Mar 2015: Bowling Trip

Yesterday, GovsPLUS scholars took a trip bowling at Brunswick Zone in Lowell. We were excited to have two GovsPLUS alumni join us, Joshua and Leonelys, who are both first-years at The Governor’s Academy. It was one of our most relaxing events and was a great opportunity to catch up!

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Estebanya and Ryan hanging out.

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Nicole, Steven, Gregmari, and Omar had fun reconnecting with GovsPLUS alumni, Joshua and Leonelys.

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Carolina, Britney, and Chynna waiting on their turn to bowl.

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Erika, Ralfy, Rixandra, T’yana, Ms. Cruz, Adeliza, and Lisa.

Some students had more fun hanging with their friends and were happy to have the bumpers on their lanes, while others were getting competitive with the bowling! We saw quite a few strikes and spares!

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Ralfy getting ready to bowl.

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Gregmari, Steven, and Leonelys showing off their pizza.

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Big group devouring appetizers.

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Ms. Honorato had fun getting to know the students. Here she is with Shea, Ali, Stervin, and Jose.

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Never too many group pics! Here’s Nicole, Gregmari, Stacey, Steven, Leonelys, Omar, Ali, and Jose.

Ms. Cruz took this as a great opportunity to catch up with some students, especially to see how the 8th graders were doing and if they had received any high school decisions. CONGRATULATIONS to all the students who were accepted into high school! We know some students are still waiting to hear back and others are trying to be patient on waiting lists. No matter where our 8th graders decide to go to high school, Ms. Cruz and Ms. Honorato are so proud of all your hard work! You are only months away from graduating and heading to high school! We hope we can prepare you for the transition this summer.g1365089101540651822Speaking of the summer, it’s time to start planning our 2015 program! The summer program will run from June 29 – July 31. All GovsPLUS scholars are invited to return. Students should expect to receive a letter from Ms. Cruz in the next week with re-enrollment paperwork. In order to secure your spot for this summer’s program, be sure to return this sheet to Ms. Cruz (in person or via mail) by FRIDAY APRIL 17th. If students or families have any questions or concerns about this upcoming summer, feel free to reach out to her.

GovsPLUS is looking forward to our next event on Sunday, April 12th at The Governor’s Academy for the 2nd Annual Independent School Spoken Word Wordfest. See you all then!

Feb 2015: Trip to Boston College

GovsPLUS scholars were up bright and early this past Saturday morning for our trip to Boston College. After an adventurous bus ride full of wrong turns, we finally made it to BC’s campus in Chesnut Hill. We were excited to have Ms. Honorato join us for the first time, with her partner, Efrain, as well as Leonelys, GovsPLUS alum (and now Govs ’18!)

At the campus gates we met our tour guide, Govs alum Lucy Purinton ’14, who is a current first-year at BC. She was gracious to give us a personalized tour of campus even though it was the start of her spring break! We were also joined by Lucy’s father, Spencer Purinton ’75, P’13, P ’14 . Mr. Purinton is a Govs Trustee, one of the Co-Founders of GovsPLUS, and continues to be the program’s biggest supporter!

After months of non-stop snowstorms, we were so excited to have the sun out and shining for our tour of BC's beautiful campus.

After months of non-stop snowstorms, we were so excited to have the sun out and shining for our tour of BC’s beautiful campus.

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Lucy showed us a classroom and explained how small classes are at BC, just like at Govs.

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Here Lucy tells us how professors often take students out on coffee dates.

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GovsPLUS scholars gaze at Fulton Hall’s beautiful design, which was inspired by the Wizard of Oz.

GovsPLUS scholars asked Lucy the best questions about college life. Maybe some of them will be future Eagles? #CollegeBound

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After we checked out the Hogwarts-like library, we headed to Conte Forum for the men’s basketball game against NC State.

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We were surprised when Ms. Cruz ran into an old friend who worked for BC athletics and upgraded our seats. GovsPLUS scholars had a blast courtside!

We ate lunch and cheered on the BC Eagles, who ended up beating NC State 79-63! When we arrived back in Lawrence, Carolina spoiled us all with the AMAZING cupcakes she made in honor of Omar’s birthday (who unfortunately had his own basketball game and couldn’t make it). It was the perfect finish to a great day. Thank you Carolina! And one last thank you again to Lucy for hosting us on her campus!

In other news, GovsPLUS has officially begun recruiting new students for the 2015 summer program. If you know any motivated 7th or 8th grader in Lawrence who might be interested in applying, please direct them to our website for more information and for the downloadable brochure and application: http://www.thegovernorsacademy.org/GovsPLUS

GovsPLUS is looking forward to our next event bowling at Brunswick Zone in Lowell on March 28th. See you all then!

Jan 2015: Skateland!

After record-breaking snowstorms and DAYS of school cancellations, GovsPLUS scholars were ready to get out of the house! On January 31, we headed to Skateland in Haverhill for our second event of the school-year. It was packed at Teen Hip Hop/ R&B Night! GovsPLUS scholars had so much fun catching up with one another and rollerskating.

Some of the GovsPLUS ladies (with some guy photobombing!)

Some of the GovsPLUS ladies (with some guy photobombing!)

Stacey, Omar, Gregmari, Julian, Steven, and Christian hanging out.

Stacey, Omar, Gregmari, Julian, Steven, and Christian hanging out.

While some were already experts, others were first-time or beginner skaters. It was great to see everyone step out of their comfort zone!

Niomi and T'yana.

Niomi and T’yana.

Samerly feeling confident out there.

Samerly feeling confident out there.

Some had more fun hanging out on the side, laughing with their friends, listening to music, eating pizza, and taking pictures.

BFFs Gleanys and Thi.

Besties Gleanys and Thi.

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Grubbing on some pizza.

Julian, José, Steven, Christian, and Ralfy representing the GovsPLUS fellas.

Julian, José, Steven, Christian, and Ralfy representing the GovsPLUS fellas.

Chynna, Chabeli, Gregmari, Maria, and Chasity.

Chynna, Chabeli, Gregmari, Maria, and Chasity.

It was a great night! GovsPLUS is looking forward to our next event at Boston College on February 28th. GovsPLUS scholars should RSVP to Ms. Cruz for the trip, which will include a college tour with a Govs alum, lunch, and a men’s basketball game against NC State.

Until then, stay warm and safe out there, GovsPLUS. Enjoy the never-ending SNOWPOCALYPSE!

Jan 2015: New Beginnings!

At the end of the 2014 summer, GovsPLUS said goodbye to the program’s founders, Ms. O’Donohue and Ms. O’Connell. We thank them for everything they have done over the last two years and wish them good luck with their teaching and coaching at Govs! This fall, we welcomed Ms. Tatiana Cruz as the new GovsPLUS Director and Ms. Elizabeth Honorato as the new Program Assistant. They are so excited to join the program and get to know the students!

In December, we began our academic year programming. Our first event of the 2014-2015 year was a huge success! The GovsPLUS students were so excited to reconnect with one another and spent their time catching up, getting to know Ms. Cruz, and eating dinner at the Govs dining hall. After that, we all went to the infamous hypnotist show. It was hilarious! While some students had a blast getting hypnotized (or pretending to be!) the rest of us had a great time laughing at all the silly things they did on stage. Did Steven really sniff another guy’s armpit? (LOL!)

Our next event will be hip hop/r&b roller-skating at Skateland in Haverhill. Looking forward to seeing everyone in a couple weeks!

Week #5: Celebration!

 

7th grader Carolina Reyes made this delicious GovsPLUS cake! YUMMMMM!!!

7th grader Carolina Reyes made this delicious GovsPLUS cake to celebrate our summer! YUMMMMM!!!

All good things must come to an end sooner or later. On behalf of everyone at GovsPLUS it is fair to say that this summer has been a great one!

The students spent this week wrapping up their summer at Govs. This week’s classes consisted of presentations, reflections, and of course ‘learning opportunities’ for each grade. The students were joined by Mr. Wann this week for a final public presentation class where they were able to reflect on their summer at Govs.

 

Mrs. Borgatti introduces Tuesday's science afternoon -- a forensics lab about Oreos!

Mrs. Borgatti introduces Tuesday’s science afternoon — a forensics lab about Oreos!

Afternoon activities were once again varied and fun. On Monday the students took part in field house sports stations with the staff.

The students had a special treat on Tuesday when Govs faculty member, Mrs.Borgatti, joined us for an afternoon full of science. The students participated in an Oreo forensics lab to discover which one of six solutions was in fact the ingredients to the cream of an Oreo.

Jose investigates the results of heating one "suspect"

Jose investigates the results of heating one “suspect”

Thi, Francesca, and Jessica work through some hard science on this one... (Hint: it was #2!)

Thi, Francesca, and Jessica work through some hard science on this one… (Hint: it was #2!)

 

Wednesday afternoon consisted of boat building. Teams worked together to piece together what they thought would be a boat that could successfully hold pennies without sinking. The boats were put to a test and the winning boat held a total of 47 pennies!

 

We had a late start on Thursday to accommodate our afternoon festivities. Friends and family joined the students to get a glimpse of the GovsPLUS experience. After attending classes, the students showcased what they had been working on all summer in their enrichment classes. 8th graders performed their spoken word pieces, 7th graders performed their dance piece, and 6th graders performed their skits. We all then headed back to the Student Center for a nice cookout on the patio.

 

We closed off the evening with a ceremony awarding all students with certificates and also recognizing those who had a perfect attendance throughout the summer. The students were given some school supplies, a Govs water bottle, an AWESOME GovsPLUS t-shirt!

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Friday morning the students arrived on campus to have their last breakfast of the summer and from there we all headed out to have an amazing final ‘Field Trip Friday’. This week our destination was Canobie Lake Park! The students all had a blast!

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The second summer of GovsPLUS over but students will continue to be a part of the Govs community throughout the year until next summer when the 6th and 7th (soon 7th and 8th!) will come together again for another five awesome weeks! As of now it is farewell and good luck to our fellow 8th graders!

Congratulations on another excellent summer, GovsPLUS! 

 

Week #4: Land and Sea Adventures!

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“Proper Planning and Preparation Prevents Poor Performance” – Stephen Keague

This was something the GovsPLUS students learned on Monday morning in a class taught by Governor’s very own Public Presentation Skills teacher, Mr. Wann. Mr. Wann gave the students tips on how to successfully speak and present to the larger public.

Rixandra writes notes in her Communications journal

Rixandra writes notes in her Communications journal

 

Throughout the week, students in the 8th grade worked on their spoken word pieces for Athena Class. 7th graders continued to work on their dance pieces while 6th graders rehearsed their skits for drama. All continued to expand their problem solving and communication skills.

Afternoon activities were varied and exciting once again. On Monday the students took place in a campus-wide scavenger hunt with locations that included hints drawn out with socks, crossword puzzles, banners, etc.We cooled things down on Tuesday with a ‘water day’. In the afternoon students alongside staff participated in water-based games and activities. With the help of Chris Robinson the students had an artsy afternoon on Wednesday. The students were able to paint using the printing press and create their own sculptures with clay.

Chris Robinson makes the first plate for the printing press...

Chris Robinson makes the first plate for the printing press…

...and rolls it out for all to see!

…and rolls it out for all to see!

Ariel demonstrates how to make a clay pinch pot

Ariel demonstrates how to make a clay pinch pot

Surprise visit by Howard & Mark from GovsPLUS partner YDO!!!

Surprise visit by Howard & Mark from GovsPLUS partner YDO!!!

The coffee house on Thursday allowed both the students and staff to share their talents with each other. Acts varied from stand up comedy to singing to dancing and were very impressive!

GovsPLUS coffee house opening act... What on Earth is our staff wearing?!?

GovsPLUS coffee house opening act… What on Earth is our staff wearing?!?

Friday was the kayaking trip and it was a mighty success this year!

Ms. O'C and Omar are ready to go! Nice hats :)

Ms. O’C and Omar are ready to go! Nice hats 🙂

 

Stacy and Britney (and half of Ariel) can't wait to get in the water!

Stacy and Britney (and half of Ariel) can’t wait to get in the water!

We kayaked out to a beautiful beach were the students were able to play on the beach with their friends (with life jackets on of course!) and after a nature walk to see the dunes we kayaked back to the base to have lunch.

Jose is an expert paddler already!

Jose is an expert paddler already!

On the water...

On the water…

Still on the water...

Still on the water…

Finally, LAND!

Finally, LAND!

Great place to cool off and play with friends :) Pictured here are (L to R): Erika, staff member Emma, Niomi, and T'yana!

Great place to cool off and play with friends 🙂 Pictured here are (L to R): Erika, staff member Emma, Niomi, and T’yana!

Stervin enjoys a float!

Stervin enjoys a float!

 

The upcoming week will be the last (insert sad emoji here), but we hope it will be the BEST (insert overly excited emoji here)!

Week #3: In the groove!

GovsPLUS and the Groundwork Lawrence Green Team group photo (w/Big Papi!) after Friday's awesome day of service together!

GovsPLUS and the Groundwork Lawrence Green Team group photo (w/Big Papi!) after Friday’s awesome day of service together!

You learn something new everyday at GovsPLUS. This was our third week running and things are looking excellent!   The students continue to attend their normal classes and enrichment classes and are really beginning to feel a sense of what the Govs community is like.

This week many Govs faculty have stopped by to help us out during the afternoons. Monday, each grade attended a session where they discussed about the ‘high school process’ at varying levels.

Mrs. Kimball shares HS admission details with the 7th grade class. They will go through that process next school year!

Mrs. Kimball shares HS admission details with the 7th grade class. They will go through that process next school year!

Mr. Long discusses the many and varied high school options with GovsPLUS 6th graders

Mr. Long discusses the many and varied high school options with GovsPLUS 6th graders

Mrs. Gary connects with the 8th graders about transitioning from middle to high school!

Mrs. Gary connects with the 8th graders about transitioning from middle to high school!

On Tuesday the students spent the afternoon outside participating in a field day ran by faculty member Mr. Gold and his son, Govs student Andrew Gold ‘17. They played soccer, kickball, and versed each other in an obstacle course which staff members were ‘dared’ to also participate in.

Mr. Gold explains the obstacle course...

Mr. Gold explains the obstacle course…

Competition heats up at the dizzy bat portion!

Competition heats up at the dizzy bat portion!

Thi nails the bean bag toss!

Thi nails the bean bag toss!

Ricky and Yosvani lead off the counselor competition!

Ricky and Yosvani lead off the counselor competition!

The 7th graders attended the Prep@Pingree secondary school admission panel on Wednesday at Pingree School. There the students were able to acquire information on many different types of school. Afterwards they introduced themselves and asked any remaining questions they had.

7th graders hear from 11 different schools at the P@P Admission Panel!

7th graders hear from 11 different schools at the P@P Admission Panel!

 

Students meet-and-greet with the panel of schools... What an opportunity for all involved!

Students meet-and-greet with the panel of schools… What an opportunity for all involved!

Meanwhile the 6th and 8th graders stayed behind and participated in an identity workshop with Govs faculty member Mrs. Gary.

Thursday the students came together for an afternoon of ZUMBA taught by Katy!

We were also fortunate to be visited by a variety of guests this week including representatives from the admission office at St. John’s Prep School, the executive team of the National Partnership for Educational Access (http://www.educational-access.org), and a former member of the Govs faculty who brought along his two adult children too! Brett Bidstrup (student-instructor for GovsPLUS 2013) even made a breakfast appearance! We love showing off what we do at GovsPLUS and thank these visitors for spending time with us in our classes!

Chloe, Maria, and Estebanya plant peppers in the Groundwork garden. What a great place to spend the day!

Chloe, Maria, and Estebanya plant peppers in the Groundwork garden. What a great place to spend the day!

Finally, Friday was field trip day and this week we stayed right in Lawrence to service our community! We joined Groundwork Lawrence’s high school-aged “Green Team” to harvest, water, and weed the community garden at Costello Park.  Shameless plug for Groundwork Lawrence (http://www.groundworklawrence.org) — what an awesome organization!

 

After the work was done we had lunch and headed over to Misserville park. There we did some more weeding and cleaning in order to beautify the park and our city. The students worked hard all week and deserve much praise! Signing off until an even better week – week #4 which will be highlighted by a week-ending kayak trip!

GovsPLUS challenges the Green Team to a post-project bball game. Victory for GovsPLUS!

GovsPLUS challenges the Green Team to a post-project bball game. Victory for GovsPLUS!