I often use our newsletter to address potential challenges that face our students. You may have heard about “the Momo Challenge.” I can say that we have not heard much about this at MMW, yet. While I do not typically contact parents or address students whenever an internet hoax arises, this hoax has the potential to cause a disruption and I feel it’s important for you to know about it.
It is a hoax about a non-existent internet challenge spread by Facebook users and media outlets. It was reported that kids were being enticed by a user named Momo to perform a series of dangerous tasks. It is important for you to know that it has been widely confirmed that Momo does not exist. There are many news articles debunking the challenge and reminding parents of the importance of guiding children in being safe online, so I wanted to share those resources with you:
Common Sense Media: 13 Online Challenges Your Kid Already Knows About (Great resource – sign up for the weekly email updates about technology trends. I learn so much from this source!)
Start with this one. Regardless of what the challenge is, the right response is the same. Scroll past the different “challenges” for the paragraph called ‘What to Do’.
Momo Challenge: How to Protect Kids from Disturbing Internet Game – Today Show
This story on the Today Show explains the basics for protecting kids online:
1. Remind kids not to contact or respond to strangers
2. Parents can enable privacy settings on devices
3. Parents can monitor internet use
4. Parents can require children to keep electronics in shared spaces
Cyber Safety Expert Denise DeRosa says this internet hoax serves as a reminder for parents to know what their kids are doing online. “You don’t need to know about every platform and every app and every device out there, but you do need to know and understand your kids favorite apps, their favorite games, their devices,” she said. Experts say even if actual threats from Momo aren’t real, the rumors alone can be frightening for kids and can encourage teens to participate in risky dares.
I hope you find this information helpful if your child has questions about this hoax.
By working together, we will continue to take care of our kids.
Have a great week!
Paula Hoff, EdD
Testing Dates at MMW
Reading MCA April 9 and April 10
Math MCA April 16 and April17
Science MCA (Grade 8 only) May 1
Math NWEA May 7, May 8 and May 9
Reading NWEA (Grades 6 & 8 only) May 14, May 15 and May 16
Science NWEA (Grade 6 only) May 21 and May 22
The assessments that our students take are an important element of our school. We want all of our students to have every opportunity to perform at their highest possible level. We know that a solid score on these assessments represents the hard work and significant learning that our students have experienced during their years in Minnetonka. It is important to us that we create the best possible testing environment so each student is able to perform to their maximum potential. We also are proud of the high results that our students achieve and how that becomes part of the story of our school community.
Activities Now Accepting Registrations
Baking Club March Session, Yearbook, BrightWatch, Minecraft, Unplugged Game Club, RAKtivist Club
Spring Sport Now Accepting Registrations
Boys Tennis, Girls and Boys Track
Registrations Deadline is March 31st (student must have a sports qualifying physical on file to register!)
Please visit the MMW Activities Page for more detailed information!
Cinderella – this weekend at MMW
Media Tips from Jane Zins, MMW Media Specialist
Teaching kids character strengths and life skills is one of the most important jobs of parents, caregivers, and teachers. Hundreds of times a day, often without realizing it, we seize on moments to reinforce strengths such as humility, integrity, perseverance, and teamwork. Increasingly, the launchpad for these lessons is media. Learn more about character strengths, tips for using media to bolster them, and recommendations for media the whole family can learn from and share.
Once kids go online, their chances of finding cyberbullies, haters, and trolls is, sadly, quite high. Find age-specific guidelines, videos, and articles to help with tough conversations — whether your kid is a bully or is being bullied. Commonsense Media answers all your cyberbullying questions, offering age-appropriate advice, school resources, and more from parents and experts. Contact your school’s media specialist or visit Minnetonka’s Digital Health and Wellness site for more information.
Bus GPS – My Stop
My Stop is a web-based application available for all Minnetonka parents whose students ride the bus to access through a smartphone, tablet or computer to view the current location of the bus and the estimated time of arrival. It allows you to see if what time the bus will be at your child’s stop. It is powered by GPS transmission from the bus every one to two minutes. This means your screen will update every one to two minutes. Click HERE to learn how to access the app using your MyMinnetonka SSO login.
Please check in with your student to see if they might need to refresh their school supplies. Some things they may be running low on: pencils, pens, pocket folders, highlighters. If you aren’t sure, check with one of your student’s teachers. Boxes of tissue are always welcome!
SeaCamp Parent Meeting for Fall 2019
SeaCamp Fall 2019 (Current 6th & 7th Graders)
We are excited to announce MME and MMW’s 3rd annual San Diego, California SeaCamp excursion. Students attending this trip will participate in hands on sea life lab activities, boogie boarding, snorkeling, San Diego Sea World, swimming in the ocean and a true camp bonding experience. Students will spend five days and four nights in beautiful California experiencing a world unlike anything they can in Minnesota. This trip will take place MEA Week Oct 14-18 2019. If you are interested, please attend the Parent/Student Information Session on Monday, March 18, 2019 at 5:00pm in the MMW Media Center. Email SeaCamp coordinators Laura Rosati: firstname.lastname@example.org or Lisa Reed email@example.com with any questions.
From the MMW Health Office for current 6th graders:
Minnesota law requires children enrolled in school to be immunized against certain diseases or file a legal medical or conscientious exemption. As your child moves from 6th grade to 7th grade, there are 2 additional immunizations required for school entry in the fall. Seventh grade students are required to have a current Tdap that has been administered on or after their 7th birthday (but are typically given near their 12th birthday). Additionally 7th graders are also required to be immunized against meningococcal.
If you have any questions regarding your child’s immunization status please call the Health Office at (952) 401-5318.
The MMW PTO has created a Facebook group specifically for parents of MMW students.
General guidelines –
– Please share and invite other MMW parents
– Our students are minors. Please be very thoughtful and cautious when posting about them. Do NOT name any child or post a picture that is in any way negative without that child’s parent(s) approval.
– All conversations should be as respectful and polite online as they would be in person
– Feel free to post questions, updates on activities, school news, etc.
– As a parent group, school administration will not be replying to posts
-Visit us at www.minnetonkawestpto.org for more calendars, updates, sign-ups, etc.
Here is the link to the Facebook group for parents to join:
Click HERE to check out the MMW PTO website.
Nutrition Services is Now Hiring!
Nutrition Services is looking for YOU to join our team in providing nutritious school meals to our students. We are still hiring for this year and next year! You have the advantage of being home to see your children off to school and be back in time to welcome them home! Other benefits include: Competitive wages- $15.13/hr; Follow the school calendar – you’re home when your children are home; work in your community; fun and friendly managers and staff; uniform allowance; paid holidays; free lunch; and most importantly- NO weekends, evening hours, or SNOW days! To apply please visit the District website at: www.minnetonkaschools.org and view the openings for Cook Helpers under Nutrition Services. We look forward to hearing from you!
VANTAGE Summer Camps
Passionate about inventing? Sustainability? Journalism? Enjoy making sense of numbers? We have a camp for you! We are very excited to offer Minnetonka middle school students (entering grades 7-9 in the fall) four unique summer camps from Minnetonka’s professional studies program, VANTAGE. Click on the camp below for more details and registration info:
Questions? Contact Julie Baeb, firstname.lastname@example.org.