ForWARD March 15, 2013

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The John Ward Elementary School PTO Newsletter

March 15, 2013    

In This Issue
Mark Your Calendars
From the Principal's Desk
And Now a Word From the PTO
School News
What's New at After-School
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

Mark Your Calendars             


From the Principal's Desk  


It was quite a surprise to experience another snowstorm last Friday.  We are required to have 180 days of school each year.  Next month the Newton School Committee will decide on the last day of school, and we will finalize plans about culminating activities.
There are several recent staffing changes for you to note.  Laurie Mario, Learning Center Assistant and Before School teacher, has accepted a teaching position in the Lincoln Schools.  Kara Thibeault will be covering her position for the remainder of the year.  Ms. Thibeault recently completed her Masters degree in teaching at Northeastern University.  Brianna Brown will be covering the Before School group.  Within the next few weeks, Ms. Vale Southard, will begin substituting as our music teacher while Ms. Seals is on maternity leave.  Ms. Southard is a graduate of the University of Miami and is currently covering a leave in the Westboro Schools.  We are pleased to welcome these new professionals to our staff.
Testing begins on Monday, March 18.  This year we have had to juggle the schedule around holidays.  There will be no testing on March 25-27 due to Passover; we also lose a testing day because of Good Friday.  Therefore there are fewer make-up options. We ask that you make every effort to have students at school and on time during the testing period.
Grade 3  March 21, 28
Grade 4  March 19 (composition), April 1, 3
grade 5  March 18, 22
Grade 3  May 9, 10
Grade 4  May 13, 15
Grade 5  May 6, 8    Science/Tech  May 16, 17
Please remember that Switch Day will again occur due to the statewide Composition test for grade 4.  Tuesday, March 20, will be a 3:00 dismissal and Wednesday, March 21 will be a 12:30 dismissal.
This week we welcomed 40 incoming kindergarten students.  Please alert any new families moving into your neighborhood to contact us so that we can make the best use of our resources.
Audrey Parad Peller
John Ward Elementary School
10 Dolphin Road
Newton Centre, MA 02459

 And Now a Word From the PTO



Spring forWARD Fundraiser on April 6th ~ Don't Miss Out!

Spring forWARD auction RSVP deadline is Friday, March 15th. Go to to pay online or drop a check in the RSVP box in the lobby.  Just added to our roster of AMAZING items:

  • One week at the official Boston Red Sox Summer Camp - $549 value
  • Behind the scenes tour of Matty in the Morning at KISS108 FM

Check out the complete list of auction items at


  Grade Wide Pot Luck Dinners ~ Thank You!!!

Grade wide pot luck dinners were held for grades K through 4 and were a huge success (despite some weather related challenges). Special thanks to the following hosts for opening your homes for these events:

  • Lisa & Chris Kirby (Kindergarten)
  • Heidi Gardner & Ivan Matviak (1st Grade)
  • Heather & Jeremy Pozen (2nd Grade)
  • Jodi & Sam Figler (3rd Grade)
  • Madelon Bracke & Jan de Boer (4th Grade)



***Upcoming Events***


PTO Meeting Rescheduled ~ Tuesday, March 19th @ 8:45AM

Come to the Dolphin Cafe after drop off and hear about what's going on this spring at Ward!


International Night, Wednesday, March 20th @ 5:30PM

International Night will be held on March 20th from 5:30 to 7:30. This is a "Best of Ward" event. An opportunity to learn about many different cultures, there will be booths for more than 20 countries, activities for kids, performances and a pot luck dinner. Everyone is welcome to attend. We still need volunteers to help setup, during the event and to help clean up, if you are interested in volunteering for the event, contact Anna Olivella at or call 617.314.0087.


3rd Grade Understanding Our Differences ~ Thursday, March 28th @ 1:00PM

The 3rd Grade Understanding Our Differences Blindness and Low Vision Unit is scheduled for Thursday, March 28th from 1:00pm - 3:00pm. Understanding Our Differences is a non-profit organization, working in partnership with the Newton Public Schools, to provide a unique and creative disability awareness program for all elementary school children. This program is taught by volunteers such as yourself and promotes inclusion, understanding and acceptance of people with disabilities and individual differences at our schools and in our community. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Alexandra Chakalis at


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!                




What's New at After-School  


Reminder from Ward After-School

Ward After-School is now accepting applications for the 2013-2014 school year!  Please visit our website,, to learn more about our program and to download an application (can be found under the "Forms" tab).  Please note we have a two-day minimum for Grades 1-up.  The application deadline is Friday, March 29.  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Donna Marohn, Director at or 617-965-3087.  Thank you!  


Newton News and Events



Newton Youth Summit: On March 20, 2013, Mayor Setti D. Warren will host Youth Summit II, bringing teens, parents and community members back together to focus on solutions to the challenges discussed during Youth Summit I in October.


Youth Summit I was a chance to hear from and talk to our teens about what they are thinking, feeling, and experiencing. Youth Summit II is an opportunity to learn about the priorities that emerged from our discussions in October and to help us move forward as a community to take action. The evening will include a chance to hear from the Mayor, the Superintendent, and teens, small group discussions and an opportunity for all to express their opinion on the best solutions to pressing teen issues in Newton. Have a positive impact on the well-being of youth in our city by participating in this community event. Teens and adults are invited and encouraged attend.


The summit will take place at Brown Middle School located at 125 Meadowbrook Road in Newton from 6-9pm. A light supper will be served from 5:30-6:00pm. Registration is required for the event. You can register by visiting or contact 617-796-1436, or


Youth Summit II is sponsored by the Newton Youth Commission, City of Newton Health and Human Services Department, and The Newton Partnership. The summit has been planned with the input of two Action Groups open to the public and by the Mayor's Newton Teen Voice Program and the Keystone Leadership Program at the Boys and Girls Club. To learn more please


Community Classifieds


Watertown Children's Theatre News:



March 15-17 The Pajama Game performances

March 21 Summer Early Bird Deadline

March 28 Spring Play Factory Begins

April 7 Spring Musical Begins


WCT Sheet Music Drive:

Do you have vocal sheet music you are no longer using?

Consider donating your old vocal sheet music or music books to WCT's Music Library!

Drop off any donations between 2 pm and 5 pm Tuesday - Friday.

Thanks for continuing to help us grow!


WCT Wish List:

As WCT continues to grow, there are some items that we'd love to have   for our shop and office. If you have any of these items that you are not using, and you would like to donate them, please contact us!


* 1 18-volt cordless drill

* 1 socket set and ratchet handle

* 2 sets of Loc-bins

* 15-20 bin clips for Loc-bins

* 1 small heat gun

* c-clamps, squeeze clamps, pipe clamps

* laptop with working graphics card

* folding easels

* 25 or 50 ft tape measure

* large box fan

* portable sewing machine


Contact Us:

Watertown Children's Theatre

321 Arsenal Street, Watertown, Massachusetts 02472

617-926-ARTS or




Spring and Summer Programs at Newton Community Farm: We are pleased to announce that our 2013 spring and summer education programs are now open for registration!


Adults and older teens, join us this spring to learn more about gardening, cooking, or raising chickens! For families and our younger followers, don't miss Spring Farm Sprouts, Ready Set Grow (a family gardening series), Wake Up the Earth (vacation week program) as well as our popular Spring Supper cooking class.


If you are already planning your summer and are looking for fun-filled, hands-on summer programs for your children (pre-school through grade 9), check out our popular offerings including Farm Sprouts, Little Diggers, Farmer in Training (FIT), and Socially Aware Young (SAY) Farmers.

We are also accepting inquiries for our High School Summer Intern Program. Summer internships are unpaid opportunities for high school students to learn about organic and community farming in a fun, friendly environment.


For more information on any of our programs please visit our website




April Vacation Sewing Camp: April Vacation camp at Hipstitch in the morning 9am-1pm, afternoon 1.30-4.30-pm or full day (9am-4pm). Do as many days as you like, spend some creative time with your friends this spring!


Hipstitch located at 15 Spencer St West Newton. 617 965 0880 or




Kindergarten Soccer: Registration for Kindergarten Soccer is Open - Register by March 22 for the spring season!


Since 1993, Kindergarten Soccer has been introducing children to soccer in a fun and non-competitive environment, where girls and boys develop friendships, learn teamwork, and gain confidence. We play on Saturday mornings at Richardson Field in Waban, starting April 6. Join us and meet other Newton families! The program is open to all current Newton kindergartners, and all children who will enter kindergarten in Newton in the fall of 2013.


Kindergarten Soccer is a program of the Zervas Elementary PTO. For more information and for online registration, please visit our website:




In Home Tutor: Call Y3K TUTOR IN YOUR HOME today, when schoolwork goes the wrong way!


Our many years of experience in teaching and educational consulting has developed the right way to motivate, the right way to teach, be understood, and be remembered. We tutor special ed. such as ADD, ADHD, Asperger's, Autism, Emotional/Behavioral, and gifted. We also tutor regular ed. and test preparation. All subjects and ages are taught. Parents can now receive 25% off the first lesson. Call 781-492-8700 or log on to




Spiral Foundation Program: Sensory Integration & Oral Motor Difficulties presented by: Lori Goodrich, OTR/L

When: Wednesday March 27, 2013 from 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM EDT

Where: Spiral Foundation, 74 Bridge Street, Newton, MA 02458

Contact: Andrea Leung, 617-969-4410 ext 231,


You're invited to our next exciting, educational evening lecture for parents, occupational therapists and occupational therapist assistants, and teachers.


Eating a wide range of foods is essential to meet a child's nutritional needs that are necessary growth and development for the body and brain. Picky eating can be the result of many factors, including Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), nutrition, medical based concerns and behavior. Picky eating can have a broad reaching impact on a child's energy level, development and social participation. Identifying the cause of a child's picky eating and using strategies and treatment in order to support a healthier and balanced diet. Providing opportunities for a child to have a positive and safe interaction with food is essential for their own well-being, as well as the well-being of their family members.

Get more information or Register Now!

Program Cost: $25, Parent Couple: $35




Events at Historic Newton/The Jackson Homestead and Museum


Sunday, March 17, noon-5:00 PM


Need help organizing or preserving your family photos and papers? Drop in for a brief, on-the-spot consultation with Archivist/Curator Sara Goldberg. Sara will provide advice and resources that will help keep your precious collections alive and well. (Please feel free to bring samples, but NOT whole collections of what you'd like help with.) Free and open to the public.


Sunday, March 17, 3:00 PM


Restoring Farlow Park Bridge and Pond

In 1880 John Farlow, a successful railroad businessman, donated land to the city for the purposes of creating Newton's first open space for recreation and relaxation. The focal point for the park was a pond with a handsome Adirondack style bridge, but in the 1950s the water was drained from the pond and the deteriorating bridge removed. Join us in celebrating the opening of this new exhibit about the history of the park and contemporary efforts to restore it. Free and open to the public.


Wednesday, March 20, 7:30 PM


Ever wondered what your neighborhood looked like 50 or 100 years ago? 150 years ago? Join Allison Carter in looking at our collection of historic atlases to find out the answers to questions such as: Whose farm was subdivided to make your house lot? When was your street first laid out? All ages are welcome. Free.


Thursday, March 21, 7:30 PM


At its March meeting, the book club will discuss A Murder in Virginia: Southern Justice on Trial by Suzanne Lebsock. In recounting an 1895 murder investigation and trial in Lunenberg County, Virginia, the author brings to life a forgotten episode of a small, segregated Southern town and frames it against the backdrop of racial strife in the country as a whole. The book provides a fascinating glimpse into the politics and law of the late Reconstruction. A Murder in Virginia won the 2004 Francis Parkman Prize. The book club is free and open to the public, new members are always welcome.


Thursday, March 28, 7:00 PM


Learn about the "Complementary Lives" of Samuel E. Courtney and Booker T. Washington at this fascinating lecture presented by Holly Robbins of Westfield State University. Ms. Robbins will give an illustrated talk about the personal and professional relationship between Booker T. Washington and his lesser-known loyal friend, Samuel E. Courtney. Ms. Robbins will also discuss Courtney's Newton, MA connection. Co-Sponsored by Historic Newton and the Newton Free Library. At the Newton Free Library, 330 Homer Street. Free.


Sunday, March 31




Confronting Our Legacy: Slavery and Antislavery in the North: This new exhibition transforms the lower gallery of the museum into a three-dimensional learning center with hands-on activities and information about colonial slavery, the Underground Railroad, and local abolitionists.


An Architect Ahead of Her Time: Annie Cobb (1830-1911): Starting in the 1870s, Annie Cobb built 16 homes in Newton Highlands and exhibited at the World's Fair of 1893 in Chicago. She was arguably the first woman architect in America, and succeeded in fashioning a career for herself in the male world of building in a time when women's work was mainly limited to the home.


Newton and the Civil War: In celebration of the sesquicentennial of the Civil War, Historic Newton will be featuring a changing exhibit showcasing Newton residents in the Civil War. Also be sure to visit our new Women's Fashions of the Civil War Era exhibit.  


Peeking into Newton's Toy Chest: The values and lessons toys teach us, as shown by the Historic Newton collection, are explored in this exhibit. Children's attractions include hands-on toys and a model train.


Mapping a New Town: 1714-1874: Maps depicting Newton's growth over the centuries are displayed; special activities for children are also featured.


Newton Salutes-Restoring Farlow Park Bridge and Pond: In 1880 John Farlow, a successful railroad businessman, donated land to the city for the purposes of creating Newton's first open space for recreation and relaxation. The focal point for the park was a lovely pond and handsome Adirondack style bridge. However, in the 1950's, the water was drained from the pond and the deteriorating bridge removed. This exhibit documents the history of the park and contemporary efforts to restore it.


The Newton History Gallery: Featuring tools, furniture, clothing, and toys to illustrate the Newton of the past.  


Save the Date for the Newton House Tour! The 31st Annual Newton House Tour will be held on May 19, 2013, 12-5 pm. Tickets go on sale April 1, 2013.


The Jackson Homestead and Museum is open from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM Tuesday through Friday, and Noon to 5:00 PM Saturday and Sunday. If you need special assistance, please call 617-796-1450.



ForWARD Submissions 

Next deadline:  Tuesday, April  2nd at noon for the April 5th issue.

Please send articles to

The ForWard will now be distributed electronically on the first and third Friday of every month instead of monthly as in past years.  On weeks when the full newsletter is not distributed, This Week at Ward will be used to inform you of dates and events in the upcoming week.  We hope that a single email each week will help you keep track of important dates and events.

The Ward PTO, at its discretion and as space is available, may permit announcements to appear in the ForWard from not-for-profit organizations that offer a direct service to children/families in the Ward community and from for-profit individuals or businesses that offer a direct educational service to children/families in our community. The Ward PTO may edit announcements and does not endorse any individuals or business whose announcements are published.     

About NPS TAC Support for PTO Communications 

Volunteers from the Newton Public Schools Technology Advisory Council (NPS TAC) are helping to set up and support PTO communications, including this system used by the Ward PTO.  
Learn more here.