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News from the Principal - October 26 2020

If you’re anything like me, I am always looking for what’s good in this world especially during times when it seems we are on the receiving end of bad news.  One of the beautiful things about working at Black Hawk Middle School is seeing human kindness and compassion in action on a daily basis.  Kindness, compassion, and love are foundational in a healthy school environment ensuring all people feel welcome, their voices heard, and their perspectives valued.  

We know these qualities are not only in our school but extend into the homes and lives of our students.  So, who better than our students to remind us of such things!  Check out this Star Tribune article where four of our 8th grade students: Alessandra Kahlhamer, Chloe Larson, Rameer Mosley, and Tyden Sojka had their tributes of kindness, compassion, and love published.  These tributes were the result of an enrichment opportunity in Ms. Alana Pixler’s 8th grade communications class.  Way to go Alessandra, Chloe, Rameer, and Tyden! 

What an important message our students bring to life; we can count on our students to remind us of the people and relationships that are vital to our success.  At Black Hawk we are always thinking about building strong developmental relationships and making meaningful connections: to our students, to our families, to each other as professional educators, and to ourselves so our collective energy can positively fuel an accessible and inclusive community. 

Important Dates in October & November

October 26-27 Spirit Week
October 27 Conferences 4-6 PM
October 28 Conferences 3:30-5:30 PM
November 2-3 School Pictures - Cohort A/B
November 4 School Pictures - Cohort C
November 4 Conferences 8:30-11:30 AM and 3:30-8:30 PM
November 9 Winter I Sports Begin 






BHMS Calendar>

More Info about School Pictures>

Health and Safety Update

In an effort to stay current and timely with our COVID-19 public health updates, we have created an After Hours COVID-19 Reporting system for families to use on weekends and breaks.  Effective immediately, there are now two ways  to report a COVID-19 concern in your family: 

  • During the school day, please contact Molly McQuown the school nurse at 651-905-5817 or email her at

  • During non-school hours (outside of 7:30 AM – 3:30 PM or on the weekend) please utilize this  Black Hawk COVID-19 Student/Family Reporting Form  This can also be found under the Families section on the Black Hawk website.

If there is any uncertainty regarding COVID-19 symptoms, exposure or testing, please keep your student home until contacted by a member of the team. If you have any questions, please contact Nurse Molly McQuown.


Conferences will be held THIS WEEK on Tuesday, October 27th, from 4-6 PM, Wednesday, October 28th, from 3:30-5:30 PM, and Wednesday, November 4th, from 8:30-11:30 AM and 3:30-8:30 PM.  By now, you should have received two emails from the teacher you and your student are conferencing with this fall.  Please remember to note if you prefer a phone conference, Zoom conference, and/or  if you have other accommodations (e.g. an interpreter, or need to meet in person on campus).  

Parents/guardians and students, make sure to use your student’s iPad for conferences.  This way you are identifiable in the Zoom waiting room.  Further, your student can demonstrate how to connect with their teachers via Zoom!  If you use your own device, please make sure your name is visible, so again, you are identifiable in the Zoom waiting room.

More Conferences Info>

BHMS 6th, 7th, and 8th Grade Weekly Academic Planner

A big shout out to our grade level counselors for supporting their grade level teams in creating a “Peek of the Week”.  Use this guide to support your student in organizing their daily and weekly work flow.  We suggest sitting down with your student on Wednesday evenings to plan their work flow for the week ahead, then checking in again with your student Sunday night to see the progress they’ve made.  

You’ll find the weekly academic planner in two locations on the BHMS Website - ACADEMICS - STUDENT RESOURCES and FAMILIES - FAMILY RESOURCES.  Please let us know what you think and how we can improve!

Student Resources Page

Family Resources Page


Spirit Week October 26-30!

Please join in some fun and community spirit by rocking your favorite comfy clothes and representing your favorite sports team whether it’s your favorite HS in the District, professional or club team.  See the spirit week link for details BHMS Spirit Week

Winter Sports

Registration for Winter Sports I, girls basketball and boys wrestling, opens Thursday October 22.  The registration fee is $50.

Register for Winter Sports I on MyPaymentsPlus

More information at BHMS Athletics >

Hello Friends and Families of BHMS Science 

We are excited to witness the culmination of the Egg Drop projects in 6th grade science.  Cohort A came with their final projects today, cohort B should arrive with theirs tomorrow, and cohort C is invited to bring their project to school today and tomorrow if they would like it dropped on Wednesday of this week! 

All students must have a handle toward the top part of their project with the following information: first and last name, cohort, class period and science teacher's name. 

Distance learning students have the opportunity to come to the school and watch their project be dropped. We will start dropping cohort C projects at 1:00 P.M. on Wednesday,  October 28th.  If you would like your student to attend the egg drop celebration you can bring your student to school or we can arrange a bus.  Students riding a bus would be picked up at a designated neighborhood bus stop, arrive at school around 12:30 for lunch then watch the drops starting at 1:00 PM. The bus will leave BHMS around 2:25 PM to deliver students back home. 

If interested, fill out this short google form ASAP to note your student’s participation in the egg drop eggstravaganza and/or if they plan to ride the bus.  Our bus list will be sent to transportation TUESDAY morning so sign up ASAP! 

Principal/Parent Listening Sessions

Hearing from parents/guardians about the lived experience, at home, across cohorts is extremely helpful.  Your questions and insights help guide our practice.  We are continually monitoring and adjusting our teaching and learning practices in an effort to be responsive to our students and their spectrum of needs.  

Two Principal/ Parent listening sessions will be held on Tuesday, November 17, a morning session 9 - 10 AM and an evening session 6 - 7 PM.  Please consider signing up, submitting your questions, and joining in the conversation.

Principal/Parent Listening Session Sign Up

Library Services for Cohort C (Digital Academy) Students

We want Cohort C students to feel connected to BHMS and make sure they have all the resources they need.  Starting this week, cohort C students will have curbside pickup and in person library checkout options, so they can get printed books, too.  

Learn how to request books and schedule a curbside pickup, offered on Wednesdays:

If you feel comfortable coming into the library on Wednesdays to browse shelves and choose books in person, learn more:   

ISD 196 Nordic Ski Team 

SNOW!  It must be getting close to the start of the Nordic Ski season! Our 2020-21 season is scheduled to begin November 30.

Visit if you're interested in a fun and safe sport this winter. Follow instructions on the website to join or for additional information simply email us at Registration is also live at MyPaymentsPlus.

All skiers and at least one parent must attend the Nordic Ski Information Meeting on Sunday, November 1, via ZOOM. Please join us for updated information even if you haven't fully committed to joining (registration through MyPaymentsPlus required by the first day of practice). Email invites for attendance will be sent after completing the Team Enrollment Form on the website. New skiers will be asked to join from 6:30 PM-7:30 PM. and returning skiers from 7:30 PM-8:30 PM. 

If you have a conflict and are unable to attend, please contact Coach Abery at

Dakota County Library Update

Dakota County Library is hosting a series of live events to help families and educators learn about library basics, online homework help, and digital collections. Registration is required using the links below. You also have 24/7 access to this collection of short instructional videos that detail how to use many of our digital resources:

Welcome to Dakota County Library 

Learn how to get a library card and access your online account, search for materials, use research tools, get book recommendations and place holds.

Zoom Virtual Event

Monday, Oct. 26, 7–8 p.m. Register here.

Facebook Event page.

Introduction to Online Homework Help 

Explore HelpNow, an online library resource for students that offers live tutoring, skill-building, a writing lab and more. Gain free access to easy-to-use video tutorials from Lynda that can help your family learn a wide variety of technology skills.

Zoom virtual event

Thursday, Nov. 5, 7–8 p.m. Register here.

Facebook Event page.

Explore E-books and Digital Collections 

Discover the library's free digital collections that support K–12 learning. Learn how to search for topics, browse reading lists, and see what’s available from your favorite authors. Find out how to check out and use e-books, troubleshoot common technology issues and get your questions answered. 

Zoom virtual event

Monday, Nov. 9, 7–8 p.m. Register here.

Facebook Event page.