Monthly Archives: January 2011

Mandalas, Madness and the Mayor!

What a busy week for Seabury Middle School! We’ve been getting ready for our “Semester Showcase”, building sets, making mandalas and for some kids- meeting the Mayor!
We had three students take the initiative to contact Mayor Marilyn Strickland to ask her thoughts on homeless children in Tacoma. The students are currently working on videos to promote awareness for the organization, “Stand Up for Kids” which helps homeless and runaway youth. The mayor was very gracious during the interview and offered some insights, advice and statistics as to what Tacoma is doing to help homeless children. Their meeting is featured in Tacoma Weekly! Check out the article here:

During the interview, Mayor Strickland admired the students’ initiative and Seabury’s ability to provide such real-life, powerful experiences for the students. She said, “Seabury Middle School has Tacoma and beyond as their classroom. It’s wonderful to have you as our neighbors.” She was pleased to meet such polite, motived and enthusiastic young people. The students came away with the lesson that even a small group of young people can make a positive impact.

Meanwhile, back at school the students continue to connect to their community as they work with Mike Figueroa, the set designer for Tacoma Little Theater, as he helps them build the set for the technology display they’ve been working on. These Pure Data “patches” will be projected onto the backdrops they built while the Garage Bands perform on Friday night.

In addition to using their creativity to build sets with Mike and Adam, the students had the opportunity to work with local artist Kate Pascal, making mandalas. She helped them connect the symbolism and meanings of mandalas to the study of comparative religions we’re completing.

While thinking of what focal point and design they wanted to use they took a break with some of Kate’s hula hoops!Then they got to work creating intricate designs rich with symbolism that was personal to them. They look amazing. Come see them on display Friday nightIt isn’t all work here. We make time for lots of exercise with our PE classes at the downtown YMCA. Crab soccer anyone?!

The kids even had a chance to go head-to-head in a balance competition with some students from SOTA. (The girls won that one-hands down!)

One of the garage bands gets one more practice before Friday night’s show.

See you Friday night! We can’t wait to show you all the amazing things we’ve worked on this year.
Semester Showcase! 6:30-here at the Middle School.
925 Court C. Tacoma, WA 98403


Yoga at the Middle School:
Every Friday the middle school kids tromp down to Serenity Yoga in downtown Tacoma.
With mats in hand- we feel so manly!

Once we’re there we slowly wake up still, sleepy bodies

We increase our circulation and step up movements with “Surya Namaskar” or sun salutations in Sanskrit, an ancient language from India.

Virbhadrasana I- Warrior I- fierce!

Ardha Chandrasana- Half Moon Pose- Check out this balance!

Check out this focus in Vrksasana- or Tree Pose

Lunge baby lunge- open those hip flexors!

Play time! Handstands all on our own!

Bakasana-Crow Pose- a tricky but fun arm balance.

A gorgeous Wheel Pose-Urdhva Dhanurasana

Finally- our favorite time of day- Savasana- “corpse pose” -integrating all the movements we’ve done and relaxing completely.

Back to school- The benefits of yoga are obvious!

Have a wonderful week! We’ll see you all at the Semester Showcase
Friday, January 28, 2011
925 Court C.
Tacoma, WA!
-Tamara, Paul, Adam and Halley

New Seabury Middle School blog!

Hello parents – this is now the location for all middle school weekly updates. We will continue to send you weekly newsletters, but the website will soon be no more.

Stay tuned for exciting news and photos from Seabury Middle School!

New website:

We are working on some changes with the Seabury websites. Please continue to use and, but all middle school newsletters will now be published in the blog format used at the lower school. Find our weekly updates here:


We have a series of parenting gifted teens seminars beginning next week that we strongly encourage all parents to attend (and invite friends!). Presented by Sandi Wollum, these seminars each focus on a different aspect of living with gifted adolescents. The first is Tuesday, Jan. 18 at Wheelock Library. Find out more here:

Have a great weekend, and we’ll see you TUESDAY.

Middle School Team

Semester showcase:

Here is an invitation to our upcoming Semester Showcase! All middle school families and friends are invited to attend, as are lower school families. Mark your calendars forJan. 28, 2011 at 6 p.m. Tell everyone you know!

New emergency notification system! We have subscribed to a new emergency notification system that we are very excited about. It allows us to enter phone numbers for all parents and staff, and contact everybody at once through an automated system. Yes, that’s right—this means no more phone trees! We will use this service to notify you of weather-related closures or delays, or if there were ever to be an emergency situation.

This means we need your preferred contact information—and ASAP. We could see more snow as early as next week! A letter with more information is attached to this email. Thank you!

Spring trip! As you have all heard, our spring trip is to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. We couldn’t be more excited. We have a few changes to the flyer that went home before break. First, the correct dates are June 6-9, 2011 (we know, we can’t believe it either!). Second, the $100 additional fee will be billed to families at a rate of $25/month from February through May. Please contact Janice Spika in the business office to discuss options. (253) 925-0878

Save the Date! Seabury Middle School- Semester Showcase- Friday, January 28- 6:30-8:00 p.m. Students will display work samples from the semester, Garage Bands will play and snacks and camaraderie served!

Language Arts: We’re cruising through Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne. All students have been given a study guide for the novel with due dates for every few chapters. Next Friday, chapters 9-11 are due. 1100 Words quizzes still happen every Friday.

Comparative Religion: Students have begun an essay project with a self-selected topic based on an aspect of one of the six major world religions we’ve studied this year: Islam, Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism or Sikhism. We got to trek to the library yesterday and get resources. Students have received due dates for outlines, drafts and final essays. The first outline will be due Tuesday, Jan 11- the first draft will be due Thursday, Jan 13. The final draft due, Tuesday, Jan. 18.

Science: We’ve continued to look at cell structure and function. We’ve been reading about how cancer cells work, and we’ve been lucky enough to have a bunch of cancerous tissue samples to look at. (Thank you, Veronica!) We’re also gearing up for another experiment using our brand new incubator. More on that next week.

Math: Algebra students have been examining slope-intercept and point-slope form along with scatter plots and lines of fit. Course 3 students have been looking at different ways to solve questions like, “80 is what percent of 105?” They have used the percent proportion, the percent equation method, and mental math so far. Course 2 students have been comparing rational numbers, converting fractions, decimals and percents, and using prime factorization to find lowest common multiples.

Check out our Flickr page for pictures from this and past weeks!