NEW Health Class PSAs on Drug Abuse

As a culminating project for the drug prevention unit in 8th grade Health class, students worked in groups to plan, design, film, edit, and publish 45 second public service announcement videos. The purpose of these videos is to educate peers on drug abuse and help spread the word of drug prevention. The topics included marijuana, LSD, heroin, cocaine, crystal meth, ecstasy, inhalants, prescription drugs, peer pressure and gateway drugs. 

These videos were shown during lunch rotations earlier this year. Members of the Sizer Community also voted on the top 3 out of 19 videos. The top 3 PSAs are also being aired on FATV! Below, you will see the selected finalists. If you would like to see a PSA on a particular topic not represented in the finalists, please email Mrs. Verelst at verelsts@sizerschool.org

Video 1: Cocaine and Pregnancy

Video 2: Marijuana

Video 3: Ecstasy

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interview with Maya, Grade 9

 

Maya, this statuesque model type, strolled into my office with a back pack jammed full of notebooks and books. There was also a book in her hand, as though she didn’t want to be far from the ability to write. She stood tall, because of both genetics and posture, and was fashionably dressed. She is clearly learning to express herself through her clothes, accessories and the embracing of her natural coils that happily bounce with every step she takes.

1. Did you choose Sizer or did your parents? Why?

I was looking for a chance to start over. I didn’t have many friends at my old school and I was intense about homework and anxious about my grades. When I got here I was able to make more friends and connected with them through similar interests.

My grades used to be my entire sense of self. It was everything. Here, teachers don’t just give work to give work. They give work that matters and has a purpose. When I first got here I wasn’t sure who I was or if it was really safe for me to be me. The community, here at school and outside of here, because they appreciate diversity, redefined my idea of beauty. The longer I am here the more I am able to establish an identity and find interests.

2. What is your favorite subject and why?

My favorite subject is English, always. I love writing. Not only are the teachers here nice, they help me create and encourage that.  I create ideas that entertain, then I create characters, and the ideas are recycled through the characters.

3. Do you participate in any clubs, sports, etc?

I used to do track and cross country. This year I dance ballet outside of here. I am also a part of the after school club Equals. It’s a club where we promote equality for all people. I’ve been a part of that for a few years now and I really enjoy it.

4. Who is your hero and why?

My hero is my mother. She’s unique and ‘out there’. She does things I’d be super embarrassed to do. She’s not worried about what others think. She’s always courageous and so brave. She’s always super positive and she tries to be super nice to everyone. When you’re around her you just can’t be sad. I want to be like that. So brave.

5. Is there anything you’d share with a student who is considering coming to Sizer School?

I would tell them to take a chance and to try something new. This is a great school where you get to learn how to become a better student and a better person.

 

When asked where she wanted to take her picture she took me to an aisle in the library where a chair was already waiting for her. She dropped her bag and sank into the chair, like a visit to a familiar friend. There have been a few times since the interview that I saw her in that nook, laughing with a friend, lost in a book, or looking off intentionally and then putting words to paper. Perhaps that space makes her feel safe, surrounded by characters and creation. Wherever this young lady sits, I am confident that she will continue to move through her life with fluidity and forever blooming into her true self.

Ms. Vazquez, interviewer, is the Student Recruitment & Enrichment Coordinator at Sizer.

Interview with Ma'ayan, Grade 7

 

1. Did you choose Sizer or did your parents? Why?

I heard about Sizer from a friend. I chose Sizer because I was looking for a place to go to school that I would be comfortable and learn the best in. after reading about Sizer and taking tours, I knew Sizer was the best place for me. I used to be super anxious because I had a lot of bullies and would come home crying every day. I now have really great friends and even those who aren’t my close friends are still friendly. I get excited about school now.

2. What is your favorite subject and why?

Right now, it is a tie between ELA and Math. If you would have asked me before I would have said that I hated ELA but Ms. Tobin makes it fun for me! Now, I love writing and solving problems.

3. Do you participate in any clubs, sports, etc?

At Sizer I do dance club and Sizer Theatre Arts Club after school. I am also a student ambassador and a student/core council member. Outside of school I do singing lessons, tap dance and theatre. I love performing and the core council is really fun and great because we are going to make Sizer even better. Sizer supports that and lets me be myself and do what I love.

4. Who is your hero and why?

My hero is my mother. She has multiple sclerosis which is a disease that sometimes makes it hard for her to move around. Even when my mother doesn’t feel good, she always does what’s best for her family and she doesn’t let her MS get the best of her. She still cooks and cleans and takes care of us. She always makes it happen to make us happy. She’s so amazing and reminds me to never give up.

5. Is there anything you’d share with a student who is considering coming to Sizer School?

I know that transitioning into a new school is hard because I was very anxious when I started to think about what school I was going to go to. I suggest going on tours and doing a shadow day. I did both and it really helped me understand how the school and the community operated. I felt so much more comfortable with making a decision after I saw the school. If you decide to come here, I promise you will love it. I know I do!

 

When Ma’ayan showed up in her first dance class, eager smile gleaming and saying hi to every student present, I knew this student was special. I had the pleasure of meeting her mother and grandmother and quickly realized that this young woman comes from a long line of strong women who support each other. She is such an amazing person and I am honored to have the privilege to work with her and to have interviewed her.

Ms. Vazquez is the Student Recruitment & Enrichment Coordinator at Sizer. 

"Circle Mirror Transformation" Huge Success

 

Congratulations to our amazing, creative, and talented students for a successful showing at the Drama Festival!

This winter, the Sizer Theater Arts club (SiTA) has been working on a performance called Circle Mirror Transformation by Annie Baker. This past week the actors took their production and competed in the the Massachusetts High School Drama Festival. Students and adults all walked away very impressed with the production.The students, directed by Mr. Noah Dawson, worked incredibly hard on the show and were excited to share their work with an audience from across the state.

After performing in the preliminary round and winning a total of 6 awards for stage manager, lighting design and execution, three acting awards, and a student recognition award for most thought provoking line, Sizer Theater Arts proudly moved onto the semi-final round with their show.

The Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild, Inc. exists for the charitable and educational purpose of promoting and strengthening excellence, access, and education in the theatrical arts for middle and secondary school students and teachers. For more than 80 years, the METG has been a leader in arts education, believing that theater has a unique power to enrich and transform young people’s lives.

In Circle Mirror Transformation, an unlikely collection of strangers sign up for Marty's creative drama class: a recently divorced carpenter, a high school junior, a former actress, and Marty's husband. Throughout, the group plays Marty's imaginative (and sometimes awkward) theatre games. But as their relationships develop over the course of the summer, the seemingly silly games generate some real-life drama.

SiTA will continue to the semi-final round of the Festival on Saturday, March 19th. Learn more at the Massachusetts Theatre Guild website

 

Interview with Alexis, Grade 10

 

1.  Did you choose Sizer or did your parents? Why?

My mom chose Sizer because she said it was the best school around. She did research on the internet. I decided to come here after I heard all about it from her. I think it’s a great school. I was literally failing all of my classes before and here I was able to receive a lot of help and after school help that brought my grades up.

2.  What is your favorite subject and why?

Chorus. Why? Because Mrs. Cordio teaches us how to use our vocal chords and its pretty amazing what we can do with our voices. I’m also a song writer and like to mix different types of music and make my own. She gives me a place to do that and be creative.

3.  Who is your hero and why?

My uncle Julio. He’s a really special person. He is a professional boxer and lives in Puerto Rico. I was struggling and going through a hard time and he came here for me. He taught me about respecting others and taught me to look at my actions and where they lead. He tries to teach me what not to do. He checks in and calls me and gives me great advice. He is my mentor.

4.  Do you participate in any clubs, sports, etc?

Right now I participate in chorus because I love music. Other than that I am usually working or with my girlfriend or with my family.

5.  Is there anything you’d share with a student who is considering coming to Sizer School?

Sizer School helps me move closer to making my dreams a reality. This community helps each other. So, even if you think you have a small dream, people get excited with you and make it a big deal here. I’m doing a coat drive and this school is really helping me make it successful. I’d like to let people know that if they have a coat, any size, please pass it along so we can get it into the hands of someone who needs it.

 

Ms. Vazquez: Where would you like to take your picture?

Alexis: In Mrs. Cordio’s room.

Ms. Vazquez: Of course, I should have guessed.

Alexis: *smiles*

As interviews go there are times when a particular answer to a standard question allows us to stray in another direction with other questions. Alexis shared a very touching story with me about his father reaching out to him after a decade of no contact and asked for his forgiveness. Most teens and even most adults would have turned away, choosing to focus on the hurt that has been created. Alexis is not like most teens, he chose to forgive and let go of the hurt. He chose to forgive. That story in and of itself speaks to the strong moral character of this young man and proves that no matter where he chooses to go in life, so long as he does so with that same sense of community, the spirit of love and the act of forgiveness, he will be able to make all of his dreams a reality.

 

Ms. Vazquez is the Student Recruitment & Enrichment Coordinator at Sizer. 

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