ForWARD September 21, 2012

Contact Group(s): 




Ward School Banner
The John Ward Elementary School PTO Newsletter
September 21, 2011  
In This Issue
Mark Your Calendars
From the Principal's Desk
And Now a Word From the PTO
School News
Newton News
Community Classifieds
Ward School Quick Links and Contacts
Ward School
Ward PTO Home
Ward PTO Calendar

Ward School: 617.559.6450
Childwatch: 617.559.6470

Dear Lynda  Bentley,
Welcome to the latest edition of the Ward Elementary School Newsletter ForWARD.
* To stop receiving this newsletter, or update your email information please use the links at the end of the newsletter.
Ward School Banner

From the Principal's Desk
On opening day we welcomed 299 students including many new families. Teachers have created warm, inviting classrooms and began the year building a community and establishing routines and expectations. Classrooms are humming with excitement as students engage with new teachers, peers and curriculum.
It is a pleasure to welcome Jean Corbo-Hudak as our new kindergarten teacher. Most recently Jean taught at the Conservatory Lab Charter School in Brighton. Amy Tai will be joining us as an ISS (building based substitute). Her experience includes teaching at the Atrium School as well as teaching in New York City and Peru. We have been given a little extra math coach time this year: Amy Lucenta will share the position with Mike Smalley, former Bigelow math teacher. We just hired a part-time class size aide, Lisa Rideout, for our third grade; we will also utilize our building aide, Mona Krozy, for third grade support. There are several part-time student teachers from area universities who are also working in our classrooms.
A number of improvements were made to the building over the summer months. Several classrooms were painted and carpeting was replaced in some offices.   Our gym paneling received a new coat of paint which really brightens the space. A new kiln has been installed. Masonry work will continue to be done on the outside of the building to realign the front steps and repoint the bricks. Our custodians have spent the summer busily cleaning every inch of the building to prepare for the opening of school.
I want to remind you that there is no adult supervision for students prior to 8:20 AM. Teachers are preparing for the day ahead. Please time the arrival of your child as close to 8:20 as possible. Due to the crowding in the front hallway, we ask that students wait outside if they arrive earlier unless there is severe weather. If you need supervision for your child prior to school, our school has a fee-based morning drop-off program beginning at 7:30.
Due to the number of vehicles at our school in a short period of time and the increased number of vans and buses, it is vital for the safety of all children that our community work together to follow the Blue Zone guidelines. Be sure to inform other family members and caretakers.
The Blue Zone is clearly marked with a blue painted curb and signage. It is meant to be a moving lane. Cars should not wait in the Blue Zone at pick-up time.
Is the Blue Zone for you?
*Remember that the Blue Zone is not for everyone. Children should be able to enter or exit the car from the sidewalk on their own. Drivers should not leave their vehicles to assist children in the Blue Zone or walk them around to the street side to enter a car. If you choose to use the Blue Zone, ask your child to meet you in the Blue Zone. If your child is waiting, stop and pick him/her up. If not, circle around the block.
Never park in the Blue Zone. This brings traffic to a standstill.
Also, do not park in the bus zone (yellow curb). It is illegal and disrupts the flow of traffic. We experience the greatest difficulty when the weather gets cold, rainy, or snowy. Let's start the year off right and keep our children safe!
If your child was in grades 3-5 last year, you will be receiving MCAS scores shortly. They will be mailed to your home from the district office.

We have a number of PTO events this month:
Friday, September 21 Principal's Coffee at 8:30 AM in the library
Monday, September 24 Back-to-School Picnic 6:00 PM
Tuesday, September 25 PTO meeting at 8:45 AM
Friday, September 28 Picture Day
I look forward to working with you. It promises to be an exciting year.
My best,
Attention dog owners
This past year, Newton Central Little League, which includes the Ward community, spent $5,000 at Ward on the Montrose Street side baseball field, and plans to spend around $2,000 annually to regrade and tune up the baseball field. All of this benefits Little League, as well as softball, soccer, lacrosse and, most importantly, the school. We have noticed that the morning dog group has moved from the grass part of the field to the baseball infield and dirt. If possible, it would be helpful if people could gather with their dogs outside the baseball field area so the infield stays in great shape from the hard work and money spent on the field. 
Audrey Parad Peller
John Ward Elementary School
10 Dolphin Road
Newton Centre, MA 02459

 And Now a Word From the PTO
***Welcome Back***  
First we would like to introduce the members of the PTO Board:
Co-Presidents: Alison Best, Jodi Figler, Gail Fitzgerald & Christine O'Neill
Vice Presidents: Julia Johnston-Ketterer & Amiee Parco
Treasurer: Karla Siegel
Secretary: Beth Panella
We would like to welcome back all of you who are returning to Ward School and extend a special warm welcome to those families who are new to Ward.  We hope your school year is off to a great start!
The PTO offers many avenues throughout the year to stay informed, participate, meet other parents and/or give your time, talent and resources to strengthen our school.  We look forward to your suggestions, ideas or any questions that you may have in the coming year.
We would also like to extend our thanks to all of you who have volunteered to work on the many committees that make up the Ward PTO.  We invite those of you who would like to volunteer but are unsure as to how or where your help is needed, to please get in touch with any one of us.  We look forward to helping you find a way to become active in your PTO.  Your interest, time and energy are greatly appreciated by all and directly benefit your children.
***Upcoming Events***
The Welcome Back Picnic and Sports Swap will be held on Monday, September 24th from 6:00 - 7:30pm at Ward School. Bring the whole family to the playground for this great way to reconnect. Bring your own picnic or pre-order pizza. Forms were sent home in the Welcome Back Folders or click  here to order online. Please have forms returned by 9am on September 21st.
Do you have sports equipment - such as bikes, balls, baseball equipment, lacrosse equipment, golf clubs, etc - that your kids have outgrown? Drop them off at Amiee Parco's house, 42 Crosby Road or bring them to the Back to School Picnic. At the picnic donated sports equipment will be available on a first come, first serve basis. We will also be selling WARD magnets at the picnic for $5 each, a great way to show your support for our school. 
In the Ward Lunch Room
In an effort to meet the demands of the many different schedules of parents, we have planned both evening and early morning meetings throughout the year.  We hope you find this convenient and look forward to your input and ideas.
Welcome back to returning families and welcome to all of our new families! To all of our new families, PTO member Amiee Parco will be hosting a new family dessert get together on October 9th from 7 - 8:30pm at her home. If you are new to the Ward School Community, we invite you to come meet some new people and learn about what the PTO does. 
Book your babysitter and enjoy an evening out filled with delicious food and wonderful company.  The evening will begin at one home for all to enjoy appetizers.  It is here that the mystery will be revealed and you will receive the theme & location of your Ward School host's home.  After dinner, everyone will reconvene at yet another Ward School host's home for dessert.
This is a fantastic evening and a wonderful way to support the Ward School PTO.  Please contact Jessie Gilmartin at or (617) 281-4535 to volunteer to host or for more information.  Look for your invitation in your child's take home folder in the coming weeks.
***Parents:  We need your help! ***  
We are looking for a Newton Safe Routes to School Task Force Representative for Ward. Please consider volunteering for this important role.  The group was established to increase the number of children walking to school, to improve safety education, to identify and resolve safety issues and to focus city efforts on improving the pedestrian and traffic situation around our schools. Please contact Jen Rugani at if interested.
The PTO is seeking one Ward parent to participate in the Ward School Council. Becoming a part of the School Council is a great way to volunteer with a minimal time commitment! If you are interested please email Jodi Figler at Please click here to go to the PTO website and find out more.
***Clip those BoxTops***
We've been counting all those Box Tops that you've been clipping. Wonder if it is worth it? For the year we have $450 worth of Box Tops. We still have another month to clip and collect for the November deadline- so please keep your eyes out - clip box tops and drop them in the box in the lobby.  
***Stay Connected*** 
  • We hope you are finding all of the information you need for you and your children at Ward School.
  • A ton of work has been made on the Ward website which will be our primary way of disseminating information about the many Ward PTO events and opportunities. Check it out at
  • Please look for the ForWard, in your inbox on the 1st & 3rd Friday of every month.
  • On the alternate weeks you will receive a shorter electronic publication called This Week at Ward.
  • Please note that there is a listing of upcoming events posted in the new information board out in front of the school.
  • There is also a Bulletin Board above the radiator in the front hall that has many postings for classes and community happenings.
  • Don't forget to look up at the railing in the front of the school - there is often a Banner hanging to announce upcoming events.


 School News

Stop and Shop Rewards Are Back! 
Help Ward School raise money. Stop and Shop will donate money each time you shop if you register your card as follows:

Go to:
Select "Register your Card",
Enter the first three letters of your last name and  your Stop and Shop Card Number
Click "Continue to Listing"
Enter the Ward School Number 08887
Click "Register my Card"
Thank you  = now start shopping!                



Newton News and Events
New Art Center Free Program: The New Art Center in Newton would like to invite you to the following activity that is free and open to the public:
Family Connections Visit on Saturday, September 29 at 3:00pm! Join us for a free drop-in educational and art activity based visit for families during Out of the Ruins: Reimagining the Romantic Tradition. This exciting, interactive program is part of Newtonville Village Day and offered through the New Art Center's community outreach program Connections.
Call for Young Artists: Here's a chance to really make your mark on Newton! Join Newton Highlands merchants and artists in creating the city's first-ever Road Mural on Lincoln Street.
Painters in grades 3-8 are needed to help our adult artists fill in eco-themed murals to highlight all that is "green" in Newton--and make the street more fun and safer for walkers! Chose a one-hour time slot on Sunday, Sept. 30, between 1 pm and 4 pm.
All traffic will be foot only for the duration of the painting. Adult helpers welcome. To sign up for a painting time, please go to
Newton Friends of Music: Calling all music parents, teachers, and musicians: You are all invited to join Newton's new list serve, Newton Friends of Music, dedicated to music awareness and advocacy. Post to this list with anything music related, such as to look for or sell an instrument, to advertise your own or your child's concert, to ask questions about music at your school, to get information on music teachers or outside programs, to get help launching a music-oriented college search, etc. Sign up at, and you can send messages to  Please help spread the word to anyone you know who's interested in an online community of music-minded people; there's a wealth of knowledge and ideas among us waiting to be shared. Please contact Lisa at with questions.
All-City Orchestra: The All-City Orchestra is about to begin its 54th season! If you have a child who plays in his or her school orchestra and would like an additional challenge, the ACO may be just the thing. We meet on Wednesdays at Bigelow Middle School. Here is the link for our group, so you can learn about it:
Wonder Book Reading & Discussion: Join Understanding Our Differences for a family friendly book reading and signing of Wonder with author RJ Palacio on Mon., Oct. 29, 7:00 - 9:00 PM, Newton South High School Auditorium, FREE. This NY Times bestselling novel is about the coming together of an extraordinary boy with a disability and his school community. Wonder gives readers a greater appreciation for the courage of friendship, and the power of kindness. Palacio will read from Wonder and answer questions, and the book will be available for purchase and signing. Event moderator is Brian O'Donovan, WGBH Producer/Host. Elementary school students and older are welcome with an adult. RSVP requested at this link: For more information, contact Understanding Our Differences at
TriMathlon: Mathnasium National TriMathlon - Join us Saturday, September 29th for our FREE and FUN competition.
All students grades 3-6 are welcome. Goodie bags for everyone! Register online:
Newton's First Annual Walk Bike Week: Come celebrate Newton's first annual Walk Bike Week, Friday, Sept. 28- Wednesday, Oct. 3, and discover all the ways that Newton can be walked or biked, and see how we can improve our shared spaces, making Newton even more livable.
The week, starts with a rewarding commute to work or school on Friday, and ends with International Walk to School Day. All Newton residents and friends are welcome to join the fun. All events are FREE.
Newton Touch-a-Truck Event: Do you "dig" Newton? Do you have a young child in your life who is fascinated by vehicles of all kinds? Then you'll LOVE the Newton Touch-a-Truck event!
On Sunday, September 23th, The Newton Partnership is hosting our Fourth Annual Newton Touch-A-Truck event from 10am-1pm at Newton South High School at 140 Brandeis Rd. in Newton.
Kids will have the opportunity to get behind the wheel of a big rig, touch the scoop of a digger, see the inside of an ambulance, sit in a police cruiser, walk up the ramp of a delivery vehicle, and much more. Buy a drink or snack from a food truck.
Here is a partial list of the vehicles we are expecting: Wally's Ice Cream Truck, Shredder Truck, Ambulance, Tractor/Trailer Rig, Armored Car, Moving Van, Fire Truck, School Bus, Police Cruiser and Motorcycle, Flat Bed, and many more...
We will hold this event rain or shine! For more information, visit the Newton Touch-a-Truck home page.
For more information on The Newton Partnership, visit
Free Youth Advisory Program: Do you know a child in grade 6 through 12 that could benefit from participating in a program to work on their fitness goals and nutritional knowledge? We are now enrolling kids in The Youth Advisory program, which connects Newton kids one-on-one with a trained adult (Advisor) who will support and help educate them about basic fitness and nutrition. Over the course of a year, Advisors will assess each teen's physical fitness and nutritional knowledge, and create personalized healthy behavior plans. Advisors will help teens find successful ways to reach their fitness and nutritional goals. The Youth Advisory Program gives teens a chance to get fit and stay healthy! With Advisors whom they know and trust, teens are more likely to remain motivated to make healthy life choices. This is a FREE program! For more information contact Susan Linn at or 617-796-9000.
Newton Youth Summit: Mayor Warren is hosting a Youth Summit to help parents and the larger community understand the challenges facing our teens, to have teens authentically express their experiences, and to coalesce as a community to support youth. The Summit will be held from 6 to 9 P.M. on Thursday October 11, 2012 at Oak Hill Middle School, 130 Wheeler Road in Newton. 200 adults and teens are expected to attend. The evening will include hearing from the Mayor, from teens, small group discussion sessions, and an opportunity for all to express their opinion on the most pressing challenges and most significant opportunities for youth in Newton. Sponsored by the City of Newton Department of Health and Human Services and The Newton Partnership. For more information and registration go to: or email
New Volunteer Opportunities with Newton at Home: New Volunteer Opportunities with Newton at Home! Newton at Home, a member organization dedicated to helping Newton seniors age in their own homes, is looking for volunteers who can help senior citizens.
 We need drivers who can give rides to seniors. Make a new friend while helping someone get to a doctor's appointment, the supermarket, a social event or the airport.
  • We need people who love to plan events like trips to museums and concerts to join our Program Planning Committee--it meets during the school day!
  • We need a volunteer to help contact NAH members and create a database of emergency contacts.
Volunteer as much as you can at your convenience, and know that you have made a difference in a Newton senior's life. You'll meet interesting people and share great conversation along the way! If you are willing and able to help, please call Julie Plaut Mahoney, Ph.D., Coordinator of Volunteers, Newton at Home 617-795-2560 or
Newton's One to One Program: Could your child, age 6 to 11, benefit from the consistent, caring friendship of a Newton teenager?   Newton's One to One Program has an enthusiastic and responsible new group of high school juniors & seniors from Newton North and Newton South High Schools. If you would like the opportunity to have your child matched this academic year with a "Big Brother/Sister", please call or email Nancy Holczer, Program Director by the end of October for more information. Please leave a message when calling 617.559.9063 with your name, address, and phone number or email info to Nancy at A program of the Newton Public Schools since 1972.  
Newton-Beijing Jingshan School Exchange Program: As our world becomes more interconnected, what better way for your family to learn about China than to host a student or teacher from Newton's partner school?
Share your home, your family traditions, and American culture with a Chinese exchange student or teacher for the 2012-2013 fall school year. Participants all speak English and are eager to learn about American culture and to share their culture with you. Beijing Jingshan exchange students and teachers arrive mid-September and depart mid-January. Students attend regular classes at the high schools. Teachers teach in our schools. Lunches are provided. Participants often travel on Columbus Day weekend, Veteran's Day weekend, Thanksgiving holiday, and winter holiday.
Newton will be hosting nine students and two teachers from the Jingshan School this fall. We are still seeking a host family for one female student and one family for a teacher (male or female).   Host families do not have to have students in high school to participate. Families with younger children also make strong connections with the visitors.
To explore this unique opportunity, please contact :
Child Assault Prevention (CAP) Program Volunteers Needed: The Child Assault Prevention (CAP) program in Newton is looking for committed and dedicated child advocates to present its personal safety curriculum in local elementary schools.
Join up with current and experienced volunteer Prevention Specialists to teach children to recognize and respond to verbal, physical and sexual assault and abuse. Potential volunteers are community members who believe that children have the right to information, skills and the support of adults. We offer a flexible schedule to volunteers who enjoy teamwork and can make a yearlong commitment of two or three mornings a month.
To make it easier for people with busy schedules to train we have decided to divide the training into two parts. Part 1 is scheduled for W. Oct. 17, F. Oct. 19, W. Oct. 24 (8:45 a.m. to noon), and F. Oct. 26 (8:45-1 p.m.)
Part 1 of the training will prepare trainees to present one of the three facilitations and participate in all of the role plays. Part 2, on Review Time (1:1 conversations) is scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 2, 8:45- 4 p.m.
For information or to set up an interview call Gail Sommer, 617-969-5906, x143 or email, Newton CAP is a program of Newton Community Service Center. Visit our webpage at for a description of the program and of the volunteer Prevention Specialist position.
Newton Community Preservation Committee News: Newton Community Preservation Committee Draft New Funding Guidelines are now online from multiple links on our home page:
HAPPY 10th BIRTHDAY, NEWTON CPA! Wednesday, 3 October 2012, 7 pm, Newton South High School Cafeteria (150 Brandeis Road). Focus on the South Side (Ward 8 & beyond), but residents of all neighborhoods are welcome!
Comments will also be solicited on the draft new Funding Guidelines:
  • Until 9 October 2012 using our online survey from the CPA Grant Priorities link under "Featured" on the City's home page:
  • Until 19 October 2012 by email or mail:
How would you allocate nearly $20 million for affordable housing, historic resources, open space & recreation land in Newton over the next 5 years? Come tell us at our 5th and final neighborhood birthday party, at 7 pm on Wednesday, 3 October 2012 in the Newton South High School Cafeteria (Brandeis Road). Refreshments provided! Come at 7 pm for a slide show with seldom-seen historic neighborhood photos and maps, then share project ideas and comments on the program's draft new funding guidelines, now online from See the online draft guidelines for other ways to comment, or contact: Alice Ingerson at 617.796.1144 or

Community Classifieds
The process for submitting classified ads for the ForWard will be changing. In the near future, the Ward School PTO will offer the opportunity to place classified advertisements on our website ( in addition to the ForWard newsletter for a small fee. Please stay tuned for more information.
Newton Community Farm's 2012 Fall Festival & Classes:
Sunday, September 23. Join us from 11am- 3pm for our annual fall festival...rain or shine! The farm is located at 303 Nahanton Street in Newton.
Families, adults, children....all are welcome!   Invite your friends and neighbors. Admission and parking are free on Nahanton and Winchester streets! Food, baked goods, produce, farm fresh jams, and beverages for sale. Proceeds benefit NCF's education programs. Enjoy live music and entertainment, cooking demonstrations, children's activities, pumpkin decorating, and more!
Don't miss this popular, lively event!   For more information, visit
Fall Educational programs at Newton Community Farm: classes and workshops
Newton Parks & Recreation Program: Parks & Recreation Department Fall programs for all ages, pre-school to adult.
Literacy and Math Program: From 1 to Z Workshops, a Math and Literacy Enrichment Program for Young Learners.
From 1 to Z Workshops is an innovative after school enrichment program offered to 5, 6 and 7 year old children in the metro west area which utilizes a developmentally appropriate curriculum to enhance young children's literacy and math skills. The program is being lead by Melody Lack, M.Ed., as an alternate after school club where children gather to actively engage in educational hands-on activities involving math and literacy concepts. For more information visit us at  
Math Programs: Mathnasium of Newton - Start the school year out strong.
Mathnasium Learning Center offers individualized math programs in a fun, relaxing environment. Schedule your sessions around sports and other activities. or call us for a free trial (617) 340-3665
Math Classes: Registration at Top Banana for 2012-2013 is Open (classes begin after Labor Day)!
Don't wait, sign up today!
At Top Banana we offer math classes for kindergarten through 6th grades, as well as handwriting classes for grades 1 through 3. Click here to check out our schedule online and register for classes today!
Phone 888-411-KIDS (5437) or 617-795-1557,
French Lessons: Need French lessons or French tutoring with a native French speaking teacher?
Please contact: Athie Tschibelu at 617-694-8705
French Tutor: Noreen Boyce, mother of two students, 8th and 10th Grades, in Newton, is available to help your Middle or High school child. With a Bachelor of Arts and Masters degree in French, and 19 years of teaching experience, she can help improve your child's writing, listening, reading and speaking skills. She can work with individuals or small groups in her home or yours. Call 617-332-0639 or email:
Sunday School for Jewish Studies: Open Enrollment and High Holy Day Services
The Sunday School for Jewish Studies is now accepting registrations for grades K-7 for the 2012-13 school year. The Sunday School is an independent school offering a once-a-week program for children in the greater Boston area for over 40 years. Located at the Oak Hill Middle School in Newton, our school is committed to providing a Jewish education that fosters a strong sense of Jewish identity for children and families with diverse traditions of Jewish observance. Bar/Bat Mitzvah preparation is available but not required, and students may enter in any grade. Interfaith and nontraditional families are welcome. For additional information, please visit our website at or call 617.264.8855.
Also, please join us for our High Holy Day Services at Newton South High School. Open to the public, no tickets are required. Please refer to our website for additional information.
Family Day Care: DoReMi Family Day Care. Fall/Winter enrollment. Children 2-5. DoReMi FDC offers music curriculum throughout the day, engaging math, literacy, science and art activities. Homemade meals and snacks provided. Fully fenced playground with organic mulch. Experienced, certified early education provider. Location: Newton Center, Rt9 and Parker Street. For more information refer to the website or contact Anna @ (617) 564-0259
Parent Program - Students with Learning Challenges: Helping your child on the journey toward independence
A six week education program for parents of 4th and 5th grade students with learning challenges.
Parents will:
            Gain a better understanding of what motivates their child's behavior
            Learn ways to help their child be more resilient
            Examine temperament and how it affects interactions with their child
            Understand the benefits and skills gained from a weekly family meeting
Terry Bromfield, M.Ed., course leader. Beginning her 18th year as an Instructor at Lesley University, Terry has over 35 years experience in the field of Childhood Development. Terry is a Board member of Understanding Our Differences, and is a citywide resource specialist for the Learning Disabilities unit that is taught in all of Newton 4th grade classrooms.
Dates: Monday evenings: October 15, 22, 29, November 5, 12, 19  
Time:           7:30pm to 9pm