Friday, December 18, 2015

Tedx @ GD, Drama, Robotics, Winter Concert & Art Show

Winter Concert & Art Show
By Jon O’Conner
The 2016 GDRHS Winter Concert and Art Show was held on Wednesday Evening at the Middle School Performing Arts Center. 

This Annual tradition is a wonderful herald of the upcoming holidays. Hundreds of community members crowded into the event to enjoy a night of Art Music and food. Concessions were managed by the GD Arts Boosters who raise money for the High School Fine and Performing Arts Programs.

With special thanks to the Art and Music Honor Society students for their efforts in helping set up and to the Middle School Administration for hosting the event.

TEDx Coming to GD
By Leah Mitchell
As many may know, TED is an annual conference that brings together the world’s leading thinkers and doers to share ideas that matter in any discipline—technology, entertainment, design, science, humanities, business, development.  All talks are under 18 minutes and are generally engaging the audience to think differently and inspire changes that ultimately will make for a better world.

In that same spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a local, self-organized event that brings together people to share a TED-like experience.  

I am a member of the class of 2016, and a member of the TED-Ed Club. Currently I am working on an independent study to plan, organize and facilitate a TEDx event. Mrs. McManus, Librarian Media Specialist and advisor of the TED-Ed Club, has been a mentor and partner in the planning of the event.

The event, named TEDxYouth@GDRHS, is scheduled for Friday evening, March 25, 2016 and will be held in the Black Box at the High School. Our theme of the night is: "The Little Things."  We plan to combine videos of official TED talks and live local speakers who will share ideas worth spreading within this theme.  We are in the infant stages of planning, but our hope is that the evening will be engaging, inspiring and the beginning of many great ideas shared.

We are currently looking for volunteers to serve on our committee to help with all aspects of this event as well as recommendations for potential speakers.  Check out our website for the application for speakers and more information.

Drama Update
Four Grades. Four Plays. One Goal. By Renee Hampton After what can be agreed upon as the rousing success that was GD Players’ production of Harvey, the next event that can be expected to come is the traditional Festival of One Act Plays. This annual event divides each grade into their own micro-company of players, director, and technical crew. Each grade is expected to produce a play with very little interference from adults, apart from supervision from a Drama Guild advisor. All four plays will be presented together, and this presentation will be judged on one of the nights by a panel of locally-based theatre experts, who will award the plays with various accolades, such as “Best Play,” “Best Actor,” “Best Costumes” and other similar honors. 
But really there is more to the festival than awards. Junior class member and active participant in GD Players endeavors, Jill Carleton says, “The one acts have always been a great experience.” Carleton herself directed her class’ play in her freshman year. She was sure to add, “I love the friendly competition aspect, but in the end putting on a good show is the best part.” This is a widely held philosophy in the drama program. The belief that ultimately, the most important thing is for all of the classes to put in their best effort and for all the other classes to support them. That really is the goal of the title: to have fun and support each other. The 7th Annual Festival of One-Act Plays will be presented in the Black Box Theatre on February 5th and 6th.

Groton Dunstable Robotics Team Gears Up For 2016 Season
Ginger Vollmar, Publicity for the GDRHS Robotics Team

The Groton Dunstable High School Robotics team, fondly known as "The Robotomies", is gearing up for the 2016 FIRST Robotics “FIRST Stronghold” competitions for 2016. The team has been meeting since September to get new members acclimated to the team culture and to work on a demo bot. Last year’s robot was on display at GrotonFest this September where the team did some fundraising.

The kickoff date for this year’s competition is Jan. 9th, 2016. At this time, the team will be given the details of the challenge for this year and their kit of parts (the same challenge is given to 3000 other high schools internationally who participate in the FIRST Robotics tournaments). The team then has 6 weeks to build, program and test the robot. The Stop Build Day is Feb. 23rd, 2016.

The first competition will be held at WPI on March 11th – 13th. The 2nd competition will be held in Providence, RI on March 24th – 26th. The competitions are very exciting events and we hope to get more spectators to come out and cheer on the team this year. More details will be provided as the time gets closer. You can visit our web site at for more information about the Robotomies or like us on Facebook at “GD Team 1277”.

The Robotics team depends on team mentors who are volunteers from the community and Mr. Mark Rocheleau, the Engineering and Technology teacher at the High School. The team is always looking for more mentors who have experience in machining, engineering, programming, marketing or project management.

All funding for the Robotics team is privately raised as no money from the school budget is allocated for this team. The Robotomies would like to thank our current sponsors who provide funding for the entrance fees for the FIRST competitions and for materials. Thank you to: Justin J. Maynard Memorial STEM Innovation Scholarship; The National Defense Education Program; The Society for American Military Engineers; Raytheon; Ted & Connie Lapres Fund; Mercury Systems; Groton Board of Trade; IBM Northeast Community Grant Program; GE Oil & Gas; Solidworks; and the Webber Restaurant Group. Additional sponsorships are always welcomed and appreciated.

If you have questions or would like to help support the Robotics team, please contact the High School who can put you in touch with our current mentors or students. Mr. Rocheleau may be reached at

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