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2013 Trivia Bee

News and Events

Grants in Action: Robotics Team Wins Title at BattleCry 15 with A 7-1 Record!!!!

posted May 30, 2014, 11:53 AM by Todd Sullivan

Last weekend (May 24 and 25), Westborough High School's FRC Team 4048 competed in its first off-season competition of 2014. Off-season competitions are used by teams to allow team members who did not have the chance to operate the robot during the regular season a chance to compete. Our team use two all-freshman drive-teams mentored by the regular season senior drive-team.

BattleCry is the oldest off-season FRC competition in Massachusetts and is highly competitive. There were 56 teams from across New England (and even New York). We finished the qualifying matches in 4th place (8-1 record) and got to select our first partner (team 2168 from Groton CT). Our second partner was a random pick from a hat and also our neighbor in the pits (team 3719 from New London CT). Together our trio of teams played an unbelievable set of matches, losing just one match from the round-of-eight (7-1 record) all the way to the title. I am incredibly proud of how these students worked well not just amongst themselves but also with other teams. They communicated, analyzed, reacted, made quick decisions on-the-fly and showed great poise even when our robot had problems (which, luckily, was rare). A mentor from another team commented that ours was the only alliance that played as a team of three.

Our school year is almost done. In mid-June we will be attending the PTC Live conference in Boston where we will demo our robot as well as play in a mini-tournament. At the end of June, we plan on attending another off-season competition at Northeastern University - Beantown Blitz.

That's it for this update. It's been an exciting week! There are BattleCry videos on our youtube channel:


and a picture on the team web site 


The team has been on a great trajectory this year and it's made possible by your generosity. We started the year as quaterfinalists at the WPI District Event, then semifinalist at the Rhode Island District Event and finished the competition season as quaterfinalists at the N.E. Championships. And now can add champions of BattleCry 15.

Thank you for your support!

Westborough Education Foundation Announces 2014-15 Grant Recipients

posted May 20, 2014, 7:18 AM by Todd Sullivan

The Westborough Ed Foundation has awarded grants totaling over $19,000 for the 2014-15 school year. Please joins us in congratulating the recipients and commend them and their innovative programs for our children!! 

Since its inception the Westborough Ed Foundation has awarded over $270,000 in grants to innovative educators across all grade levels in the Westborough School District. 

A reminder to save the date: The annual Trivia Bee has been scheduled for Monday, November 3rd at the Double Tree.  

Homework Helpers: Free Tutors

Westborough High School, Grace Cheng

Homework Helpers provides academic support to Gibbons Middle School students and to promote a positive learning environment. This grant will support marketing and scheduling processes that will allows Homework Helpers to provide academic support 

to a larger group of students,

iPads in the Classroom

Mill Pond School, Erin Yablonski, Amy D’Avia

The use of iPads in the classroom encompasses all learners, specifically those who learn best via visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learning. Non only do iPads allow for the advancement and knowledge of technology applications, they also enable all learns 
to showcase their learning in a variety of ways. This grant will fund several iPads and supporting equipment.

Lisons et parlons des sciences! (Read and Talk about Science)

Westborough High School, Eleanor Brown

This grant will allow for the purchase of current science discovery book in French for use by intermediate-level students. These new non-fiction titles will allow students to foster a connection between the language they are learning and their science and 
technology interests. 

Yoga 4 Classroom to Empower Core Practices

Hastings Elementary School, Lauren Kennedy, Kim Keogh, Leigh Becker

It is the purpose of this grant to help young children develop self-regulation by practicing yoga into the classroom. 

Interactive Whiteboard Technology in the General Music Classroom

Mill Pond School, Andrea Ehrenreich

In order to facilitate multisensory music learning, this grant will fund new software programs including the “Interactive Now” series for interactive whiteboards. 


Westborough High School, Jo-Anne Purdy

The Bio Builder Curriculum encourages students to solve real world problems through synthetic biology. It allows students to act like scientists and not technicians following a cookie cutter lab procedure. This grant will ensure that all biology students have the 
consumables they need to run BioBuilder Labs. 

Annie’s Reading Stars Program

Fales Elementary School, Maryann Stannard

Annie’s reading Stars is a read-at-home program where each child is provided with a different bag of books to take home each week. This grant will fund the supplies required to store and deliver the books to the students’ homes with the plan to increase 
the span of the program over the next several years. This is the first program of its kindin Westborough Public Schools. 

Coming to America – Ellis Island Experience

Fales Elementary School, Kathleen Swanson, Patricia Gallo

This program will provide the students with a realistic immigrant experience. It will mirror what immigrants went through during their journey to America and upon their arrival at Ellis Island. The grant will cover customers, books, photography and other supplies to 
bring the immigrant experience to life. 

A Longitudinal Study of Westborough High School Graduate: year Five

Westborough High School, Judith Martin

The research on college readiness shows that there is a gap between the experiences of high school students and the expectations of colleges. Beginning with the Class of 2009, this program surveys graduates one year after graduation to ask whether they 
were prepared for college, work or military service. This grant will provide needed resources to complete the fifth year of this project. 

Functional Fitness at Gibbons Middle School

Gibbons Middle School, Nathan Jyringi, Sandy Robichaud

This grant will partially fund a new program that provides an instant activity for students to participate in at the beginning of each physical education class. Students will change and immediately begin a series of 10 fitness stations. With this program, over the 
course of two years, students will progress to higher fitness and strength levels. 

Clue: And Then There Were None

Gibbons Middle School , Denise Casale, Jennifer Nottingham

The grant is for a multi-disciplinary problem solving adventure based on the strategies employed by the board game, Clue, and Agatha Christie’s novel And Then There Were None. The project will prepare new 7thscience journal work. The project also prepares our team student, analytically, for a larger inquiry based CSI unit that takes place later in the school year. 

Book Club + Science = Fun

Gibbons Middle School, Lisa Greenwald

The purpose of this project is to show connections between non-fiction books and science. This grant will fund books and science experience supplies for students who will meet after school throughout the school year. Through participation in this program, 
students will combine a love of reading with hands on science activities. 

Museum in a Box: The Sequel

Westborough High School, Colleen Gormly, Ed Belbin

The grant is to fund the continuation of a program previously funded by the Westborough Education Foundation. The program funds the purchase of a collection of artifacts and primary sources for core history course at the high school. By putting 
authentic historical objects in front of students, this program gives them an authentic and valuable learning experience. 

Poet in Residence

Gibbons Middle School, Deb Lamothe

Alex Charalambides has been coming to the Gibbons Middle School for the past several years as a presenter and a culminating experience to the eight grade poetry project. Based on the tremendous response from Gibbons’ student to Alex Charalambides’s 
visits, the Westborough Education Foundation is proud to fund this program for another year.

Celebrate Wonderful Teachers with CARE

posted May 13, 2014, 12:43 PM by Todd Sullivan

As the end of the school year approaches, do you want to show your appreciation for your child’s teachers, principal and staff members? Add them to the “Honor Roll”!

As a meaningful year end gift, individuals, groups or classes can make a tax-deductible donation to the  Westborough Education Foundation in appreciation of these wonderful teachers. Your child’s teacher will receive notification acknowledging your gift. A notification of receipt will be sent to each contributor for tax purposes. 

WEF is a 501(c)(3) organization. 

The Westborough Education Foundation’s primary goal is to raise funds to provide innovative educational programs for Westborough students that are outside the realm of the normal school system budget. Teachers from throughout the school system are eligible to participate in our grant program, and the benefits of these grants reach children of all grade levels. Check out the WEF website for more information on what we do and grants awarded.

To celebrate remarkable educators, please fill out the bottom of this notice and send it along with your contribution to the Westborough Education Foundation, PO Box 59, Westborough, MA 01581. Please complete ALL requested information to help us expedite the acknowledgments.

The Westborough Education Foundation welcomes your support and participation in its efforts to provide more resources to our teachers and children. Your support truly makes a difference for our children. To learn more or get involved, email us at wef@westborougheducationfoundation.com 

Thank You!

Grants in Action....... Poetry Team Makes Semi-Finals!!!

posted May 12, 2014, 11:12 AM by Todd Sullivan

We are pleased to share that our WHS poetry slam team Poetry Power made it to the State Semi-Finals yesterday!  Thirty-two teams from all over Massachusetts competed in The Louder Than A Bomb event held at MassArt and Wentworth Institute.  The team placed first and third in the preliminary battles on Saturday--this gave them enough points to qualify for the semi's yesterday.  We then placed fourth in our bracket (only the first place teams make the finals).  We are so proud of our students.

If you see any of our 4 slammers,please congratulate them!

Kofi Dadzie (grade9)
Adhu Krishan (grade 12)
Gabe Espisito (grade 12)
Abram Lucas (grade 12)

Grants in Action: The Robotics Team Competes

posted Apr 14, 2014, 5:35 AM by Todd Sullivan

An update on the Westborough Robotics Team sponsored with a grant from the Westborough Ed Foundation:

"The 2014 FRC New England Region Championship is over and unfortunately, we didn't advance to the World Championships. There were 53 teams and we finished in 41st place with a record of 4-8-0. As expected, there were so many good teams that most teams fell in the middle of the ranking with very few at the top and bottom. No one went undefeated and only one team was winless. We faced a string of bad luck that could easily have changed our fortunes; but the team took it well and forged ahead. In one match, our two alliance partners became entangled with one tipping over so we had to play solo - and almost won if not for a technical foul by a human player. In two other matches, a top ranked partner inexplicably had ball shooting and handling problems. Nothing is guaranteed and this is just art imitating life.

But all was not bad. Our robot held its own even when we lost a match and other teams noticed. On Friday we deployed our secret weapon - our blocker. A few teams had blockers during the District Events but no one successfully used one. At the Championship, no other team had a blocker and no one expected us to use it; and certainly not during the autonomous period. So with the start of play, our robot deployed the blocker, posted itself in front of an extremely good opponent and blocked both of its shots. The crowd loved it. The opposing coach was overheard saying "I didn't expect that!". Little victories like this make all the hard work worthwhile. And it helped us advance to the elimination round.

Despite our poor ranking, the #2 alliance picked us to be one of their partners. We were thrilled to advance! But bad luck struck again as we lost 2 matches during the best-out-of-3 quarterfinals; and had to play shorthanded when one of our partners lost their drivetrain. In the end, we didn't accrue enough points to make the cut for the World Championship.

The Championships was a lot tougher on the robot - we had to make a few minor repairs for the first time. But on the whole it was extremely sturdy and it validated our solid design. We now start our post-season where we plan on competing at Battle Cry at WPI (Sat/Sun May 24 & 25) and Beantown Blitz at Northeastern University (Sat May 31). We will use these events to (1) train new drivers (these things are no easy to control) and (2) allow younger team members a chance to incrementally refine the robot and build their technical skillset. The season is not over yet!"

Visit the team's YouTube page here: https://www.youtube.com/user/FIRSTteam4048

Grants in Action: Gibbons Poetry Slam

posted Apr 9, 2014, 10:56 AM by Todd Sullivan   [ updated Apr 9, 2014, 10:57 AM ]

On March 28 Gibbons Middle School hosted their sixth annual Gibbons Poetry Slam in the  Gibbon’s Library for the eighth grade teams as an opening to the eighth grade Poetry Unit. Four  poets from the New England area presented a very unique, dynamic and diverse style of poetry. 

They each performed two of their original poems and competed against each other in a fun  and upbeat style. The poets presented a range of poems from heartfelt poems, comic routines, to personal memoir pieces. The classes were able to hear several different voices, judge a  competition, and root for their favorites! The students thoroughly enjoyed the poetry slam and  some of their comments were: “fantabulous, beautiful, slambuctious, and awesome.” “It was very moving and touching.” These rave reviews are only a sampling of the audience’s reaction to the performance. Alex Charalambides, the host of the slam, expressed his excitement for the Gibbon’s Poetry Unit which has now become the foundation for the Poetry Club and Performance Poetry Group at Westborough High School. Alex was in all the eighth grade classes the week following the Poetry Slam teaching poetry writing. Alex introduced the components of Performance Poetry, talked about what inspires him, and followed up by conferencing on their writings. He also met with small groups of students to critique and offer advice on students’ poems during all period seven classes throughout the week in the library. 

Grants in Action: Code Orange

posted Mar 12, 2014, 10:49 AM by Todd Sullivan

Teachers: Lisa Greenwald, Jeanine Weiss, Mark McNeil, Lisa Marcotte, Linda Kimball


This is an interdisciplinary project for the Orange Team, made up of about 80-90 grade 7 students, in which they will make connections between four content subjects after reading the novel Code Orange by Caroline B. Cooney. During the science unit Viruses, Bacteria and Disease, students will read the novel in English class. In science class, they will research a viral or bacterial disease (just like the main character in the novel.) The project will allow students to see that science extends beyond textbooks, as they research disease and learn about its history. Students will also see the role math plays in tracking diseases such as the flu and the role epidemiologists play in collecting this data. Online resources as well as library books dealing with viral and bacterial diseases will help with the research that will result in completion of a Glogster (web based interactive poster) and a formal research paper. Ultimately the students will complete a science project on a disease, a research paper in English, a social studies activity, and a graphing activity in math.

Below are photos from the project the grant funded... 

Westborough Education Foundation Grants in Action: Robotics

posted Mar 12, 2014, 5:34 AM by Todd Sullivan   [ updated Mar 12, 2014, 5:34 AM ]

The Westborough Education Foundation has given a grant to the Westborough Robotics Team for the past three years. The team will be competing this week (Thu/Fri March 13 & 14) at WPI (WPI District Event in Worcester MA) and next week (Fri/Sat Match 21 & 22) at Bryant University (Rhode Island District Event in Smithfield RI).

Information for both events can be found at the New England FIRST web site http://www.nefirst.org (WPI parking passes available on web site)

Admission is free. Pits are open 8AM to 8PM on Day 1 and 8AM to 6:30PM on Day 2.

Come on out and see your donations in action!!!

2013 Westborough Education Foundation Trivia Bee Date!!

posted Jul 23, 2013, 10:02 AM by Todd Sullivan   [ updated Oct 14, 2013, 2:18 PM by Lisa Edinberg ]

The 2013 Westborough Education Foundation Trivia Bee will be held Monday, November 4, 2013, 6:30 pm at the Doubletree Hotel in Westborough.

Last year over 600 community members and families attended the 5th annual Trivia Bee at the Doubletree Hotel to watch thirty-six local business-sponsored teams compete for the bragging rights of the 2012 Westborough Education Foundation Trivia Bee Trophy. Hosted by Joe Harrington (often known as the voice of Westborough town meetings), six rounds of trivia were completed, and in the end, The Westborough Little League Baseball Association took the win with the final question of how many traffic lights exist in Westborough. This fun-filled event included kid-trivia rounds led by the infamous Fales Elementary School, physical education teacher, Matt Travis. A fun evening was had by all, enabling the Westborough Education Foundation to raise funds for programs via grants, benefiting Westborough students and teachers

Sponsors To Date Are:

  1. Westborough Little League and Softball 
  2. Central One Federal Credit Union 
  3. Ball Financial Services-
  4. Law Offices of Nicole D. Sullivan
  5. AdCole Corp. 
  6. RedTail Solutions  
  7. BJ's Charitable Foundation 
  8. Beaumont at the Willows 
  9. Alexander, Aronson, Finning CPAs
  10. Partridge, Snow, and Hahn LLP 
  11. Prudential Prime Properties - Dalia Izvolsky 
  12. Middlesex Savings Bank 
  13. Cumulus Global  
  14. Marlborough Savings Bank 
  15. Mike Mathieu 
  16. Westborough Newcomer's Club 
  17. Fales Parent Group 
  18. Armstrong Parent Group 
  19. Gibbons Parent Group 
  20. Westborough Youth Basketball 
  21. Westborough Lacrosse
  22. Triboro Hockey
  23. Hastings Parent Group
  24. Mill Pond Parent Group
  25. Westborough Soccer 
  26. Westborough Rotary Club  

Westborough Education Foundation Awards Grants

posted May 24, 2013, 5:54 PM by Lisa Edinberg   [ updated Sep 3, 2013, 11:22 AM ]

A breakfast reception was held on Tuesday, May 21st at The Willows to honor the grant recipients for the 2013-2104 academic year.  The Westborough Education Foundation awarded 11 grants totaling over $21,000As Kim Martin-Girard, President of WEF addressed the crowd, she said, “It is so nice to be able to stand up here and be able to give out money instead of asking for money.”

Grant recipients include:

·         Cooking Up Cultural Connections: Family Book Club – Hastings Elementary School

o   Cindy Hodgdon, Sheila Plifka, Eileen Harvey, Lauren Kennedy, Sara Neilson

·         Mountain Dulcimers for the Elementary Classroom – Fales Elementary School

o   Pam Yanco, Valerie Clemans-Castilla

·         Bringing Multi Modal Teaching to the Next Level – Mill Pond Intermediate School

o   Rachel Stanton

·         Poet in Residence – Gibbons Middle School  

o   Deb Lemothe, Linda Kimball

·         Library Learning Connections – Westborough High School

o   Anita Cellucci

·         The Power of Resilience – Westborough High School

o   Ceil Parteleno

·         WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) – Westborough High School

o   Maria DeVuono-Homberg

·         Bringing the Museum to the Students – Westborough High School

o   Colleen Gormley

·         Poetry Power – Westborough High School

o   Kathy Stoker, Anita Cellucci

·         App-titude matters – Westborough High School

o   Kit D’Angelo-Carley

·         Robotics – Westborough High School

o   Maria DeVuono-Homberg, Louis Lung

The money for these grants is primarily funded through WEF’s annual fundraiser, The Trivia Bee. Last year the event raised more than $16,000 to support educational grants developed by teachers and administrators from across the district. Another source of funds is the CARE program where parents can make a donation to WEF to honor and celebrate remarkable educators.  As the end of the school year approaches, an easy way to show appreciation for teachers, principals and school staff members is to make a tax-deductible donation to the CARE program.  Information can be found on the WEF website.

The Westborough Education Foundation would like to thank The Willows for their hospitality, as well as the teachers and administrators who attended this event.  Congratulations to all the grant recipients!

Founded in 1996, the Westborough Education Foundation is an independent non-profit organization whose mission is to establish a permanent fund and to allocate funds to stimulate, support and strengthen the creation and implementation of innovative educational programs which are outside the funding normally provided in the school budget. WEF grants benefit all students in the Westborough Public Schools system.  Since its inception, WEF has awarded over $200,000 in grants that support programs that benefit students in all grades.  

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