Ball In The House, an A Cappella Band

Ball in the House came to our school on May 11, 2016, to sing for the entire school. They are an A Cappella group, from Boston, Massachusetts, who just use their voices to sing … there are no instruments. They were fabulous! They taught us how to make musical instrument sounds with just our voices. Near the end of their show, they saved time for a few questions from us.

Do you guys like A Cappella?

Yes, they do! They love playing with other Acapella groups and exchange CDs with each other; while traveling they listen to Jazz to Classical, Hip-Hop to Rock. “The human voice is a beautiful thing!”

How did you guys meet?

The band started with Dave and Jon, 15 years ago, and who met each other  since 5th grade. They reconnected together after college, Jon wanted to sing full-time. 2 years ago the band was looking for a Baritone and they found Monty in Washington, DC. They needed a High Tenor, 1 ½ years ago and found Wallace in Jacksonville, FL. 5 months ago, the band needed a Base and found Ben in Rochester, NY.

Do you play songs that other people write or do you write your own?

Over the years we have written over 60 original songs. We also sing other people’s songs, so we do a mix of both.

Do you guys like to travel a lot?

Yes, we like to see different parts of the country. Last month, we drove to South Dakota, it’s maybe the farthest we’ve gone. We’ve also gone to Texas and Miami. We get to see this great country of ours because we sing! We are flying to San Francisco for the National Harmony Sweeps because we won the Boston Regionals.

Is it just the 5 of you or do you have someone else who books your gigs or make travel arrangements?

Just the 5 of us do most of the work, singing, sound set-up, driving and travel, arrangements, and managing the band. We have several agents who handle:

. schools/performing art centers shows

. college shows

. specific types of shows

Most of the work is done by the band.

They left us with this message … “The Arts are wonderful … play instruments, do acting, dancing, and write poetry.… Sing in chorus / play music…. You can play sports AND play music …. Your true friends will support you along your journey!”

Below is our Animoto to provide a glimpse of Ball In The House! They kindly gave us permission to use photos, video clips and audio clips from their performance at school. Thank you, Ball in the House!

Reported by: Luke and Felix

Manguito Latin Band

CSR - logo

Chickering Student Radio

Our school invited Manguito Latin Band to perform on March 4th. The students listened to different Latin music from different areas and instruments from around the world. We had the opportunity to speak with the bass player, Alex Aluear. We hope you enjoy listening to our interview.


Reported by Rachel, Marin, Eva, and Ellie

A Welcoming Musical Start!

Principal leading kindergarten students under the 5th grade student bridge to welcome them to Chickering. It was hard to ignore the sound and feel of the electric atmosphere coming from the students and teachers, in the hot and humid Chickering gym, on Friday, August 29th. Our annual gathering, the Welcome Back Assembly, was about to begin. Students in grades 1-5 and all staff were waiting for the special guests to arrive. Our principal talked about goals and expectations for the school year. Our music teachers led us in our two traditional songs, which we sing at this annual assembly. Everybody was ready for a fresh start for the new school year.

At 1:30pm, the Welcome Back Assembly began as the noise level went down and the Chickering students and staff became more attentive. Our special guests, the scared kindergarten students, filed in, led by Principal Dayal. As the music began, directed by Mrs. Barry and Mrs. Law-Linck, our music teachers, the whole school started to sing our traditional song. The Welcome Back Song is based on our Mission statement: “Chickering School is a place where students learn, laugh, grow, care and make a difference.” The whole 5th grade stood up on both sides of the aisle and made a big bridge using their arms. The kindergarteners were guided under the bridge by the principal and their teachers, before sitting down in the front rows designated for them.

Mrs. Dayal took the mic and asked the new teachers and students to beRunners up and winners of the new Directory cover. recognized. After the new people sat down, Mrs. Dayal instructed us to say “Hi” or “Good Morning” to people who say it to us, as well as practicing the quiet sign [peace sign]. Blue tickets are awarded to students who do something kind for another student or teacher. This year’s goal is to earn 5000 tickets! Then, our principal enthusiastically announced the Directory cover winners this year:  the runners up are Corrine, Lauren K. and Marisol and the winner is Anissa! The directory is published by our PTO and contains information about classes and home addresses for students.  For the new cover each year, the PTO asks students to submit their drawings for consideration. After the winners were announced, the the words of Chickering Rocks!, our new school song, was displayed. … With a 1 and a 2 and a 3 … the 2 music teachers played the music with their guitar and piano.

As the light and happy-hearted students left the gym, it was easy to tell they were thinking that the Welcome Back Assembly had certainly started the new year off on a good note!

Reported by Esme and Anissa


Respect Assembly

Whoa! Look at those blocks switch around. How does she do it? The Respect Assemblies showed kids from Chickering School not to bully and respect each other. They used many fun activities and plays to show many types of lessons to demonstrate why you shouldn’t bully; such as teamwork and complimenting, to make someone feel better after being bullied. They didn’t just tell you to stop bullying, they acted it out so kids could laugh and enjoy learning about different ways to handle bullying. The presenters were a man and a woman who came to our school on September 25, 2012. They taught us how to respect each other in a fun way. They performed entertaining skits and acts. They also juggled to show how to work in a team and to share. They showed that complimenting people after being bullied makes them feel better. They showed us that practicing helps you get better at things that need improvement. What made this assembly enjoyable is that they didn’t just give a speech and tell you not to bully, they showed you how to be kind and how it affects others.

Y stands for you. E stands for everybody, and S stands for start and special and that was what the respect assemblies explained to us. In the assemblies the performers juggled blocks around. Three of the blocks had letters on them. The letters were Y, E, and, S. The lady flipped them around and did a bunch of tricks with them and eventually it came out to spell yes. That was one of the many lessons they taught us. Another thing they taught us to do was teamwork and to practice. The two performers worked together and juggled to show teamwork. They did this by tossing a lot of bowling pins in the air thus showing teamwork. The man said when he was little he had trouble reading. His friend told him to read five minutes a day to get better. When he practiced reading he got better and thought to use this for juggling as well.

They taught us everything from a person believing with a rope and a knot to juggling tennis rackets and skits about how people feel after being bullied. They brought up a volunteer to show how to believe and what it feels like after being bullied. They also brought up several volunteers throughout the assembly to do many different things such as balancing a peacock feather on your hand and nose. Another thing they did with a volunteer was that they had a knot to represent how you feel after being bullied, and they had the volunteer say believe and they  pulled off the knot to become one.

The performance included a lot of skits like the man performed the book “The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein”. They acted it out and didn’t read the book as they went instead they already had it on a tape recording so they could focus on their acting. The lady performed a skit about how she tried out for the tennis team. She too, didn’t speak any words and had a tape recorder that spoke for her. The story was about how she couldn’t hit the tennis ball until the coach taught her and she made the team except until one day she juggled tennis rackets and became a performer and her teammates became tennis players.

A woman named Mrs. Matarese was the organizer of these assemblies. A couple days before the assemblies we interviewed her. Here is some feedback we received. We asked her what the main focus was, and she replied saying its to help students be kind to each other. Also to respect the people around them. The second question we asked was the differences between the K-2 and 3-5 assemblies. She did not know much about that question. So at the assemblies we observed our selves. After watching the assemblies we realized the older grades had more of a stronger approach for jokes and skits, and also they taught the students with a more sophisticated language. Another question we asked was why did the administration decide we needed an assembly on respect. She replied saying that a parent saw this performance and thought it was an excellent example for the Chickering School. Although this show has been happening for 15 years this is the first time for the Chickering students to witness it. That was what happened during the interview with Mrs. Matarese.

We learned a lot watching the respect assemblies, so we hope you learned and enjoyed our information about it.

Reported by: Emily, Julia, Caroline, and Diana

Unexpected Beginnings!

Did you enjoy the Back To School assembly? We sure did! On September 9th, all students, staff and some special guests gathered in the gym to celebrate the start of our new school year. Some 5th graders presented the morning announcements and led us in the Pledge of Allegiance.

It has now become an annual tradition to welcome the new kindergarten students by singing our ‘Welcome Song’. Ms Pappas, Mrs. Barry, (our music teachers) and some fifth graders played some instruments as we sang while the kindergartners, new students, and new staff joined us in the gym.

Dr. Nugent, our principal, introduced the new staff. One of the new staff members is Mr. Crowley, a fourth grade teacher aide. She also mentioned some additional staff changes.

Mrs Spriggs, Superintendent of the Dover Sherborn Schools, told everyone about the storm and why we didn’t start on the first day of school. Due to Tropical Storm Irene, there were trees fallen across many roads and down electrical wires. This made it extremely dangerous for students and staff to travel safely to school.  She acknowledged our heroes in town who fixed up the awful mess from Tropical Storm Irene. They were Mr. Hughes, Superintendent of Streets, Mr. Ramsey, Town Administrator, Police Chief McGowan, and the NStar Company.

Representing Police Chief McGowan was Officer Harry. Officer Harry said lots of trees had fallen on buildings, which caused some damage. Roads were closed due to down power lines and trees which caused us not to go to school. Tropical Storm Irene made it too dangerous to travel on the roads and Chickering’s power went out. Most people in Dover lost their power for several days. More than 5 inches of rain fell on the streets of Dover. All those reasons are why we couldn’t go to school.

Dr. Reinemann, our Assist. Principal, talked to us about Blue Tickets. To earn a Blue Ticket, students are recognized by an adult for being good or helpful. If we meet our goal, PTO writes a check, which then sends kids to camp who are not as fortunate as we are. We set a goal, last year, for 5,000 Blue Tickets including Blue Ticket Awards. Blue Ticket Awards can be given by a student to another student for being nice or helpful. We earned 5,126 Blue Tickets last year. Our goal this year is 6,000 including Blue Ticket Awards.

After the Blue Ticket announcements we sang our new, traditional Chickering Song. Ms Pappas led us through the song. The new song really helped bring us together as a school community. We are off to a great year!

Reported by Coleman, Adam, Will G., and Matty