Posted on 06/04/2018

SMARTS Night at Clark Lane Middle School! (Waterford, CT, May 31, 2018) - What happens when you bring together middle school orchestra, band and chorus, add a cooking demonstration, a  3D Printer, some robots, a service dog, add a dash of Art , PE and World language, and surround the entire event with dozens and dozens of clubs, electives and other fun and fascinating activities enjoyed by students? You get SMARTS Night! The second annual SMARTS Night to be precise! On May 31st, the entire Waterford community was invited to Clark Lane Middle School to get a taste of all of the unique and intriguing opportunities students can take part in outside their core studies. The night was filled with demonstrations, performances and exhibits that highlighted the numerous opportunities middle school students can choose to become involved in throughout the year. The night was hosted by teachers and students who were there to share with the public what their interests are and how they become reality at Clark Lane. Alexis Myers, grade 8 student, and member of the Wingman Mentoring program begun at Clark Lane this year, reflected upon SMARTS Night, “It helped us have stronger relationships with different grades and kids we wouldn’t normally talk to.” Mack Jackson, also in Grade 8 and a Wingman, stated, “The program helped me feel more comfortable speaking in front of large classes, and SMARTS Night informed the community what exactly Wingman does.” The Drama Club performed two skits from their spring production of High School Musical II. The Ukulele group performed with the CLMS Chorus, and guests were greeted with other fantastic musical treats throughout the evening! The World Language team hosted a contest to build the most realistic Eiffel Tower out of newspaper, and students enrolled in 3D Design “printed” useful items raffled off to those in attendance. Over 350 people visited Clark Lane for SMARTS Night, including the many fifth grade students and parents transitioning to the middle school this fall. 

"It was really exciting at SMARTS Night to see all the things I'll get to consider when I get to Clark Lane." -- Abby Gerboth, entering sixth-grade. "Learning is never limited to a traditional classroom, so being able to experience firsthand Clark Lane's robust extracurricular options across such areas as music, drama, science, culinary, community service, and even the Rubik's Cube reaffirmed for us the middle school's strong commitment to engaged learning at every level. We look forward to seeing what clicks outside the classroom for all our children at Clark Lane." -- Karen Gerboth, mom of two entering students. SMARTS Night turned out to be a great opportunity for new students to get a taste of what is to come and what a comprehensive middle school can offer. SMARTS Night creators Jeanne Morgan and Laura Provo-Parker, teachers at the school, had their work cut out for them bringing dozens and dozens of extracurricular activities together for a night of showcasing. “Clark Lane offers so many opportunities for students to access multiple intelligence interests and talents. It’s wonderful to see students share their passions with the community,” said Jeanne Morgan.  “Smarts Night enhances our students’ education through their public presentation of their work, interests, and ideas.  I could not be more thrilled or inspired by the high level of participation by students, parents, and community members, and the cross-discipline awareness and appreciation that was generated as a result,”  added Laura Provo-Parker. Principal James Sachs noted, “SMARTS Night is a chance for students to explain their interests to the community, demonstrate their talents, and for the school to show the many choices students have to enhance their middle school experience. I think it sends the message that we have a club, elective or activity for everyone and if you are interested in getting involved, there are plenty of ways to do that!” Technology teacher Ed Torres supervised students demonstrating 3D Printing and Design, an elective available to student, “It was amazing to see the students and staff come together to show the community all the various opportunities there are here at Clark Lane. There is something for everyone!” SMARTS Night has become a tradition at Clark Lane and will be a yearly feature of the Waterford Public Schools, along with Waterford High School’s STEAM Night.

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