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February 16, 2012

posted Feb 16, 2012, 7:06 PM by   [ updated Feb 25, 2012, 6:04 AM ]

The school was filled with archeologists and scientists this week as our students enjoyed interesting and engaging enrichment programs to support the curriculum. Second grade students were able to replicate the experiences and challenges of being true archeologists.  It was amazing to see the focus and intensity as students located and carefully examined each artifact.   First grade students had an opportunity to learn about magnets through a special presentation.  We truly appreciate the support of the PTO and Enrichment Committee for providing our students with these special experiences that enrich our curriculum.

Throughout the year we have been focusing on curriculum and learning experiences that maximize student understanding of concepts as well as their development of higher level thinking skills.  Much of this learning occurs through discussion, collaboration, and exploration. Student authors are writing creative and thoughtful stories about the small moments they have experienced.  Students are discussing and responding to authentic literature in different genres to enhance their comprehension skills.  In April, we will have two opportunities to share information about the curriculum and the ongoing academic progress of our students.  On Thursday, April 5, and Friday, April 6, we will be scheduling spring parent conferences.  This is an important opportunity for families to meet individually with classroom teachers to discuss each student’s progress during the school year. Teachers will contact families for scheduling.   In addition, on Thursday, April 12, we will have a family open house where all students can share with their families the exciting learning that occurs each day  in their classrooms. 

In March our third grade students will participate in the first round of the MCAS reading assessment.  This component of the state assessment system will focus on students’ ability to understand and respond to grade level text. In May, students will participate in the mathematics portion of this assessment.  On Thursday, March 1 at 7:00 we will have a special evening program for parents to discuss the MCAS assessment.  We hope you are able to join us for this informative program.  

Donna Dankner and Pamela Bator


News from Mrs. Santillo’s Art Room:

Kindergarteners are completing a study of castles. Why are buildings designed the way they are? When those needs change, what happens to the buildings? What did people wear? How did they live, both the lord and his servants? And even though castles were built for defense, most of the time they were peaceful places. We focused on the lord and lady’s attire, their quarters, and market day when the local farmers and artisans brought their wares to the castle to sell. In addition to individual projects, we built a large castle of discarded cardboard that is currently a traveling art exhibit spending a day in each kindergarten. In all these weeks, I have been emphasizing fine motor skills of cutting, gluing, beading, art elements of color, texture, pattern, and social skills of sharing and working as a team.

First graders will soon be bringing home a “Who Am I” book. I won’t give it away, but they have learned a great deal about a certain bird of prey who will be visiting Green Meadow soon in person. Our book was created using “Picturing Writing”, an art-and-literature-based writing model developed at UNH.

Second-graders are working toward a culminating event for this year, our big second-grade art night at ARTspace on Summer St. Our theme is “Faces and Phases” and we have been having so much fun playing with these words. Wait until you see. I do not have our May date yet, but will keep you posted.

Third-graders are creating houses out of discarded books. I will post photos of a few of our favorite rooms. They also created houses of clay combining skills they have learned such as coil and pinch. As time permits, we have been editing and doing voiceovers for our movie all about the number 3.

Another way I can share with you what has been going on in the art room is to ask you to go to our website. One of the best parts of my job is having the privilege of working with your children for four years, K-3. I organize the work on the website by the children’s graduating year from MHS so that you can find their class’s artwork no matter what grade they are in now. For example, class of 2021, on the Photos page or the Movies page, will show this year’s 3rd graders art all through their Green Meadow years. Flashcards is the newest page. It has an interactive component and we hope to build more flashcard segments. Check the Places To Go page and the Blog for fun activities for school vacation week at area museums. Books We Love and Cleaning Tips round out the offerings on the art website. We even keep a running list of items we are saving for future art projects.  Click here for the Art Room website

Second Grade News from Miss S

Wow!  I can’t believe it is the week before February vacation.  Time is flying by!  I hope you all enjoy your well deserved week off.

All six second grade classes participated in an archeological dig this week.  Erika Whitworth, from the Audubon Society, led the students in a discussion about the differences between a paleontologist and an archeologist.  Students then learned about three important jobs on an archeological dig:  excavator, mapmaker, and curator.  Students rotated through these jobs while investigating the artifacts.  Students then presented the artifacts they discovered to the class and made predictions about where the people lived, what they ate, and for what they might have used the artifacts.  Students and teachers loved the presentation!

Special Notes:

  • The Maynard Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SEPAC) welcomes Bruce Sabien, M.A., LMHC from the Academy of Metrowest to speak about Social Skills for students with ADHD, Asperger’s and Non-Verbal Learning Disorder on Monday, March 5, 2012 from 7 to 9 pm at the Fowler School Library, 3 Tiger Drive, Maynard.   Social skills delays and difficulties figure prominently among children with ADHD, Asperger's Disorder, and other issues.  Mr. Sabian will discuss these issues and offer practical tips for parents and educators as they try to help their children navigate the social world. This event is free and open to the public. Registration not required.  Please contact Jennifer O’Leary with any questions at or 978-897-2705.  
  • The next SEPAC’s meeting is scheduled for April 2, 2012 with the title “Transition to Adulthood – Turning 14”, 7-9:00 p.m..

Dates to Remember:

February 20-24, 2012                 Winter Break

March 1, 2012                            MCAS  Presentation for Parents, 7:00 PM

March 2, 2012                            Community Reading Day

March 2, 2012                            Early Release, 12:30

March 9, 2012                            Early Release, 12:30