u leeyihiin xirmooyinka cuntada ee toddobada maalmood oo bilaash ah si loo taageero waxbarashadooda fogaalka ah. Si sida ugu wanaagsan loo daboolo baahiyaha qoysaskeena, xirmooyinka cuntada ayaa la heli doonaa ooi laga qaadan karo meel u dhow albaabada laga soo galo dugsiyada dhexe ama sare waqtiyadaas:

· Isniinta 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

· Talaado 7:30 subaxnimo - 9:00 subaxnimo

· Arbacada 10:00 am - 11:00 am (Waxa sii socon doonaa Cuntooyinka Aqoonta Dhijitalka)

· Khamiista 7:30 subaxnimo - 9:00 subaxnimo

· Jimcaha 7:30 subaxnimo - 9:00 subaxnimo|so)

Raadi bannerka oo saxeex goobta qaybinta.  Qoysaska carruurta leh ee ku kala jira iskuulo badan ayaa lagu dhiirigelinayaa inay ka soo qaataan dhammaan xirmooyinka cuntada ee toddobada maalmood ah hal iskuul.

Ugu horreyn, qoysaska waxaa laga codsan doonaa inay dhammaystiraan Sahankan Toddoba-maalmood ah ee Saamaynta Xirmada Cunnada. Tani waxay u oggolaan doontaa waaxda Adeegyada Cuntada iyo Nafaqada inay diyaariso tirada xirmooyinka cuntada ee loo baahan yahay. Sahanku wuxuu u baahan yahay keliya in la dhammaystiro hal mar.

Mareykanka Waaxda Beeraha ayaa u oggolaatay maalgelinta dugsiyada inay ku siiso cunno lacag la'aan carruurta, 18 iyo kuwa ka yar, sannad dugsiyeedka oo dhan. Dhamaan qoysaska dugsiga sare waxaa lagu dhiirigelinayaa inay kaqeybqaataan fursadan. Ilmo kasta oo 18 ah ama ka yar, ama waalid / ilaaliye cunug ayaa qaadi kara xirmooyinka cuntada ee toddobada maalmood ah. Qaybinta xiriir la'aanta ah, sanduuqyada xirmooyinka cuntada ee toddobada maalmood ah waxaa la saari doonaa miis 6-fuudh ah oo ay ku jirto boorso caano ah oo la socota. Qoysasku waxay awoodi doonaan inay qaataan inta sanduuqyo ah ee ugu baahan yihiin carruurtooda. Shaqaalaha Cuntada iyo Nafaqada ayaa kormeeri doona oo dib u buuxin doona miiska sida hadba loogu baahdo.

Child Care Worker Job Openings

District 196 is seeking applicants to fill vacancies in our tier 1 critical worker child care program. The position is 10 AM - 2 PM, Monday through Friday, at various elementary and middle school buildings across District 196. Rate of pay is $17/hr. Please apply online.

Important Dates In November-December

November 11

Students take attendance in Campus and check Schoology for new content

November 26 -27 

No School - Thanksgiving Break

December 4

End of Trimester I

December 9

No School - Teacher Workshop

Dec 23 - Jan 1

No School - Winter Break