June 12, 2015 

JUNE 12, 2015

Monday, June 15

            School Committee Meeting – 6:00pm

Wednesday, June 17

            Last Day of Preschool – Celebration at 11:30am

Thursday, June 18

            Sixth Grade Farewell – 1:30 pm

Friday, June 19

            LAST DAY OF SCHOOL – 11:00 Dismissal

Wednesday, September 2

            First Day of School for Grades K-6

~~~~~~~~~~

IN THE SCHOOLHOUSE

Sumer Is Icumen In

The celebrated English medieval tune, “Sumer is Icumen In,” though written in Wessex English, still serves as a recognizable welcome to the season that is now upon us. Yesterday’s wonderful Field Day was a fitting way to kick off the coming weeks of warm weather.

It is also a time when life slows down, and children’s lives are less dictated by a clock. There is something to be said for having the flexibility to stay up a bit later knowing that it’s not a ‘school night.’!

The American school system is unique in its long summer vacations. For European schools, 4-5 weeks is often typical, though they have other short breaks during the year that we do not. Many parents wonder how to maintain a child’s academic skills during ten weeks of summer vacation. Summer can be a time of incredible learning. There is opportunity for large doses of experiential learning, for leisurely reading, and for practicing skills at a time that really ‘works’ for a child. I think every teacher would agree that encouraging your child to read, and reading aloud together, is the most important ingredient in summer learning.   If you are on a road trip, have your child read up on where you are going or practice being the ‘navigator.’ Have them read you the directions for a new toy or tool. There are so many ways to incorporate reading! Math skills can also be practiced in ways apart from the usual pencil and paper method. Cooking incorporates reading, measuring, fractions, and following a multi-step problem!  Finding ways to make learning fun and stress-free should be the focus of summertime learning.

While we get ready for the end of the school year, we are also preparing for next year. As you know, there will be some changes in the staff due to retirement, a leave of absence, and shifts in positions. Because many of the current changes have occurred very late in the year, the interview process has happened very quickly. Even with a shorter timeframe, we had over 80 applicants for the second and fourth grade openings! The interviews for both positions were held simultaneously, with an interview committee consisting of parents, school committee, and staff. It is my preference to send a letter inviting parents to volunteer for such a committee, but there simply was not time to do so in this situation, and I contacted parents who wear ‘multiple hats’ (school committee/parent, parent with children in each of the grades) to serve on the committee, in order to streamline the process.

 The final candidates came to do demonstration lessons, which were observed by myself and other staff. A recommendation is made to Bob Mahler, who interviews the candidate(s) and makes the ultimate decision. I was hoping to be able to announce new staff in this last edition of the Friday Post, but the last phase of the process is still in the works. Watch the LES website for those announcements.

Thank you to everyone for making my first year at LES such a happy, albeit slightly too adventurous, one! I look forward to being able to greet each child by name on the first day of school in September, and to a year free of floods and snow days!

Have a terrific summer.

-Margot Lacey

 

CONGRATULATIONS, GRADUATES!

Our awesome sixth graders will be bidding us farewell very soon. They will showcase their talents at their graduation celebration next Thursday afternoon.  We wish them all the best as they move on to Middle School and beyond!

 

            Emily Cobb                     Ashirah Devi-Dolomba

             Ethan Flint                      Ruby Heller-Goodman

        Adriana Gahagan                   William Konieczny

 Tatiana O’Connell-Toplitz                 Emily Owen

         Jonathan Picard                  Elizabeth Pobezinskaya

         Madeline Poole                            Grant Pwicki

             Maeve Roe                              Noah Saxenian

       Zachariah Sexton                           Owen Young

Ocea Zullo

 

SPOTLIGHT ON . . .

Spirit Week!

In the last week of school, from Monday, June 15 to Wednesday, June 17, we will have spirit week. On Monday, June 15 it will be crazy hair day. All kids have to do is create a crazy hairdo and wear it to school. On Tuesday, June 16 it will be dress alike day. Kids can dress alike with one other person, two other people, or a whole group of people. The goal is to dress alike as much as possible. The last day of spirit week will be on Wednesday, June 17, and it will be black and white day. Black and white day will be where everyone looks like they came out of a black and white film. Kids can dress in all black, all white, or black and white. This week is intended to be a week where you can let your creativity shine while having lots of fun.

 

Summer Camp Registration Continues:

The Leverett Summer Camp is currently accepting registrations for our small community centered educational and recreational day camp here at LES.  Space is limited and is open to children K-6.  We are operating for 4 weeks.  Week I:   July 13 - 17  Classic Sports and Games;  Week II:   July 20 - 24  Theatre Week;  Week III:  July 27 - 31  Nature and Science;  Week IV:  August 3 - 7 Theatre Week.  Camp hours are from 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM.  Space is limited with no exceptions so please contact us now if you’re interested.  For more information or a registration form please contact Mike DeRosa at the Afterschool Program 413-548-9144 extension 6, or email  [email protected].  Thanks and hope to see you here!

~~~~~~~~~~~

 

COMMUNITY BULLETIN BOARD

(Items listed here are not school sponsored)


Leverett-based dog walking service has early afternoon and late afternoon walk times available.  Dogs must be good with other dogs, children and adults, and be able to run off-leash. Please contact [email protected] or 413-475-4304.

Wolf Tree After School Nature Program, 2015-16 - Now registering for the 2015-16 session, which starts in the fall. Wolf Tree Programs is offering an after school program, Wild Coyotes, based in the woods next to Leverett Elementary School. The program runs from 1-5pm on Wednesdays. Wild Coyotes is a supportive container for kids to grow, play and deepen their connection to nature. Kids are encouraged to follow their interests and explore the natural world through all their senses. Combining outdoor skills, naturalist knowledge and a long-term mentoring model, Wild Coyotes offers your kids a safe place to be themselves and develop a deeper connection with the natural world.

Visit http://www.wolftreema.com/wildcoyotes/ for more details or to register.

 

WANTED:  A room or in-law apartment to rent to a young, single woman.  Please call 397-3300.

 

Family Afternoon with Multi-Arts - Let your creativity run wild!  We'll be making masks, sculptures, imaginary creatures, 3D art pieces, and much more!  Spend the afternoon with us, and you’ll be sure to leave with a beautiful final product to bring home and display (or play with,) as well as ideas for many more projects to come.

Hadley Senior Community Center

Free admission

Friday June 19, 4:30

 This program is supported in part by a grant from the Hadley Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

 

The Diaper Task Force of the Franklin County Resource Network is holding a DIAPER DRIVE  through June 21 to support families in Franklin County.  You can help by donating diapers (collection box at school) or by making a financial contribution.  Diapers are a huge expense when money is tight. The diapers provided will help.  For more information, to make a donation, or to organize a diaper drive where you work, visit www.communityaction.us and click on “community partners”, or call or email Judith Weinthaler at [email protected], 413-548-9896.

 

A large oval Le Crueset Dutch Oven was left in the cafeteria after the Teacher Appreciation Luncheon. Please pick it up if it belongs to you. Thanks.

 

Information from Dorothy Cresswell: 

•A local kids TV show has just been put on the air. We film at Amherst Media on College Street in Amherst.  I hope your families will enjoy it.

Episode 1:

https://archive.org/details/CuriousGiraffeEp01

Episode 2:

https://archive.org/details/CuriousGiraffeEp02

Episode 3:

https://archive.org/details/CuriousGiraffeEp03

 

• The Happy Valley Children’s Chorus will continue in the fall from Sept. 21st through Nov. 30th. 

Children 5-12 are welcome. If interested, contact Dorothy Cresswell, [email protected] 

•Dorothy will be leading children’s singing this summer. Come join in the fun.

July 4th at the Amherst Farmer’s Market, 11-1:00

August 15th at The Odyssey Bookstore, South Hadley, MA, 10:30-11:30


Closing Notes From the Greenhouse:

To begin, I would like to say a great big THANK YOU to all who participated in the “open house and plant sale” we had during the ice cream social. I would like to send out an especially BIG THANKS to Wes Goscenski for not only helping with the sale BUT for gathering donations of some beautiful bedding plants and vegetables to sell in addition to our potted seedlings!

I also want to thank Tom Zuzgo of 20 Acres Farm & Greenhouse in Hadley for donating the added plants for our fundraiser project! Also, thanks to Kate Rice and Sofie Buford for helping me with some garden chores prior to the open house. WE made $183 that evening, then we had a total of $70 come in from monetary donations. Finally, I put out the left over tomato seedlings the kids and I potted up in front to the school, which brought us another $15! (and cleaned up our leftovers!). This brings us to a total of $268 towards our goal of $500 to help repair the waterline! 

As the school year draws to a close, we also had our last classes at the greenhouse this week for this growing season. Even though the greenhouse classes are ended, we will continue to welcome donations towards our goal in hopes that this waterline project might happen by this fall. 

I must say that I am pleased at how nice the individual classroom garden projects came out finally after such a slow start to spring! We are on our 4th harvest of the lettuce and kale this spring, I noticed that the 5th grade corn is starting to set tassels! And the sixth grade class was eating the peas from their experiment! 

In the past I have closed the door to the greenhouse in the summer and let it turn into a “jungle (which it does).  However, this summer, I am hoping to stop in periodically to keep it more manageable.  I also intend to finish some of the outside gardens and mulch them to keep weeds down. So, IF anyone wants to be on a contact list for some spontaneous “work bees” this summer just send me an e-mail ([email protected]) and request your name and address to be on a list. 

I also want to thank the Field Family for donating more compost this week--It is a welcome sight! 

I want to wish everyone a fun and safe summer- make sure you take some time to get outside and notice Nature with your children! 

Most sincerely, Dawn Marvin Ward – Greenhouse manager and lesson leader!

 

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