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Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of September 15, 2014

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

I hope that every family received a TNS Handbook last week in your child’s backpack (if not, please stop by the office and ask for a copy).  It describes some important TNS values and traditions, as well as the essential “nuts and bolts” to get started this year.  

In my letter last week, I mentioned two very important upcoming traditions that may require a little context for our newest community members:  Sing and Community Day.  Our school “Sing” occurs the last Wednesday of every month after drop off.  Families gather in the school lobby while teachers organize their classes and escort them to the Auditorium. Song sheets are handed out at each session. This is a wonderful opportunity to see your child among their peers and to see the entire school community together in one place. Teachers and parents play instruments while children and families contribute the vocals. The entire event typically lasts 10 – 15 minutes. Children practice their songs in class throughout the month and our Sing event is a proud moment for all. We encourage all families to attend.  Our first Sing event is next Wednesday, September 24.  

Community day involves one part helping to clean and care for our classrooms and shared facilities, and one part thought and reflection.  Class parents often assess each teacher’s classroom needs and help to ensure that each class has a team of helpers. On this day in past years, there has been book re-shelving in the library, block cleaning in the classrooms, painting of the bathrooms, hanging of shelves and cabinets, and assembling benches to name a few activities.  This year, we will have two community days; one in the fall and one again in the spring.  Community Day is Sunday, October 5 from 11 - 4pm.  

It is going to be another very busy week, both at TNS and in our neighborhood!  

  • Please join us on Tuesday morning at 8:40 in the Library for our Welcome Back breakfast.  

  • Curriculum Night is Tuesday!  Pre-k through 2nd grade families will meet in the classrooms from 5 - 6pm, and then will meet with out-of-classroom teachers and support staff in the auditorium from 6 - 6:30pm. 3rd through 5th grade families will meet in the auditorium from 5:30 - 6pm and will meet in classrooms from 6 - 7pm. I very much hope to see you there; this is an exciting opportunity to learn about the curriculum for the year and to meet other families in your child’s class.

  • In 2013, The Neighborhood School’s PTA and SLT voted in support of a kindergarten enrollment diversity policy and joined the District 1 Diversity Task Force to explore options district wide.  Wednesday at 6pm at PS 20, the Community Education Council  (CEC) will be holding a School Diversity Town Hall to discuss the history in D1 of advocating for fairness in terms of diversity and equity.  Chancellor Farina will be at the Town Hall to speak with community members and to take questions. It’s important that we show the Chancellor the rich history we have in D1 for advocating for diversity and equity.  

  • Our first PTA meeting of the year is Thursday, September 18 at 8:40am in the PTA room.  Please come and meet the new staff at TNS!

  • Our first School Leadership Team (SLT) meeting of the year is Thursday, September 18 at 5:30pm in the office.  This meeting is open to all.

  • Friday, September 19th is a half-day.  Dismissal is at 11:35am.  Wingspan and University Settlement will provide after school care that day.

  • Join the TNS contingent at The People’s Climate March on Sunday, September 21 at Central Park West and 66th Street.  Look for our banners and signs.  

Lastly, please remember, the PTA will be collecting donations for the Summer Read-A-Thon all this week at drop off.

Warmly,

Dyanthe

Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of September 8, 2014

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

We have several events for new families this week.  This morning, there was a kindergarten orientation in the library at drop-off.  On Wednesday morning, there is an orientation for our new Pre-K families in the Library.  Please join us to meet other new families and learn more about TNS.  

This year we start each school day at 8:25am.  Breakfast will be served each morning from 7:45 - 8:15am.  Although we are delighted that students are eager to start their day, children (and their grown-ups) must wait until 8:23am to come up to classrooms.  

The school day ends at 2:45pm (This is 5 minutes earlier than last year).  At the Neighborhood School, we work hard to provide a safe and successful learning environment for each child.  When the school day ends, we also want to make sure that children get to their next destination safely and securely.  In the lower grades, this is achieved by having parents or caregivers pick each child up at the classroom.  In the upper grades, this is still an option.  As children gain increased independence and are able to take on more responsibility, parents may opt to have their child self-dismiss.  This means that your child would leave the classroom independently and exit the building directly and either meet a parent or caregiver outside or walk home or to another prearranged location.  (Children who attend after school programs that work in collaboration with our school will be picked up by an adult from the program, so this does not apply to them.)  If you decide that your child is ready for this responsibility, please sign the authorization for self-dismissal form and return it to your child’s classroom teacher.  All students still waiting for their grown-ups to pick-up after 2:55pm will be in the P.T.A. room (next to the small cafeteria).  

Curriculum Night is Tuesday, September 16th!  Pre-k through 2nd grade families will meet in the classrooms from 5 - 6pm, and then will meet with out-of-classroom teachers and support staff in the auditorium from 6 - 6:30pm. 3rd through 5th grade families will meet in the auditorium from 5:30 - 6pm and will meet in classrooms from 6 - 7pm. I very much hope to see you there; this is an exciting opportunity to learn about the curriculum for the year and to meet other families in your child’s class. Childcare and dinner for Neighborhood School students will be provided.

All Neighborhood School families should, if possible, subscribe to our school’s listserv. It is used for official communication from the school staff and PTA. It keeps you informed about important events happening in the school. This is a moderated list and, honestly, very few emails are sent out weekly. If you know a parent who is not on the email list, please forward this letter to them with this link: http://lists.theneighborhoodschool.org/listinfo.cgi/tns-list-theneighborhoodschool.org. We will also have laptops available for families to subscribe at arrival and dismissal all this week.

Mark Your Calendars!

  • Our Welcome (Back) Breakfast for all families is Tuesday, September 16th in the Library at drop off.

  • Friday, September 19th is a half-day.  Dismissal is at 11:35am.  Wingspan and University Settlement will provide after school care that day.

  • Sing is Wednesday, September 24 in the Auditorium at 8:45am.

  • Community Day has moved!  It is now on Sunday, October 5 (from 11 - 4pm).

On Friday afternoon, more than a dozen alumni (very sweaty 6th and 7th graders) came back to visit.  It was heart-warming to know that even as our students grow up and move on, they still come back to see familiar faces, say  “Hello” and get hugs.  

Warmly,

Dyanthe

Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of September 8, 2014

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

We have several events for new families this week.  This morning, there was a kindergarten orientation in the library at drop-off.  On Wednesday morning, there is an orientation for our new Pre-K families in the Library.  Please join us to meet other new families and learn more about TNS.  

This year we start each school day at 8:25am.  Breakfast will be served each morning from 7:45 - 8:15am.  Although we are delighted that students are eager to start their day, children (and their grown-ups) must wait until 8:23am to come up to classrooms.  

The school day ends at 2:45pm (This is 5 minutes earlier than last year).  At the Neighborhood School, we work hard to provide a safe and successful learning environment for each child.  When the school day ends, we also want to make sure that children get to their next destination safely and securely.  In the lower grades, this is achieved by having parents or caregivers pick each child up at the classroom.  In the upper grades, this is still an option.  As children gain increased independence and are able to take on more responsibility, parents may opt to have their child self-dismiss.  This means that your child would leave the classroom independently and exit the building directly and either meet a parent or caregiver outside or walk home or to another prearranged location.  (Children who attend after school programs that work in collaboration with our school will be picked up by an adult from the program, so this does not apply to them.)  If you decide that your child is ready for this responsibility, please sign the authorization for self-dismissal form and return it to your child’s classroom teacher.   All students still waiting for their grown-ups to pick-up after 2:55pm will be in the P.T.A. room (next to the small cafeteria).  

Curriculum Night is Tuesday, September 16th!  Pre-k through 2nd grade families will meet in the classrooms from 5 - 6pm, and then will meet with out-of-classroom teachers and support staff in the auditorium from 6 - 6:30pm. 3rd through 5th grade families will meet in the auditorium from 5:30 - 6pm and will meet in classrooms from 6 - 7pm. I very much hope to see you there; this is an exciting opportunity to learn about the curriculum for the year and to meet other families in your child’s class. Childcare and dinner for Neighborhood School students will be provided.

All Neighborhood School families should, if possible, subscribe to our school’s listserv. It is used for official communication from the school staff and PTA. It keeps you informed about important events happening in the school. This is a moderated list and, honestly, very few emails are sent out weekly. If you know a parent who is not on the email list, please forward this letter to them with this link: http://lists.theneighborhoodschool.org/listinfo.cgi/tns-list-theneighborhoodschool.org. We will also have laptops available for families to subscribe at arrival and dismissal all this week.

Mark Your Calendars!

  • Our Welcome (Back) Breakfast for all families is Tuesday, September 16th in the Library at drop off.

  • Friday, September 19th is a half-day.  Dismissal is at 11:35am.  Wingspan and University Settlement will provide after school care that day.

  • Sing is Wednesday, September 24 in the Auditorium at 8:45am.

  • Community Day has moved!  It is now on Sunday, October 5 (from 11 - 4pm).

On Friday afternoon, more than a dozen alumni (very sweaty 6th and 7th graders) came back to visit.  It was heart-warming to know that even as our students grow up and move on, they still come back to see familiar faces, say  “Hello” and get hugs.  

Warmly,

Dyanthe

News & Announcements

What’s Up September 2014

What's Up September 2014 - Welcome Back!

Dyanthe’s Weekly Letters

Week of September 1, 2014

Dear Neighborhood School Families,

As I write to you, the rain is pouring down, the sun is shining and there is a giant rainbow outside my window.   Today misleadingly feels like a typical (although, perhaps not this year) muggy NYC summer day.  Yet... tomorrow is the first day of September.  It always amazes me that even after many years of teaching, I get the back-to-school butterflies at this time of year.  Speaking with other TNS staff this past week, all of them busy readying classrooms, I realize that this feeling is shared; we are all eagerly anticipating the start to another school year.

Thursday, September 4th is the first day of school!  This year we will start each school day at 8:25am.  Breakfast will be served each morning beginning at 7:45.  The school day will end at 2:45pm (This is 5 minutes earlier than last year).  Late pick-up will be in the P.T.A. room (next to the small cafeteria).  Pre-K and kindergarten students will be dismissed at 11:35am all this week.

On Friday, September 5th, representatives from several After School Programs including Wingspan,  University Settlement,  Boys Arts Express and the Boys Club will be available to meet with families in the lobby at drop off (8:30am).  Scholarships are available for all afterschool programming.  

I look forward to catching up with many of you at the PTA sponsored Welcome (back) Picnic on Wednesday, September 3rd in the recess yard from 3 - 6pm.  You will have an opportunity to meet many of our new staff and families and also see familiar faces (and perhaps assuage some of those butterflies).  

See you in 4 days.  I can’t wait.

Warmly,

Dyanthe

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