NewsLink is the bi-weekly e-newsletter for HMS parents. It’s the source for up-to-date information & stories about life at Hinkletown Mennonite School. 

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Eighth graders explore careers through the interactive Construction Wars at ABC Keystone

Construction Wars

By: Julia Hoover, Alayna Regitz, Isabelle Stauffer, Madison Stauffer, Paul Hurst, and Jeremiah Knowles.

Construction Wars was offered to 8th grade students and six of us were able to go. It was a lot of fun and exciting to be a part of this event. There were many parts to the day and we enjoyed all of them. The instructors showed us how to do many things we never knew before, including an electrical course and a sheet metal course. We had a great time learning new things and having fun with our other classmates. In all the different courses we made something new and put it in a toolbox we made. We would highly suggest doing this again if we have the opportunity.

The first thing we really loved was the electrical course. We were connecting two light switches together to make them both able to turn on and off the light bulb. We learned what the different colored wires mean and how to connect a circuit. We also had the opportunity to learn about careers and jobs on the construction fields.

The other course we thought was a lot of fun was the sheet metal. Basically we banged on the metal with a hammer to form it into the tool box. We had a lot of fun working with each other in this very loud and fun activity.

We also learned about CPR and how to help someone if they are having a heart attack. We used little manikins with different colored lights that lit up based on if we were going too fast, too slow, not going deep enough, or going too deep.

There were many more courses that we did and the lunch was really good too! Also the people their were really nice and helpful. They helped us learn about different job courses. This was a really great experience for all of us and would love to do it again.

Photos by HMS parent Loren Stauffer 

Young Writers Week highlights HMS student writers – February 6, 2019

Young Writers Week is an annual HMS activity to draw out student stories and encourage student writers. This year’s theme–All In For Jesus: Stories of Overcomers–was drawn from our 2018-19 theme verse, Colossians 3:17. Velina Showalter was our guest writer, sharing specifically about her book, Blind Martha, set in Akron, Pennsylvania. Students were prompted to write about times that they struggled to do something and times that they gave their all. They were also prompted through the week to write about others who overcame struggles. On Friday, classes met together to share some of the stories that they had written. 

Young Writers Week truly highlights the hard work of students. Mr. Jeremy Horning, Mrs. Erin Lichty, and Mrs. Anette Raiser highlighted how students were writing about the same topic of overcoming but they could clearly see how the content and skills grew and matured through the grades. Check out the gallery here to see the growth of HMS writers.

Middle School Students take learning leadership in their study of Water – January 9, 2019

From mid-October through December, the HMS Middle School used Project Based Learning (PBL) to study multiple angles of a valuable resource—-water. Student investment and choice in learning are important parts of PBL. It might make teachers a bit nervous at times to give some control to students and take more of a guidance role, but HMS students clearly benefit from this process.

The PBL series kick-off included a water-carrying exercise, taste-testing samples of water from various sources, and hearing International Volunteer teacher Mr. Talento Bempo’s stories of water issues in Mozambique.

During the Thursday afternoon club time, students met in research groups where they could dig into various topics led by different teachers:

  • Water & the arts
  • Aquatic life 
  • A Long Walk to Water book club 
  • Local & global water issues 
  • Nutrition of water 
  • Living water of Jesus 
  • Natural disasters and weather 

Each group completed a project based on their research and the students’ choices, and the results were wide-ranging, including a promotion for “No Straw Wednesdays” to reduce plastic waste harmful to marine animals, testing pH levels in water, building models to simulate locks and floods, devising a device to help fourth graders with their stream study, and designing gospel-centered water bottles for community distribution. Another highlight of the water study was the middle school field trip to the Susquehanna River and Chesapeake Bay in Havre de Grace, Maryland on November 20. 

The PBL series is one way that HMS inspires curiosity and opens the door for the students to take ownership in their learning. We as teachers get to be a part of the journey and see how students will carry out their God-given gifts and purposes.

from Jeremy Horning, Middle School Coordinator