ForWARD April 4, 2014

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The John Ward Elementary School PTO Newsletter

April 4, 2014 

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

Mark Your Calendars  

    • Friday, April 18: Good Friday, NO SCHOOL  
    • Monday, April 21 - Friday, April 25: April Vacation, NO SCHOOL 


From the Principal's Desk  



Dear Ward families.


I am excited to be returning to Ward following April vacation.  Mr. Griffin has done an outstanding job running the school during my absence and has kept me informed to ease my transition back to school.  I will be working part time for a while as I continue to regain my strength and Mr. Griffin will be spending some time here during the week following April break.  I also wish to thank the amazing Ward staff for their help in making the transition period so successful.


We are just beginning to plan for the upcoming school year.  I know that you are eager to hear our thoughts as we begin the process.  While it is still early to predict fall enrollment, I want to share with you our thinking based on current information.  We anticipate the following organization next year:

Grade   anticipated number of classes
K               2
1               2
2               3
3               3
4               2
5               2 ?

I want to underscore that this configuration is subject to change as we gain more information from families.  So, if you or someone you know will not be returning or intend to register, please contact our school office immediately.  A few students can make a huge difference.  I will update you as we continue to review our plans.

Prior to April vacation, you will be receiving a letter describing the placement process that includes an optional form for you to provide input.  I want to emphasize that the process is a very thorough one involving teachers and specialists who know your child best and consisting of numerous grade level meetings.  It is not necessary to complete this form for your child to receive careful consideration concerning placement.  If you do choose to contribute information, be sure to submit the form before May 5.  In fairness to all students, information received after this date cannot be accepted as we are on a tight timeline to complete the placement process in a fair and thoughtful way.

Have a wonderful time during April vacation.  I look forward to greeting you on April 28!

Warmest wishes,

Audrey Parad Peller
John Ward Elementary School
10 Dolphin Road
Newton Centre, MA 02459



 And Now a Word From the PTO



***Upcoming Events***


Cradles to Crayons Collection ~ April 16th

Cradles to Crayons (C2C) is a nonprofit that collects children's clothing, toys, books, shoes, boots, and coats in good condition from people who no longer need them.  These items are then repackaged and distributed to children living in poverty in the Greater Boston area.


We'll be holding a collection here on Wednesday, April 16th.  It's a great opportunity to clear out closets and toy chests and give what you don't need to someone else who really does.


Please note C2C can't use toys that are very large or stuffed animals.  Batteries don't matter if toys are in good condition and all the parts are intact. They will accept clothing from newborn through size 10.  For more information, contact Alison Best


May Magic Show ~ May 15th

Save the date for this exciting new community event at Ward. We will host 2 shows at 6:15 and 7:15 with Magician Matt Roberts. Matt's shows are interactive and engaging for all ages! We will have dinner options and snacks and a lot of other surprises too -- so stay tuned for more information.


More Upcoming Spring Events ~ Save the Dates

  • May 4th - Ward Serves Day: **Please note that this is a different date then the standard Newton Serves Day on April 27th. We have switched days to try to accommodate folks who may be on April vacation.
  • May 9th - Last PTO meeting of the year. Newton School Superintendent David Fleishmanwill join us. He will be available to answer and questions you may have.
  • May 21st - Ward Art Show
  • June 10th - Color Day (rain date June 17th)


 School News

Shop at  

10% of all purchases go to Ward School! If you use the link (click here) to connect to and make your purchases, Ward School will earn up to 10% of your order. There is no added cost to you - just use this link to connect to Amazon!


Boxtops for Education
You can raise money for Ward School by clipping boxtops and by shopping at

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:




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



Road Race:  Registration is still open for the Heartbreak Hill Road Race, Saturday April 19, Noon - 3pm, Newton City Hall


One mile, up and down famed Heartbreak Hill. For runners ages 8 - 90. Runners compete in their own age and gender groups. 1st, 2nd & 3rd place trophies for each race. Every runner gets a race medallion, goody bag, seedling tree, free pasta/pizza party ticket, and an official digital clock time. The first 500 registrants receive a free t-shirt. Come to the pasta/pizza party dinner on Friday, April 18th at 5:30pm at Newton City Hall - free for all registrants, just $3 for guests. Not a runner? Join in the family walk at 3:00, and walk the course with your family, friends and neighbors. It's fun! More information and registration at




Food Allergy Discussion:  Starting School or Pre-School with Food Allergies: Parents Need to Do Some Homework First


Entering pre-school or kindergarten is a big step for every child and parent, but poses special challenges if the child has food allergies. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, New England Chapter is sponsoring a meeting for parents to learn how to address these issues on Tuesday, April 8 at 7:00 p.m. at Newton-Wellesley Hospital. There is no charge to attend. Pre-registration is not required.


Guest speaker Jan Hanson, founder of Educating for Food Allergies, LLC, has been providing consulting services and educational workshops to parents and school personnel since 2001. She has two sons with food allergies, and is the author of the comprehensive handbook "Food Allergies: A Recipe for Success at School."  There will be time for questions and discussion following her presentation.

"What should a parent look for in choosing a pre-school? What steps need to be taken to keep children with food allergies safe? These are among the questions that will be on the agenda," says Sharon Schumack, Director of Education for the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, New England Chapter. "Parents will also have the opportunity to share their concerns and gain confidence for handling this important transition."


AAFA New England organizes educational support group programs throughout the region, publishes a newsletter, and runs a telephone resource and referral line for people coping with allergies and asthma. For more information or free fact sheets about managing food allergies at school or child care, call (781)444-7778 or see




"Frozen" Fundraiser: at West Newton Cinema, Tuesday, April 15


Looking for a great way to combat this endless winter? In preparation for the Best Buddies Challenge, Team Believe, which includes students from Angier, Brown and South, has organized a special showing of FROZEN at the West Newton Cinema on Tuesday, April 15 at 3pm. For $10, you can enjoy the movie with friends, a drink and popcorn. Additional donations are welcome and encouraged! Click here to learn more about Best Buddies or click here to make a donation to Team Believe. To RSVP or if you have any questions, please contact Meda Barnes




Technology and Learning Speaker:  Justin Reich:  The Future of Learning in a Networked World

How should schools adapt to a changing world with new technologies, and what practices should be held constant as the world changes?

Wednesday, April 9, 7:00 - 8:30 pm

The Cafetorium at Mason-Rice Elementary School, 149 Pleasant Street, Newton Center


For more information:




Suicide Prevention Training:  Learn how to respond to someone in distress

Choose one date:  Mon., April 7, 1 p.m. or Tues., April 15, 10 a.m.


Question, Persuade, Refer:  QPR is a simple educational program that teaches ordinary citizens how to recognize a mental health emergency and how to get a person at risk the help they need. 


Participants will learn how to:

     - Recognize the warning signs of suicide

     - Offer hope

     - Get help & refer


Registration is required.  Space is limited.  Register at:  These dates are intended for adults.


Newton Cares: Coalition for Suicide Prevention & Mental Health,

City of Newton Health & Human Services Department, (617) 796-1420




Bike Donations Wanted: Do you have an unused bike in your garage? Please consider how much it could benefit someone in a developing country. Get rid of clutter, keep trash out of landfills, and make a difference by donating a used bike to Bikes Not Bombs. Bring bikes of any size or condition to the First Unitarian Church in West Newton, 1326 Washington St., on April 27th between 10am and 1pm along with a $10 donation per bike. For more information see  



Newton PAC Presentation:  Please join us for the April meeting of the Newton Parent Advisory Council for Special Education, for a presentation on Reading and Language Based Learning Difficulties Steve Wilkins of the Carroll School.


The meeting will take place at 7:30 pm. on April 8, 2013 in room 210 of the Education Center at 100 Walnut Street, Newton.  Networking and refreshments will begin at 7:15 pm.


IMPORTANT: Because we anticipate a large turnout for this meeting, please RSVP with the number of people attending to     


Steve Wilkins is Head of School at Carroll, a K/1 - 8 school in Lincoln, MA for children with language based learning difficulties, including dyslexia.  With more than 35 years of experience in the field, Steve is passionate about children who learn differently and celebrates their strengths while striving to provide a creative, experiential, outcomes-based curriculum that educates the whole child.  Steve and Carroll are actively engaged in important brain science research that is helping educators understand why and how children with dyslexia learn differently.  Steve's talk will lay out the best thinking about how children learn or don't learn to read, what kinds of interventions are most effective, and cutting edge studies that piloting new curricula to address working memory and other associated learning issues.  More than an educator, Steve is a champion for kids who learn differently and what they have to offer the world.




Newton Schools Foundation's Awards of Excellence:  Newton Schools Foundation Announces Honorees to be Recognized at Celebration of Excellence Gala May 3


Newton Schools Foundation will honor nine outstanding individuals who have had a profound impact on the Newton Public Schools.  The honorees will be recognized at NSF's Celebration of Excellence, May 3 at 6:30 p.m. at Newton North High School.  They are:

  • Kenneth Brennan, President and CEO, Village Bank
  • David Greenblatt, NSHS '62 and NSHS Athletic Hall of Fame inductee
  • James Heppelmann, president and CEO, PTC
  • Chuck Hurwitz, teacher and former NSHS science department chair, wrestling, soccer and Ligerbots coach
  • Greg Livingston, Bigelow Middle School music teacher
  • Jimmy Marini, NHS '63, former NNHS principal and NPS superintendent
  • Mary Pohlman NNHS '76 and Scott Pohlman NNHS '75, coaches, Newton Bluefish
  • Mary Scott, Vice Principal, NSHS

NSF reached out to the Newton community for nominations of NPS alumni, educators and Newton community leaders who've made a positive impact on the Newton Public Schools.  A panel of Newton residents, educators and business leaders selected the honorees from a host of outstanding nominees.


The May 3 gala will feature the comic genius of Boston comedian Jimmy Tingle, the music of Loose Change, a band of Mason Rice educators and parents, and fine food and refreshments from local restaurants.  Newton South Principal, Joel Stembridge will serve as master of ceremonies.  Rockland Trust is the title sponsor for the event.


Proceeds raised from the event will be used by Newton Schools Foundation in its mission to support the Newton Public Schools.  For more information on the Celebration of Excellence,



Community Classifieds  




Academic April Vacation Camp:  Looking for something for your 1st or 2nd grade child to do over April vacation? Look no further! Top Banana is offering an educational camp where students will play logic games, participate in reading circles and work on their fine motor skills! You can sign up for 1 day, 2 days or the whole week, whatever works best for your family!


We are also offering handwriting workshops throughout the week! You can either sign your child up for just the handwriting workshop or for the camp day, plus the workshop!


To register your child for one or more days, if you have questions or concerns, please contact Ashley at (617) 795-1557 or by email




Summer Basketball Clinic:  Summer is right around the corner and we all know there are many choices on how your children will spend their vacation time.  When considering summer opportunities for your child, we invite you to consider The Joe Jones Basketball Clinic at Boston University (  The Clinic will run from June 30 thru July 3.  The typical day will begin at 9 AM and conclude at 3 PM.  This is a great opportunity for your child to receive individual instruction as well as learn the value of hard work and teamwork.


The clinic will be held at Case Athletic Center on the campus of Boston University.  It is designed for boys & girls ages 7-18.  The clinic fee is $225. 


I encourage you to consider sending your child to The Joe Jones Basketball Clinic, not just for a summer event to choose from, but as a tool for them to build a foundation of hard work, fun, and teamwork.  Currently we are in the preferred registration phase to give you a special opportunity to reserve your spot now.  Space is limited.  


You may register via our website ( or contact Adam Hood ( with your name, child's name, email, and phone number.  If you decide not to register via the online option, you will have to mail a check to the men's basketball office (300 Babcock St, Boston, MA 02215) to complete registration.   




Kindergarten Soccer:  Sign up now for Kindergarten Soccer!


This program provides an introduction to soccer and focuses on having fun and developing confidence.  Teams are small and each session includes simple drills followed by a game.  It's open to all children in the Newton area.


The program runs for 8 Saturdays: April 12 - June 14, from 9 to 10 am, at the Memorial Spaulding's Upper Field.  There will be no soccer on Saturday, April 26 (Spring Vacation) and Saturday, May 24 (Memorial Day weekend).  Children must be accompanied by an adult - this is not a drop-off program.


Kindergarten Soccer is run by parent volunteers and we need parents to help as coaches and assistant coaches.  No prior knowledge of soccer is required.  If you're interested in signing up your child, please consider signing up yourself as well! 


The PTO asks for a voluntary contribution of $65, payable to the Memorial Spaulding PTO.  For this donation, your child will receive a team T-shirt as well as a trophy at the end.  Every child must wear shin guards each week or they will not be permitted to play.  Bring a #3 size soccer ball if possible.  Some children wear cleats; however, sneakers are fine.


Enrollment is limited and handled on a first-come, first-served basis.  Team and coaching assignments will be e-mailed by April 9.  There will be no other confirmation of registration.  If you have any questions, please contact Mike Lange at, or 617-216-5552 (cell).




Summer Latin Enrichment Program:  Introducing "LatinSummer Boston," a two-week summer enrichment program that provides students in grades 1-7 a unique chance to learn about Latin and the classical world! Creative and enthusiastic instructors will provide a wide array of exciting and hands-on activities that introduce students to many varied aspects of classical and conversational Latin, Greco-Roman mythology, and Roman culture and daily life. No prior knowledge of Latin or Classics is required. An all-new curriculum awaits both new and returning students! 


The popular LatinSummer programs have been offered many times over the past decade in locations across the nation. LatinSummer Boston will run from 9:00 am - 12:30 pm on weekdays from July 21 - August 1 at The Brimmer & May School in Chestnut Hill (Brookline / Newton / West Roxbury). LatinSummer is sponsored by the nonprofit Ascanius: The Classics Youth Institute and is hosted by The Brimmer & May School. Registration fee is $295 with significantly reduced rates also available depending on financial need. Tee-shirts provided! Registrations are accepted by mail or online through May 31. For more information and to register, please - this summer, let's carpe diem and do as the Romans did!




Preschool Summer Program:  Fun summer program for children ages 2.6 - 5 years.

Beautiful Chestnut Hill location.  Flexible schedule. Children may attend as few as two weeks or as many as seven.   Three or four days per week.  Certified Teacher with over 30 years of experience.


For further information or to receive an application please contact Jude at 617-277-6225



Nursery School:  CMT Nursery School at Chestnut Hill is now enrolling for September 2014


CMT Nursery School enrolls toddlers as young as 1.8 years old through Transitional Kindergarten. There is a flexible 2, 3, or 5 day program, hours ranging from 9-12, 9-1:30, 9-3, or 9-6pm. There are excellent student/teacher ratios and all of the teachers are certified and highly qualified.


Various specialists visit each month (story teller, music specialist, creative dance teacher, certified yoga instructor, and an early childhood basketball coach.) This is all included in the tuition. Also as a bonus for enrolling in the nursery school - every family is given FREE SYNAGOGUE MEMBERSHIP.  SYNAGOGUE MEMBERSHIP IS INCLUDED IN ALL OF THE STATED TUITION PRICES. (This includes free High Holiday tickets with free babysitting, as well as many kinds of young family activities and events throughout the year. Please join the Congregation Mishkan Tefila (CMT) Family!!


Call Lisa Kideckel at 617-332-7770 Ext. 3236 or email Lisa




Jewish Learning:  Are you looking for Jewish learning for your child?

Kesher Newton now enrolling for Fall, 2014.  Kesher Newton is an after-school program that offers a hands on and indepth approach to Jewish learning for students in grades K-7! Kesher Newton is now located on Hammond Pond Parkway, convenient to Newton, Brookline, and the surrounding communities. Housed inside the building of Congregation Mishkan Tefila, Kesher's warm and inviting new space accommodates its expanding student base and its many family activities.


Kesher Newton is a nationally-recognized alternative to traditional Hebrew School, where children learn Jewish culture and Hebrew language in a spirited, camp-like environment. Kesher's innovative curriculum challenges students intellectually, while fostering Jewish commitment, joy of learning, and active community participation. Kesher Newton is an independent pluralistic community that is welcoming to all.


For more information, contact Kesher Newton at 617-244-5390 and ask for a tour now! Please email for more info!




Hebrew Program:  Ma'or Hebrew Program for Kindergarten-Fifth Grades.  Visit us and learn about the exciting and innovative


Open House:  Join us on Sunday, May 4, 2014 at 9:15 am.

We are located on the Fifth Floor at the JCC, 333 Nahanton Street, Newton, MA 02459


Meet with the Directors, tour our facility, and observe the program in action.  We will be happy to answer your questions about what to expect as you plan for your child's Jewish education.  R.S.V.P. at   


If you would like to visit at another time, please let us know. We are happy to schedule alternative times for you to see the program.  Open to anyone interested.




Math and Reading Programs:  Kumon Math and Reading, 230 Central St. Auburndale, is an individualized program for students Pre-K -12th grade in Math and Reading.  We, the teachers/owners, offer a free testing/orientation.  Please call to schedule.


Jane Chiong, Ed.D., Winston Chiong, Ph.D.,, 617-244-9540




After School Enrichment Program:  Bright Pearl Chinese and Arts After School Enrichment Program 2014-2015

Open House: Noon-2pm Sunday, April 20, 2014


Bright Pearl Chinese and Arts After School Enrichment Program is to provide a safe and enjoyable environment for elementary children to spark cultural discovery through art, education, and engagement. Our Mandarin language class offers a thematic curriculum developed through years of teaching experience. Students will develop their Chinese language skills in a fun and productive environment. The extra activities cover the spectrum of traditional arts such as arts and crafts, Chinese brush painting, singing, drumming, dancing, and martial arts. The wide exposure to fun activities allows all children to maximize their potential. We will host open house on Sunday April 20th from 12:00-2:00pm at GBCCA.


Please don't hesitate to contact us with any questions. We look forward to seeing you in our open house.  Please visit our website for more information: 


Contact info (617) 971-8866, (617) 340-9618

Email Address:

Address: 437 Cherry St Newton MA 02456




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, Executive Function, and gifted.  We also tutor regular ed. and test preparation.  In addition to academic subjects, we teach children organizational skills, homework coaching, study skills, and time management. All subjects and ages are taught.  Parents can now receive 25% off the first lesson.  Call 781-492-8700 or log on to




Academic Performance Training:  Are you concerned about your child's academic performance?

Do you want to learn how to improve and maintain their grades? 

Brain Excel specializes in providing individual training to improve attention, memory, and reasoning. Our certified trainers assess and target these cognitive skills through customized exercises to improve your child's academic performance.  We are also introducing a Group Brain Training were your child may train for free! To find out more contact us at or 781-530-6677 or




Etiquette Classes:  The Etiquette Academy of New England is proud to announce Spring 2014

Saturdays, May 3rd - June 21st

Open Enrollment at:  



Basic manners: greeting, knocking, yawning properly, holding a conversation, table manners, improving posture, improving social & communication skills, projecting confidence, overcoming shyness, strengthening self-esteem & leadership skills, navigating friendships, resolving conflict, understanding social cues, and more.


Mind Your Manners: Beyond Please and Thank You {Grades 2-4}

Etiquette for Middle Schoolers: Peer Pressure and Beyond {Grades 5-8}

Etiquette for Young Adults: Social Skills for the Real World {Grades 9-12)}


For more information call 617.608.3920 or email




Youth Theatre:  Newton Youth Players

If your child would like to be a part of an outstanding after-school youth theatre program, then Newton Youth Players could be the answer to their performing dreams! This program has a few spaces available for some upcoming plays, and the enrollment will start soon for next year.  The casts are small, which gives every child an opportunity to feel they are an important part of the show. They sing, dance, make their own scenery, and wow their adoring public every time!   


Great news! This summer we are extending the enrollment age group to include children going into 1st grade, because "Annie" is a wonderful play for younger children! for more information, and to enroll.




Alice in Wonderland Performance: featuring New Philharmonia Orchestra and Boston Ballet School

Sunday, April 6 at 3pm, First Baptist Church, Newton Centre


Your favorite Alice in Wonderland characters leap from the page to the stage! This family-friendly performance features music, dance and storytelling by narrator Laura Young, former Principal Dancer with the Boston Ballet. Following the imaginative performance, audience members of all ages are invited to meet and try the instruments at our Instrument Petting Zoo. Don't miss this magical, musical afternoon! Tickets $10-$15. More information available at  or call 617.527.9717.




Performance at TheatreInk: Theatre Ink presents: Spontaneous Generation! From the moment when the first bacterium crawled onto the felsic shore and called itself man, Mother Earth has called on one troupe to be the guiding light for the despairing mass: SPONTANEOUS GENERATION! Back with four more action packed improvisation shows that will have you sneezing with laughter from start to finish. Relying on both audience participation and the cunning of the actors, Spon Gen is one show you will not want to miss. Wake the kids! Call the neighbors! Summon the spirits! SPON GEN IS BACK! April 2,3,4,5-2014, at 7:30pm in the Little Theatre at Newton North High School, 475 Washington Street, Newtonville, MA 02460 tickets $7.00 at or 617-559-6406




Newton Cultural Alliance Gala: host Ed Harding (WCVB) and awards presenter Congressman Joe Kennedy invite you to Ovations 2014 Gala on Saturday, April 5 at 7pm at the First Baptist Church in Newton Centre. Ovations celebrates Newton's arts, culture and community! This year's honorees include Newton native and sculptor Nancy Schön, non-profit Historic Newton, and patron WS Development. The ceremony also includes a performance of Alice in Wonderland by the Boston Ballet School and New Philharmonia Orchestra plus a gallery powered by Newton Open Studios. Tickets begin at $50. | 617.332.4300




Lifestyle Management:  Our mission is to make your busy life less hectic because let's face it - there are times we all wish we had a second pair of hands. That is where The Help: Boston comes in.  We are a lifestyle management company offering a wide variety of services, tailored to your every need. From running errands to organizing your home to planning your current event, whether it be a baby shower for your friend or your child's birthday party, we are The Help you need! Just give us a call or visit us on line at




Help Wanted: Marketing/Special Events Coordinator

Newton Community Education (NCE), a self-sustaining arm of the Newton Public Schools, is looking for an enthusiastic individual to lead our marketing efforts and manage special events. Marketing/PR experience as well as excellent writing and interpersonal skills are required; experience with Macintosh computers is a plus, as is familiarity with our market. This is a flexible 10-15-hour/week position working closely with the NCE Kids Program Coordinator (who is involved in our marketing and events work), and reporting to the NCE Director. Hours may increase over the summer in support of the NCE Kids program.


Send resumes to:




Cupcakes:  Cupcakes on Centre in Newton Centre (617) 244 3232 in now a nut free cupcake boutique specializing nut free cakes, cookies and cupcakes. We offer gluten free, egg free/ dairy free and sugar free. We can customize orders as well. Mention this add and receive $ 1.00 of any single item or $5.00 off any dozen for first time customers.