Learning Updates for April 29 to May 3

May 3, 2024

Fifth Grade Math Tackles Volume Calculations

Fifth graders have been studying how to calculate the volume of rectangular prisms using the length times width times height formula. Each Thursday is station rotation day in math class, and this week students were exploring various ways of calculating volume, including constructing with unit cubes, arts and crafts to solve volume formulas, and filling prisms to capacity. Next up in math, students will be navigating the coordinate grid, learning how to represent different data sets as they prepare for the upcoming fifth grade curriculum showcase.

– Patrick Murray, fifth grade teacher

Our Feathered Friends: After School Celebrates Bird Week!

In collaboration with the innovation team, the After School program spent the week back from break delving into all things bird!!!

Our little bird enthusiasts in the pre-kindergarten and kindergarten crew soared into Bird Week! We started the adventures by diving into the world of bird nests, crafting cozy cup nests outside, and discovering what makes the perfect bird nursery. We learned about local birds from backyard buddies to woodland wonders. We then honed our bird call skills by tuning into chirps and tweets of all kinds, perfecting our feathered impressions. Next, we enjoyed a lively reading of Mo Willems’s Don’t Let The Pigeon Drive the Bus! Finally, and we flew into Friday painting our very own birdhouses to celebrate our feathered friends!

Our first and second grade friends tackled a variety of bird-related learning discoveries during the week. We started things out by coating pine cones in Sunbutter and seeds to hang outside the After School classroom as bird feeders in front of a trail camera. We had students vote on what they thought we would get pictures of … birds, squirrels, squirrels and one bird, or just pinecones blowing in the wind? By the very next day, we had documented data that the squirrels had taken every last one! Students also painted a bunch of exotic birds (and their ancestors) to make a display in the Gallery that showed bird evolution and variety. We also played “Jays and Juncos,” which is a running game in which students need to collect food (pompoms) and bring it back to their nests (cups). They learned about the importance of nest/food source location as well as the relationships between different species as jays can steal food from juncos.

Our third through fifth graders were on the case by recording all of the bird data that was collected over April break. Be sure and drop by and check it out or ask an After School student about what they discovered and learned from the data!

What’s better than learning about and celebrating birds? Actively helping the environment! On Friday our students of all grades (prekindergarten through middle school) learned about invasive species before helping to remove garlic mustard around campus. Garlic mustard originates from Europe and was brought to America to be used in cooking. Unfortunately, it spreads quickly with no native predators, pushing out local plants and reducing the food available for our native species. We ended up collecting two massive bags full and making a huge impact on the local BDS garlic mustard population.

– Blair Fross, director of school year auxiliary and specialty programs

Arts Update: Spring Music Showcase Set for June 5

During the fall, the first BDS Music Showcase was held in the Palandjian Arts Center. Student participation and audience attendance at this event were incredible, and we are excited to announce that we are planning a spring version of this event!

Similar to the arts electives offered in the first trimester, there are seventh and eighth graders in the BDS Spring Music Showcase and Audio Technology electives this spring. Through collaborative work, these students have helped assemble an impressive “musical talent show” in which all middle school students were invited to perform. The line-up is going to be awesome and we don’t want you to miss it! It would mean a lot to us to have as many BDS families attend this event as possible, as it will be a wonderful way to celebrate the amazing talent here at BDS!

The BDS Spring Music Showcase will be held on Wednesday, June 5, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. on Far Field (the rain location is in the Barn). All families are welcome to bring lawn chairs, blankets, and picnic dinners to enjoy during the event. Please be mindful that we are a nut-free school community!

Please check the Scoop in the coming weeks for more information about this event.

– Clive Sutton, eighth grader, and Mrs. Bettinelli, music teacher

A student in the air catching an ultimate disk

By John O'Neill, director of athletics |

May 17, 2024

It was a slow start to the spring for the varsity ultimate team. After the first two games were canceled due to bad weather, the team opened with lackluster performances and entered last weekend’s Middle School Jamboree with a 1-2…

By Josh Sussman, school counselor |

May 14, 2024

On Thursday, May 2, Belmont Day was represented at the AISNE Health and Wellness Conference in Norwood by food program director Tara Lightbody, second grade teacher Nancy Fell, physical education teacher and mindfulness director Alex Tzelnic, school psychologist Arlene Silva,…

By Sarah Merril, director of high school placement |

May 14, 2024

Congratulations to our eighth grade class on their recent decisions on which high schools they will attend in the fall. We’re proud of every student for the journey they’ve taken to reach this milestone in their education. While the decision…


May 14, 2024

PE Update: Fourth Grade Olympians Shine In Competition In fourth grade, the study of Ancient Greece made its way out of the classroom and into their physical education classes! The young Olympians learned all about the spirit of the Olympic…
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