News From CSC – September 10th, 2014

Greetings CSC Parents and Students,

I will be sending out CSC Newsletters periodically throughout the year.  The purpose of these newsletters are as follows:

  • Help parents/guardians gain a better understanding of what their children are doing and learning in the class
  • Promote discussions at home about topics explored in the class
  • Showcase student work
  • Communicate to the larger community and encourage greater collaboration between classroom and community.


What We’ve Been Up To

DSC_0450We spent the first few weeks laying the foundations for a successful learning community.  We began by discussing the basic classroom expectations for behavior, which are as follows:

  • Be Honest
  • Be Kind
  • Be Respectful
  • Be Your Best


We then went outside to the Low Ropes Course where students were asked to complete a team building   DSC_0654 activity.  This particular challenge, called the Spider Web, requires every student to work together as a team.  Students reflected on their experience and came up with a list of “Do’s” and “Dont’s” for effective Collaboration and Communication.  This list became a rubric we will use to assess student performance throughout the year.

We are currently discussing how to create the optimum conditions in our classroom community to maximize the learning of every student.  We will be having some pretty thought provoking discussions about brain-based learning, grading, and homework.

Once we finish laying the foundations DSC_0853for the rest of the year, we will move on to our first Inquiry-Based unit of the year – How to Balance the Natural and Digital Worlds.  Students will learn about a condition called Nature Deficit Disorder, which occurs when children spend too much time in front of screens and not enough time in the natural world. 



The Field Trip

To help students gain a greater appreciation of community and the natural world, we have organized a two-night wilderness education trip with Kroka Expeditions in Marlow, New Hampshire.  Students will spend three days learning more about their role in the community and the natural world by living, working, harvesting, cooking, dining, and exploring together on the Kroka wilderness campus.   There will be no personal devices of any kind and various community building activities will encourage students to build strong relationships and make new friends.  The result will be a stronger learning community in all of our Sophomore classrooms.  


Students will be taking a guided tour of the Northern forest ecosystem, gain hands-on experience with various forms of renewable energy systems, and work on the farm harvesting vegetables and collecting eggs, which they will use to prepare community meals over an open fire.  Students will also have the opportunity to learn many useful wilderness skills, such as fire making, wooden spoon making, wilderness navigation, canoeing, tracking, and basic survival skills.


The total cost for the three-day trip will be $90 per student, which includes ten dollars to help students with limited means.  If you are able to contribute more than $90 that would be greatly appreciated.  Likewise, if the full cost is currently beyond your means please contact me so we can help figure out a way to make it work.


Please check out Kroka’s website at for more information. This is a very reputable organization and the safety of your children is our primary concern.  


The Kroka campus only has room for a limited number of students, so please sign up and send payment as soon as you can.


To sign up for this trip, please use this link:


We have also attached more information about our new online sign-up process.


Please email me at if you have any questions or concerns.


Cost: $90/student   

Depart from Harwood: 8am on Wednesday, October 8th  

Return to Harwood: 3pm on Friday, October 10th

Where: Kroka Expeditions, 767 Forest Road, Marlow NH, 03456

Who: Any Sophomore student currently enrolled in CSC


*Please make all checks payable to Harwood Union High School or HUHS