Congratulations to our 2014 MHS Graduates!


This gallery contains 147 photos.

On Thursday morning, the MHS community celebrated the Eighth Grade Class of 2014. High Schools our students will attend include: Boston Arts Academy, Boston Community Leadership Academy, Excel High School, Fenway High School, John D. O’Bryant School of Math and … Continue reading

Carrot Soup from the Farm School!

Last week, The Farm School joined forces with Boston Public Schools Food & Nutrition Services to serve up fresh and delicious carrot soup for MHS students! Students from the Margarita Muñez Academy helped dish out the soup, which was created by The Farm School’s chef, Cristina Garcia. Classes did taste tests and posted results.

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Most students tried the unfamiliar carrot soup. Many discovered that they liked it!












Many thanks to our Cafeteria Manager, Chris Whitley and staff for supporting this fun and nutritious event!

Here is the recipe:

The Farm School Carrot Soup
Serves 10-12.

2 Tbsp Butter
2 cups Yellow onions, chopped (2 medium)
1 Tbsp Garlic, minced (4 cloves)
5 cups Carrots, diced (2 lbs)
3 cups Potatoes, diced (3/4 lbs)
3 cups Turnips, diced (3/4 lbs)
5 tsp Cumin, ground
2 tsp Salt (to taste)
10 cups Water
4 tsp Lime Juice
1 Tbsp Honey
1/3 cup Heavy Cream
2 tsp Pepper (to taste)

1. In a large pot melt butter over medium heat.
2. Add onions, stirring occasionally for 4 minutes or until translucent.
3. Add garlic, continue cooking, stirring occasionally for 3 minutes.
4. Stir in carrots, potatoes, turnips, cumin, salt and water.
5. Simmer for 25 minutes or until vegetables are easily pierced with a knife.
6. Puree soup with an immersion blender. Or carefully blend in small batches in a regular blender.
7. Pour soup back into large pot. Whisk in lime juice, honey and heavy cream.
8. Season to taste with salt and pepper

Optional Toppings: chopped cilantro, crema, toasted pepitas.

Learning with Legos

On Tuesday afternoons the Mission Hill staff participates in professional development meetings. This week, the focus was on learning with Legos. Many thanks to parent, Steve Banzaert, who helped facilitate.


MHS parent Steve Banzaert works with K1/K2 teacher Liz Borson and art teacher Jeanne Rachko.

Teachers investigated Duplo kits with simple machines and structures, by following designs. These are a great way for young children to get their hands on materials and start to think about coding.


Principal Ayla Gavins and Grade 1/2 teacher Jenerra Williams study a design map while building with Duplo Tubes.

Duplo tubes were also used.  Here pre-made designs were followed and then teachers created their own. One challenge was to make a structure that would allow a ball to travel a distance and hit a wall.


Grade 7/8 teacher Khury Petersen, tests out a Duplo Tube structure with KO paraprofessional Donna Winder and K1/K2 teacher Jada Brown.


7/8 grade teacher Ann Ruggiero and K0 teacher Geralyn McLaughlin build an EV3 robot.

WeDo is another kit that was examined.  Staff built robots and programmed them, while also teaching themselves new programming techniques.


Real Life Learning at MHS

Mission Hill School eighth graders are participating in their second Apprentice Learning ‘apprenticeship’ this school year, where each student travels to a local business one afternoon a week for six weeks and works alongside of an adult mentor.

Apprentices gain career knowledge while applying good habits of work to the world beyond the classroom. At the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, Apprentice Engineers participate in the design process and test their mini robots,  “Bristol Bots” under the tutelage of Crystal Knodel, Staff Electrical Engineer.

Siobhan and Kaya test their mini robots at the Wyss Institute during Apprentice Learning.

Siobhan and Kaya test their mini robots at the Wyss Institute during Apprentice Learning.

Descriptive Inquiry Conference at MHS

On Saturday, a group of 25 educators from over seven states gathered together to exercise the power of collective work to see children more fully and examine school environments. The Prospect Descriptive Review Processes, which provide a unique perspective for thinking about children and their work, were used to deepen that knowledge.

A fall conference for Descriptive Inquiry was traditionally held at the Prospect Archive and Center for Education and Research, which closed in 2010. The Mission Hill School hopes that this conference will continue in the spirit of Prospect’s Fall Conferences.


A New Schoolyard and a Visit from Mayor Menino

On Friday, the entire MHS community celebrated our two new outdoor play spaces. We also had a special visitor: Mayor Menino! Wearing new green MHS t-shirts, students, staff, families, and visitors sang songs and enjoyed the beautiful warm weather. Special guests from BPS and the Boston Schoolyard Initiative joined the Mayor as he cut the red ribbon (held by two MHS students) with a pair of gold scissors!

Mayor Menino cuts the ribbon!

Mayor Menino cuts the ribbon!

Many thanks go to the Boston Schoolyard Initiative and the teams that designed these spaces. James Sessum and Nancy Leask from the City, Kathy D’Andrea, Jenerra Williams and Ayla Gavins as school staff members, and parents Jessica Parsons, Diane Abrams, and Deborah Gregson.

Families are fundraising to complete the project with an Outlast Block set for children to explore and play with. Donate to the project by visiting Thank you!

The Boston Neighborhood Network News reported about the event:

MHS on Roller Skates!

Last week, 200 MHS children, teachers, staff, and family members traveled by city bus to Chez Vous roller-skating rink in Dorchester. What followed was a morning full of nervous anticipation, (more than a few) falls, some tears, and a whole lot of excitement, pride, accomplishment, and joy.

Enjoy the slide show!

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MHS Debate Team takes First Place at Harvard Competition!

On Wednesday, May 8, 2013, 12 debate team students from Mission Hill School traveled to Harvard University to participate in the day long 2013 Debate Mate Boston competition against other Boston middle and K-8 schools.

DebateMate_SignThree teams of four students each participated in three rounds of debates addressing possession of nuclear weapons, equal access for men and women sports teams to TV coverage, and fines for sagging pants. Our teams won seven of their nine debates. Judges evaluated each debater and awarded points for content and style. We placed second out of 22 teams on points, and qualified for the final championship round against debaters from the Edison School.


Faces were serious during the final debate.

Our debaters argued in support of making gun possession illegal. The judges awarded the win to the Mission Hill team on the basis of number and depth of arguments and rebuttal.

The MHS Debate Team at Harvard University.

The MHS Debate Team at Harvard University.

The Mission Hill Debate team, comprised of students in grades five through eight, has been meeting after school since February with debate coach, Brandeis student Sarah Pizzano, and MHS mentor and middle school teacher, Ann Ruggiero. The team is eager for next year’s debate season to begin, and promises to work hard to defend their title.

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The Cup!

Screen-Free Week at MHS

Join the Mission Hill Community in celebration of Screen-Free Week!

From “Screen-Free Week is an annual celebration where children, families, schools, and communities turn off screens and turn on life. Instead of relying on screens for entertainment, participants read, daydream, explore, enjoy nature, and enjoy spending time with family and friends.

Screen-Free Week isn’t just about snubbing screens for seven days; it’s a springboard for important lifestyle changes that will improve well-being and quality of life all year round.”

Click here for a list of Screen-Free Week resources.

Read this week’s Mission Hill News article about Screen-Free Week, by teacher Geralyn McLaughlin.

A group of MHS teachers kicked off the celebration with an entertaining skit, which was performed at Friday Share.