Academic Highlights

7th Grade River Exploration

Young Authors Conference

Young Authors Conference

On Monday, May 20th, eight of our middle school students joined students from ten local districts at PNW BOCES for the first annual Young Authors Middle Level Colloquium.

The process for selecting participants was highly competitive due to the fact that this was the inaugural year of the event and space was limited. Submitted essays were selected based on the quality of the writing and how well student author’s interests matched the learning sessions being offered.

The day began with a keynote speaker, middle grades author, Elly Schwartz, followed by either one double-blocked learning session or two separate learning sessions designed to foster growth and engagement in the area of writing for middle level learners.

In addition to chaperoning, Mrs. McCollum and Mrs. Pece facilitated a learning session entitled “What’s There to Talk About, Anyway?” The session focused on “animating”  dialogue by considering the many facets of conversation, including movement, facial expressions, intonation, and body language.

Patrick Locitzer, William Busselle, Celia Drury, Josephine Russell Jarmusch, Elaine Llewellyn, Percy Parker, Josie Foley-Hedlund, and Violeta Edwards Salas

All That Remains

Thank you to the Haldane PTA for supporting LDC in bringing this year’s Middle School speaker, Mona Smith, to 6th and 7th graders for an important presentation on historical exclusion and discrimination seen through the lens of Japanese-American internment camps during WWII. A journalist, author, and playwright, Smith adapted elements from her play “All That Remains” on this topic for our middle schoolers. Weaving fact and historical fiction, she helped students process how fear can lead to discrimination and exclusion, and how all countries and democracies are vulnerable to this. Later she followed up during students’ homerooms and was impressed by their thoughtful and broad-reaching questions! Prior to Smith’s presentation, LDC's annual 6th grade project focused on discrimination this year by giving students an experience of how it feels to be excluded also rooted in historical facts. LDC would also like to thank MS principal Dr. Seelke and the entire 6th grade teaching team for their continued support.

Youth Climate Summit

Mr. Wick’s 6th graders attended a Youth Climate Summit at Garrison school on Friday. They participated in various workshops that included everything from inoculating their own mushroom kit and learning about how fungi could be part of the climate solution, to learning about how clothing is the second most polluting industry in the world. They learned how they can reuse, repurpose, and up-cycle used clothing to keep it out of landfills. Finally, students put together and presented their very own Climate Action Plans for their schools. What an amazing day! 

Maple Sugar Update

Watch the presentation about Mr. Wick's 6th grade maple sugarers!

8th Grade Visits FDR's Home

Chess Team Tournament Success

MS/HS Debate Teams Compete at Bard College

In spite of a late arrival to the competition because of snow, the Haldane Middle School and High School debate teams took part in the Bard College Annual Debate Competition on Friday, March 1st. Fifteen middle schoolers and 6 high schoolers debated with other schools throughout the Hudson Valley on three debate topics: whether or not social media’s presence makes the world a better place, whether the UN should be abolished, and whether the US should institute a junk food tax. The competition lasted throughout the day and ended with Haldane being recognized for a number of rewards.

The high school teams did well, winning several competitions. Sophia Kottman, Patrick Reinhardt, and Tess Bayly made up one of the teams while Zack Shannon, Damian Vladimiroff, and Caleb Schmidt comprised the other team. Sophia Kottman and Zach Shannon were selected as two of the top ten debaters at the high school level.

The middle school teams performed incredibly well. Dahlia Beck, Keira Shanahan, and Josie Foley-Hedlund were the 6th-grade team and placed in the top 5 of the best middle school teams. Josie and Keira were recognized as two of the top 10 debaters in the competition. Liliana Cappello, Will Denehy, and Will Busselle made up the 7th-grade team and performed strongly, as well. Liliana was recognized as one of the top debaters. Roy Smith, Amanda Johanson, and Francesca Fina also performed well. Roy Smith was recognized as one of the top 10 debaters. Sam Bates, Owen Edelson, and Matt Rodino were very impressive, and were recognized as the second best debate team in the competition. The most impressive was the team of Rowen Kuzminski, Sophie Sabin, and Celia Drury. They went undefeated and were named the top debate team in the tournament, with all three debaters being recognized as 3 of the middle schools’ top debaters. Rowen Kuzminski was named top middle school debater in the competition.

Overall, Haldane’s Middle School teams finished 11-4 in their contests, claimed 4 of the top 5 debate team spots, and had 7 debaters finish in the top 10. It was a very successful day.

8th Grade Team Bonding

Haldane Maple Syrup on Its Way!

Dr. Benante joined Mr. Wick’s 6th grade Eco class in collecting maple sap. With the help of Sandy McKelvey, the students are reviewing and analyzing data while on their quest to win the best tasting maple syrup in New York state!

6th Annual Community Read


Click here to listen to a podcast interview, created by students, about Counting by 7s.

"From our community to your community." Charlie Keegan

Mrs. Gesson's 8th grade DCI class held a clothing drive for a NTN school in North Carolina affected by Hurricane Florence. They collected over 50 pounds of clothing, and held a movie night to raise funds to ship the donations.

MS/HS Catapult Collab

Our K-12 Campus @ Work!

Mr. Lynch’s HS engineering students assisted the 6th graders with design & building of their Catapult Project. The project is a collaboration between Mr. Wick and Mr. Sniffen, who explore the science and engineering behind catapults, as well as the history of these medieval siege weapons.

Mr. Lynch’s students showed the catapults they designed and created a few months ago.

Jean Saunder's 7th Grade History Contest

Congratulations to this year's winners and all Haldane & Garrison 7th graders for their hard work highlighting Philiptown's rich history.

1st - Julie Shields
2nd - Ella Mekeel & Olivia Scanga
3rd - Mack Lake & Peter Pitaleff (Garrison)
Honorable Mention - Maggie Gordineer & Emily Tomann

Preparing for Community Read Night

Middle schoolers Drop Everything And Read during DEAR time to prepare for Community Read Night on Thursday 2/21. This year's book choice is Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan.

St. Basil's Art Supply Drive

Walker Tinsley and Diego Haskell-Ramirez held an art supply drive while in Mrs. Gesson's 8th grade DCI class. They collected arts and crafts materials for the children at St. Basil's preschool program. The children came to visit Haldane to collect the art supplies, and had books read to them while they were here!

Pictured are Walker (holding the baby) and Diego (holding the book), as well as Sophie, Grace and Sarah, who couldn't resist visiting with the preschoolers!

Hudson River Housing Sports Equipment Drive

Mrs. Gesson's 6th grade DCI class held a sports equipment drive for the children living at Hudson River Housing in Poughkeepsie. Micah, Claire, Amelia and Savannah met with representatives from their facility to give the donations. The students said afterwards how rewarding it was to be able to make a difference in more than 50 children's lives.

2018 Red Ribbon Week

During Red Ribbon Week, students in the Middle School have been creating red hands with positive messages to hang throughout the building. Here's a sample of just a few!

6th Grade DCI Sports Clinic with 4th Grade

6th Grade DCI Plans Reading Day with Kindergarten

Haldane Debate Teams

Haldane’s Debate teams performed magnificently today. The high school rallied and one of their teams finished in 3rd place in the high school division (Sophia Kottman, Joseph Carmicino, and Caleb Schmidt). Ninth grader, Sophia Kottman was voted 3rd best debator in the high school.

The middle school had 3 teams place, claiming the 1st, 3rd, and 5th spots. Francesca Fina, Olivia Knox, and Maggie Gordineer (who never participated in a competition before and who just started working together this week) went undefeated and took 1st place. More amazingly, of the top ten debaters in the middle school, six of them came from Haldane. Seventh grader, Roy Smith was voted top debater in the middle school division.

Mr. Sniffen and the entire Haldane community are very proud of their efforts leading up to this day, and their performances today. Thinking critically and engaging intelligently in challenging discourse centered on real world affairs is what we want our future citizens to be able to do. The Haldane community should be very proud of the future citizens they are producing.

Thank you for all the support and granting us this opportunity.

Community Read - Wonder

Students in grades 6, 7, and 8, and their families, gathered on evening of February 28th for a community discussion of the book Wonder by R. J. Palacio. As a follow up, Haldane middle schoolers are pledging to choose kind.

Discover, Create, Innovate

The 4th and 7th Grade Discover, Create, Innovate classes presented their community improvement ideas to the Cold Spring Village Board and Recreation Department on January 23rd. The students did an impressive job! Their research was so thorough and compelling that the tunnel beautification project was approved! The skate park design group has a follow up meeting with the Recreation Department on February 27th. The projects were truly interdisciplinary, combining research and planning skills, math, and art.

"It's not enough to stare up the steps, we must step up the stairs."
- Vance Havner

Classical Cafe

Classical Cafe is an opportunity for students to swap the usual clamor of the lunch room for the sound of student-made music. Once a month, Haldane students K-8 have the chance to perform music of their choice for their fellow classmates, solo or in groups. Performances range from piano solos, a capella, clarinet ensembles, and even spoken word!

7th Grade at the West Point Foundry

During the Fall of 2017, Haldane’s 8th grade students took a walking tour through time as they visited the West Point Foundry Preserve. In conjunction with the Putnam Historical Society, the students explored the impact and affect the Foundry had on the Civil War, as well as the growth and development of Cold Spring. The tour helped bring to life Cold Spring’s local history as the students discovered the lives of the ironworkers who produced some of the first steam engines and the famed Patriot Gun of the Civil War.

6th Grade Time Machine Competition

The 6th grade students were given the task of creating a timeline that depicted the key events of the ancient civilizations in a creative and engaging manner, while staying true to the agreed-upon scale. The timeline challenge was a competition between the four 6th grade homerooms, with each homeroom putting their unique spin on the creativity component. Mrs. McCollum's class created a time machine that met the requirements, while other classes opted for three dimensional timelines focusing on famous structures and events. Mr. Virgadamo's class was the winner, having created a mechanical timeline, where a marble would trigger the pop up of events as it traveled along the shoot.

Mr. Virgadamo’s mechanical timeline which uses marbles and shoots to animate illustrations of famous events for each of the 4 civilizations.

Mr Sniffen’s Roads Through Time depicts the ancient roads and each civilization’s famous landmarks.

7th Grade Kinesthetic Learning Technique

Students used a Kinesthetic Learning Technique to reiterate the concept of transitions in writing. Transitions "bridge" or connect two sentences, ideas, or topics together in a logical way. Students had to pick up different sentence and transition jumbo cards throughout class, and then circulate the room to find students who they could "match" their cards with and make a logical connection.