John F. Kennedy Middle School
Bethpage, NY 11714
PRINCIPAL: Mr. Kevin Fullerton
ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL: Mr. Nicholas Jantz
DEANS: Brian Hennen and Jill Bennardo
In the News
Mathcounts Club Competition
On Saturday, February 4, 2017, John F. Kennedy's Mathcounts Club attended the Mathcounts Long Island Chapter Competition at SUNY Farmingdale. Schools from all over Long Island competed. Mathcounts is a national mathematics enrichment program for middle school students. The competitors from John F. Kennedy Middle School this year included Aurrel Bhatia, Ruchitha Channapatna, Suchitha Channapatna, Sidh Chhabra, Ryan Fina, Bernardo Jimenez, Simoni Khashu, Taebin Son, Theresa Thulasidas, and team captain, Pawan Pitironggon. Congratulations to all of the students!
21st Century: Chocolate Duck
The theme for this session was edible Valentine's Day treats that compliment a cup of hot cocoa. The students painted the with colored chocolate and then they filled in their molds with the milk chocolate. While the chocolate was setting, they decorated six cupcakes in "loving" ways. All of the students had a wonderful time!
Back in November, as a part of the Grade 6 curriculum: Ancient Worlds, we studied Otzi the Iceman. During a five-day mini-unit, we hypothesized and created scenarios based on evidence as to what killed Otzi: hypothermia, ritual sacrifice, battle in war, robbery, or assassination. The students enjoyed this unit.
On Saturday, January 28, 2017, thirty-four Grade 6 students ventured out to the DNA labs at Cold Spring Harbor. It was there that they saw the only secondary source of Otzi the Iceman. His mummy was found in 1991 in the Alps bordering Austria and Italy. He had been covered in ice for nearly 4,500 years! At the DNA lab, the students extracted DNA from wheat germ, since scientists extracted DNA from Otzi. They were taught how to do this amazing technique using common household products. Then, they examined pollen under a microscope, since pollen was found in Otzi's stomach. This fact alone can tell you what time of year that Otzi died. Finally, we saw the mummified body and the many artifacts that he left behind. One wouldn't think that the mummy they saw was not real. This was a terrific extension activity to our Grade 6 unit of study!
Sign Language, Part II
In this session, Ms. Alyssa Syznal continued to teach each of us sign language. She taught us many greetings so that we could conduct a small conversation. We proceeded to practice our newfound knowledge of this foreign language with friends. We found it interesting how we were able to communicate with each other across the classroom and not voice a single word! Our next session will focus on the Family Tree and Holidays!
John F. Kennedy students Gianna Battaglia and Isabelle Yoon will have their artwork featured in the Colors of Long Isand Exhibit at the Long Island Museum. The exhibit will run for two months and the Nassau County reception is held on April 2, 2017 and will feature select works from Long Island art students. Congratulations to Gianna and Isabelle!
Sand Art Creations
On Friday, January 20, 2017, students met with Miss Danielle from Castaway Sand Creations. The refined sand from the North Shore was used to create snowflakes, birds, mittens, and/or snowmen. The students chose their item and decoration. Miss Danielle poured 'liquid milk' into the sand mold and then returned them on Wednesday, January 25, 2017. Mrs. Klein's bird can be seen completed. Look for the next one in March 2017!
Spikeball fever hit John F. Kennedy on Monday, January 23, 2017 and Tuesday, January 24, 2017. During the Physical Education classes, all students got to learn a new game called Spikeball. It can be played on the beach, outside, and even in the gymnasium. A great time was had by all students!
John F. Kennedy's CSI's
The sixth grade Academic Exploration students are on the hunt for a suspect that broke into JFK Middle School over the weekend. It has been reported that the suspect stole the band's music sheets for an upcoming competition. In order to solve the crime, the students found evidence and analyzed it for information. It will be their job as crime stoppers to eliminate suspects based on the information they have gathered from the crime scene. Special thanks to Ms. Moquin and Ms. Walsh for working with the students throughout this investigation!
21st Century: Diversity Walk
On a brisk, but sunny day, Mrs. Klein, Mrs. McKweon, and seventeen students ventured out for a diversity walk of Little India in Hicksville. The group started out at Patel Brothers, where Mr. Patel treated everyone to complimentary pomegranate drinks. The students went shopping and tried new items. The group then walked to SAI Dresses were Mr. Neel provided everyone with a very in-depth presentation of different Saris and outfits worn at a traditional Indian wedding. Next, they went to Bengali sweet and savory shop where Mr. Raj and Ms. Geeta provided everyone with delicious customary Indian food which the students absolutely loved. The day concluded at Maharajah market, where once again the students tried new items!
On Wednesday, January 11, 2017, John F. Kennedy Middle School held its annual National Geographic Geography Bee. Over 30 classroom winners participated in the school-wide competition. This year's winner was Patrick Dircks from Mr. Kramer's Grade 6 class. Thanks to all of John F. Kennedy's Social Studies teachers who helped organize and run this event. Congratulations to all of the participants!
[Pictures to Follow]
John F. Kennedy's Academy students created stuffed monsters this month during Art class with Ms. Noskewicz. After using a probability worksheet and dice to help select the characteristics of their monster, students first sketched and colored their design on paper. Next, the pieces were cut from felt using their drawings as a guide. Last, each student sewed the pieces together to create a stuffed monster. During this project, students worked on their sewing skills and fine motor skills.
Melodic Performance from Binghamton's Pegs
On Friday, January 6, 2017, John F. Kennedy Middle School students enjoyed a performance from Binghamton's all-girl a capella group, the Harpur Harpeggios. The "Pegs", as they are more commonly known, sang a medley of popular songs and spent some time answering questions as well. Special thanks to the PTA for sponsoring this after school activity and visit!
Over the course of three concerts, each grade level was able to celebrate the holidays by entertaining the school community through our annual Winter Concert Series. All of the performances were wonderful! Special thanks to Mrs, Cooper, Mr. Coscette, and Mr. Kay for their hard work in preparing our students for each performance.
21st Century: Decoupage Memory Box
On Wednesday, December 21, 2016, students met with Mrs. Klein and Ms. Noskewitz to create a memory box either for themselves or as a gift. Ms. Noskewitz led demonstrations on how to use decoupage to transfer one of their favorite photos onto their box. Directions were then provided to the students so that they could recreate these at home on their own.
21st Century: How Much Does it Cost to Run a School District?
On Monday, December 5, 2016, students at John F. Kennedy participated in a 21st Century event led by Mr. Clark to calculate how much it would cost to run a school district. The students learned that it costs approximately $82 million to run Bethpage Schools.
21st Century: Disney Fun
21st Century: Students Tackle the 24 Challenge
On November 15, 2016 and November 22, 2016, Grade 6, 7, and 8 students joined Ms. Green and Mrs. O'Sullivan for several challenging and competitive rounds of the math game, 24. Combining creativity and technical skill, students utilized addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division skills to make the number 24 from four numbers on a card while using each number only once. After honing their skills during the first session, the second session required students to compete against each other and themselves to earn the title, JFK 24 Challenge Champion! Eighth grade student Pawan Pitiranggon earned this honor, but participants agreed that they were ALL winners for having had the experience!
Finding the Right Fit at the JFK Library
The John F. Kennedy Library was transformed into Bethpage Eagle Outfitters for Grade 7 ELA students shopping for outside reading books (ORBs). Students received a sale flyer detailing the day's promotions (borrow three books, get one free!) and the latest reading trends. First, they browsed books in their size (Lexile or reading level) and then selected books that fit their style (genre and subject matter). Store Managers (Ms. Green, Ms. Balvin, Ms. Greco, Ms. Gutkes, Ms. Trogele, and Mrs. Phillips) provided personal book shopping and consultation services. Students brought the books to private fitting rooms where they could try on their choices while enjoying the comfort of a bean bag chair. When students were ready to make a "purchase", Assistant Store Manager Mrs. Quinn placed the books in a shopping bag along with a Customer Satisfaction Survey. The Google Form questioned the students on strategies for picking a book that fits as well as their comments and suggestions regarding the book shopping experience. For completing the survey, students received coupons for either a free cookie at Panera Bread or a sundae at Applebee's. The students were very enthusiastic about the lesson and excited to begin reading their ORBs.
On Saturday, November 19, 2016, students from John F. Kennedy embarked on a trip to Savers in Commack. Not only did they donate clothes to a needy cause (Big Brothers Big Sisters of Long Island), but they purchased clothes at a discounted amount. The students had a great time!
Science Research Students Visit the DNA Learning Center
In 1991, two hikers stumbled upon one of the most astonishing funds of the 20th Century: the mummified remains of a 5,300 year old man, frozen on the mountainside of the Otztal Alps. "Otzi" named in honor of the region where he was found, is the oldest intact natural mummy ever discovered. His body and accompanying artifacts have been expertly preserved.
John F. Kennedy's Grade 7 Science Research students went to the DNA Learning Center in Cold Spring Harbor to view replicas of Otzi and his artifacts. They explored the Otzi exhibit which included Otzi, his gear, skeletons and skulls showing the evolution of humans from apes, and other topics in genetics.
In addition, the students participated in laboratory experiments including looking at pollen found in Otzi's disgestive system, helping track Otzi's movements in his final hours. They extracted DNA from wheat germ and experimented with enzymes that illustrated Otzi's lactose intolerance! A great time was had by all!
21st Century: Symmetry in Nature
On Monday, November 7, 2016, a group of John F. Kennedy students met with Ms. Maloney and Ms. Okita to learn about symmetry. Students discussed line, rotational, and point symmetry. The group went on a nature walk around John F. Kennedy and found symmetry in the leaves, flowers, etc. Students created leaf art work with the leaves they found, created pop-up cards, and created pictures on a coordinate plane to practice what they learned.
Teacher-Student Badminton Tournament
On Thursday, November 10, 2016, the John F. Kennedy Physical Education Department held its first-ever Teacher-Student Badminton Tournament! The tournament consisted of 16 teams of teacher and student pairs battling it out, and raised money for the upcoming Special Olympics. Special thanks to all the teachers, students, and John F. Kennedy staff that participated and helped make this event possible to support a great cause!
News 12 Studios Visit
On Wednesday, November 9, 2016, the John F. Kennedy Media Relations Club had the opportunity to visit the News 12 Studios in Woodbury! The students received an extensive tour of the studio, getting a chance to see how all aspects of a professional news broadcast come together. Along the way, the students got the chance to meet numerous News 12 personalities, one of which included meteorologist Rich Hoffman! As we saw last May, Mr. Hoffman is no stranger to the students at John F. Kennedy (video). Mr. Hoffman took time out of his busy schedule to speak to the students about the technologies involved in a news broadcast, his ascent to success, and how he always had more to learn in the field of meteorology. Mr. Hoffman reminded the students that they we must always be lifelong learners. The students and their club adviser, Mr. Levy, were extremely grateful for this opportunity and hope to return again in the future!
21st Century: Chocolate Duck
On a gorgeous Saturday morning, John F. Kennedy students ventured to the Chocolate Duck in Farmingdale to try their hands at making autumn-themed chocolates and decorating cupcakes. All of the students had a great time and enjoyed dipping their fingers into the decadent flavors!
John F. Kennedy Election
On Monday, November 6, 2016, the students of John F. Kennedy Middle School participated in their very own presidential election. Each student cast their vote during their Social Studies class and the winner was announced over the public address system by Mr. Fullerton during 9th period. A big thanks to Ms. Smith, Ms. Mastellone, Mr. Fisher, Mr. Brace, Mr. Indenbaum, Mrs. Klein, and Mr. Kramer for their hard work.
On Tuesday, November 1, 2016, fifteen students from John F. Kennedy attended the 2016 Middle School Leadership Conference at the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County. The students had an opportunity to engage in a discussion about politics and community activism with Jeff Guillot from Millennial Strategies. His company organizes and runs all aspects of political campaigns including strategy and management, fundraising, event planning, and media buying. Students discussed the attributes of good leaders, our recent political climate, and ways that they can get involved politically within their own community.
All County Musicians
Congratulations to the following John F. Kennedy students for making All County: Joyce Choi, Graziella Conte, Lilly D'Avanzo, Mary Tsiokas, Sophia Passaro, Ashley Garnar, Adriana Lisa, Madison Cross, Lindsay D'Agostino, Svetlana Mughnetyan, Gianna Battaglia, Samir Gupte, and Kyle Kim. Huge thanks to Mr. Coscette, Mr. Kay, and Mrs. Cooper!
On a lovely Saturday morning, Mrs. Klein and Ms. McKeown accompanied students to West Islip to tour the place where George Washington slept while here on Long Island! In 1692, Stephanus Van Cortlandt purchased the original piece of land from the Secatogue tribe (the original deed was recently found). He built the first part of the Manor as a hunting lodge in 1697. During the following years, more land was purchased until the estate was 1200 acres (it is now 10.2 acres). The land was primarily used for farming and the Sagtikos Dairy Farm operated into the 1960's. Two additions were put on the house in 1772 and 1902 when it became one of the fashionable summer estates on the south shore.
During the Revolutionary War, the British Army occupied the Manor. When George Washington toured Long Island, he stayed one night. Rose Kennedy had tea at the Manor when her son was running for President. Sagtikos Manor is the largest house in the Town of Islip and is filled with over 300 years of living history. The house has 42 rooms on 3 floors with a full basement. Outside you will see the Carriage House, weather station, walled garden, potting shed, calling bell, and cemetery. Restoration is ongoing.
On Friday, October 28, 2016, John F. Kennedy's Student Council hosted its annual Halloween Party. The night was highlighted by a DJ, snacks, and a costume contest. Huge thanks to Mrs. Leemon and Mrs. Schneider for planning a great event!
Photo Gallery (Revised: November 1, 2016)
On Thursday, October 27, 2016, the students of John F. Kennedy Middle School showed their Bethpage pride and spirit by taking part in the annual Pep Rally. The event highlighted the school's talented athletes and singers and also included participants from the upcoming Special Olympics. A great time was had by all.
Photo Gallery (Revised: November 1, 2016)
Red Ribbon Week
Students from John F. Kennedy Middle School visited the students at Kramer Lane Elementary School to participate in the annual Ribbon Week lesson. Members of the Grade 8 Honor Society and the "Champion of Choices" club discussed with the elementary school students about how to make good choices.
Soaring Eagles Day
On Thursday, October 27, 2016, John F. Kennedy Middle School hosted their annual "Soaring Eagles Day". The day was full of character education workshops that were built around the inspirational message from author and speaker, Mark Mero. Mr. Mero is a former football and hockey all-star, a four-time New York State Boxing Champion, a WWE Wrestling Champion, and founder of "Champion of Choices". The day ended with the annual Pep Rally where the John F. Kennedy student body cheered for the student athletic teams as well as local athletes from the Special Olympics. Overall, it was a fantastic day for the John F. Kennedy students and staff.
John F. Kennedy Live Special "Soaring Eagles Day" Interview with Mark Mero
Photo Gallery (Revised: November 1, 2016)
Learning the Basics of Sign Language
Bethpage graduate Alyssa Szynal conducted a one-hour session for all students at John F. Kennedy interested in learning the basics of Sign Language. Sign language is a foreign language. Knowledge of the alphabet is a big key to learning sign language. Alyssa taught the attendees the sign language alphabet and from there the students learned to sign their name. All participants were given a sheet with the alphabet and the hand signs on it. An arts and crafts activity involving the students names was completed followed by a long round of deaf Bingo to reinforce the newfound knowledge!
The John F. Kennedy Library Media Center held a "book tasting" in the "Library Cafe" where Grade 8 English students sampled various books on the menu. Complete with table settings, a roaring "fire", and flowers on the table, the Library Media Center was transformed into a fancy feast for readers. Students enjoyed perusing through Ms. Phillips' suggestions for each course while "dining" with their classmates.
21st Century: Math Dice Games
On October 17, 2016, John F. Kennedy students met with Ms. Maloney and Ms. Okita to practice their math skills through a series of dice games. Students worked in teams and had a wonderful time!
21st Century: Create Your Own Comic
On October 6, 2016, a group of John F. Kennedy students met with Ms. Maloney and Ms. Okita to celebrate the anniversary of the famous comic strip, Peanuts. Students examined features of comics such as dialogue and onomatopoeia. They were able to create their own comic strip either on paper or electronically on their Chromebook. Students created super hero characters and new Peanuts characters as well.
The Scientific Method
It was all in the name of science! During a lesson on the Scientific Method, 8th grade students at John F. Kennedy Middle School asked the question, "How many rubber bands will it take to make a watermelon explode?" Procedures were created, hypotheses were made, supplies were gathered, and the students took action wrapping rubber bands around a juicy, seedless watermelon. Take a guess before watching the video below as the results were captured in slow-motion!
21st Century: MakerFaire NYC
On Sunday, October 2, 2016, students from John F. Kennedy Middle School accompanied by Mr. Scarola and Mr. Choi, attended the 7th Annual MakerFaire NYC held at the New York Hall of Science. A MakerFaire is "an all-ages gathering of tech enthusiasts, crafters, do-it-yourselfers, educators, tinkerers, hobbyists, engineers, science clubs, authors, artists, students, and exhibitors". At MakerFaire NYC, the students got to see various exhibits, ask questions to the exhibitors, engage in hands-on activities, and watch several drone races. In addition, the students got to meet with the Regal Eagles, Bethpage High School's very own Robotics Team, who were exhibitors themselves with their robot in attendance. Under the guidance of the Regal Eagles, John F. Kennedy students were able to control their robot! To end the day, the students met with Mr. Zabell who summarized the various activities that the students took part in from throughout the day!
School Store Grand Opening
On Friday, September 30, 2016, John F. Kennedy Middle School reopened its School Store. The store was packed with new school supplies and other novelty items. It is open every Wednesday and Friday during lunch periods and is operated by members of the Student Council.
Pizza with the Principals
On Tuesday, September 27, 2016, the winners of the Preamble Challenge along with a few friends enjoyed some pizza with Mr. Fullerton and Mr. Jantz. The celebration took place during their lunch periods. Congratulations to Valenni Passaro, Ruchitha Channapatra, and Georgia Karaisarides.
On Thursday, September 29, 2016, the Grade 7 students headed out to Old Brookville to participate in a series of team building exercises at Project Adventure! The weather held out and cooperated and the students and chaperons had a great time!
On Thursday, September 22, 2016, the John F. Kennedy Cafeteria was transformed into the annual Activity Fair. This gave students an opportunity to view the club offerings for the 2016-17 school year. As expected, the turnout was great! Have fun this year!
In order to celebrate the adoption of the United States Constitution, 6th, 7th, and 8th graders at John F. Kennedy Middle School participated in the 11th Annual Preamble Challenge. Students competed against each other in order to see who could recite the Preamble of the Constitution the fastest. This year's winners are:
Grade 6: Georgia Karaisarides (6.58 seconds)
Grade 7: Ruchitha Channapatra (6.96 seconds)
Grade 8: Valenni Passaro (6.09 seconds)
A big congratulations to our winners and all that participated in the Preamble Challenge!
Summer Reading Discussion
Welcome to the 2016-17 school year! On Thursday, September 8, 2016, students of John F. Kennedy Middle School packed the Library Media Center and other classrooms in order to discuss the books from their summer reading list!