Davidsen Announces New Online Uniform Sales
Davidsen eighth graders topped off their year with an action-packed dance, with the theme “Light up the Night.”
The students were dressed to impress as they danced the night away! Many thanks go out to Davidsen administration, including Shanta Talamantez (eighth grade teacher liaison and dance photographer), Shane Heath and his fabulous 3-D art students who helped with the amazing dance decor, and Chef Toner and her culinary students who made awesome chocolate covered marshmallows. Also, thank you to Monica Kelly of PSAV for supplying the lighting. We also thank all the parents who volunteered their time in so many ways to make this eighth grade year a success – especially to the dance committee leads, Kerry Planeta and Ellen Dadlani.
Turn to pages 94-95 of the print magazine to see highlights from this year’s dance.
Looking to next year, mark your calendars for the Open House on Aug. 5 from 3:30-6:30 p.m. This is a great opportunity for all students, incoming and returning, to pick up their schedules and meet their new teachers.
In other exciting news for the coming year, the PTSA is excited to offer uniforms online for the first time! There are two changes to the uniform policy this year:
1. Any Davidsen shirt may be worn on any day of the week!
2. School uniforms will only be offered online.
Check out http://www.davidsenuniforms.com for the current style of polos, tees, sweatshirts, as well as new styles including ladies cut tees, dry-fit shirts and bling items.
The Davidsen Middle School front office has items on hand to view and try-on to determine proper size and desired colors. Please be sure you view the samples as all orders are custom made and cannot be exchanged or returned. Summer office hours are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
All orders placed by July 18 will be available for pick up at Open House. Orders placed between July 19 and Aug. 1 will be shipped to your home for a $6 fee. Please note that Aug.1 is the final day to purchase uniforms online and have them before school starts. Orders placed after Aug. 1 will be sent home with your child approximately five to ten days after school starts or you may choose the ship to home option for $6.
Davidsen’s Updated Uniform Policy
Tops: Any Davidsen Middle School logo top (yes, any!) may be worn. All items offered online can be worn any day of the week! All logo shirts from previous years are also acceptable.
Bottoms: All bottoms must comply with Hillsborough County dress code. No specific colors are required.
All uniform tops are now only available at http://www.davidsenuniforms.com.
Enjoy your summer, Dragons!
By Karen Ring
Another Successful Year at Davidsen Comes to a Close
May at Davidsen was filled with year-end performances and celebrations – as well as a lot of hard work.
May had a festive start when the teachers were treated to a weeklong Mexican Fiesta for Teacher Appreciation Week, May 2-6. The PTSA would like to thank Starbucks Coffee, Bakery Mélange, The Olive Tree, IPop Gourmet Popcorn, Chili’s Bar & Grill, The Grind Coffee, Gladiator Boot Camp, 100% Chiropractic, Durrett Orthodontics, Westchase Flower Co-op, Tijuana Flats and the many parents who donated items to make this week a success.
On May 12 Davidsen music program students from chorus, band and orchestra headed to Orlando for a special performance by the Blue Man Group. On May 17 the Davidsen Orchestra held their final performance at Grace Lutheran Church. The band then held their end of year concert on May 26 at Sickles High School. Both performances showcased the growth of our music department.
Davidsen’s Battle of the Books team went head to head with schools from across the county on May 12, ending with a strong finish. On May 25 Davidsen Math League took its turn showcasing their skills. (Results were not available at press time.) That same evening, Davidsen’s athletes were honored at the All Sports Banquet.
Of course, a number of May activities bid farewell to our graduating eighth graders. On May 18 outgoing students swapped final thoughts with one another on yearbook signing day. May 20 was the much-anticipated eighth grade dance, featuring the theme “Light Up the Night.” And on May 24 eighth graders had their last hurrah with a trip to Islands of Adventure. These are memories the students will cherish for a lifetime and we are grateful to all of the staff and parents who made these activities possible.
The final events of the year are coming up this first week of June, with award ceremonies on June 1 for sixth grade (10 a.m.) and seventh grade (3 p.m.). Eight grade students will celebrate their award ceremony on June 2 at 5 p.m.; the final day of school is June 10.
The end of the school year is always bittersweet as we bid farewell to our eighth graders. In just three years we have watched these students blossom from shy, incoming sixth graders to confident young men and women. Best wishes to all as you move on to the next phase in your education.
We not only say goodbye to these students, but also their families. Many outgoing families have played such integral roles here at Davidsen. You will be missed, but the impact you have had on this school will leave a lasting legacy.
Finally, please join us in thanking our generous Business Partners! A special thank you to the World of Westchase, Mathnasium of Westchase the math learning Center, Orangetheory Fitness @ Westchase, V-smart by your Virtual Portal, The Kitchell Group Real Estate Professionals, Sharon J. Durrett Orthodontics, Kool Kids Pediatric Dentistry, Westchase Music School, BayOne Reality Services, Bivens Orthodontics and Burger 21 for supporting our school! Please visit them in person or on our Business Partners page at davidsenptsa.org/business-partners for more information.
Attention Returning Students and Parents!
Keep an eye out over the summer months for our new Online Spirit Line Clothing Store, scheduled to launch in July at http://www.davidsenptsa.org Stay .tuned for exciting information regarding Davidsen’s uniform policy!
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Eighth Graders Host Final Fundraising Efforts
Our first annual Dragon Blast, held on March 24, was a huge success!
Formerly known as the Medieval Fair, this much-anticipated annual fundraiser had a whole new look and feel this year with new games and prizes devoted to Dragon spirit. We offer our special thanks to organizer, Kristen DeAngelo, and all of the parents, teachers and faculty members who devoted their time and energy to this wonderful event. It’s a wonderful tradition that lets students and faculty let loose for an afternoon while raising funds for our school.
Now the focus turns to our final Eighth Grade Fundraising efforts of the year. On Friday, April 8, Davidsen will be hosting its first ever Dodgeball Tournament from 4- 6:30 p.m. at the school. There will be four divisions (sixth, seventh and eighth grades and an all-girls division). Each team will consist of five players, and the cost is $10 per player. All Dragons are welcome to join in on the fun and try to be the first ever Dragon Dodgeball Champion!
Then, on April 16, Davidsen eighth graders will host a car wash at the Westchase
7-Eleven (at the corner of Linebaugh Avenue and Countryway Boulevard) from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This will be the last fundraising opportunity for the eighth graders, so please come out and show your support for our graduating class!
Also coming up later this month is a very important day: Administrative Assistant Day on April 27. We are so very thankful for all that the Davidsen front office staff does for our school. Be sure to drop by the front office on April 27 to let the administrative staff know how much they are appreciated.
During the week of May 2-6, we will celebrate all of our wonderful Davidsen teachers during Teacher Appreciation Week. May is also jam-packed with end-of-year activities. Please refer to Upcoming Dates on this page to keep tabs on all that is coming up.
As we near the end of the school year, it will soon be time to bid farewell to our outgoing PTSA members. We will be looking to fill several positions. If you would like to learn more about volunteer opportunities for the 2016-2017 school year, please contact Nathalie Kobel at email@example.com or Leslie Blaze at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also learn more about the Davidsen PTSA by visiting http://www.davidsenptsa.org.
Finally, please join us in thanking our generous business partners! We offer our special thanks to the World of Westchase, Mathnasium of Westchase the Math Learning Center, Orangetheory Fitness @ Westchase, V-smart by your Virtual Portal, The Kitchell Group Real Estate Professionals, Sharon J. Durrett Orthodontics, Kool Kids Pediatric Dentistry, Westchase Music School, BayOne Reality Services, Bivens Orthodontics and Burger 21 for supporting our school!
Please visit them in person or on our Business Partners page at davidsenptsa.org/business-partners for more information.
Upcoming April Dates
8 Dodgeball Tournament
16 Eighth Grade Car Wash, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
27 Administrative Assistant Day
Upcoming May Dates
2- 6 Teacher Appreciation Week
4 Conference Night
16 NJHS Induction, 6 p.m.
17 Eighth Grade Yearbook Signing
20 Eighth Grade Dance, 7-10 p.m.
21 Relay for Life at Alonso
23 All Sports Banquet, 6:30 p.m.
24 Eighth Grade Field Trip
27 PTSA U-Pass Day
30 No School
By Karen Ring
From Preview Night to Dragon Blast
March is packed with activity at Davidsen.
Attention, fifth grade parents! Davidsen will host its annual Sixth Grade Preview Night on Thursday, March 10, from 5-6:30 p.m. This is a great opportunity for parents and incoming students to meet Davidsen’s wonderful teachers and administrators, get a peek inside the classrooms and learn more about all of the exciting electives, clubs and sports programs available at Davidsen. Davidsen’s NJHS students will be on hand to give tours and answer any questions your child may have about the move to middle school.
Preview Night is also the perfect time for incoming parents to learn how they can get involved with the school. Even if you only have limited time to spare, becoming a part of the PTSA is a great way to stay connected as your child makes the transition into middle school. To learn more about the PTSA, visit http://www.davidsenptsa.org or like us on Facebook by entering key word Davidsen Middle School PTSA.
It is hard to believe we are now well into the third quarter here at Davidsen. We would like to take a moment to congratulate all 233 students who earned straight A’s during the second semester. This is no easy feat and these students were rewarded with a special PHD Breakfast on Feb. 12.
The moment students, teachers and administrators have been waiting for all year is almost upon us. Dragon Blast will be held Thursday, March 24, from 2-4 p.m. This year, the annual student-only festival, formerly known as the Medieval Fair, is getting a complete overhaul that puts the focus on school spirit! In addition to fun new games and prizes, there are a number of new ticket options. Students can purchase $5 Ticket Strips, a $10 Wristband that covers Unlimited Dodgeball2You and Unlimited Inflatable Runs, or the $40 Ultimate Play Bundle that includes 40 tickets and a free wristband!
All ticket options can be pre-ordered online and the tickets will be delivered directly to the student on the day of the Dragon Blast – it doesn’t get any easier than that! Order forms are also available in the front office. As an added bonus, all those who pre-order will receive a limited edition silicone Dragon spirit band, which won’t be available on the day of the event. Tickets/wristbands will also be sold during lunch March 21-23.
The Dragon Blast is the PTSA’s primary annual fundraiser and proceeds directly benefit our wonderful school. There is a tremendous amount of planning and prep-work that goes into this fundraiser. To learn more about how you can help, even if it just for an hour or two, contact Kristen DeAngelo at email@example.com.
Speaking of fundraisers, we would like to thank everyone who came out to our First Annual Applebee’s Flapjack Breakfast and our Burger 21 Spirit Night. Your support of our school is greatly appreciated.
Last, please join us in thanking our generous Business Partners. A special thank you to the World of Westchase, Mathnasium of Westchase the math learning center, Orangetheory Fitness @ Westchase, V-Smart by your Virtual Portal, The Kitchell Group Real Estate Professionals, Sharon J. Durrett Orthodontics, Kool Kids Pediatric Dentistry, Westchase Music School, BayOne Reality Services, Bivens Orthodontics and Extreme Graphics for supporting our school! Please visit them in person or on our Business Partners page at davidsenptsa.org/business-partners to learn more about the services they have to offer.
Have a wonderful spring break, Dragons!
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Students Win Big at Reflections Ceremony
With second semester underway, we begin with some exciting news.
Of the 25 Davidsen students whose Reflections entries advanced to Hillsborough County judging on Jan. 10, five students walked away with awards: Dance, First Place: Michelle Contreras; Photography, First Place: Natalia Farraz; Photography, Third Place: Nolan Jaffray; Music Composition, Honorable Mention: Angelina Krinos; and Literature, Honorable Mention: Eric Young.
Congratulations to these students and to all who participated in this year’s Reflections Art Program, whose theme was: Let Your Imagination Fly.
Congratulations are also in order for those students who earned straight A’s during the second quarter. These students will be invited to the next PHD Breakfast on Feb. 12. Conference Night for the third quarter will be held on Feb. 23. There will also be a PTSA General Membership meeting in the cafeteria that evening at 5 p.m. All are welcome to attend.
Our annual Spirit Night at Burger 21 will be held Sunday, Feb. 21. Dine in or carry out any time during the day and a portion of your purchase will be donated back to Davidsen. What an easy (and delicious!) way to give back to our school!
Here’s another simple way to give back to our school: It’s time to gather up those Box Tops! Our current Box Top drive is underway and runs through Feb. 19. During this time, the PTSA will hold three weekly participation drawings both for students and staff members who turn Box Tops in each week. One final $25 grand prize will also be awarded to both the student and staff member with the highest overall total of Box Tops submitted. So, start clipping away – Box Tops are such a valuable resource for our school!
Believe it or not, Dragon Blast (formerly known as the Medieval Fair) is quickly approaching! This fun festival for students and faculty is scheduled for March 24 from 2-4 p.m. As always, it takes a lot of volunteers to make an event of this magnitude a success. To learn more about how you can help, contact Kristen DeAngelo at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last, we may just be weeks into the second semester, but it is time to start looking ahead to the next school year. At the end of each year, we bid farewell to outgoing PTSA members and look forward to welcoming new volunteers into our Davidsen family. If you would like to learn more about volunteer opportunities for the 2016-2017 school year, please contact Nathalie Kobel at email@example.com.
Keep it up, Dragons! It has been such an amazing year.
Upcoming February Dates
5 No School (Fair Day)
12 PHD Breakfast
21 Burger 21 Spirit Night
23 Conference Night
By Karen Ring
Welcome Back, Dragons!
The weeks before winter break were a flurry of activity at Davidsen!
From a very festive outdoor band concert that featured a visit from Santa Streeter and the Davidsen music department’s performance at the Westchase tree lighting to the school’s first annual Holiday Shop, lots of fun activities got everyone in the holiday spirit. The PTSA also treated the Davidsen faculty to a holiday snack bar on Dec. 18 as a reminder of how much their efforts are appreciated.
Thanks to all of the volunteers who gave their time to make these events possible, and to all of those who donated funds to purchase gifts for our Davidsen families in need.
In upcoming news, all 25 Davidsen students whose Reflections entries advanced to Hillsborough County judging will have their project on display at a gallery on Sunday, Jan. 10, from 2-4:30 p.m. at Jefferson High School. The judges will decide which candidates from schools throughout the county will advance to the state competition. The 2016-2017 theme will be announced at the ceremony. Good luck to all of our participants!
Looking ahead, it is time to start rounding up those Box Tops. The next Box Top drive will be held during the month of February. More details will be coming soon.
Our annual spirit night at Burger 21 will be held Sunday, Feb. 21. Dine in or carry out any time during the day and a portion of your purchase will be donated back to Davidsen. What a great excuse to take a break from the kitchen!
And, last, it is time to talk about the event that teachers and students look forward to all year: The Medieval Fair. The fair is getting a modern update this year. The newly named “Dragon Blast!” will be held on March 24 from 2-4 p.m. for students and faculty and will put the focus on school spirit. This traditional festival of food and fun will be filled with awesome new entertainment options that will get the students fired up with Dragon pride! It takes lots of volunteers to make this event a success. If you are interested in learning more about volunteer opportunities, contact Kristen DeAngelo at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Welcome back, Dragons. Here is to making the second half of the school year even better than the first!
By Karen Ring
December is Chock-Full of Activity at Davidsen
Some congratulations are in order!
Davidsen had 221 students who earned straight A’s during the first quarter to earn PHD status – that is one out of every four students! These students were treated to breakfast on Nov. 13.
We would also like to commend all of our students who completed an entry for this year’s Reflection’s theme, “Let your imagination fly.” Davidsen had an impressive 91 entries; a quarter of those students will advance to the county competition. All of the students who submitted a Reflections entry enjoyed a special breakfast on Nov. 20.
This year’s Great American Teach In on Nov. 19 was also a huge success. The students learned about careers ranging from animal training and nursing to meteorology. This program is such a valuable resource that helps students see where their education can take them in the future. Thanks so much to all of the parents and community members who participated.
Dragons, have you ever wondered what it would be like to sit back and enjoy a meal while your teachers waited on you? Now is your chance! On Dec. 10 between 4:30 and 8:30 p.m. head to Westchase Pizza & Pasta, where Davidsen faculty will be serving meals for the evening. Proceeds from this event will support our PTSA fundraising efforts.
Other upcoming opportunities to contribute to our school include a carwash on Dec. 5 (look for information to be sent home with students soon) and the next PDQ Waters Spirit Night on Dec. 16 from 3-10 p.m.
In other exciting December news, the PTSA will host the first-ever Holiday Shop at Davidsen during the week of Dec. 14. Students will be able to shop from an assortment of items ranging from $1-$15, giving them a chance to purchase fun, inexpensive gifts for family and friends.
December also brings several opportunities to see Davidsen’s growing music program in action. As a fitting addition to our band and orchestra programs, Davidsen added a choral program this year. Judith Romera, who served as a peer evaluator for music in Hillsborough County for the past 13 years, joined the Davidsen faculty to serve as the orchestra and chorus director, and assistant band director aiding Ms. Cochran with our very popular band program.
In November, the Davidsen jazz band and the newly organized chorus joined forces to perform at the Westchase Elementary Veterans Day program, as well as the Hillsborough County School Board meeting.
On Dec. 11 at 7 p.m. the band will perform their Winter Wonderland concert at Davidsen. The following night, Dec. 12, the orchestra, chorus and jazz band will perform at the Westchase Tree Lighting Ceremony in West Park Village for Santa’s Pre-Flight Parade. Last, on Dec. 15, the orchestra and chorus will perform a Not-So-Silent Night concert at Grace Lutheran Church at the corner of Linebaugh Avenue and Dale Mabry Highway. They will be joined by the Adams Middle School Orchestra for a performance that is sure to get you in the holiday spirit. These are all great opportunities to come out and support Davidsen’s expanding music program.
Thanks to all of our wonderful Davidsen teachers and staff, our PTSA members and our business partners for their support in making the first half of the year a success. We wish all of our students and their families a happy holiday season!
Important December Dates
2 Conference Night
5 Car Wash Fundraiser
10 Westchase Pizza & Pasta Fundraiser
11 Band Concert at Davidsen
12 Band, Chorus, Orchestra at Tree Lighting
14-18 Davidsen Holiday Shop
15 Orchestra/Chorus at Grace Lutheran Church
16 PDQ Spirit Night
21 Winter Break Begins
By Karen Ring
Show Your Davidsen Spirit!
Did you know Davidsen Spirit Line items are available for purchase throughout the year?
Now is a great time to stock up on our cold weather apparel, including the popular grey hoodie and our sleek new long-sleeved T-shirt. And the best part – both of these items can now be worn Monday through Friday! Visit http://www.davidsenptsa.org to place your order before the next cold snap hits.
Another great way to show your school spirit is to take part in the monthly Family Fun Nights at PDQ Waters. Upcoming dates are Wednesday, Nov. 18, and Wednesday, Dec. 16. Just mention that you are with Davidsen and PDQ will donate a portion of the proceeds from your purchase. The funds will be used toward a fabulous and free dance for our graduating eighth graders in May.
Westchase McDonald’s will also be resuming a monthly Spirit Night. Look for more information in the coming weeks.
Congratulations to all of our students on their performance during the first nine weeks, especially to all of the PHD students who earned straight A’s. Those students will be honored with a special breakfast on Nov. 13.
The Great American Teach In will take place Nov. 19. Volunteers are needed to make this event a success. If you have a career or a hobby that you would like to share with the students, please contact Leslie Blaze at email@example.com. This is a great opportunity to share your knowledge with students and inspire them to consider their future goals.
In other exciting school news, Media Specialist Merle Supple held Biographies and Breakfast during the first quarter in an effort to increase student achievement in reading comprehension and writing and foster positive relationships between students and faculty. Students read a biography of their choice and completed a short summary of the book. To encourage participation, students who turned in a completed summary were invited to attend a special breakfast before school in the Media Center, where they were able to enjoy some delicious donuts and juice while they discussed their books with other students and faculty members. These conversations were not only a form of assessment to see what the students had learned from their reading, but also aimed to build a sense of community and pride within the school.
The event was a huge success! Approximately 65 students and 15 faculty members participated, and all had a fabulous time. This event could not have taken place without the extreme generosity of the Westchase Publix on Linebaugh Avenue, which donated all of the juice and water for the event.
Thanks to Ms. Supple for sharing this wonderful program with us. We have so many more exciting things in store this year. For now, we wish all of our Dragons and their families a safe and happy Thanksgiving!
Important November Dates
11 Veterans Day: No School
13 Report Cards/PHD Breakfast
19 Great American Teach In
23-27 Thanksgiving Break
By Karen Ring
New Community Discount Card Available at Davidsen
Have you heard about the New Community Discount Card available for order through Davidsen Middle School?
PTSA members were hard at work over the summer revamping the card, formerly known as the Westchase Discount Card, to provide access to a Web portal available for all smart phones. For the same low price of $10/per card, you now have access to the discounts offered through 33 local vendors on the card, as well as those available through the 45 additional vendors that can be found on the portal. And that number continues to grow, meaning more savings for you!
Best of all, the proceeds from the sales of the card help support your local schools. If you would like to purchase a Community Discount Card or if you are a local business that is interested in taking part in the Community Discount Portal, please contact Nathalie Kobel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In other exciting news, the ballots have been cast and the vote is in. The theme for this year’s Eighth Grade Dance is Glow in the Dark. The dance committee is now hard at work developing this theme and working on T-shirt designs. More information will be coming your way soon. For now, be sure to mark your calendars for the dance on May 20.
Speaking of dances, the first dance of the school year will be held on Friday, Oct. 9 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. If you haven’t done so already, be sure to sign your child up for the PTSA. Members will be admitted to the dance at no charge! You can purchase your membership at http://www.davidsenptsa.org.
Our first Box Top Drive of the school year is also currently underway and will run through Friday, Oct. 30. Box Tops function as a key fundraiser for our school, with the money going to fund events and grants for students and teachers. It’s easy to do, and lots of small contributions added up to $800 in free money for our school last year. Please take the time to clip and send them in with your child in a baggie with his or her name, lunchroom teacher and number of box tops enclosed. Please look for eBoxTops, bonus box tops and even printouts on your store receipts. Ask your neighbors and relatives to collect for us too! This fall we will award $25 prizes to the student and teacher with the most submitted, as well as a random drawing for all participants and another one for the rest of the Davidsen staff who participate.
During the week of Oct. 27-31 students will be celebrating Red Ribbon Week with numerous activities meant to remind them of the dangers of drugs and alcohol. These are just a few things we have in store for the students this fall.
As always, the best way to stay informed on all of the school happenings is to become a member of the PTSA. There are always plenty of volunteer opportunities to be had. Whether you have an hour of time here and there or are looking to volunteer during one of our many school functions, every little bit helps. To learn more about available opportunities, contact PTSA President Leslie Blaze at email@example.com or stop by the Davidsen front office and fill out a volunteer form.
Important October Dates
1-30 Box Top Drive
7 Home basketball game vs. Martinez
9 Fall Dance
26 No School
27-30 Red Ribbon Week
By Karen Ring
Welcome Back, Dragons!
We kicked the year off with our annual Teacher Breakfast on Aug. 17. Members of the PTSA Hospitality Committee were on hand to welcome the teachers and staff back to school with a delicious assortment of casseroles and baked goods – just a way of reminding them how much we appreciate all they do.
On Aug. 21 new and returning students received a warm welcome at the Back to School Open House. There is always much preparation that goes into these events at the beginning of the school year and we thank all of the PTSA members and Davidsen staff who graciously volunteered their time.
Next up is the Eighth Grade Committee Kickoff Meeting on Sept. 11 at 9:30 a.m. in the cafeteria. All eighth grade parents are welcome to attend to find out about volunteer opportunities for the many activities that will take place throughout the year.
The Volunteer/Business Partner Breakfast will be held Thursday, Sept. 17, at 9:30 a.m. in the cafeteria. For businesses that are interested in partnering with Davidsen, it is not too late. E-mail Gwenn Silverstein at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about the many benefits of becoming a Davidsen Business Partner.
If you haven’t already done so, be sure to order your Community Discount Card. Our Ways and Means Committee was hard at work over the summer designing an exciting new Community Discount Program. The newly revamped Westchase Discount Cards now feature a virtual portal app, which gives you access to even more vendors and offers not listed on the card. You get the card and the app for just $10. To learn more about this amazing new discount program, e-mail email@example.com.
We also have a number of new additions to our Spirit line, including our new baseball T-shirt ($20) and a spirit T-shirt featuring our beloved Dragon ($10). Order forms for the discount card and spirit wear were sent home in the first-day packets. These items can also be ordered on the PTSA Web site, http://www.davidsenptsa.org.
The best way to stay informed about all of the school happenings is to become a member of the PTSA. Plenty of volunteer opportunities always exist. Student membership also has its privileges, including a free ticket to the first school dance of the year and two uniform passes to be announced by Principal McBrien throughout the year. Visit the PTSA Web site to find out how you can become a member.
Finally, it is time to get those creative juices flowing and start brainstorming on those Reflections entries. This year’s theme is Let Your Imagination Fly. Submission deadlines and details will be announced later, but it is never too early to start looking for inspiration.
The school year has only just begun, but it is already shaping up to be another successful year at Davidsen Middle School!
Important September Dates
11 Grade 8 Parent Meeting, 9:30 a.m.
16 Home Basketball vs. Farnell, 6 p.m.
17 Volunteer/Business Partner Breakfast, 9:30 a.m.
24 Home Basketball vs. Walker, 6 p.m.
29 Conference Night, 7:30 p.m.
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Open House Aug. 21
Dust off those uniforms, Dragons!
It’s time to get ready for another exciting year at Davidsen Middle School. The first day of school will be Tuesday, Aug. 25. In preparation, Davidsen will host its annual back to school open house on Friday, Aug. 21. This is an opportunity for incoming sixth graders to have the school all to themselves from 3:30-4:30 p.m. The open house will then be open to all students, sixth through eighth grades, from 4:30-6:30 p.m.
Davidsen’s open house offers students a chance to meet their teachers, pick up class schedules and catch up with friends. Parents, be sure to bring your checkbook, credit card and cash, as a number of items will be sold during the open house, including:
• Spirit shirts ($10)
• Uniform shirts ($10)
• PE uniforms ($20/set)
• Discount cards ($10)
• Student planners ($3 cash only)
The Davidsen PTSA will be on hand at the open house to sign up new members and answer questions about volunteer opportunities. Anyone interested in learning more about Davidsen’s PTSA prior to the open house can e-mail Leslie Blaze at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As for school supplies, Davidsen will be providing a general list of supplies for incoming sixth graders to bring on the first day of school, including:
• Number 2 Pencils
• Colored Pencils
• Black/Blue/Red Pens
• Highlighters (Yellow, Orange, Blue)
• Three 1.5" Binders
• Notebook Paper
• Glue sticks
Teachers will provide a list of additional items during the open house based on course and content level.
Enjoy your last few weeks of summer, Dragons. We look forward to seeing you all soon!
By Karen Ring
Davidsen’s Eighth Graders Dance into High School
The Davidsen Middle School eighth graders topped off their year with "A Night Under the Stars.”
The students were dressed to impress as they danced the night away! Many thanks go out to the Davidsen administration; Shanta Talamantez, Grade 8 teacher liaison and dance photographer; Shane Heath and his fabulous 3-D art students, who helped with the amazing dance décor; and Chef Toner and her culinary students, who made 300 chocolate star lollipops.
Many local businesses helped out with fundraising this year, allowing this dance to be free for all eighth graders! Many thanks to Westchase Burger 21, Westchase McDonald’s, Westchase Pizza and Pasta, and Flippers Carwash. Also very supportive were PDQ, Walmart, and Tampa Pizza Company. We also thank all the parents who volunteered their time to make this eighth grade year a success, especially the dance committee leads of Shannon Longo, Dina Marcus, Elaine Ragan, Kristin O'Donnell and Sandy Anderson. Congratulations to all the eighth graders and good luck in high school!
Incoming and returning students, be sure to mark your calendars for the Davidsen Open House on Aug. 21 from 2-6 p.m. (2-4 p.m. for Grade 6; 4:30-6 p.m. for Grades 7-8).
Enjoy the rest of your summer!
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Approaches End of Successful Year
The end of the school year is now in sight.
It has been another successful year thanks to the hard work of all of our students, teachers, staff and administrators.
We also take a moment to thank our generous business partners, who contribute so much to the success of our school. A special thank you to the World of Westchase, Orangetheory Fitness @ Westchase, The Kitchell Group Real Estate Professionals, Bivens Orthodontics, Real Athletic and Wellness (R.A.W.) health club, Dr. Goodnight, Grade Power Learning, Miche Fashion Purses, our community McDonald’s, Westchase Pizza and Pasta Co., Chick-fil-A and Extreme Graphics for their support. Please visit them in person or on our sponsorship page at http://www.davidsenptsa.org to learn more.
The last month of the school year is exciting for all of our students, but especially for our eighth graders. The fun begins with the Eighth Grade Field Trip to Islands of Adventure on May 19. The Eighth Grade Yearbook Signing will be held May 21 during eighth period. Students will enjoy a snack, sign each other’s books and watch a slide show of their years at Davidsen. Awards for all grades will be held on May 29: eighth grade awards will be at 11 a.m., seventh grade a 1 p.m. and sixth grade at 9:30 a.m.
The Eighth Grade Dance will be held the evening of May 29. The theme for this year’s dance is "A Night Under the Stars." Davidsen parents and staff have worked hard all year to make sure this is a night the students will never forget.
In other May news, the All Sports Banquet will be held on May 18 at 6 p.m. May 19 will also be the field trip day for sixth and seventh grade students. And the National Junior Honor Society will hold its induction ceremony for new members on May 20.
Last, we thank all of the PTSA members for their hard work throughout the year. Being a part of the PTSA is a great way to give back to the school and stay connected with your child’s education. Current parents and incoming sixth grade parents can become involved with the PTSA in a number of ways. Whether you are looking to head up a committee or simply volunteer an hour of time, every little bit helps. To learn more about opportunities with the Davidsen PTSA, visit http://www.davidsenptsa.org.
Let’s make the last month of the school year the best one yet!
Why Choose Davidsen?
Davidsen is consistently ranked as an ‘A’ school – a testament to the quality of education our students receive. Davidsen has also been recognized as a Golden School for the past 14 years and a Five Star School for the past eight years.
The Golden School Award is given annually by the Florida Department of Education to recognize public schools with exemplary volunteer programs.
A Golden School must have a staff training program on volunteerism in which a minimum of 80 percent of the school staff has participated; a School Volunteer Coordinator who provides leadership for the school volunteer program; and a total number of hours in volunteer service that equals twice the number of students enrolled in the school.
The Five Star School Award is presented annually to schools showing evidence of exemplary community involvement. In order to earn Five Star School recognition, a school must show documentation that it has achieved 100 percent of the established criteria in the categories of business partnerships, family involvement, volunteerism, student community service and school advisory councils.
Davidsen has a dedicated team of teachers, administrators, staff and parents who work together to provide our students with a quality education and an environment in which they can thrive.
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Dragons Let Loose at the Annual Medieval Fair
Davidsen held its annual Medieval Fair on March 6.
Students enjoyed inflatables, several fun carnival games and, of course, lots of fair food! PTSA member Elaine Ragan headed up the festivities again this year and thanks everyone who volunteered their time to make the fair possible. Our special thanks go out to Principal McBrien, all of the teachers and administrators, as well as the Davidsen maintenance, custodial and kitchen staff.
The February Box Top Drive was a huge success. Congratulations to Ms. Pelfry’s lunch class, which won for most submissions. Seventh grader Stephanie Brennan was the individual winner. Stephanie and three of her friends will be treated to a special lunch.
First up in April, Davidsen’s National Junior Honor Society will be hosting a talent show on April 2 at 6 p.m. This is a great opportunity for students to let loose and showcase their talents. The next McDonald’s Spirit Night will take place on Tuesday, April 7. Head to the Westchase McDonald’s between 5 and 8 p.m. and 20 percent of your purchase will help support Davidsen’s eighth grade dance. The next PHD celebration will be held on April 17, when traight-A students will be treated to an afternoon ice cream bar!
Davidsen will host an Open House for incoming sixth graders on April 23 from 5-6:30 p.m. National Junior Honor Society students will serve as school ambassadors, giving tours and answering questions. This is a great opportunity for students and parents to get an up close and personal look at all of the wonderful things Davidsen offers.
It has been a great year so far at Davidsen. We can’t wait to see what the rest of the year has in store!
Why Choose Davidsen?
Did you know that Davidsen offers courses like Aerospace Technology and Culinary Careers? Davidsen offers a well-rounded curriculum that gives students the opportunity to explore many areas of interest. During the first two semesters, incoming sixth graders take part in the Electives Wheel, in which they spend several weeks exploring each of the following electives: band, orchestra, Spanish, art, computers and AVID (a college readiness course). Following completion of the wheel, students apply to electives for the second semester that best match their interests. It is a great way for students to have a say in their education.
In Grades 7-8, a number of additional electives are offered. Options for each grade are outlined below:
Grade 7 Electives:
Fundamentals of Manufacturing (Robotics)
Grade 8 Electives:
Fundamentals of Manufacturing (Robotics)
Orientation to Marketing
Career Discovery (Culinary)
Spanish 1 (High School Credit)
By Karen Ring; Photos by Davidsen Yearbook Staff
Davidsen to Host Spring Open House for Incoming Students
On April 23 Davidsen will host an Open House from 5-6:30 p.m. for incoming sixth graders and their parents.
This is a great opportunity to meet all of Davidsen’s wonderful teachers, tour the school, get a peek inside the classrooms and learn more about all of the exciting electives, clubs and sports programs available at Davidsen.
The Open House is also the perfect time for incoming parents to learn how they can get involved with the school. Davidsen’s PTSA is in the process of looking to fill board positions that will be vacant come the end of the year. Even if you only have limited time to spare, becoming a part of the PTSA is a great way to stay connected as your child makes the transition into middle school. To learn more about the PTSA, visit http://www.davidsenptsa.org or like us on Facebook by entering key word Davidsen Middle School PTSA.
The second nine weeks at Davidsen ended on a high note with 186 students earning straight A's. These students were treated to a special breakfast on Feb. 10. Thanks to Dunkin’ Donuts for offering a generous discount on doughnuts for the breakfast.
Next up is Davidsen’s Medieval Fair! The student-only fair will take place on March 6. This event is always the highlight of the year for the students and a great way to kick off spring break, which runs March 9-13. There is a tremendous amount of planning and prep-work that goes into making this exciting event possible. For more information on how you can help, even if it just for an hour or two, contact Elaine Ragan at email@example.com.
On March 26 Westchase Pizza and Pasta will host a special night to support Davidsen’s eighth grade fundraising efforts. Davidsen’s eighth grade teachers serve as waiters for the evening and percentage of the night's proceeds will benefit eighth grade activities.
Last, congratulations are in order for student Thomas Keller and science teacher Ms. Deringer. Thomas will be heading to the State Science Fair with Team Hillsborough at the end of March. Thomas also earned first place in the Junior Environmental Science category, the Carolyn Crow Memorial Award, third place for the Florida Association of Water Quality Control, and a BROADCOM Masters Award. In addition, Ms. Deringer was recognized at this year's STEM Fair Teacher of the Fair! Congratulations to Thomas and Ms. Deringer on their tremendous achievements!
It has been a great year so far and we are looking forward to all that is yet to come.
Why Consider Davidsen?
We are lucky to have such a high-quality, well-rounded middle school right here in the heart of Westchase. In addition to ranking as an A-rated school for academics, Davidsen is also home to a number of clubs that allow students to pursue a new interest, foster academic achievement and meet new friends. Below is a list of some of the exciting clubs offered at Davidsen:
Award-winning Math League
National Honor Society
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Mourns School Nurse Karol Wilkerson
This month we open with a moment paying tribute to Davidsen’s school nurse, Karol Wilkerson, who passed away suddenly on Jan. 14.
The loss came as quite a blow to staff and students alike. “Karol prided herself on taking care of our kids. She was a vocal presence when it came to the health and well-being of our students and she will be sadly missed,” Principal Brent McBrien said.
Davidsen parent Gail Frank added, “As the parent of a medically fragile child, it was so uplifting to have her in a school where people get it. I barely knew this woman, yet she impacted me in so many ways.”
Karol worked at Davidsen for the past seven years. In the chaos of day-to-day life, it can be difficult to find the time to let people know how much they are appreciated. The hard work of the staff and teachers at Davidsen has such a tremendous impact on our students and our school as a whole. On behalf of the PTSA, please know how grateful we are for all you do.
On Dec. 11. Davidsen Media Specialist Merle Supple took three students to the Hillsborough County All Middle School “Poetry Jam” Day. Davidsen students Sarah Frank, Leisha Fuster, and Natalia Troupe had the exciting chance to create their own poems. Sarah Frank represented Davidsen in the “Open Mike” portion of the day. Thank you to Ms. Supple for providing these students with such an exciting opportunity.
The next Davidson Box Top Drive runs Feb. 1-26. Students should turn in their Box Tops to their lunchroom teacher in a baggie or envelope with their names, their lunchroom teachers’ names and the number of Box Tops they are turning in. Students will be selected in a random drawing and could win a special lunch with their friends at school.
Parents of prospective Davidsen students who would like an in-depth look at the school are encouraged to attend the next Davidsen Tour on Feb. 3 at 9:30 a.m. This is a great chance to get all those questions answered. For those who cannot attend, please call the school at 558-5300 to schedule a tour.
On Feb. 10 students who earned straight A’s for the second grading period will be treated to a PHD Breakfast at 9:30 a.m. Congratulations to all who will be attending. Conference Night will take place on Feb. 18 and the next school-wide dance will be held on Feb. 20.
In the coming months Davidsen’s chapter of the National Junior Honor Society will be partnering with students from the culinary program to revive the Davidsen Garden. This will be a great opportunity for students to get a glimpse into the hard work that goes into food production. Culinary students will use the vegetables in their recipes to get a true farm to table experience.
Students and staff are also gearing up for the highlight of the year, the Medieval Fair, which will take place on March 6. A tremendous amount of planning goes into making this exciting event possible. For more information on how you can help, contact Elaine Ragan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
10 PHD breakfast, 9:30 a.m.
18 Conference Night
20 Dance, 4:30 p.m.
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Celebrates Math Bowl Teams and Reflections Winner
Recent months saw Dragons notching some impressive successes in both math and art.
We congratulate all of our talented Math Bowl teams! In the Hillsborough County Regional Math Bowl, the Seventh Grade Math Bowl took third and the Eighth Grade Team took second place.
Meanwhile seventh grader Hailey Marquez was awarded an honorable mention in the Reflections Art Program by Hillsborough County PTA/PTSA. They recognized her music composition, "When the sun is up." The county saw 62 schools and over 900 students participate. Congratulations to Hailey and to all of the Davidsen students who submitted a Reflections entry this year. For those who want to get a jump start on next year’s Reflections, the theme will be: "Let your imagination fly."
Before winter break, the Davidsen PTSA worked with area businesses to ensure that the teachers and administrators were treated to a bit of holiday cheer.
On Dec. 17 the PTSA hosted a holiday buffet for teachers, staff, custodians and bus drivers – 120 people in all. They enjoyed an assortment of special holiday treats. The PTSA also held a 12 Days of Holiday Giveaway, where gift cards for area stores and restaurants were given away to teachers and staff members every day for 12 days. PTSA members donated many of the gift cards. In addition, McDonald’s generously donated 120 free food vouchers, Olive Tree gave four $5 gift cards and Bakery Melange donated two free treats.
Another area supporter, Westchase Pizza & Pasta, offered a generous discount on the food for the PTSA’s annual holiday dinner, held on Dec. 11.
These are just a few examples of the ways in which area businesses support our school, for which we are extremely grateful. We would also like to take a moment to thank our business partners whose contributions are greatly appreciated: World of Westchase, Orangetheory Fitness Westchase, Kitchell Group, Westchase McDonald’s, Biven’s Orthodontics, Real Athletic and Wellness (RAW) Health Club, Dr. Goodnight, Orthodontics, Power Learning and Miche Fashion Purses
On Jan. 21, another loyal supporter, Burger 21, will be donating a portion of the proceeds from sales that day to Davidsen’s Eighth Grade Class. Be sure to stop by and support our school.
During Feb. 2-27, Davidsen will hold another Box Top Drive. Students can turn their Box Tops in to their homeroom teachers. Gift cards will be awarded to one student and one teacher for participation.
It is also time to start thinking about the event every Dragon looks forward to each year: The Medieval Fair! The Medieval Fair is a parent/teacher run festival for students only. It will take place on Friday, March 6. Volunteers are needed to help make this event a success. Contact Elaine Ragan at email@example.com to find out how you can help.
Please note that the PTSA will hold a meeting on Jan. 6. There is no school Jan. 19-20.
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Girls Basketball Team Ends Season Undefeated
Congratulations to the Davidsen Girls Basketball team, who finished the season with an impressive second place finish at the Hillsborough County Tournament.
This after an equally impressive showing in their regular season, where the Dragons went undefeated, 6-0! Davidsen faced off against Martinez in their final game of the season. Both teams came into the game 5-0. Davidsen trailed Martinez until the last minute of the game. In the last 43 seconds, Davidsen tied the game and in the final seconds of the game they pulled ahead to win!
Davidsen went on to beat Benito in the semifinals and then lost to Rampello in the finals.
“Special thanks to Coach Lindsay Windell for all her dedication and exemplary demeanor on the sidelines as she led the girls to victory,” said Gail Frank, whose daughter, Sarah, is a sixth grader on the team.
Congratulations are also in order for all of our PHD students for the first quarter. On Nov. 7 188 students who earned straight A’s were treated to breakfast. We also commend all of our students who completed an entry for this year’s Reflection’s theme, “The World Would be a Better Place If….” Those students were treated to breakfast on Nov. 14. Seventeen Davidsen students will advance on to the Hillsborough County finals, to be held on Dec. 6 at Hillsborough Community College.
In upcoming news, Davidsen’s next conference night has been scheduled for Dec. 3 from 5-7:30 p.m. Westchase’s “Walk to Davidsen Day” for fifth graders will be held on Dec. 11 at 9:30 a.m. Parents can meet at Davidsen for a tour. Spirit shirts and uniform shirts will be available for purchase.
Also, don’t forget about our monthly Spirit Night at McDonald’s, held on the first Tuesday of the month between 5-8 p.m. (dine-in, take-out or drive-thru and no flyer is needed). This is a great way to support our graduating eighth graders. We hope to see you there!
Thanks to all of our PTSA volunteers, our wonderful Davidsen teachers and staff and our business partners for their support in making the first half of the year a success. We wish all of our students and their families a happy holiday season!
By Karen Ring
Davidsen School Year Off to Great Start!
The school year at Davidsen is off to a great start and we have lots of important news to share.
The annual Business Partner/Volunteer Breakfast held on Sept. 9 was a huge success. We offer our special thanks to our valued business partners who were able to attend: Orangetheory Fitness Westchase, The Kitchell Group and Miche fashion purses.
To learn more about how your business can help support Davidsen Middle School through our Business Partners and Sponsorship programs, visit http://www.davidsenptsa.org or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our annual Box Top Drive is currently underway. The drive runs from Oct. 1-28. Students should turn their Box Tops in to their lunch teacher. Gift cards for participation will be awarded to one student and one teacher.
Going forward, on the first Tuesday of every month from 5-8 p.m., the Westchase McDonald's will offer Davidsen Spirit Night to support eighth grade activities. Davidsen will receive 20 percent of the sales. The next spirit night will be Oct. 7. No flyer is necessary.
The first dance of the year will be held Friday, Oct. 17, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. If you haven’t done so already, be sure to sign your child up for the PTSA. Members will be admitted to the dance at no charge.
During the week of Oct. 27-31 students will be celebrating Red Ribbon Week with numerous activities meant to remind them of the dangers of drugs and alcohol.
Discount Cards are a great way to save money with area businesses and are available for order online at http://www.davidsenptsa.org The h.ugely popular Davidsen hoodies are sold out for now, but look for them to be available again later this fall.
Finally, for those interested in participating in Reflections, there is still time to get your entries together. Students can interpret this year’s theme, The World Would Be a Better Place If…through choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography or visual arts. Submissions are due Nov. 3. For more information visit http://www.floridapta.org/programs/reflections.
4 PTSA Board/Committee Meeting
4 McDonald's Spirit Night
7 Report Cards/PHD Breakfast
20 Great American Teach-in
2 PTSA Board/Committee Meeting
2 McDonald's Spirit Night
3 Conference Night
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Dragons Celebrate “A” Grade
We begin the 2014-15 school year by focusing on some exciting news from the previous school year.
First and foremost, Davidsen has regained its “A” FCAT status, thanks to the hard work of both the faculty and students. “We scored a total of 603 points, which was a gain of 24 points from the previous year (579),” Principal Brent McBrien stated. Other highlights include significant gains in writing (80 percent at 3.5 or better, up from 71 percent the prior year) and math (89 percent of Algebra I students scored a 3 or above). In addition, 20 students achieved perfect FCAT scores and six students earned perfect Algebra I EOC scores. Congratulations to the school as a whole on these tremendous achievements!
The new school year kicked off with the annual Welcome Back Teacher Breakfast on Aug. 11. Members of the PTSA Hospitality Committee were on hand to serve up a variety of breakfast goodies to the teachers and staff – just a way of reminding them just how much their efforts in getting the school year off to a great start are appreciated.
The school doors opened on Aug. 19 and already the PTSA is busy planning this year’s upcoming events. Next up will be the Volunteer/Business Partner Breakfast, which will take place on Tuesday, Sept. 9, at 9:30 a.m. in the cafeteria.
The best way to stay informed on all of the school happenings is to become a member of the PTSA. There are also always plenty of volunteer opportunities. Visit the newly redesigned PTSA Web site at http://www.davidsenptsa.org to learn more.
If you haven’t already done so, be sure to order your Community Discount Card. The cards are just $10 and offer great discounts at the areas most popular establishments. Also, show your Dragon spirit by purchasing items from our spirit line, including the spirit shirt, car magnet and the brand new hoodie. All of these items are available for purchase online on the PTSA Web site and will be delivered to your child at the school – shopping doesn’t get much easier than that!
Last, although the school year has just begun, it is time to get those creative juices flowing and start brainstorming on those Reflections entries. This year’s theme is “The world would be a better place if...” Submission deadlines and details will be announced at a later date, but it is never too early to start looking for inspiration.
Welcome back, Dragons! We are excited for another successful year at Davidsen Middle School.
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Open House Aug. 15
Dust off those uniforms, Dragons! It is time to get ready for another exciting year at Davidsen Middle School.
The first day of school will be Tuesday, Aug. 19. In preparation, Davidsen will host its annual back-to-school open house on Friday, Aug. 15. Hours will be 2:30-4 p.m. for incoming sixth graders and 4:30-6 p.m. for seventh and eighth graders. The open house is a great opportunity for students to meet their teachers, pick up class schedules and catch up with friends.
The Davidsen PTSA will be on hand at the open house to sign up new members and answer questions about volunteer opportunities. They will also be selling Spiritwear and Discount Cards. At 6 p.m., immediately following the open house, the PTSA will host a general meeting to vote on the budget for the coming year. All are invited to attend.
In an exciting fundraising first, the PTSA is now offering a Davidsen hoodie for purchase. The proceeds from the sale of these sweatshirts will benefit eighth grade activities, including T-shirts, the yearbook signing, the end-of-year dance and field trip. They are available to all students and can be worn any day of the week! The cost is $20 and they will be on sale at the open house. Order forms for all of these items – Spiritwear, discount cards and sweatshirts – will also be sent home in the first day of school packet.
Now get out there and enjoy those last few weeks of summer, Dragons! We look forward to seeing you all soon.
2014-15 Davidsen PTSA Executive Board
1st VP Ways and Means
Ruth Smith (Graphics)
2nd VP Membership
3rd VP Volunteers
By Karen Ring
Exciting Ending to another Successful Year at Davidsen
Another school year has come and gone at Davidsen. And this one ended with a flurry of accomplishments.
On Wednesday, May 28, Davidsen Middle School’s Math League competed at the Florida State Fairgrounds for the county-wide Math League Competition. Davidsen’s team represented the school extremely well. Individually, seventh grader Rebekah Mahusay placed seventh overall followed by her two teammates, Nicholas Caulley (13th) and Lleyton Fischer (15th). This was out of over 170 other seventh grade students from 45 middle schools.
The seventh grade team placed second overall, missing first place by just two points! The eighth grade team was equally exciting with Patrick Boatman individually placing fourth and Timmy Chang placing thirteenth overall. The eighth grade Algebra team placed third overall with combined scores. With all of Davidsen’s sixth, seventh and eighth grade scores totaled, our Dragons ranked fourth place overall in the county, beating out rival schools Farnell and Walker. “We are so proud of these Davidsen mathematicians!” said sixth and seventh grade coach, Melissa Degusipe.
Congratulations to all of the team members, as well as Ms. Degusipe and Algebra coach, Mr. LaRosee!
We also learned that Davidsen’s Five Star Application for 2013-14 was approved! This award is presented annually to those schools that have shown evidence of exemplary community involvement. This is our seventh year as a Five Star School. We also received confirmation that we achieved Golden School status for the 13th year! The Golden School Award is given annually by the Florida Department of Education to recognize public schools with exemplary volunteer programs. A big thank you goes out to all of the teachers, administrators and volunteers for making these awards possible.
Davidsen’s PTSA would like to like to give a special shout out to Ivan De La Guardia and Westchase Pizza & Pasta Co. for their contribution to Davidsen during Teacher Appreciation Week and for being an outstanding business partner with our school throughout the year.
Last, with the end of this school year, we bid farewell to our fearless PTSA leader, Kendra Drake. Kendra served on the PTSA board all three years of her stay at Davidsen and was president for the past two years. “Kendra is a priceless asset to our entire Westchase community. Over the years, she has not only devoted her time to our schools, but she has also worked tirelessly for Relay for Life. She is giving of her time and heart. We are all so very lucky to have her as a neighbor, friend and volunteer,” said fellow PTSA board member, Dina Marcus.
While we are sad to see Kendra go, we are excited to welcome Leslie Blaze as the incoming PTSA president! “I know I have big shoes to fill. Kendra left a lasting legacy with all of our Davidsen parents and volunteers,” Leslie said.
Blaze is no stranger to school service, having spent countless hours volunteering her time in numerous capacities at Westchase Elementary School. She also served on the Hospitality Committee for Davidsen this past year. We welcome and thank her for taking on this important role.
We hope all of our Dragons are enjoying their summer. We look forward to seeing you all when the school doors open in August!
By Karen Ring
Dragons Throw Dance for Eighth Graders
On May 16 it was Midnight in Paris in the middle of Westchase.
A 15-foot Eiffel Tower and sparkling globe lights greeted students as they entered the Davidsen Middle School Cafeteria. Once inside, the students searched for their names written in hieroglyphics on the 14-foot obelisk. The stars glittered from above while they danced to the tunes of DJ, Danny Deleon. The Arc de Triomphe was center stage and overlooked all the smartly dressed eighth graders. Food from our Davidsen French families was delicious. It included croque-monsieur, gougère and Eiffel Tower sugar cookies. The French flag was composed of delicious mini-cupcakes baked by Bridges baker, Nikki Pivnichny.
We offer our great thanks to Mr. Shane Heath, Art Teacher at Davidsen Middle School, for making our majestic French monuments. We also thank our French families, the Clarkins and the Commins, for making the authentic French food. Last but not least, we thank all the Westchase parents and PTSA for making this possible.
By Pam Wilcox
Dragons Inching Toward Freedom
The Dragons have only a month left before being released upon their villages.
As the school year winds down, we offer May’s calendar and a few photos from the year. We thank Ms. Talamantez and her yearbook staff for sharing them!
By Karen Ring
2 Band Field Trip
5-9 Teacher Appreciation Week
6 PTSA General Meeting, 9 a.m.
6 PTSA Board Meeting, 9:30 a.m.
7 NJHS Meeting, 8 a.m.
13 Band Spring Concert
16 Grade 8 dance
19 Sports banquet
20 Yearbook signing
22 Grades 6-8 Field trips
26 No School, Memorial Day
Davidsen Dragons Enjoy Another Successful Medieval Fair
This year’s Medieval Fair has come and gone, but it won’t soon be forgotten.
The fair was a tremendous success and much fun was had by the students, teachers and volunteers. The fair included four spectacular inflatables, several fun carnival games and, of course, lots of fair food!
Elaine Ragan headed up the festivities this year and is thankful to everyone who volunteered their time to make the fair possible. “It would not be possible without you,” Ragan said. Ragan extends special thanks to Mr. McBrien and Ms. Wilson, as well as the Davidsen maintenance, custodial and kitchen staff. “We know how much extra work it is for everyone and we appreciate all that they do! And a special thank you to Mr. Gambino. who was gracious enough to get drenched in the Flush ’Em game on an exceptionally cold afternoon. The kids loved that!” Ragan added.
Until next year!
For many parents it is middle school decision time. Now is the perfect time for current and former Davidsen parents to take a few minutes to fill out a review of our school at http://www.greatschools.org. Great Schools is a well-respected Web site that many parents turn to when making school choices. It is also popular with parents who are relocating to a new area, as school ratings play a large role in neighborhood selection for people with school-age children. Please take a few minutes to help spread the word about our wonderful school!
It’s hard to believe just how quickly this school year has gone. As the year winds down, the testing season is quickly approaching. The FCAT tests will be administered from April 22-30. We know that our students and teachers have been working hard all year in preparation and we wish them all the best!
Be sure to “like” the Davidsen Middle School PTSA on Facebook to keep tabs on all that is yet to come this school year. The school year may be nearing the end, but there still is still much fun to be had!
By Karen Ring
Davidsen’s Medieval Fair is Finally Here!
The event that every Davidsen Dragon has been eagerly awaiting all year long is finally just days away.
That’s right! It’s time for The Medieval Fair, which will be held on Friday, March 7. This annual event is always a fun time for students, teachers and volunteers. Speaking of volunteers, it’s not too late to sign up to help out with the day’s events, the set up or the take down. Every minute spared is appreciated. Please contact Elaine Ragan at email@example.com for more information.
The Dragons had another successful grading period, with 201 students achieving principal honor roll status for the second quarter. Congratulations and keep up the good work! Conference night also went well and the PTSA thanks The Olive Garden for donating their delicious breadsticks and salad that evening.
There is much exciting news coming from Davidsen’s music department! Davidsen’s Jazz Band earned straight superiors at the MPA (music performance assessment) held at the Florida State Fair. While the jazz band has earned a superior before, and the concert band has earned several superiors as well as straight superiors, this rating is extremely hard to get and very rare, especially at Jazz MPA. “It's the first time our jazz band has earned that rating!” said Davidsen’s Band Director, Kassandra Cochran.
Trombone player, Jonathan Baron, also achieved a rare feat, becoming the first Dragon to make the auditioned all-state band! In addition, six students made all-county: Jonathan Baron (trombone), Drew Garcia (trumpet), Robson Galvao (flute), Katie Morello (flute), Diego Rodriguez (tuba) and Amber Farve (euphonium).
On the Orchestra front, eighth grader Amanda Sherwood was a member of the 2014 All-State Honors Orchestra in January. In addition, Orchestra Director Andrew Guarrine said the group is working on its MPA music, which will be performed at Armwood in late March.
Congratulations to all our talented musicians!
The next general PTSA meeting will take place on March 20 at 6:30 p.m., when the nominating committee will be selected. It’s that time of year when the committee will begin looking to fill PTSA board positions that will be vacant come the end of the year. For those that are interested in taking on a board position, please contact Paula Cannella at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Keep tabs on all the exciting events in store for the rest of the year by visiting the Davidsen PTSA Web site, http://www.davidsenptsa.org or by, liking them on Facebook. It has been a great year so far and we are looking forward to all that is yet to come.
By Karen Ring
Dragons Rewarded for Reflections Entries
Congratulations to all Davidsen Dragons who were honored at the county level for their Reflections entries.
The entries exemplified this year’s theme: “Believe, Dream, Inspire.” Those honored include Claire Chesney (second place, film, and advancement state), Emily de Almenara (judge’s choice, film), Makenna Kirsch (judge’s choice, photography) and Katie Marello (honorable mention, photography). Well done, Dragons!
If you have a stash of Box Tops eagerly awaiting a home, you are in luck! There will be a Box Top drive Feb. 1-26. Students will be entered into a raffle for every 10 Box Tops they turn in. The student whose name is drawn wins a $25 gift card. The Davidson teacher who has the most participating students will also win a $25 gift card. Participation is easy – just bring Box Tops in to your lunch teacher, either on collection sheets provided or in a sealed plastic baggie. The money earned through Box Tops benefits Davidson with additional supplies and programs for the school. “We typically raise over $1,000 a year between the two drives, but know we could do much, much more,” said Box Top Chair Beth Cupari.
The Davidsen Running Club wrapped up its season in January and Running Club Chair Anne Hull thanks all who participated. “The club enjoyed forming new friendships as well as having fun and learning teamwork through exercise and other activities,” Hull said.
The club had some friendly competition, both at an individual and team level. The highlight of the season was the scavenger hunt, where members searched the school for clues to create a food pyramid. The club also hosted a used running shoe drive. Donations went to Nike Reuse a Shoe, which recycles sneakers and turns them into sports courts throughout the U.S. Over 300 pairs have been turned in to date. Great job, Dragons!
The NJHS also embraced the spirit of giving, donating proceeds from their candy gram sale to the eighth grade dance fund. The Eighth Grade Committee will be raising more dance dollars by hosting a Valentine candy gram sale Feb. 10-12. The candy grams will be available for purchase in the cafeteria during lunch.
The next school-wide dance will be sponsored by the NJHS and will be held on Friday, Feb. 14, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Also, be sure to mark your calendar for conference night on Feb. 19.
The highlight of the year, the Medieval Fair, is fast approaching! The fair will be held on Friday, March 7. Volunteers are needed to help with ticket sales, March 3-5. Ticket bundling and set up help is needed on March 6 and the day of the fair. Please contact Elaine Ragan at email@example.com for further information.
Keep tabs on all the exciting events in store for the rest of the year by visiting the Davidsen PTSA Web site: http://www.davidsenptsa.org.
February Dates to Remember
4 PTSA Board Meeting, 9:30 a.m.
5 Grade 6 Scoliosis Screening
7 No School
10-12 Valentine Candy Gram Sales
11 PHD Breakfast
14 NJHS Dance, 4:30-6:30 p.m.
19 Conference Night
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Track Team Finishes Regular Season Undefeated
As 2013 drew to a close, the Davidsen Track Team wrapped up another successful season.
“Both the girls’ and boys’ teams made it through the regular season undefeated!” said track coach Robert O'Keife.
At the time this issue went to press, both teams were preparing for the Cluster Championships, which were held at Sickles High School on Dec. 12 and pitted Davidsen against Farnell, Hill, Martinez, Smith, Walker and Webb. All teams entered two contestants in the individual and field events and one team each in the various relays. The first and second place finishers then advanced on to the County Championship, held at Jefferson High School on Dec. 18.
As the Davidsen team prepared for the championships, Coach O'Keife added, “Obviously the final results are not yet in, but we're hopeful we can match our regular season performance against some of the best schools and runners in the county.”
O'Keife added that the successful season was a team effort. “Davidsen's girls have been led by a number of sixth graders, including Shaniya Benjamin, Jaeda DeJesus, Lexie Gyselinck and Carley Price as well as eighth graders Katie Morello and Blair Buck. The boys also benefitted from a number of sixth graders led by Ja'neil Johnson and Juwon Castro and eighth graders Domenic Haynes, James Sanchez, Noah Drake and Cameron Gyselinck. Besides our student athletes, our success can be attributed to parent support from coaching to preparing snacks before the meets. We have the girls and boys work out together, and the kids seem to enjoy this and have a great deal of fun and I think this leads to their success.”
We congratulate the Davidsen track team on their tremendous season!
As the new year begins, be sure to mark your calendars for the eighth grade fund-raiser to be held at Burger 21 on Tuesday, Jan. 21. The fundraiser will last all day and 10 percent of the day’s sales will be donated to the eighth grade, which will use it for the eighth grade dance.
The Davidsen Running Club is running every Monday through the end of January from 3:30-4:30 p.m. No experience needed and anyone is welcome.
It’s also time to start thinking about the event every Dragon looks forward to each year: The Medieval Fair! The Medieval Fair is a parent/teacher-run festival for students only. It will take place on Friday, March 7. Volunteers are needed to help make this event a success. Contact Elaine Ragan at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how you can help. In addition we need new or gently used small toys and stuffed animals. They should be sent to the office to the attention of Elaine Ragan.
Important January Dates
6 Classes Resume
8 NJHS Meeting, 8 a.m.
12 Reflections Reception at Jefferson HS
13-17 Semester Exams
20-21 No School
21 Burger 21 Grade 8 Fund-raiser
23 Grade 6 Preview Night
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Dragons Gear up for the Next Nine Weeks
For those Dragons still wishing to participate in Reflections, it is not too late!
Reflections is sponsored by that National PTA and offers students the opportunity to express themselves through one of these genres: dance choreography, literature, photography, visual arts, music composition and film production. Participation is voluntary and students work on their projects independently. Entries must be turned in to homeroom teachers by Friday, Oct. 11, along with an entry form that has been signed by a parent. Entries will be judged on how well the student uses his artistic vision to portray this year’s theme: Believe, Dream, Inspire. For more information, contact email@example.com.
The first nine weeks are coming to a close and what better way exists for our Dragons to celebrate all of their hard work than by breaking it down on the dance floor at the membership dance, which will be held on Friday, Oct. 25, from 4:15-6:15 p.m. If you haven’t done so already, be sure to sign your child up for the PTSA. Members will be admitted to the dance at no charge.
During the week of Oct. 23-31, students will be celebrating Red Ribbon Week with numerous activities meant to remind them of the dangers of drugs and alcohol. Looking ahead to November, speakers are needed for the Great American Teach In on Nov. 21. This is a great opportunity to share your work experience with students and show them how all their hard work in middle school will pay off in the future. If you are interested, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The PTSA’s Hospitality Committee would like to thank Westchase Pizza and Pasta (formerly San’s) for providing our teachers with dinner on the first conference night of the year, which took place on Sept. 18. The committee also extends its gratitude to all the new recruits and business partners that attended the Volunteer Breakfast on Sept. 19.
The PTSA can always use for volunteers for events throughout the year. Visit the PTSA Web site, http://www.davidsenptsa.org and l,ike us on Facebook to keep tabs on upcoming events. The PTSA is also excited to announce the new online ordering link on the Web site, where you can purchase Spirit Shirts, PTSA memberships, Discount Cards and Legacy Bricks. All items will be sent home with students. It doesn’t get much more convenient than that!
Last, here is some exciting news from the eighth grade ranks: the votes for this year’s theme have been cast and counted. The winner is...Midnight in Paris. Ooh la la!
The school year is off to a great start. Now it’s time for the Dragons to wrap up those Reflections entries and gear up for another successful nine weeks!
By Karen Ring
Dragons Set for New School Year
Davidsen’s 2013-2014 school year kicked off with the annual Welcome Back Teacher Breakfast on Aug. 12.
Members of the PTSA Hospitality Committee were on hand to serve up a variety of breakfast goodies to teachers and staff to remind them how much their efforts in getting the school year off to a great start are appreciated.
The school doors opened on Aug. 20 and already the PTSA is busy planning the events of the coming year. Next up will be the Volunteer/Business Partner Breakfast on Thursday, Sept. 19 at 9:30 a.m. in the cafeteria. Immediately following, an informational meeting for all eighth grade parents interested in helping with eighth grade activities throughout the year will be held at 10:30 a.m.
The best way to stay informed about school news is to become a member of the PTSA. Plenty of volunteer opportunities exist. Membership also has its privileges…including a free ticket to the first school dance (details forthcoming). Visit the PTSA Web site, http://www.davidsenptsa.org to fi,nd out more.
Be sure to order your $10 Community Discount Card, which offers great discounts at the area’s most popular establishments. Another fun way to support the school while leaving a lasting legacy is by purchasing a Legacy Brick. These personalized bricks line the cafeteria walls and are a great way to leave your name behind long after your Davidsen days are over. Legacy Bricks are just $10 each. Order forms for the discount card and the legacy bricks were sent home in the first-day packets and are also available on the PTSA Web site.
Although the school year has just begun, it’s time to get those creative juices flowing and start brainstorming about Reflections entries. This year’s theme is Believe, Dream, Inspire. Submission deadlines and details will be announced later, but it is never too early to start looking for inspiration.
The school year has just begun, but it is already shaping up to be another successful one at Davidsen Middle School!
Davidsen PTSA Executive Board
First VP Ways and Means
Elaine Ragan, Kate Sorsby
Second VP Membership
Tammy Huynh, Sarah Carroll
Third VP Volunteers
Nancy Gerovac, Jen Warnke, Beth Cupari
By Karen Ring
Davidsen Open House on Aug. 16
It is that time of year again – time to dig out those backpacks, dust off the school uniforms and get ready for another wonderful year at Davidsen Middle School.
The first day of school will be Tuesday, Aug. 20. In preparation, Davidsen will host its back-to-school open house on Friday, Aug. 16. Hours will be 2:30-4 p.m. for incoming sixth graders and 4:30-6 p.m. for seventh and eighth graders. It’s a great opportunity for students to meet their teachers, pick up class schedules and catch up with friends.
The Davidsen PTSA will be on hand at the open house to sign up new members and answer questions about volunteer opportunities. They will also be selling spirit shirts, which will sport an exciting new design this year. The shirts will be offered in black, blue and gray for $10 each. Order forms will also be sent home in the first-day-of-school packet.
At 6 p.m. immediately following the open house the PTSA will host a general meeting to vote on the budget for the coming year. All are invited to attend. The PTSA will be in good hands again this year, as Kendra Drake returns for her second year as president. We thank Kendra and all of the returning and incoming PTSA members.
Last, we are excited to announce that Daviden’s principal, Mr. Brent McBrien, was named middle school principal of the year by the Hillsborough County PTA! He was also the only one chosen by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to represent Hillsborough County for the Measures of Effective Teaching project. Davidsen was selected to participate in the production of a video explaining the Measures of Effective Teaching. Mr. McBrien always goes the extra mile and is determined to upgrade our classrooms with the most current technology.
We thank Mr. McBrien and all of the teachers and staff members who go above and beyond to ensure that our students are in excellent hands at Davidsen.
Now get out there and enjoy those last few weeks of summer, Dragons! Another exciting school year is just around the corner.
By Karen Ring
Dragons Bid Farewell to Eighth Graders
Welcome to June and the end of another school year at Davidsen!
It’s amazing how quickly the middle school years pass and how much a child can grow and change in three years. Less than confident sixth graders quickly become eighth graders who rule the hallways and are ready to conquer high school. We thank all the teachers and staff that help our children grow a little wiser and stronger each year. We appreciate all that you do and the impact you have made on our kids.
Davidsen’s Class of 2013 has been busy with a class field trip to Islands of Adventure, yearbook signings and the always amazing eighth grade dance. I am sure all graduating students will remember the Moonlight Masquerade, where they danced the night away and said arrivederci to middle school. As always, we thank Mr. Heath and all the volunteers who helped transform the lunch room into a special Italian moonlit night. Without the help of these parents and teachers, the eighth grade events would not have been possible. Grazie to all!
We also send a special Dragon shout out to all who helped with Teacher Appreciation Week and the Davidsen Sports Banquet. Thank you, volunteers! We appreciate all you do.
Hooray to San’s Pizzeria for providing delicious meals for our teachers. Great food was enjoyed by all after a long day of conferences. San’s always supports our school in a big way. This summer we encourage our Davidsen families to stop in and enjoy a meal at San’s Pizzeria to show gratitude for supporting our school.
We wish everyone a fun and safe summer. We offer a heartfelt goodbye to our eighth grade Dragons and a special welcome to all incoming sixth graders joining the Davidsen family!
By Dana Gerus
Davidsen Celebrates Teachers in May
May is a time for appreciation, goodbyes and congratulations.
Congratulations to Davidsen’s Hannah Keller and Elizabeth Corn, who moved on to compete in this year’s State Science and Engineering Fair. Both girls took home high honors for their projects. Hannah took third place in the Junior Behavioral and Social Sciences and Elizabeth earned first place in Microbiology. Elizabeth was also named as a 2013 Broadcom Masters nominee and earned her project a chance to qualify for a showcase event held in Washington D.C. Nice job, ladies! You make our school proud.We offer a big Dragon shout-out to all the teachers at Davidsen! During the month of May we will be honoring our teachers’ commitment to our school and students by celebrating Teacher Appreciation Week. A special teacher breakfast is planned for May 6 to celebrate our staff. Take some time this month to let your favorite teachers how thankful you are for all they do.
The end of the school year is busy for all students but especially for the Davidsen class of 2013. The eighth graders are getting ready to walk their final steps in Davidsen’s hallways as they prepare to say goodbye to middle school. The end-of-the-year activities will kick off with a trip to Orlando on May 23 to spend the day at Islands of Adventure. On May 31 our oldest Dragons will be celebrating a Moonlit Masquerade, which is the theme of this year’s eighth grade dance. Mr. Heath is already hard at work getting ready to transform the cafeteria for a magical, moonlight night.
Once again the Westchase Relay for Life will be held at Davidsen Middle School. Come out on May 10 and support the teams who are raising money to help find a cure for cancer. Food and fun are always part of this event. Volunteers are also needed. E-mail Kendra Drake at email@example.com if you are interested in contributing your time.
By Dana Gerus
Davidsen Medieval Fair Kicks Off Spring Break
Water balloon launchers, prizes and food!
What better way to kick off spring break then the annual Davidsen Medieval Fair? The fair was successfully held on March 8 and students, staff and volunteers all had a terrific time. We thank Amy Daner and all the volunteers who worked for months to make this event a success. Please be sure to turn to pages 42-43 for photos of the fun.
Without our terrific volunteers events like the Medieval Fair would not be a success. We are looking for PTSA board members for the 2013-2014 school year. If you are interested, please contact Pam Wilcox at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We offer a big Dragon shout out to Olive Garden, which provided a wonderful dinner on conference night. The teachers appreciated the wonderful meal on this busy night.
This year students will take the FCAT from April 15-19. Our students have studied hard all year and are ready. Good luck to all Dragons. We know you will do well!
By Dana Gerus
Davidsen Students Reap Success at Fair
Dragons brought home STEM Fair awards in February
The 2013 Hillsborough Regional Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Fair was held at the Tampa Convention Center Feb. 11-13. We are proud to announce that among the winners were many Davidsen students.
Elizabeth Corn’s project, The Effects of Nanoparticle Size on the Antibacterial Effects of Zinc Oxide (ZnO) on E.Coli Bacteria, placed first in the Junior Microbiology category and also won Junior Division Best of Fair award!
Hannah Keller also took the first place award from the Florida Psychological Association and second place in Junior Behavioral and Social Science for her project, Comparing the Effectiveness of Reading Aloud to a Therapy Dog vs. an Adult Mentor on the Reading Fluency of Second Grade Students Based on Gender and Reading Level.
Other winners were Shawn Gerovac, who received a merit award for Junior Physics; Stephanie Corn, who won an honorable mention for Junior Chemistry; and Nimna Gabadage, who took third place in the Junior Physics category.
The hard work and dedication of these students is evident in their terrific results. We congratulate them on their achievements and send special congratulations to Elizabeth Corn and Hannah Keller, who will be representing Davidsen Middle School on Team Hillsborough later this month at the 58th annual State Science and Engineering Fair in Lakeland.
Gallant knights, beautiful princess and fierce dragons await you on March 8! OK, maybe it will just be some Dragons having a fun time at Davidsen’s annual Medieval Fair. Students, teachers and helpers always have a great time at this event. Volunteers are always appreciated and welcomed. Please contact Amy Daner at email@example.com to donate your time and join in the fun. Small toys and stuffed animals are also needed and can also be donated and left in the office, marked to the attention of Amy Daner – Medieval Fair.
The PTSA’s nominating committee is busy searching for volunteers for the 2013-2014 executive board and its committees. If you are interested, please contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congratulations to all students who received straight A’s for the second quarter and made the principal’s honor roll. In honor of their accomplishments, they were treated to an honor roll breakfast and will soon be receiving their PHD T-shirts. Way to go, PHD Dragons! We are proud of you!
By Dana Gerus
Davidsen Running Club Sets Pace for February
Run, Dragons, run!
The Davidsen Running Club is looking for new members and will meet every Tuesday in February from 4:30-5:30 p.m. No running experience is needed. Improve your running skills using games, obstacle courses and jogs around the school. All participants are guaranteed to have fun and will receive a Davidsen Running Club sports water bottle for participating!
The running club is also sponsoring a shoe drive. Bring in any used running shoes, regardless of their condition. These will be recycled through Nike's Reuse-A-Shoe program. Through this program, worn-out athletic shoes are recycled, made into sports surfaces and kept out of landfills. Drop off your old shoes at Davidsen Middle School or the Westchase Swim and Tennis Center.
Believe it or not, it’s almost time for the annual Medieval Fair! This year’s event will be held on March 8. Please donate any gently used toys or stuffed animals that you may have gathering dust around the house. Just place the items in a plastic bag to be delivered to the office to the attention of Amy Daner.
Mark your calendars to help with the Medieval Fair. Volunteers are always welcome. Currently help is needed for ticket sales from Monday-Wednesday, March 4-6. Ticket bundling and set up help is also needed on March 7 and on the day of the event. Please contact Amy Daner for more information at email@example.com.
A big Dragon shout-out and congratulations go to our students who were recognized at the county level for Reflections entries. These include Meredith Puster (judges choice) and Claire Chesney (third place) for film and Kaley Wojiechoski (honorable mention) and Aleena Ruscella (third place) for photography. Nice job, Dragons!
Looking ahead, our honor roll breakfast is scheduled for Feb. 12 and Davidsen Conference Night is Feb. 27. Keep informed on all upcoming events by visiting the PTSA Web site, http://www.davidsenptsa.org.
By Dana Gerus
Davidsen Reflections Participants Advance to County Level
Davidsen is proud to announce the 2012-2013 Reflections participants who will advance to the county level.
Over 80 students submitted entries based on the theme “The Magic of a Moment.” We congratulate all our amazingly talented Dragons who participated and those who will advance in the competition.
Photography: Kaley Wojciechowski, Bailey Jones, Shawn Gerovac and Aleena Ruscella
Literature: Katie Morello, Morgan King and Larissa Krinos
Film Production: Linda Claire Chesney and Meredith Puster
Visual Arts: Leah Pelcastre, Olivia Cien and Darby Murray
For their hard work, all Reflections participants were treated to a donut recognition breakfast; we thank Dunkin Donuts on Race Track Road for making this possible.
This year’s Great American Teach In was a success, thanks to all participants. Whether you were a speaker, a baker or hospitality volunteer who made the day special, it was a fun event and the students enjoyed the day.
We also want to give a shout out to Greek City Café, which provided dinner to our staff on conference night. It was appreciated by all and delicious!
We wish everyone a wonderful New Year; many events are planned for the coming year, including a few upcoming dances and the ever popular Medieval Fair. Keep informed of all events and volunteer opportunities at http://www.davidsenptsa.org.
By Dana Gerus
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Visits Davidsen
On Tuesday, Nov. 6, Davidsen Middle School was chosen for a visit by a team representing The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
They were there to assess the status of Hillsborough County's Empowering Effective Teacher's (EET) grant, which is producing a revolutionary new way to evaluate and improve teachers and administrators. Their initial findings have shown substantial increases in the quality of classroom instruction and admiration for improvements teachers are making. Davidsen Middle School represents what is right with education. The school reflects the investment made by students, parents, and community – and it showed during the visit. It was quite an honor to be chosen by this fabulous foundation to represent Hillsborough County schools.
Good luck to all of our Reflections art contest participants! We’re excited to announce that we received many more entries than we did in previous years and we’re looking forward to announcing the winners. All the participants, however, were treated to a special breakfast on Nov. 28 to thank them for their hard work. It is always exciting to see what wonderful ideas our students submit each year.
We thank the students and teachers who participated in the October Box Top Drive. We raised $800 for our school. Congratulations to Mrs. Shelton, the teacher with the most Box Tops collected in her classroom. Her class brought in 740 and she won a $25 Publix gift card! The next drive is in February, so start clipping and saving those Box Tops over the holidays.
Once again we would like to give a Dragon shout out to our business partner, San's Pizzeria. They sponsored the Nov. 14 Davidsen Family Night. It was a huge success and the teachers and students that participated had a great time. We can’t express our gratitude for all the wonderful things they do for our school. Thank you again, San’s!
Things always get busy in December so be sure to mark these events on your calendar. Dec. 5 is conference night, Dec. 13 is the orchestra concert and Dec. 20 is the band concert.
Congratulations to all our PHD dragons who earned straight A’s for the first quarter. Nearly 240 students made the grade this time around and were treated to breakfast for their achievements. Keep up the great work, Dragons!
We wish everyone a safe and happy holiday break!
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Davidsen Band Rocks Alonso
Fall was in the air on Oct. 12 as the eighth grade band played at the Alonso vs. Plant football game.
The Davidsen band played “Party Rock” with the Alonso High School band and truly rocked the stadium. A great time was had by all and the Ravens were victorious. We thank Mrs. Cochran for her dedication to all of the Davidsen band programs.
The biggest event in November is the Great American Teach-In. Many volunteers are needed for this event on Nov. 15. If you have a career or hobby that you would like to share, please contact Kendra Drake at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are available this day, please think about joining our Great American Teach-In team. We have had terrific speakers in the past and look forward to all the great ones volunteering this year.
The theme for this year’s reflections event was “The Magic of a Moment.” Every year we are amazed at the creative entries sent by our Dragons. As our special thanks to all students who submitted entries for this year’s contest, a breakfast will be held on Nov. 28 in their honor. The Reflections Awards will be presented later; we wish all our participants the best of luck!
The eighth grade students have voted and this year’s theme will be Moonlight Masquerade. Many diligent eighth grade parents are busy planning T-shirts and fabulous banquet ideas based on this year’s theme. Everyone can’t wait to see what Mr. Heath will create this year for our departing class. It should be spectacular as always.
We look forward to a fabulous month and the beginning of a new quarter. Congrats to all our PHD students who earned straight A’s. They will be honored on Nov. 8 with a special breakfast. Keep up the great work!
As always, volunteers for any and all events are greatly appreciated. Keep track of upcoming events on the Davidsen Middle School PTSA Web site, http://www.davidsenptsa.com.
Take the time to be thankful for those who inspire you this month.
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
A Time To “Reflect” At Davidsen
Is your child participating in the Reflections Program?
Reflections is a voluntary arts program that is sponsored by the National PTA and encourages students to express themselves through musical composition, literature, photography, visual arts, dance choreography and film production. Each entry is judged on how well the student uses his or her artistic vision to portray the theme. This year’s theme is “The Magic of a Moment.”
Students work independently at home to create one entry in one or more of the six categories. All entries must be returned to homeroom teachers by Wednesday, Oct. 24, with an attached entry form, completed on both sides and including a parent’s signature. Please contact Nancy Gerovac at email@example.com with questions. Additional entry forms can be found in the office or on the National PTA Web site, http://www.floridapta.org/programs/reflections Good .luck to all our entrants.
It is time for Davidsen Dragons to bust a move at the membership dance. This is the first dance of the year and is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 18, from 4:15-6:15 p.m. All PTSA members will be admitted to the dance at no charge. Come on out and support the PTSA and show your mad skillz on the dance floor. It’s a great way to celebrate the end of the first nine weeks of school.
Looking ahead, Davidsen will be seeing red Oct. 22-26 as we celebrate Red Ribbon Week. Many activities are planned for this week to remind our students of the dangers of drugs and alcohol. Also be sure to mark your calendars for The Great American Teach In, set for Nov. 15. Speakers are needed! Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.
Thanks to all those who participated in the Business Partner/Volunteer Breakfast on Sept. 20. We especially thank San’s Pizzeria, which donated all the food for the first teacher conference night on Sept. 25. It was fantastic! Volunteers are always welcome and appreciated. Please check out our Web site, http://www.davidsenptsa.org to vo,lunteer and stay informed about all upcoming activities.
October brings cooler temperatures and the end of the grading period. Be sure to attend the Alonso football game on Oct. 12 to see the Davidsen eighth grade band perform.
We hope you enjoy the pleasant weather, start working on your Reflections entry and have a great month.
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Dragons Kick Off New School Year
A big “welcome back” to all Davidsen Dragons and staff!
The 2012-2013 school year was kicked off with a breakfast provided by the PTSA. Nancy Gerovac and a group of volunteers treated the guests of honor to a variety of baked goods and breakfast goodies. It was a nice way to ease into a new school year while enjoying the cool atmosphere provided by the new air conditioning system installed over the summer. We particularly thank all volunteers who helped with this event.
The students were greeted back to school at the Aug. 17 open house. Students were able to pick up their schedules, catch up with friends and buy their spirit shirts. As always, this was a nice transition to say goodbye to summer break and start preparing for the year ahead.
Once again the PTSA is busy planning many events and activities for the school year. Join us for the volunteer/business partner breakfast at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 20. We will meet in the cafeteria to discuss opportunities for the coming year.
To keep up with the latest events and take advantage of Davidsen’s many volunteer opportunities, check out the Davidsen PTSA Web site, http://www.davidsenptsa.org Also,. don’t forget to join the PTSA; it is one of the best ways to support our school. Membership has its privileges, including a free ticket to the first dance of the year (dance details will be announced later).
Another great way to support the school is by purchasing the community discount card. Yes, it’s back! These cards are only $10 and deliver many wonderful discounts at local businesses. This year the card has a new look and a few new businesses. Buy yours today; it is a great value and one of the easiest ways to contribute to Davidsen.
Calling all Dragons! Get those creative juices flowing and start on those Reflections entries. This year’s theme is “the Magic of a Moment.” Details on submitting entries will be announced later, but don’t delay starting on your entry today.
Welcome to all students old and new! We are looking forward to a great year at an A-rated school with our A-rated students and staff.
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Davidsen Open House Aug. 17
As the last month of summer break comes to a close, it’s time to prepare for another great school year at Davidsen Middle School.
Mark your calendar if you haven’t already! School starts on Aug. 21.
As always, we thank our teachers and staff who make returning to school a wonderful experience for all students, new and old. On Aug. 17, Davidsen will be hosting its annual open house. The sixth grade open house is from 2:30-4 p.m. and seventh and eighth graders are scheduled from 4:30-6 p.m. This is a great time for students to pick up their schedules, meet their new teachers and catch up with friends they haven’t seen all summer. There will also be a PTSA general meeting following the open house at 6 p.m. All are invited to attend.
The Davidsen PTSA will be available at the open house and will be selling spirit shirts and the new 2012/2013 Community Discount Card. During open house you can also join the PTSA and learn about volunteer opportunities available for the upcoming school year. Volunteers are needed for open house and many other events throughout the school year. If you are interested in lending a hand, please e-mail Kendra Drake at email@example.com. We appreciate the time and dedication shown by all our Davidsen PTSA volunteers.
Planning for the 2012-2013 school year is off to a great start and the PTSA looks forward to a fabulous year with our new president, Kendra Drake. Kendra was very active in the Davidsen PTSA last year as the Vice President of Ways and Means. She brings a lot of experience to her current position as she served as Westchase Elementary PTA President. We offer a warm welcome to Kendra, all members of the Davidsen PTSA Executive Board and committee chairs for the coming year!
We hope all our Dragons cherish their last few weeks of summer and have fabulous tales to tell once school starts up again in a few weeks.
Davidsen PTSA Executive Board
1st VP Ways and Means
Kate Sorsby, Elaine Ragan
2nd VP Membership
Kathi Ballehr, Alyssa Herbig
3rd VP Volunteers
By Dana Gerus
Dragons Celebrate Endings and Beginnings
Fire and ice and endings and beginnings were the themes for Davidsen’s graduating class.
The eighth graders celebrated the end of their middle school days and the beginning high school. They were greeted by a unicyclist and entered their final middle school dance through either an igloo or flames. They were greeted by two very large dragons – created entirely of recycled products by Mr. Heath and his advanced art students.
One side of the transformed room was on fire and the other on ice. Food was donated by Surf Shack Coastal Kitchen, Delaware North Companies and San’s Pizzeria, and Kevin Carathanasis of Mail Marketing provided invitations. The kids enjoyed a photo booth, cotton candy torches, ice slushies, and a game room. The evening included a surprise appearance by Fritzy Brothers One Man Circus, whose various acts included a big surprise: fire eating! The kids were amazed and gathered to watch. Over 275 students celebrated the night in style. Check out pages 94-95 for photos of the fun.
We thank the Eighth Grade Committee and all the parents who showed up to transform the cafeteria into what was called the best dance yet. We also couldn’t have done it without the support of the school administration; Mr. Heath for the fabulous dragons, which have yet to be taken down; his art students, who spent hours making the decorations; and Ms. Talamantez, for her help with the field trip, yearbook signing, and decorating for the dance.
We wish all of the students good luck in high school and beyond. We hope you had a great final year and look forward to seeing your accomplishments. Farewell, Dragons, you will all be missed!
In other June news, Chloe Robinson received an award of merit for film from Florida PTA Reflections. Davidsen teacher Shanta Talamantez received a plaque for the Instructional Support person of the year. Mr. McBrien was also nominated for principal of the year. Davidsen PTSA received recognition for volunteers, student involvement and communications excellence. Thank you to Lynne Donahue for submitting these to the county on behalf of our PTSA!
As we know, summer goes by in the blink of an eye. Mark your calendars for Aug. 21, the first day of school. Until then, rest, relax and enjoy summer.
By Kendra Drake
June Marks Davidsen Endings and Beginnings
It is hard to believe the 2011-2012 school year is coming to a close.
It’s time to welcome the fifth grade students who visited from Westchase, Lowry and Deer Park Elementary Schools. We’re excited to have you join the Davidsen family in August.
It’s also time to say goodbye to our eighth grade Dragons, who are finishing this year with their end-of-year dance. This year’s theme, Fire and Ice, represents the endings and beginnings that mark their last year of middle school. We wish them much success in high school and know they will always be Davidsen Dragons.
This year has been an academically strong one for our school. Over 200 students achieved PHD status for the third quarter; they were treated to a special breakfast and a PHD Dragon T-shirt. The school also inducted 102 new members to the National Junior Honor Society. Congratulations to the students who worked hard all year to achieve these honors.
We thank Amy Daner and the Teacher Appreciation Committee, which treated our teachers, staff and faculty to a week of appreciation and surprises. From the special teacher breakfast to the delicious nacho bar and nice luncheon, we hope our teachers enjoyed their special week and know how wonderful we think they are. We also thank Tijuana Flats and San’s Pizzeria for providing delicious meals for our fabulous teachers and Leroy Selmon’s in Palm Harbor for providing the fabulous dinner during conference night.
It’s also time to say goodbye to this year’s PTSA president. We offer a big Dragon shout out to Marcy Bunn, who worked hard to make sure this year’s PTSA events and activities were successes. Marcy has been a hard working member of the PTSA for three years and helped co-chair SpiritLine before serving as president. Good luck to you, Marcy. You will be missed!
Once again we thank the volunteers who helped out this school year. Your dedication and help are greatly appreciated. Our special thanks go to Lynne Donahue and Pam Wilcox for preparing, submitting, and presenting our Five-Star Book. Thanks to their efforts, we are moving on to the State PTSA level. Way to go, ladies!
Enjoy the summer! August and the beginning of the 2012-2013 school year will soon be here.
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Kudos to Davidsen’s Outstanding Students and Teachers
It’s been a year of great accomplishments at Davidsen Middle School.
The 57th State Science and Engineering Fair was held at the Lakeland Center on April 3-5. We are proud to announce that Davidsen Middle School students took top awards. Congratulations to Hannah Keller and Elizabeth Corn! Hannah for took first place in the Behavioral and Social Science category and Elizabeth received a top award in chemistry. We are so proud of these talented scientists!
Congratulations also go to our terrific Davidsen Volleyball team! The girls won the first three games against Hill, Walker and Webb. The sixth graders have been impressively cohesive for a new group and the more seasoned seventh and eighth graders have strongly closed their games. We thank Coach Pelfrey and Coach LaRosee for guiding our girls to this level. These girls also deserve our kudos for an exciting beginning to their season!
The Davidsen Band and Orchestra students have been working hard all year and are preparing their end-of-the-year concerts. The orchestra will be playing on May 22 at Davidsen following the PTSA membership meeting and the band will play on May 25 at Sickles High School. Please come to both performances and support these programs.
Behind all these achievements are great students and a dedicated faculty who help assist our students. May 7 is the start of Teacher Appreciation Week and we will be showing our wonderful teachers, coaches and administrators how important they are. This is a great time to drop your teacher an e-mail or small note of thanks for all they do to set our kids up for success.
We offer our special thanks to everyone who helped with this year’s Medieval Fair. The donated items and volunteers contributed to its success. The kids had an awesome time!
May and June are a busy time. Please mark your calendars with the dates.
End of Year Events
May 7 Teacher Appreciation Week
May 14 NJHS Induction
May 18 End of Year Field Trip
May 22 PTSA Membership Meeting; Orchestra Concert
May 24 Awards
May 25 Band Concert at Sickles High School
June 1 Eighth Grade Dance
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Dragons Enjoy Medieval Fair
There were turkey legs, dunk tanks and tons of fun.
After months of preparation, teachers and volunteers manned the booths on March 9 for Davidsen’s annual Medieval Fair. A offer a big thank you to Amy Daner and all who volunteered to make this event a success. What a wonderful way to kick off spring break! We couldn't have pulled it off without everyone's help! It was a long day and a great time was had by all.
This year’s box tops drive was another success. Davidsen raised almost $900 for the school. Ms. Worme and Bailie Smith were this year’s Box Top Contest winners. Ms. Worme’s homeroom brought in the most box tops and Bailie Smith won the random drawing. Each winner received a gift certificate from Target. What a great way to earn some extra money for our school!
It’s hard to believe there are only a few months left in the school year. Our Davidsen eighth graders are preparing to end their middle school days with many events. Please see the inset box and mark your calendars.
A big Dragon shout out goes out to the Little Greek for providing a wonderful dinner for our teachers on conference night. We thank them for their generosity!
Don’t forget to order your 2011-2012 yearbook. The cost is only $35 and this year it will be printed in full color. Place your order through the school (with a check or money order payable to Davidsen Middle School) or online at http://www.yearbookordercenter.com (order number 2221). Order yours today.
As this year’s school year draws to a close, it is time to start searching for next year’s PTSA volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering your time as a PTSA board member, please contact Amy Hodges at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This year the FCAT will be taken from April 16-20. We know our students have studied hard and are ready to rock the test. Good luck, Dragons!
Eighth Grade Events
May 18 Field Trip
May 24 Awards
June 1 Eighth Grade Dance
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Davidsen’s Medieval Fair March 9
Spring break for Davidsen’s Dragons is right around the corner.
After all the hard work it’s time for our students to have a little fun at Davidsen’s Medieval Fair! This year it will be held on March 9. There are still many volunteer spaces available. Students, teachers and helpers always have a great time at this event. Please contact Amy Daner at email@example.com to donate your time and join in the fun. Small toys and stuffed animals can also be donated and left in the office marked to the attention of Amy Daner–Medieval Fair.
Spring break runs March 12-16. Once the students return, Davidsen will be holding a dance on March 30. The theme is Mardi Gras and the dance will be co-sponsored by the student council. Come on out for a great time of dancing and music.
The Davidsen eighth grade Dragons would like to thank everyone who joined them for dining night at Surf Shack in January and San’s Pizzeria in February. They also thank Surf Shack and San’s for donating a portion of sales back to our graduating class.
We would also like to give a Dragon Shout Out to Mr. McBrien, Ms. Talamantez, Mr. Campbell, Mr. Hallman, Mr. O’Keife, Mr. Rohrbaker, Ms. Houston, Ms. Poyner, Ms. King, Mr. Miller, Mr. Dashner and Mr. Larosse for coming out to San’s and serving tables.
Special thanks also go to Little Greek for sponsoring dinner for the faculty and staff during conference night on Feb. 23. We also would like to thank Tijuana Flats for providing dinner last quarter. The food is always terrific and makes it easier for our staff to make it through a long day.
If you’re looking for an easy way to support our school and enjoy a tasty treat, stop by Just Say When Yogurt, located in the Citrus Park Mall near Dick’s Sporting Goods. Every Monday and Wednesday from 4-7:30 p.m. they donate 20 percent of their profits to Davidsen Middle School. Just mention our school by name when ordering.
Once again, over 220 students received straight A’s for the second quarter and made the Principal’s Honor Roll. In honor of their accomplishment they were treated to a Chik-fil-A breakfast and will soon be receiving their PHD T-shirts. Way to go PHD Dragons! We are proud of you!
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Oldest Dragons Keep Busy With February Fund-Raising
As we enter the third quarter, Davidsen’s eighth graders are busily preparing for end-of-the-year activities. Be sure to mark your calendars for these fund-raising events benefitting the eighth grade class. Davidsen Dining Night at San’s Pizzeria is Feb. 9 from 5-8 p.m. Your delicious meal will be served by Mr. McBrien and many of your favorite teachers. If you can’t join us, call in for take-out. Ten percent of proceeds go to the eighth grade class.
Also be sure to order Candy Grams for your favorite classmates and teachers Feb. 7-9. Their cost is $1. Candy Grams will be on sale during lunch and are always popular with the students.
For only $10, you can purchase a Legacy brick for your child or your favorite teacher. For more information contact Tracy Urso at 786-3770 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
We offer our special congratulations to the winners of this year’s Reflections art contest. Once again, many Davidsen students took home top honors. Special shout outs go to Emily Miller, judges choice in visual arts; Sabrina Sanchez, judges choice in photography; Meredith Puster and Dilina Weerapperuma, honorable mentions in music composition; and Chloe Robinson, second place in film production. We are proud of all of your accomplishments!
Medieval Fair is right around the corner. We will be having this annual event on March 9. The fair is great fun for the volunteers and students alike. We are always looking for extra hands to help with this event. If you are interested, please e-mail Amy Daner at email@example.com. There are still many opportunities available to sell tickets or help with booths. New or gently used stuffed animals and small toys are also needed. Please send these to the office to the attention of Amy Daner-Medieval Fair.
The PTSA is also looking for a treasurer for the 2012-2013 school year. If you are interested, please e-mail the Davidsen PTSA at firstname.lastname@example.org. This is a fairly straightforward job but we would like to give the new treasurer some exposure to the job requirements before the year’s end. Please consider helping if you can.
Thanks again to all our teachers, volunteers and students who make our school special. Keep up the great work! We appreciate all you do.
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Davidsen Welcomes Back Dragons
Yes it’s true! January is here and winter break is behind us. It’s time to look forward to many upcoming events at Davidsen.
January brings another dance. The annual NJHS dance will be held on Jan. 20 immediately after school. Buy your tickets, put on your dancing shoes and get ready to have some fun. As always, volunteers are needed for this and all PTSA events. Please e-mail email@example.com for more information.
The creativity, diversity and talent of our students will be celebrated at Jefferson High School on Jan. 8 when the winners of the Reflections art contest will be announced and honored. We are proud of all the entries submitted for this annual event. Special thanks go to Ilona Fraleigh and Becky Gordon, who did a great job bringing our students together to celebrate diversity.
It’s never too early to start planning for Davidsen’s Medieval Fair, a parent and teacher run festival for students only. It will take place on Friday, March 9, from 2:15-4:15 p.m. Here are the dates and times volunteers are needed:
Ticket pre-sales: Mon, Tue and Wed, March 5-7, 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Bag pre-sale tickets: Thu, March 8, 10 a.m.-noon
Set up: 4-6 p.m.
Deliver tickets: Friday, March 9, 9-10 a.m.
Finish set up: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Help at booths: 1:45-4:15 p.m.
Clean up: 4:15-5:30 p.m.
Please e-mail Amy Daner at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to help with this fun event!
In addition, we need new or gently used small toys and stuffed animals. They should be sent to the office to the attention of Amy Daner – Medieval Fair.
As always we would like to thank our PTSA business sponsors who help with events throughout the year. This month’s Dragon shout out goes to Tijuana Flats’ Mark Chiaramonte and Anthony Zupo, who provided a fabulous dinner for our faculty and staff on conference night. The delicious tacos, queso and guacamole were enjoyed by all.
We hope everyone is well rested after a long break and wish all students good luck on exams. January is a busy month, so be sure to make a note of its very important dates.
Important January Dates
2 Return from Break
8 Reflections Award Ceremony
9-13 Mid-Semester Exam Week
13 End of Semester
16-17 No School
20 NJHS Dance
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Dragons Lend a Helping Hand in December
This month our Dragons have the opportunity to adopt an angel. Through the school’s annual Adopt an Angel program, each homeroom sponsors a child and will collecting donations to purchase gifts for their angel.
All the students are eager to participate in the program. It’s encouraging to see our students take an interest in their community by lending a helping hand. Way to go, Dragons!
While busy with their studies, Davidsen students have also found other ways to give back to the community. The members of the National Junior Honor Society (NJHS) have started a canned food drive during each meeting. Last month, 80 cans of food were collected and given to the Westchase food drive. Canned goods will also be collected during the month of December to help fill the shelves of a local food bank.
It’s hard to believe that the first few months of the school year have slipped away and we are already preparing for a well-deserved winter break.
We offer a big round of applause to the 255 students who earned straight A’s on their report cards and earned the title PHD, Principal’s Honor Roll Dragon for the first semester. These students were treated with a special breakfast in honor of their accomplishments and we are proud of all of them.
The PTSA would like to thank everyone for a very successful Box Top Drive. Through it we raised $530 for our school. Congratulations to Mrs. Miller and Mrs. Houston, who tied for first place. They will both be receiving $25 gift cards to Burger 21. Additionally, Emily Miller in Mrs. Bolivar’s homeroom won a $25 Target gift card in the student drawing. Congratulations to all the winners!
We offer our special thanks to all our volunteers and business partners. Whether it is speaking at the Great American Teach In, making cherry snow cones for Red Ribbon Week or providing dinner for our teachers during a long conference night, we appreciate all you do to help make our school great. We offer a special shout out to Tijuana Flats, which will be providing dinner for the teachers on Dec. 6.
We wish all Dragon students, staff and faculty a happy holiday break. See everyone in 2012!
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Dragon Hoopsters Have Terrific Season
What an amazing start Davidsen Dragons have had in their fall sports season. We offer a great big Davidsen Dragon shout out to the boys’ basketball team. Our Dragon hoopsters were undefeated and earned a spot in the championships this year. Congratulations to the boys’ basketball team and to all our excellent student athletes for an amazing season. We are proud of you!
The biggest event in November is the Great American Teach In. On Nov. 17 many volunteers are needed to speak to our students. If you have a career or hobby that you would like to share, please contact Ms. Pothier (email@example.com). For this event to be a success, participants are needed! Please think about joining our Great American Teach In team by sharing your life experiences and knowledge with our students. We have had terrific speakers in the past and look forward to all the great ones volunteering this year.
“Diversity Is…” is the theme for this year’s Reflections Arts event. We thank all the students who created many wonderful entries for this year’s contest. The Reflections breakfast for all participants is Nov. 16. It is amazing how creative and talented our students can be.
A special Davidsen thank you goes to Ivan de la Guardia and all our friends over at San’s Pizzeria. Once again they provided a fabulous meal on conference night this year. The faculty and staff enjoyed the baked ziti, chicken marsala and other wonderful dishes. The caesar salad and amazing garlic knots were also a hit. We appreciate the special relationship and generous donations that San’s provides to our school.
As always, volunteers for all of Davidsen’s events are greatly appreciated. Keep track of upcoming events on the Davidsen Middle School PTA Facebook page.
A special volunteer is needed to help Mr. McBrien with the updating of our school sign. If you have some time on your hands, a tall ladder and are not afraid of heights, please consider volunteering for this responsibility. E-mail Nancy Ostrowski at firstname.lastname@example.org if you can help.
We look forward to a fabulous month and the beginning of a new quarter. Congrats to all our Ph.D. students who earned straight A’s. They will be honored on Nov. 9 with a special breakfast. Keep up the great work!
We wish all students and faculty a wonderful Thanksgiving Break and hope they enjoy their time off!
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Why Not Like Davidsen’s PTSA?
Davidsen Middle School PTSA is proud to announce the addition of our very own Facebook page.
All you have to do is “like” our page to have access to the most current PTSA information. It’s a great way to keep up-to-date with school events.
It’s the time of year for falling leaves, cooler temperatures (hopefully) and the annual Reflections art projects. This year’s theme is “Diversity Means…” and the deadline for entries is Oct. 20. In past years, Davidsen students have submitted many fabulous entries and have always represented our school proudly. We can’t wait to see the amazing ideas our creative and talented Dragons will submit this year.
As always, October is one of the busiest months of the year. There are many activities and opportunities for volunteers. On Friday, Oct. 14, Davidsen’s annual PTSA membership dance will kick off the dance calendar for this year. This dance is free to all PTSA members, but tickets can be purchased Oct. 10-12 during lunch. Another great activity, Red Ribbon Week, will be held Oct. 24-28. Many activities will be planned during this week to help remind our Dragons of the dangers of drugs and alcohol. Please contact email@example.com if you are interested in volunteering for any of these events.
This year’s Community Discount Card fund-raiser is off to a great start with many cards sold. Cards will be sold at this year’s Westchase 20th Anniversary Party on Saturday, Oct. 29. Buy yours today and start enjoying the savings the smart card offers. For more information, go to the community card Web site, http://www.westchasediscountcard.com.
As always we want to thank the many businesses that are actively involved with our school. A special Davidsen shout-out goes to Publix, which provided bags during Open House, and San’s Pizzeria, which treated our teachers with a delicious meal on conference night. We thank all the businesses that have donated to our school!
Mark your calendars for Nov. 17, the date of the Great American Teach In. Speakers are needed to make this event a success. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact D.J. Jones firstname.lastname@example.org.
We wish our Dragons cooler weather and fabulous fall fun.
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary
Davidsen Dragons Discover Newly Painted School
September brings cooler weather and the first full month of school. With summer now a memory, the students are focusing on new classes and teachers.
The newly painted hallways of Davidsen are busy with the sounds of students shuffling through textbooks and scurrying to classrooms before the bell rings.
The 2011-2012 school year was kicked off on Aug. 15 at the annual Welcome Back Breakfast. Faculty and staff were greeted with a fabulous array of breakfast treats. The teachers had a wonderful time catching up after the long summer break and preparing for the year to come. We offer special thanks to Elaine Ragan, the Hospitality Committee and all other volunteers for making this event a success.
The students were invited back on Aug. 19 for the annual sneak peek. Students picked up schedules and met teachers and everyone admired the newly painted school. PTSA membership, Spirit Shirts and community cards were also sold. Although most students were not ready to come back, they enjoyed seeing their classmates and eased back into the school routine without too many complaints.
It’s fall fundraiser time at Davidsen, so don’t forget to pick up your community discount card! For only $10 you receive many money-saving discounts from local businesses. Order forms were sent home the first day of school and will need to be returned by Sept. 9. Contact Kendra Drake (email@example.com) with any questions or visit the newly created Web site, http://www.westchasediscountcard.com for m,ore information. Students who sell the discount cards will be eligible to win great prizes like an XBox 360, uniform passes and iPod shuffles. The purchase of this card is a great way to support our school and community.
Many activities are planned for the coming year and volunteers are needed to make these programs a success. The PTSA helps with dances, Red Ribbon Week and the Medieval Fair, among other events. Mark your calendars! The first night dance is scheduled for Oct. 15 and volunteers will be needed to decorate, sell tickets and chaperone. Please contact Nancy Ostrowski at firstname.lastname@example.org to help with this or any other event for the upcoming year. As always, all volunteers are welcomed and greatly appreciated.
Welcome back, Dragons and staff! We wish everyone a successful school year.
By Dana Gerus, PTSA Corresponding Secretary